I had the privilege to sit in on two book club discussions of Awaken this month. Here are some photos with me and my readers (featuring a pretty cool pair of socks).
Thank you to the two lovely book clubs that hosted me (and supplied me with wine, tea, brownies and my favorite—pancakes with whipped cream in dedication to the scene where Maddie eats pancakes for the first time).
I love listening to how people respond to my book—especially to the timely message of technology. Last night, one of the readers said, “We no longer know how to embrace silence.” That comment really struck me. We are so over stimulated with distractions all the time, we don’t know how to unplug and be still. We rarely are ever in the moment as we text and email and try to be twenty places at once.
As a writer, I struggle with technology because there are so many benefits to social networking. I’ve met some amazing fans, I get to Skype with classrooms, and it’s great publicity. But, I really struggle with my online presence(s). I would much rather be outside than be on my computer tweeting, or online updating my stupid status all the time. I don’t know why we feel the need to have such strong online billboard advertisements of ourselves, announcing ourselves all the time. It’s very self-fulfilling and I guess, my response is, who cares? Go outside. Take a walk. Do something for someone else. Volunteer in your community. Cook a meal for a family with little kids that could use your help. Help your neighbor paint their house. And after you do it, don’t announce to the world that you did it. You don’t need a hundred “likes” to feel justified. Do you?
If people unplugged for an hour each day and invested that time in others—wow. Now that is what I call being social.
Speaking of being social, I have a couple of events coming up in Oregon before I move East. So, for any of you that live in the Oregon area, come and meet me on May 11th, at Grass Roots Books and Music from 11 am to 1 pm. First Comes Love (a finalist for the Oregon Book Award), will be in paperback, and my other books will be there as well. Buy ahead for Christmas presents! 🙂 I will also be signing with fellow YA author (and Oregonian) Lisa Burnstein. Come down and hang out!