Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Tidbit Tuesday #2 - new books, music & MISHA IS FAMOUS(ish)!

Don't faint. I'm actually doing a weekly feature more than one week in a row. If you need help with the shock, put your head between your legs, or breathe into a paper bag. An empty paper bag.

First, as always, les livres! (Sometimes I break into French for no good reason.) Two more of my fellow class of 2K10 members had releases last week. We're already more than 25% of the way through our year's debut novels, and it's only (*checks calendar*) some day in January.

Jennifer Hubbard's debut, The Secret Year, came out on Thursday. I picked it up to "leaf through" and spent the next half hour standing in my living room reading the first several chapters. All while the five books I'm in the middle of reading glared at me from various spots in the house (most had to glare through the ceiling and walls). Jennifer also has a wonderful blog that fills me with awe.

Irene Latham's Leaving Gee's Bend arrived on the same day. I was psyched to see that it's set in 1930s Alabama and concerns a sharecropper's daughter who sets out on her own to find help for her ailing mother. Being a giant fan of early Delta blues music, that place and time has always fascinated me. For a great interview, check out our fellow classmate Denise Jaden's blog.

In music, Vampire Weekend has a new CD out today! They were not a love-at-first-listen band for me, but the songs from their last album really grew on me over the months. The new stuff sounds even better.

I've gotten three minor pieces of good news from my agent in the last two days, none of which I can share at the moment (but they're minor, so you're not missing much). But by far the most exciting thing to happen today occurred in this video interview with Jason Scott, owner of and Twitter transcriber for Sockington, the world's most popular cat.

Sockington has over a million followers on Twitter (listen to the interview to find out why), including my cat Misha (who has his own Twitter account). Misha, along with several thousand other cats, dogs, rabbits, hamster, geckos, etc., is officially part of Sockington's army. Back in May (May 16, to be exact, three days before the release of Bad to the Bone), I happened to be passing by Socks's page and noticed he was about to pass 500,000 followers.

Ten minutes later, he did, then asked Socks Army to "represent" with the American Sign Language sign for cat. Somehow I managed to get Misha in the proper position and sent a link to the photo to Sockington. It was a fun moment of goofing off with my cat, nothing more.

Three days later, Socks had a new video up, and holy crap, Misha was in it (at minute marker 1:47, to be exact)! Yes, it was the release day of my new book, and the happiest moment was my cat appearing in another cat's video. (You might wonder if authors get blase about their new books, maybe when they're not the beginning of a new series and when they know it has a snowball's chance in hell of hitting a bestseller list. Instead of "blase," I would use the word, "calm.")

Fast forward to today and the interview with Jason Scott (aka Fatty). Our little man-cat's picture can be found at minute marker 2:58 (disturbingly, as Jason is talking about people whose cats are no longer with them, which I can assure you Misha is. With us. Demanding food, so I better go.)

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Misha Ready, you star! And you're a star, too, dear Jez - for teaching him ASL ;-) And you're nifty on your own, of course ;-)

Posted by: Blogger Tez Miller at 1/13/2010 5:40 AM

I'm not really a fan of Vampire Weekend. Maybe I haven't heard the right song yet. I was that way with the Decemberists - now I love them.
I have Leaving Gee's Bend and The Secret Year also - Unfortunatly I haven't been able to read for about a week but I'm getting a cold so tomorrow is curl up in bed and read day!


Posted by: Blogger Karen at 1/15/2010 8:49 PM

Tez, I am ridiculously excited about this whole Misha/Sockington thing. Sockington is like a celebrity in our household. We are weird.

Karen, I didn't really like VW at first either, and I still haven't gotten their previous album, because I didn't like enough of what I heard. But "Cousins" is a really cool song. :-)

As for the Decembrists, I just heard them in the Sirius XMU studio the other day talking about their rock opera THe Hazards of Love and playing some acoustic bits from it. I need to look it up.

Hope you feel better soon!

Posted by: Blogger Jeri at 1/16/2010 7:04 PM

Jeri - Finished The Secret Year...LOVED it! So beautiful.

Just heard the new VW stuff this am on Alt Nation - you're right - it's good.

I used to change the station whenever I heard the the Decemberists songs (they annoyed me) then one day The Rake Song was on and I wasn't close enough to change it & I started listening to the words and couldn't stop laughing.....(it's about his wife dying and then him killing his children so I'm not sure what that says about me) then I listened to the Hazards of Love and a few other songs & now I like them ;-)


Posted by: Blogger Karen at 1/17/2010 10:08 AM

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