Thursday, August 14, 2008

A Groupie...Who Me?

Can authors have groupies? If they can, I think I can officially fit the bill now!

About a month ago, my friend Naomi sends me an e-mail and says, "Michael doesn't have his event schedule on the website yet, but I found out he's going to be at our book club at Foul Play bookstore on August 13th. Do you want to come down?" The offer didn't even require thought! You betcha!

So, yesterday I drove down to Westerville, Ohio, which is just outside of Columbus. I got to meet Naomi face to face for the first time. What a fabulous lady! Just love her. I got to visit the Foul Play bookstore for the first time. What a cool store - definitely going back there! I got to join in the book club meeting and discuss Rex Stout's Fer de Lance. I'm so envious that they have this awesome club! And...and...and I got to see Michael Koryta! You just can't top a night like that!! :) The weather was beautiful, and we sat out on the back patio of the store - which is an old Victorian home by the way. (Can you tell how excited I still am? I used "got" how many times? And I HATE that word! ha)

Michael read from his latest release, Envy the Night. It is such a treat to hear him read his own work. I know I've said this before, but you really have to go see him in person if you have the chance to do so.

I had to ask about the dedication in Envy. It says "To Dennis Lehane, who remembered the elevator." Hmmm, very intriguing. Plus, I'm a busy body. I'll admit it. Anyway, for anyone else who might be intrigued by this dedication, the story behind it is an awesome one. If you don't know, Dennis Lehane has been a significant influence on Michael, both through his writing and his mentoring. So Michael explained that Dennis believes when you ride the elevator of success, you don't get off on the top floor of your success, instead you ride it back down, helping the others who are trying to go up...through teaching and mentoring and whatnot. This analogy doesn't originate with Dennis, but isn't it awesome? I walked away feeling more respect for Dennis Lehane AND Michael. Dennis because he does give that support to others and Michael for being so appreciative of it. Michael was also mentioning how Michael Connelly has been very generous with support as well. He said both Michael and Dennis must feel sorry for him because he's the "pitiful kid pushing the pull door." That just cracked me up. He's so witty! And he's definitely NOT pitiful. If you listen to him in person you know he has a story-telling gift. And that doesn't come from anywhere except himself!

O.k., so the future for Michael's books is The Silent Hour. I will have to wait about a year. It'll come out next summer. Which is great news if you haven't read any of the Lincoln Perry series yet. This gives you time to catch up. The Silent Hour will be the fourth Lincoln Perry novel. AND there's a second stand-alone in the works to follow The Silent Hour.

And you know me, I can't NOT get pictures. They look a little washed out because it was so sunny where I was sitting. I certainly can't complain about that...

But, I owe MANY, MANY, MANY thanks to Naomi who took this fabulous one of Michael and Moi. I'm thinking of blowing it up and hanging it in my living room...just kidding...maybe ;)

But hello, dunce that I am, all in my excited fog, I didn't get a picture of Naomi. I guess that means I for sure have to make another trip to visit her so that I can get a picture of us to share on here. I was so thrilled to have a friend to talk books with last night. She let me run on and on about my blog...I started thinking on my way back home that I'm not sure if I made a complete coherent thought because I was just so excited to have someone to share all this with! Bless her for tolerating me! :)

And I have to share this picture...also taken by Naomi - she's getting a second job as a photographer after this...

This incredibly fun woman is Toni Cross. She and her husband, John, are the Foul Play's owners. Anyone who has cats in their bookstore AND hosts Michael...WOW! You just can't top that! PLUS, she and Naomi ooh'd and aah'd over my author mini scrapbook!

O.k., since I have to admit that I am a Michael Koryta groupie...we need to have a name for the groupies...RC's fans are the "Craisies", Lee Child's fans are the "Reacher Creatures", and I learned last night that the fans of Rex Stout are part of the Wolfe Pack...does that make them pups? Anyway...we need something catchy for Michael's fans. I've been contemplating this, but I've only come up with sub-par ideas so far. I'll continue contemplating, but send ideas my way if you have them.

My sincerest thanks go out to Naomi for inviting me to Foul Play. I so enjoyed finally meeting you face to face, my friend! And to the Crosses for hosting such a wonderful author event and letting me come. And of course to Michael for continuing to do what he does so well and sharing it with the world. I know I enjoy the world a little bit more because of it!

Happy Reading!! :)


Debbie August 14, 2008 at 6:31 PM  

Well, now... how can I not start reading him? I'm almost as excited at the thought of starting a new series as you were writing this blog. LOL
So, when you figure out the groupie name, let me know. I'm planning on being hooked too by that time.

beauvallet August 14, 2008 at 8:10 PM  

Gosh golly, I feel like I really did something, but all I did was hold the camera for a sec. (And managed not to break it, as I have so many others. I forgot to warn you about that, didn't I?) The pix did come out verra, verra nice though.

Groupie name, eh? Koryta's Kingdom? Michael's Maniacs? Wouldn't he just hate those! Yeah, this will take some thought and creativity, both of which are in short supply at my house.

We loved having you at book club, Jen, and you know you're welcome any time. Next time I see you, that scrapbook will be much thicker I bet.

Patti O August 15, 2008 at 12:50 AM  

Hi Jen!

I LOVED your post!!! I've been a Koryta fan since Tonight I Said Goodbye, which I recommend often to library patrons and friends. Michael also was kind enough to be part of a program I coordinated at the library I worked at in Michigan, not too long after the first book came out, and held his own against seasoned panel veterans such as William Kent Krueger, and entertaining panelists such as Joe Konrath. Personally, I love how much he respects the PI genre. Starting Friday AM, I'll start reading Envy the Night, in anticipation of Michael's visit to Poisoned Pen in Scottsdale, AZ.

Take care!

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