Still processing this weekend, and still dead tired from it, so will be posting it in bits.

Friday night, hosted an “arts and sciences” party, featuring a mix of authors, scientists, family and friends. The party idea came about when, after I bugged Leila at Elm Books to get a booth at Litfest, my tae kwon do instructor announced that the second degree test would be on the same day. More on that later. I was so disappointed that I wouldn’t get to meet my authors…R suggested a party, and I jumped at the chance.

This meant, of course, that we had to clean house.

I’d envisioned a good, thorough tidy-up, but, after finishing this draft of Turnbull House I got carried away and did a whole-house deep-clean. It took all week, but WOW was it worth it. I can actually feel my blood pressure lowering when I look at my now-immaculate sewing table. I scrubbed baseboards, people.

The entire house smelling of vinegar, lemon and clean, I set out a display of books in the dining room, along with an inventory and a cash box. This had the dual benefit of selling some books ahead of Litfest, as well as making sure everything I’d need at the crack of dawn the next day was ready and in one place. The guests started arriving at 5:00.

Such a harmonious, interesting group of people. Old friends and new. Artists and scientists. Stinky cheese, fruit, and Smoking Bishop. As one of the authors put it, “I knew I had the right house when I saw a bunch of kids in front trying to whack each other with bo staffs.”

The only thing that wasn’t there was the shipment of Death and the Detective that we needed for the launch.

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These, we kept joking about, the giggles becoming increasingly more tense, our smiles increasingly more strained until, at exactly five minutes to seven, it came.

The house erupted in cheers when the truck pulled up.

At this moment, Michael Malloryalso arrived, no doubt confused at this effusive greeting from a house full of strangers, but possibly happy to receive the appreciation that his excellent books deserve. Gay Kinman was also there, as were Leonhard August, Mark Hague, Lois Osborne, and Tucker Cobey—new names in mystery you should look out for.

All in all, a wonderful kickoff to a wonderful weekend. Stay tuned for Part 2, in which I shamefully drop more names. =)

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