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Friday, February 12, 2010

Opening NIght Party in Review

Thank you, thank you to all of you who came to the opening night, it was such a great turn out and I was pleased to only have a couple cakes come back home with me :-)  In case you weren't here, this is the recap:

First off, yesterday was I-N-S-A-N-E. I'd been up til 3:30 writing at the office, and then up at 6:30. I was sure I'd have time to take a nap. Nope. Being that I am 4 days from a deadline, I finished up a reader evaluation (Thank you Annette!) and then got to work. I finished the frosting, frosted the cakes, and swore as I made about 200 chocolate curls. We were doing a total 9 cakes--I spared you the intermediate photos since my kitchen was far from pretty at that point.

I tried to make some dark chocolate decorating frosting, to make the cakes look two toneed and super fancy. It looked like wet coal dust and my kids thought it tasted like black licorice. So the triple batch of frosting went in the garbage. BUT, there was no time to cry about it so we carried on. Thank goodness I'd made the actual cakes over the weekend and for my fabulous helpers who came home from school and got to work so I could take a shower and run to piano lessons and a final trip to the store.

The one benefit of being a little bit late, is that people are waiting. And I wasn't really late, but I was only 5 minutes early, which is late when you're doing an event. But I have to wonder if part of it isn't psychological in that I like having a crowd when I get there. That doesn't say much about my character does it?

It's overwhelming to me when people come out to these events. I almost feel guilty that they took time to come see me, but I enjoy being able to catch up with everyone that I get over my guilt pretty fast :-) Reflections of Utah set up a whole corner of the store with tables and chairs, which was really fun.

My good friend Melissa (denim) came, as well as Becki and Ronda (Ronda's new book, Missing, is great, BTW) are part of my writer's group, which has been such a great blessing for me in many ways. They already had the book, but came out just to support me, which was so sweet of them both.   Though not in the picture, my step-sister-in-law came with her little girl, Hannah. Her dad and my mother in law got married just a few months before Lee and I got married and so being as how all of us were grown, and our parents moved to New Orleans a few years after that, we don't see each other much, but it was great to see her and I was touched that they came out. Fellow author Frank Richardson came up from Fruit Heights and it was fun to catch up with him.

We had a steady stream of people coming throughout the night--my friend Heather B. came and about made me cry when she gave me a hug and told me how proud she was of me. She's been to every opening night party I've had and is always such a great cheerleader and friend. I didn't get a picture of her either :-(  but it was highlight. Lee brought the two little kids toward the end--they get a little ballistic if they're there for too long, and it's always so nice to have them come and be all excited (it helps that I let them both have two pieces of chocolate cake). I had several other people stop in--Anna, Michele, Tiff, Denice, Marion, Tana, Pam, Jodi, Bonnie, Ashlea, McCall, Brenna, Wesley, Kate, Ilean, Leda--and several others.

Just as the evening was winding down, I got a couple more surprises. First, Julie Wright and Karen Hoover came all the way up from Provo. They'd been at a conference and must have flown out of it as soon as their panel was over in order to get there. Julie is...well, she's my Julie and is always front row to my life and career. And Karen is a solid, inspiring, and oh-so-positive person. I'm so glad to know her and so excited for her book which will be out in 32 days (check back on March 3 for my review--The Sapphire Flute) I did get a photo of them, but it was crappy. My camera isn't so good. So, if anyone has a better copy, please send!

Then, I look up and this guy walks in. My first thought was "Boy, he looks a lot like Don Carey. That's weird since Don lives in Texas." Then about .8 seconds later I realize it IS Don Carey! Don is a good friend, an inspiriting husband and father, and one of my test kitchen cooks. He just had his first novel accepted for publication and I couldn't be happier for him. Apparently he was up for work this week and so he made the drive from Provo to come be a part of the opening night. Is that not so cool? His mom came with him, and what a sweetheart she is--putting up with Karen, Julie and I and all our book and writer talk. The event was supposed to go til 7:00, but we were there to almost nine just chatting and catching up. It was such a great end to the night.

