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August 27, 2006



How serendipitous...I just blogged about seeing *Going to Heaven* on the "New & Noteworthy* shelf of a local independent bookseller, the same shop that stocked Ivy's chapbook when she was in residence at the MacDowell Colony:


Someone else had arranged the shelf so *Heaven* was peeking out. It was such a pleasant surprise to see it looking at me after having found my Amazon-ordered copy in the big bin of mail awaiting me when I got home from Ireland this week.

My friend Pavel's new book was also in that big bin of mail, so between your book, his book, and Fred First's book earlier this year, I'm getting used to the thrill of seeing friend's writing in print. I don't think the sensation will ever grow old, though: like the arrival of a child, the appearance of a new book feels like a new promise, a bit of good news in a weary time.

Congratulations, and hurray. I can't wait until my back-to-school schedule settles so I can tackle my to-read pile.



(If that ever happened to me, I'd be thrilled to bits too). You've earned the moment Beth.

And let us know how "Snow" is.

Zhoen, Lorianne, and Teju - you are all people for whom I fully expect this experience to happen! Thank you for being there to share it with me.

I think "Snow" will be very good, and I decided to read it before "Istanbul," which also looks excellent - anyway, will report!

Oh, what a beautiful feeling! I'm glad you finally had that experience and could hold it in your memory! You really deserved it. (I'm waiting for my copy to arrive any day!)

Wonderful! (And I too am looking forward to reading the Pamuk books.)

So well done! Why don't you buy it and sign a copy to yourself?

I'd be knocked out just to hold my completed PhD in my hand - I'll let you know how I feel if I haven't passed out with relief and joy :-)


Wow, Thomas Aquinas and St. Augustine, you are in great company. Both of these men has some serious issues with church and spiritual experience. I am hoping to see my own first work hit the shelves this Fall. I held my book in bound form for the first time a couple weeks ago then handed it to my editor!

What a rush.


Congratulations to you too, Jeremy! I look forward to reading your book when it comes out!

Congratulations and well done! I'll look for a copy when I'm in Toronto next month.

Beth, how beautifully you describe that magic moment. You've now joined the secret society of authors who quietly enter bookstores and surreptitiously turn their new-born babies covers to face the world more boldly. It's a wondrously mischievous feeling. I've gone so far as to move a book of mine from a shelf to a table or to shift it to another section altogether because it had been classified under the wrong heading. Well, who's going to do it if we don't? I'm very glad your publisher is getting the book out and about efficiently and doing all the right things. The best of blessings for it.

Sounds like a good feeling, one that I can understand entirely.

Quite a different feeling -- so i understand from my mother -- is finding a copy of your book in the *used* bookstore! Especially if it's inscribed -- then you know it wasn't just a review copy. I hope you don't run into that for years to come.

Oh, but I'm sure I will, on Amazon if not face-to-face. And I'm sure there will be unflattering reviews, too. I've tried to prepare myself for whatever happens, but I'm sure the bad stuff will hurt and the good stuff will continue to feel good. The main thing I keep telling myself is that I did my best, and that's all anyone could ask.

Sweet Beth. What a wonderful moment. So full of electricity and quiet joy. If such a conjunction is possible. Which I think you have just proved is.

What a lovely description of a wonderful feeling! Congratulations from me as well.

This is a little late, but congratulations on your book. I'll definite get one soon.

This makes me smile.

Congratulations, Beth.

Congratulations! You have realized a wonderful accomplishment and I am thrilled for you. I hope to see my own there one day, and I'm looking forward to the same moment of discovery.

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Who was Cassandra?

  • In the Iliad, she is described as the loveliest of the daughters of Priam (King of Troy), and gifted with prophecy. The god Apollo loved her, but she spurned him. As a punishment, he decreed that no one would ever believe her. So when she told her fellow Trojans that the Greeks were hiding inside the wooden horse...well, you know what happened.