I'm home in Portland, which feels surreal given the events of the past month. I read Tricia Lockwood's take on being on tour
somewhere between Detroit and Long Island, and it rings painfully true:
[...] you are not quite yourself. You have misplaced your mind; you are too much your body but due to repeated siftings through airports and cabs and other people your body is hardly there. Your seeing of things is somewhat raw: where is my next cup of coffee coming from, does the moon travel backwards here, what a grotesque thing a rose is, the sponginess of hotel apples. The slipping and the solid hours. How strange, how improbable church spires seem in other towns. [...] You speak to many, many strangers a day, until you feel yourself to be a great thrumming organ of listening, a drumskin that must be struck to give back sound.
She's a beast.
For the first leg of the 100 Demon Dialogues Tour, I was moving every two days to keep up with all the different hosts and events. My ability to also
keep five social media platforms informed about everything that was going on evaporated. Despite the loss of feeling in my tweeting fingers, I'm feeling so inspired and nurtured by all the good connections I made on the road. Being back this week finds me touching familiar things as if they couldn't possibly be mine. It's a blessing to be in my own bed.
If you signed up for this mailing list during the tour, hello! Thank you for letting me be in your inbox! I promise not all of these monthly missives are as detail-heavy as what follows—it's just That Time of Year.
Here are some fun statistics from Leg 1:
I'm still collating the numbers, but I'd like to release a financial report once this is properly over so you can get an idea of how I structured the tour. I think I sold about 150 copies of the book, and halfway through the trip I got word that my distributor wanted 300 additional copies to meet pre-order demands, which was GREAT NEWS. This means the tour and your enthusiasm have led retailers to lay in a bigger supply. I'm so grateful.
I'm happy to answer any questions you might have about planning and executing the tour on Twitter.
If you want to be a fly on the wall at a tour stop, my friend Glenn recored our conversation at Brick and Mortar Books in Redmond, WA so you can hear us natter on about passion projects, letterpress printing, self-doubt, and more. (I'm also working on getting audio from the Chicago panel and my New York talk with Marissa Siegel uploaded to SoundCloud. Keep an eye out.)
And now, since all my West Coast friends have been waiting so patiently, it's time for Leg 2. Here are all the places I'm planning to go (with some empty spots that could use assistance, so email me if you have venues, spare beds, or connections to local libraries):
- Big Adventure Comics – 5-8pm, July 18th, Santa Fe, NM
- 826 Valencia with special guests Rose Eveleth, Molly McLeod, and Anxy Magazine – 6:30-9pm, July 25th, San Francisco, CA
- [San Jose: TBA]
- Bart's Books - 6pm, ~August 3rd, Ojai, CA
- [Los Angeles: TBA—venue needed! Email me if you've got a lead.]
- [San Diego: dates forthcoming, hopefully at the Maritime Museum]
- BookPeople – August 20th, 7pm, Austin, TX
- [Colorado: TBA for Boulder/Denver]
- Thought Bubble Festival – September 22nd & 23rd, Leeds, England
- MICE – October 20th & 21st, Cambridge, MA
I'll leave you with a couple Things I Think are Neat
to cleanse the palate:
- The Americans of Conscience weekly action list has been a huge help in directing my efforts to be a more engaged citizen this year. If you'd like an email every Sunday with practical actions to advance equality for all, sign up!
- The Aforementioned Glenn taught me a new word this week, and when I went to look it up, I found this beautiful poem.
- Kristin Wong writes about Imposter Syndrome (particularly how it effects underrepresented groups) for the New York Times.
- New chapters of Tony Cliff's latest Delilah Dirk graphic novel are going up, month by month, on his website. Tony's artwork is a marvel, and Delilah is the swashbuckling heroine I've longed for all my life. Plus: there's BOATS.
- Lucas Mann plays into my current obsession with vulnerability as a career by connecting personal writing to reality TV:
I did find a lot of parallels — in this sense of performing yourself, but also feeling like you’re exposed — this weird balance between intimacy and artifice, and then also the commodification of that.
Take heart. I'll see many of you real soon!