I came home and spent an hour making stupid valentines for stupid valentine's day, but that's another blog post so I'll refrain.

Over all it was a great event--thank you to everyone who came, everyone who sent good vibes, and thought about me last night. I have to say that this whole writing thing has been a remarkable journey for so many reasons. I love the Opening Night parties for many reasons, but one of the best is the reminder I have of how many people I'm connected to in this life of mine. It's a powerful realization, to see just how un-alone I am. The support is priceless; thanks for sharing these moments with me any way you can.


Matthew Buckley said...

Congrats! I'm glad it went well.

It looks like you love Valentine's Day as much as I do.

The only redeeming factor that holiday has going for it is that it's an excuse to make sugar cookies.

Savanna said...

I'm glad it went so well. I really wanted to be there, but the new baby kinda put a damper on things, well that and that my husband works until 8:00. I can't wait to get the book though. My sisters have already bought it BEFORE Me! They all love you. :)

Cheri Chesley said...

It was great! And those are my children in the picture with Melissa (and my back lol)wolfing down the delicious cake. We ended up leaving there and going on a whole crazy all-night adventure, which included the Layton Hills Mall and a late movie--all before going to the airport to pick up my hubby at 1am.

I can't wait to dive into Devil's Food Cake :)

Heather B said...

Aw Josi (sniff). I have just loved watching you and your writing grow since day one. It's been quite the journey and you can count on me to be there for ALL your opening night parties. And I'm sure there will be many, many more!

Anna said...

I've been to a couple of country singers signings and a couple of LDS authors signings. I must say, I'm probably more excited to see the authors. Probably because I hope to someday be having my own book signing.

The cake was good. I made my 2 kids share one piece with me and my son was gobbling it up. I showed him the recipe in the book and he wants me to make it already.

I'm a couple chapters into the book and already liking it. :)

Melissa J. Cunningham said...

It was great fun and I was glad to have been there. Can't wait to finish your book. I've only started the beginning and already, I'm laughing out loud. I love your humor!

Thank you so much, Josi. You've been such a good example to me. You have inspired me and are one of the main reasons I have embarked on this journey! Sure love you.

Annette Lyon said...

So. Dang. Awesome! I'm glad it went so well (now I wish I'd have taken the drive!).

Don said...

Josi - you are WAY too kind. Thank you.

I'm glad to hear you had a good turnout. I was starting to wonder why nobody else came after we did, thinking the event went until 8:30.

It ended at 7? Seriously? Yikes - we were really late. But it was wonderful to chat with you and Julie and Karen. I'm very glad we got there when we did.

Kathi Oram Peterson said...

Josi, how awesome! You're an inspiration. I really don't know how you do all you do: write books, bake cakes, have a major signing and then you go home to make valentines. What vitamins are you taking? I've got to get some. Congratulations!

Kara said...

Congrats Josi! So glad all went well. Can't wait to read it!

Karlene said...

Sounds like it was an awesome night. Sorry I missed it. But I will be posting a RAVE review on my blog very soon because I finished DFC last week and I LOVED it! It's my fav Sadie book. :)

Melbell said...

A friend and I were going to come join the fun but her hubby threw her a surprise anniversary party - the nerve! LOL - sounds like the party was a hit! I hope you get a spa night for V Day!!!!!

Brittanie said...

Hi Josie
I just finished reading Devil's Food Cake. It was sent to me for review. It was really good. My review will be up on the tour date in March. Thank you.

Nancy Campbell Allen said...

Josi, it sounds like an absolutely wonderful night! I'm so sorry I missed it. :-( Get that new book turned in so I can plan on making it to your next one. :-)

Hugs, and good job!

Anonymous said...

I a m sorry I wasn't able to come to your opening night. It is something I look forward to each time you have a new book come out.

Don't tell me that Sadie is finished cooking up mysteries.

You are amazing.

L.T. Elliot said...

Oh, I wish I could have been there! It looks like a great party and I'm so happy it went so well!