Saturday, October 18, 2008

The Today Show, Baby!

So I didn't want to jinx myself by mentioning this on the blog earlier, but Time of My Life was just named one of the top 10 reads for fall on The Today Show!


The company that I keep on that list is UNBELIEVABLE. Truly. Dennis Lehane. Anita Shreve. Wally Lamb!?!? Are you kidding me? I cannot describe how much my mind is blown.

Here's the link if you want to see their top 10 picks:

Or watch the video:

Also, because this blog is not - nor has it ever been - all about me, I just want to say that all of you aspiring writers out there, keep plugging away. Four or five years ago, writing fiction was an aspiration for me, something I thought I was capable of but daunted all the same. But because I don't believe in limiting myself, I gave it a crack, and while (as well documented on this blog), my first manuscript never sold, I kept at it. Because that's what you have to do. So keep at it. That's really your only choice.

In addition, I am so sorry that for the past few weeks, I haven't been able to answer any of your Ask Allison questions! I know that first and foremost, you guys come to this blog not to read about my book release (ha!) but to get advice on the industry, but the truth is that things have exploded in ways that I couldn't anticipate, and I am just so, so, so busy that I haven't had time to sit down and answer your questions. But I do hope to get back to that soon!

Anyway, enjoy your weekend! I know that I will!!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

People! PEOPLE!!

Oh What a Night!

Last night was so great! We SOLD OUT Borders, drank mojitos, and all in all had a blast. I'm posting some pics when I get a second.

But I just had the most SURREAL experience at the grocery store. I wandered in to pick up a few things after dropping my son off at school, and saw the new People magazine. I flipped through to see which books were reviewed, and TIME OF MY LIFE is in there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was so freaked out (in a good way!) that I could barely sign my credit card receipt! And now, I'm wondering if it's too early to start drinking! :) As we've discussed here before, People is the ultimate (though I hope to have some other very, very big news to announce on Saturday), and I am going totally bananas. Ba. Na. Nas.

Anyway, pictures are coming asap. Thanks to everyone who came and celebrated and got a copy!

Oh, several people have posted here or sent me emails as to how to get a signed copy. The best thing to do is to send me an email, and I'll send you my address: you can mail me a copy, and for Ask Allison readers, I'll throw in free return postage and send it back to you. :)

Okay, off to make that drink!!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Tonight, Tonight, Tonight


(Yes, I just quoted Genesis on my blog. Am I old or what?)

But all of you New Yorkers or folks in the New York vicinity, I'm reading/signing/discussing ToML TONIGHT at the Borders at Time Warner Center at 7pm. Check out the spiffy window display (taken from my Blackberry, so the quality ain't great)!

I hope to see some of you there, and please feel free to pass this along to any/all friends in the area!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

What, Really, Is the Goal Here?

So a writer friend, Tricia Lawrence, was kind enough to post a lovely review of ToML last week, and it got me thinking. Specifically, the last line of her review got me thinking. She said, "And to my very good writing friend, Allison, cheers. You outdid your first success, I think," and I was so touched by this sentiment. And this is why I started thinking. What I was thinking about, specifically, was what the goal of putting out a novel has to be. This past week has been so stressful - are people buying the book?, are people enjoying the book?, will Random House be pleased with the results?, can I come up with a new concept to top this one? - the questions were (and are) unending. But then I read Tricia's post, and I thought, hmmmmmmmmm.

I've long said on this blog that my goal is never to be more prolific or better than any of my writing peers. My goal has been - and will always be, I hope - to simply be the best that I can be. And this is why Tricia's post resonated so soundly. The goal of ToML, for me, was to evolve into a better writer than my last effort. To not rest on the fact that I was now a published fiction author. To, in fact, use the fact that I was now a published fiction author to become a better author period. So when I was writing, I pushed myself to not take the easy way out in the plot, to read and reread my work until I was satisfied with every last sentence (though I still see some and cringe), to listen to the constructive criticism offered by my team and really take it to heart and allow my work to improve because of it. Not that I didn't do this with my first effort; I did. Only now I had a bar and knew I could raise it higher.

And, because I think I met all of these goals, I have to be satisfied no matter what happens with this book. And once I considered this, I felt a little bit more at ease about all of those other questions that are clanging so loudly around my brain. The truth is that you can't control if people buy your book (to a certain extent), you can't control if everyone loves your book (they won't), you can't control your publisher's expectations. What you can control is being your very best, and since I'm satisfied that I did, indeed, put my best effort forward, I can take this satisfaction and hopefully, let the other stuff take a back seat. I think this is true whether or not you're a published author, whether or not you're on your first or your fifth novel. I think this has to be our ultimate aspiration as writers because, if not, you'll get too caught up in the question marks to really come up with any solid answers.

So readers, how do you stay on top of your games?

Sunday, October 12, 2008

I'm in Recovery

So after going full-throttle all week and capping it off with my son's birthday party Sunday morning, my body gave soon as I walked in the door from the party, my temp shot up to 102, and all viral hell broke out inside of me.

So, I promise a real post on Tues, but for now, it's all I can do to moan under my covers and enjoy the occasional reprieve that Aleve brings. Sigh.

But to hold you over (not that you're chomping at the bit for a blog post or anything), here's a TV interview that I shot that ran over the weekend.

Enjoy Columbus Day!