Michigan was amazing--send Hannah and Sarah Morris and Lisa Chau big digital cheers for bringing down the house(s). You also might want to send Lisa your favorite puke-in-the-classroom stories... Standing-room-only at both events. Borders had to keep bringing in chairs, and your three fellow RED authors had them rapt, from moments of beautiful silence and suspsense to the most genuine, roaring laughter. I'm so proud to be a part of this, share the room with your talent. And that includes in my hometown, with a few surprise guests I hadn't seen since I was in high school.
And another very special RED report: So, two nights earlier, I was speaking, on the book, at Albion College. The other guest lecturer happened to be my other (plus you guys) new hero--Civil Rights activist Juanita Abernathy, widow of Ralph Abernathy (I'm going to say MLK's bff, because I like the sound of that; get Googling!). She absolutely fell in love with the book, kept picking it up and reading a page or two and couldn't stop, even late in our B&B. Made her laugh the most beautiful laugh. But the highlight of it all was her reading Aarian Marshall's wicked, wonderful, says-it-all, hilarious essay "Burning in Heaven." An absolute once in a lifetime moment, to witness one of the last living icons of the Civil Rights movement reading our Aarian's words, and getting the biggest kick out of "the one black boy in our class" and "What an abject waste of blackness!"
Wow, wow, wow. WISH you could have been there.
With that, I return to strangely Michigan weather in New York on this Monday morning.
Huge congratulations and thanks, for the great success of Hannah, Sarah, Lisa--and by proxy, Aarian--in Michigan!