Friday, October 2, 2009
Maybe y'all noticed I changed my screen name to get a head start marketing myself-- you know, building my online presence and all that jazz. Well, in honor of this momentous change (seriously, this is a big deal for me. I loooooved the anonymity a screen name provided. I guess I'm just shy, but more about that later) I've decided to make this post a little more personal than usual.
It started raining last night all the way through to the morning. I took the streetcar to work for the first time in years, but I couldn't find my galoshes, so my feet are wet. While I'm warming up with a nice hot chai with real half and half, and checking my email, I see I have a Click and Ship notification. I just about die of ecstacy. But I don't dare die, because then I'll never get my Oceans of Love and Millions of Kisses limited edition Lucy Westenra themed Halloween bath oil.
For those of you not in the know, I am an addict. I love things that smell good. I'm reading Jessica Verday's The Hollow right now and loving it because the main character wants to be a perfumer. One of my favorite books is Suskind's Perfume. You're about to get a peek into the depths of my madness. I buy perfume-- unsniffed, no less!-- off the internet from a place called Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab.
Who in their right mind would buy perfume off the internet, you might ask? Well, I never said I was in my right mind. But the website is so evocative and poetic; dark, bawdy and romantic at turns that I can't resist the urge to smell like a Hawaiian goddess or the personification of Smut. Or the spicy Bengal that smells just like my chai. I love the Beardsley prints and other art that adorns the pages. The perfumers at bpal take inspiration from literary sources, too, running the gamut from the innocent scents of Alice in Wonderland, to the dripping aquatics of H.P. Lovecraft's Cthulhu. Right now you can smell like Hellboy, if that's your thing. Just reading the website stirs my creative juices and I rarely leave the house without applying some sort of bpal oil that suits my mood.
So you can imagine my elation at the Click and Ship notification. My package will be in my grabby little hands by Tuesday. I enjoy a shortbread cookie, dunking it decadently into my chai as I scroll through blogger. I hit up my usual haunts, leave some comments, when I read on Lauren's Crammed Bookshelf that one of the cutest ya books I've read in some time might not get another print run if sales don't improve. This leaves the buttery shortbread tasing like ash in my mouth, and my Click and Ship/perfume high vaporizes.
Shrinking Violet, written by Danielle Joseph and printed by MTV Books, is a book about a normal girl with normal problems. Her name is Tere, so she's got that going for her. ;) And she's horribly, terribly, painfully shy. I used to be shy, too, and on occasion, still get the urge to run to my bed and hide under the covers rather than meet new people at a party. But Tere overcomes her shyness when she's given an opportunity of a lifetime-- to be a disc jockey on her step father's radio station. Of course, her shyness complicates things along the way, and she tries to keep her radio persona a secret (something I can definitely identify with), but she gets her Cinderella story ending. And the Miami setting adds a hot, sultry, sexy vibe to the story.
Head on over to Danielle's livejournal, where you can read more about the book and the author, and what she's doing to promote book sales. You could win a prize!
Danielle's problem is probably a lot more common than we aspiring novelists realize. I think we're all learning that debut authors can't just sit back after the novel is published and wait for the money to roll in (not to be taken to mean that I think Danielle was doing this). Over the past few weeks I've learned just how important self-promotion is, and what content is or isn't appropriate for a writing blog, a topic that has been recently discussed by some of my fellow bloggers, such as Lazy Writer (Susan), and Abby Annis. Now more than ever I realize that I made the right decision to change my screen name, but that doesn't mean I have to like it. ;)
So yesterday we talked about banned books, and this morning we're trying to save one from the obscurity of the small print run. It's been fun revealing some of my passions to the blogosphere-- whether it's my love of books, which I know most of y'all share, or my obsession with perfume oils, which I'm sure not many people can really understand. But we all have our vices. Mine just happens to smell like chocolate, black cherry and orange blossom.