The day before my first surgery I took a walk on the beach where I found a red stone like the one in the photo, and knew I had to have it. Stones, shells, I'm always bringing something home--to the chagrin of my family--who often ask, "What's so special about THIS one?" and "Can't you leave a few on the beach?"
Of course, they're right. The house is cluttered enough with my natural collectibles. And as any child with a pail or adult with pocket can tell you, the wet stone glittering in the sun often turns into something quite ordinary when you try to bring it home.
Not all of them though. Some grow even more extraordinary the longer you look at them. "The Liar's Diary Blog Day" which was planned and organized by a few amazing writer friends--and participated in by literally hundreds of others--including some of my very first blog friends, and others, who had never heard of me, my book or my blog, but who jumped in and said "I want to help'" is like the latter. The longer I look on it and the more I think about it, the more it shines.
Among the wonderful souls were authors who are like gods to me, and those who never aspire to publish beyond their blogs, many people I've met, but far more who I will never know. There were also agents and editors and publishers who defied the cynics by proving it's not all about the bottom line. The real reason they got into this business is because they love books and people, and because they really believe in their heart of hearts that stories can change the world.
I spent the day wandering from blog to blog, but still haven't hit half of them. (I will though!) I cried a lot, but I smiled far more. I had been told not to attempt to comment, and for the most part I didn't. I let friends like the wonderful Robin Slick, who visited so many on my behalf, say my thank yous for me. Know that I realize it's a debt that I can't possibly repay--but hopefully, karma can.
I also know that this goes far beyond me and my illness, and the book you all promoted for me when I couldn't do it myself. Once again, it all goes back to defying the cynicsim that has become so much a part of our world. A cynicism I've frequently indulged in myself.
Others have said it better, but the very best part of blog day has been the amazing show of goodwill. It's out there. If it can send a just-released novel shooting up in the Amazon numbers, and can make writers and cancer survivors and bloggers everywhere feel just a little bit closer, a little bit more united than we were before, imagine what else it can do?
And so back to that red shiny rock I found on the beach the day before my surgery. I didn't know why I was picking it up and bringing it home, but now I do. It's for YOU. For all of you.
I'd be remiss if I didn't mention a few of the people who worked incredibly hard, and dreamed incredibly large to make this happen: Laura Benedict, who started all this with an idea and worked hard to carry it though, Susan Henderson of Litpark and Karen Dionne of Backspace both of whom have an amazing gift for bringing people together, and who frequently put their own work aside to promote others, Jessica Keener and Tish Cohen who shared their knowledge and ability to get the word out, also sacrificing hours of precious writerly time, my fabulous literary agent and even more fabulous friend, Alice Tasman, who cried with me when we first learned of this effort, and has done more behind the scenes to help than I'll ever know, Dan Conaway, who is NOT my agent, but still put valuable hours and enthusiasm and heart into getting this off the ground, all my good friends at Gather, Huntington Sharpe from Red Room, who designed a terrifc author page for me, and who mobilized the site to get dozen of authors involved, Sheila English and Victoria Fraasa at Circle of Seven Productions who made a Liar's Diary book trailer that made it to #7 on Google Videos last night, the delightful Eileen Hutton at Brilliance Audio who offered audio clips, MJ Rose who got out the troops at ITW, my fellow writers from Killer Year, several of whom were out promoting our anthology of the same name, but who took time to get involved in blog day, and two outstanding and generous bestselling authors, who took the time to read and support THE LIAR'S DIARY from the start. Both Jackie Mitchard and Tess Gerritsen once again, stepped up, and shared their thoughts on the novel. And I can't forget my wonderfully supportive editor, Julie Doughty at Dutton, my publicist, Laurie Connors, and all the people at Plume/Penguin, without whom there wouldn't be a book to promote.
A huge thank you--and much bliss to them--and to all of YOU--who made this day a small miracle.