Last Friday I hosted a Facebook Part to celebrate the launch of my latest book Black Cat Blues. What a rush!
It went for six and a half hours, but many of the contests went on into the next day and I think one or two into the day following that. The chatter on the site continued for days. Wonderful chatter about books, and life and of course men. Great fun.
I chatted with old friends and met a ton of new people. We talked about everything under the sun and laughed a lot. For those who aren’t familiar with these events let me describe how it worked. I opened and was “on stage” for the first twenty minutes. I introduced the party, set up the sign in post with the big prize and ran two smaller contests. Then Judy Hudson followed with her introduction and games for the next twenty minutes, but all my posts were still live. Then another . . . and so on, until the party was over. Eighteen writers had introductions and games running. On the side I had the message bar open to all of the co-hosts and a conversation was going on there too. Mostly it was about who was up next and how well things were going, but at one point we had a gif conversation that cracked me up. Talk about multi-tasking. I’d be following conversations in several posts at a time as well as talking on the message board. What a riot!
By the end of the party my stats read: 147 went and 1.3K were invited! Amazing results for my first time.
I could not have done this without the sisters (i.e., Sisters of Suspense) who were there supporting me all the way. Most of them made an appearance and kept things happening. Also big thanks go to my other writing friends who joined in. (Here is a list in time order of all the authors: Judy Hudson, Claire Gem, Jerrie Alexander, Mia Kay, Reggi Allder, Jennae Vale, Pat Amsden, Stephanie Taylor, Jacquie Biggar, Melissa Keir, Barbara Monajem, Marian Lanouette, Sarah Andre, Marsha R. West, Kathryn Jane, Jacqui Nelson, JC McKenzie and Shereen Vedam)
A huge thank you and a bundle of white daises go to my daughter JC McKenzie who got me through the initial hurdles of setting up the event and invited a ton of people.
No social event would be complete without a blooper, and I had a real whopper. I went up to my writing loft thirty minutes ahead of the party start-time to be prepared. I had planned this party for over a month. All my posts were written and sitting on my desktop. All my pictures . . . You get the idea. I was uber-ready. Or so I thought.
I looked at the screen with horror. Windows had decided to update! Aaaaaah! Why now? Why me? I pushed control, alt, delete. Nothing. I pushed the power button. Nothing. I watched the updates. 2% and going slowly. Time ticked by. I repushed the buttons. Nothing . . . Nothing . . . Nothing . . .
In a frantic state I phoned Judy who was scheduled to follow me at the party. She’s never done a party before, but I asked her to be ready to go first. She agreed. So I had a fall-back plan.
I messaged PJ my techie husband even though I knew he couldn’t receive the message. I swore a lot. I racked my brain. And with five minutes to go, I pushed on the power button hard. I later found out this is called a hard reboot.
The screen responded. It stopped the updating and told me it had to re-install the last configuration. Sweet, sweet Jesus. Three minutes to go. My stomach was in my mouth. I really wanted this to go well. Was this going to kill my machine? I was almost beyond caring. I crossed my fingers and prayed.
Boom . . . I was in. I posted my introduction two minute before schedule. My heart hammered. My fingers sweat. I was beyond reason. But I was live and the party was starting.
Except . . . my mouse died. Now really, my mouse! Of all the times it could choose to die, why did it choose that moment? I ran downstairs, found a battery and ran up again. Within a couple minutes I was operational again. Phew! Second hurdle over.
I jump started the party.
The next morning I awoke with burning eyes, stiff shoulders and an aching body. I felt like I had ran a marathon. But I couldn’t stop smiling. My first review came in before midnight and more were appearing. I made it to 186 in one category on Amazon! I had many more followers on Twitter, FB, and my Amazon author page.
People liked my book and my party. All the work and all the worry was worth it. I’m almost back to normal now. If I was every normal.
What did I learn?
To have my posts on a thumb drive so I can use any computer to upload them. And many other things, which I will write about another day.