The trip to New York went well. After the long bus ride, I was extremely haggard on Wednesday evening. I had a meeting with my agent at the Bowery Hotel Bar, and then she and Spooky and I caught a taxi and headed over to KGB for the reading. Apparently, I did okay. My voice was going, but people seemed pleased. I read the second section of Agents of Dreamland, "Words Written Backwards," and then, since I had a little extra time, I read a few pages of the first section, "Oddfellows Local 171." Afterwards, we went with the KGB group to dinner at the Kitchen Sink. Unfortunately, the debate was on two enormous televisions, and it rather dominated the meal. I'd actually hoped to avoid it by having to do the reading on Wednesday. No such luck. It was good, though, getting to talk with Jack Ketchum after so many years. I think I had an embarrassing fangirlish moment, when I started telling him about my copy of Off Season, bought at a grocery store in Leeds, Alabama in 1982.
Kathryn and I stayed at the Carlton Arms Hotel in Gramercy, and I have a feeling I'm going to have to write a short story about the place to do it justice. It's easy to throw around adjectives like "Bohemian" and "fleabag" and "bizarre" and only hint at the actual weirdness. I suspect we'll be heading back sometime this winter for two or three nights, as winter rates at the Carlton are cheaper. We stayed in a room that I described, fairly accurately, as the Hipster Jesus LSD Dungeon. I'll post photos later. I don't have time today, as I have to get some emergency copyediting done.
I caught a second wind after dinner, and we had a late-night stroll in the city. Well, with these feet, I don't so much stroll as hobble. We had a brisk late-night hobble. The city is so much more pleasant, I find, long after dark. And then I couldn't sleep, and I was up until sometime after four a.m.
Thursday, we spend some time exploring the city from the Carlton to Madison Sqaure Park to the Flatiron District. And then we met up with folks from Tor.com for lunch at a Thai place (Thai Villa, 5 East 19th St.). My thanks to Irene Gallo, Katharine Duckett, and Theresa DeLucci for a fine meal. Spooky and I headed back to Port Authority after that, and our bus left NYC at 5 p.m. We should have been back home by 9, but we pulled into Providence more like 9:45. I have no idea what the source of the holdup was.
The trip set up back about three hundred dollars, between bus fare, the hotel, and taxis. But it was worth it. It helps that all our meals were covered.
As I said on Facebook this morning, for the release of Agents of Dreamland, I'm going to do something I've never done before, not in eighteen years of publishing: A book tour. It's going to be a small regional book tour, probably limited to New England and New York. This will be late in February and in March, as the book is being published on February 28th. I'll be announcing dates as they're confirmed. But I can say upfront that there will be appearances in Manhattan, Boston, Providence, and in the Amherst/Northampton area. Katharine at Tor.com will be helping me set up the dates. I think there will also be an official tour T-shirt, available via Red Bubble.
And now, I gotta go work! Oh, hey...it got cloudy.