Friday, June 4, 2010

You've Got to Have Friends.

RO: Yes, as Bette Midler - and before her Buzzy Linhart - said you gotta have friends. Right now I'm in North Carolina with some of mine for a tour we're calling Unarmed But Dangerous. I don't remember how it came to be but we are in the hands of the amazing Molly Weston and Elaine Viets, Meredith Cole, Donna Andrews and I will be in the triangle area from June 5-8 visiting libraries, bookstores and a landmark Cultural Center, if you're in the area please check any of our websites (mine is for dates and locations.

In the past three years I've toured (mostly unofficially) with Jane Cleland, Meredith Cole, Cathy Pickens and I've shared the stage with Barb D'Amato, Liz Zelvin, Louise Penny, Julie Kramer, Wendy Corsi Staub and our own Jan Brogan. It's always fun. At the risk of getting all mushy...there is a sisterly quality to most of these events. No, we're not setting each others hair, but there is a camaraderie and a generosity of spirit that is one of the things I enjoy about what I'm doing.

And it's fun. Molly told a story tonight about the time 5 writers were staying with her and one of them found a snake on the premises. What they did sounded a little like the lobster scene in Annie Hall.

Roberta, you had mentioned in the past a fun trip you took with Libby Hellman. Anyone else have fun group stories from the road?


  1. Ro, my first major touring experience was with Libby Hellmann and Deborah Donnelly. We'd all had our debut books out that year and we were so very excited. We planned the Sex, Lies, and Videotape tour and traveled the length of California giving talks and having adventures on the side. They will always be friends!

    Since those early days, I've done tons of events with other authors like SW Hubbard, Hallie, Hank, Kate Flora,...there's no way I can list everyone. It's much more fun to travel with pals--you can laugh about the bad things and the events have a great energy.

    The best part of my writing career is definitely the friends I've made for life!

  2. Beautifully said, Rosemary! Writing is such a solitary lifestyle, and so unique, that it's rare for us to come across people in our daily lives who "get it." Conference panels and group signings are rare, golden opportunities for us to mingle with kindred spirits. In fact, I loved all the essays on that very topic in this year's Edgars program. And it's always a pleasure to share a panel with you. :-)

  3. Dang, I lived in Raleigh right after I got married, and the idea of a cultural hub in the area would have been laughable. I'm so glad to see things have changed!

    I think whenever writers get together, the group generates its own energy. Have a great trip!

  4. OH, waving like mad! Hi to all of you in NC, and special hugs and kisses to Molly Weston, guide and mentor extraordinaire!

    I was on the NC tour with Julee Hyzy and Karen Olsen..need I say more? We were the Triple Threat tour, and it was a hoot.

    We could have talked forever about writing and worrying and the great parts and the scary parts and the only-in-book-world parts!

    And Oh, with Marcia Talley and Elaine Viets and Laura DiSilverio in Annapolis and Oakmont--five hours in a car can really bring you together. And it was unforgettable.

    I think Rosemary, that is is such a wonderful topic--it's something that's so unique and so precious. I'm getting sappy, too.

  5. I have had so many fun road trips. For me they are the best part of being a mystery author. I've toured mostly with Lyn Hamilton, who sadly died last year. We've battled revolting pigs and strange fans and eaten lobster on a dock together. I also did the NC swing from Molly's with Donna Andrews and Lyn. We spoke at a library where the entire audience looked like the cast of Deliverance. As I spoke a teenage girl crossed the room three times sobbily loudly. Nobody seemed to care, except me, and I was trying to give a speech.

    I've also done the drive to Oakmont several times with Marcia, Elaine, Louise Penny, Donna Andrews and more. We always eat at Jean Benet's tavern--wonderfully atmospheric and great soups.

    I've toured Florida and the South with Mary Anna Evans,(and had a real experience in a cave in Kentucky) California with Penny Warner, Jonnie Jacobs, Janet Dawson, Camile Minichino, Ann Parker, Dianna Orgain and many more than I can't remember as they all blur after a while.

    Exactly what Roberta said about the laughter after awful events, and the camaraderie. The sisterhood of the traveling pants and more!