In spite of my promise not to post tonight, I find I'm home earlier than I thought and less tired. So I'll report tht our event--an onstage interview with an author, followed by signings--went well. We had over 500 tickets out for 450 seats but the 10% no-show rate held, and we had a packed audience but no overflow. Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves, it was a funny, interesting interview, and it all went well. TCU Press got lot of credit from the author, so that was good. There was a party afterwards to which I was invited but I begged off and came comfortably home to my cat and dog.
Three of my four children call me two, three, four times a week. Colin and Megan call when they're bored on their drive home from work; Jordan just calls--we usually talk once a day and often email several times a day. I love being in touch with them and hearing stories of their families. Sometimes we talk about deeper topics, but it's often a kind of "What's going on?" conversation. But I can go a couple of weeks without hearing from Jamie, which he doesn't seem to think is strange at all. He called last night at 9:45, asked if I was asleep, and we talked for 45 minutes--a wonderful conversation about everything from his moving his office to political theory, some about the current presidential race, some about his daughters who are lights in my life. I truly enjoyed it a lot and emailed him today to tell him so. It's the same when I go to Dallas to visit--because he picks me up in downtown Dallas and he lives in Frisco (as Melanie describes it, just south of the Oklahoma border), we have a long drive home--and we always have good conversations then. So I guess I'll stop complaining about never hearing from him--or his family. I thought I had Maddie, age nine, getting into the habit of emailing, but apparently not. And for a while, she tried to teach me about text messaging, but that went away too. I love it that I can have meaninful conversations with all my children. We've all grown up to be great friends.
At the event tonight, a woman came up to me and said she was a counselor at the middle school my children attended. I thanked her for speaking to me and told her that my children had all grown up to be lovely, nice people, married wonderful spouses, and had given me seven grandchildren. "I never doubted it," she said. Talk about pride. It's funny, but there are people in this city who remember me as the mother of my kids, not the press director, not the author. And that's how I hope my obituary reads--I am first and foremost a mom and a grandmom.
Today I read an article in Atlantic Monthly by a professional journalist on why he blogs. It was a deep, intellectual, convoluted article, but what I got out of it was that a blogger is free to say what he or she wants, thinks, believes. No worries about what an editor will think, whether or not it will sell, etc. It's sort of the ultimate in freedom of expression. And I guess that's why I blog. When you write mysteries, your concentration is always on what an agent and/or editor will think. When you blog--and particularly when you get feedback--it's sort of like talking to folks. I'm not much for being onstage--too shy--but this is an easy way to be onstage.