A Party Animal

There was a time when “going out” for me meant leaving the house at 9:30PM and closing the nightclub with my friends at 2:00AM. That was in the days when I was between the legal West Virginia drinking age of 18 and the legal Pennsylvania drinking age of 21, so my merry little band of partiers would drive to Wheeling, WV. Ah, the adventures I could tell. But I won’t. That’s not what this post is about.

These days I’m more prone to the kind of party that begins at 7PM, is over by 9PM allowing me to be home and getting ready for bed by 10:00. Such was the kind of party I attended last night.

I also won’t write today about the over two-hour drive through rush hour traffic to get to Oakmont or the restaurant that hadn’t even put my sandwich in the oven after a thirty-five minute wait on my part, forcing me to leave without it. It was not an evening for tranquil dining.

I won’t write about that stuff because the party to launch Kathryn Miller Haines’ first novel The War Against Miss Winter was such a lovely affair that I don’t wish to sully it with tales of my day or my youth.

Kathy looked stunning in an elegant black dress, which, I was told is going to be a one-time-only thing because she can’t get out of it without the benefit of scissors. The crowds for a first-time author were amazing. Kathy belongs to a theatre group who showed up en masse dressed in zoot suits and vintage dresses complete with fedoras and big hats with feathers to celebrate the 1940s setting of the book. Alas, I was attired in jeans and my favorite Gap t-shirt, unaware of the unofficial dress code. Just as well. I don’t own anything appropriate for the occasion. Although, I remember borrowing a pair of my mom’s vintage shoes once that would have worked nicely. Wonder if Mom still has them.

But I digress.

There was food. After the thirty-five minute wait and still no sandwich to show for it, I was famished. All the major food groups were covered: chocolate, cheesecake, and cookies. And all was delicious. But what do I know? I was starved.

But it’s the mingling that is always the high point of any good party. I had a chance to see a few of my favorite authors who also happen to be friends and Sisters in Crime. Nancy Martin put in an appearance. I’m sorry, Nancy, that I said you weren’t that sweet. But the girl needs to know that a compliment from you isn’t without merit. In areas other than flattery, you are definitely a sweetheart.

I spent a nice part of the evening with Rebecca Drake whose new book is coming out in September. It was nice to hear that her publisher seems to be pulling out the stops to promote this, her second thriller. If you haven’t read the first one yet, Don't Be Afraid, go here now and buy it. Warning: it is not a cozy.

And Pittsburgh author and producer of plays, Kathleen George was there, too. Kathleen teaches dramatic literature and playwriting at the University of Pittsburgh. She also has a new book coming out in December titled After Image.

Besides rubbing elbows with my fellow crime writers, I had the opportunity to meet a few local mystery fans. It’s always nice to meet the folks who hopefully will one day be reading my work. I also got to talk up Pennwriters to another aspiring author who I hope will show up at one of our meetings.

By the way, if you’re one of the folks I gave my card to last night and are checking out my blog today, THANKS. And you can go here to read one of my short stories "Sanctuary" and here to read my Derringer finalist story "A Signature in Blood."

All in all, I’d have to say a grand time was had by all. Thanks always to Richard and Mary Alice Gorman of Mystery Lovers Bookshop for knowing how to through a publication party.


Sounds delicious. I always say there's no better party than one to celebrate a new book.
Thanks for the links.
Kristine said…
Sounds like it was a great party. I'm so sorry to have missed it!

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