You know how runners in a long race save a sprint for the final kick? That’s how today felt, as if the bell for the last lap just went off.
There’s no formal reason why so much hit today, but a blizzard of things happened all at once. Late yesterday Penguin/NAL in New York learned that River was getting a starred review in Library Journal next week. We had to wait for confirmation that it was all right to report this before publication, and offer a quote. That came this morning. Starred reviews are really important, over and above being really nice. They play a big role in library orders. With budgets obviously limited, librarians will often take cues from LJ as to what the big or best books are in a given season and those are the ones they order.
The quote clip? I’m sure the PR/marketing people will ‘pull’ their own, but this sounds awfully good to me:
“Kay’s historical fantasy … portrays a world of changing traditions, casual cruelty, and strict codes of honor and respect… A powerful and complex tale told with simplicity and elegance.”
If I’m betting, I’ll wager that on the paperbacks next year just the last line will be used … shorter is better there, usually.
Just after that exchange, I heard from my New York editor that she’d received their first copies of the book this morning, it looked gorgeous, and she was having a first one rushed on to me. (I’ll get a box or two in due course.) Then my Toronto editor tweeted she’d just received her first book and it ‘made her day’. She also sent over a bottle of single malt (Ardbeg, which happens to be really, really good). And then one of my UK editors reported that their ARCs had arrived on her desk (remember, UK is coming out later, in July).
Meanwhile publicists in New York and Toronto reported in emails through the day of interviews firmed up and pitches being made to major media (these may or may not hit, obviously, but people are working hard here). And then my agency confirmed that details of our recent agreements in France (for Under Heaven) and Macedonia (for the Sarantine Mosaic) were both now being announced.
As I said, it felt like a lot was picking up, all at once. It is misleading, of course, as there can be – there will be – utterly quiet, uneventful days (weeks!) ahead, but from first morning emails until now it has felt like a high-octane day.
Well, with the caveat that an idiot referee made a complete hash of a wonderfully dramatic, high stakes game at Old Trafford between Man U and Real Madrid today. Hate when the officials take over – and destroy – a game.