A recap of the Powell’s Reading

Last night’s reading at Powell’s was my first public reading of any sort, barring the Bad Poetry Contests I used to help organize back at the University of Portland, and it couldn’t have gone any better—not even if a horde of My Little Ponies had descended from the heavens and pooped rainbows all over the crowd. The introduction included a warning about blue language and a recommendation that anybody within hearing distance who might be offended to go to the Christian supply store across the street. Many friends and website regulars showed up, including Lilith Saintcrow, Meljean Brook and fiveandfour. There was heckling, and hilarity, and many silly hand-gestures and facial expressions on my part. To see the last in action, please enjoy this video of me attempting to explain what man-titty means to the uninitiated-to-romance (turn the volume up—my digital camera’s microphone isn’t the biggest or best):

I read aloud from Choose Your Own Man-Titty, and the crowd decided to go with Historical Option Number 1: The Feisty Heiress at the House Party, so I got to say things like “insolent chit” and “mon enfant” (complete with atrocious French accent, whee!). However, the best part, by far, was the Q&A; at one point, while talking about gender roles and heteronormativity in romance, how ménage romances are starting the change the landscape in that regard, and how some authors are struggling with the notions that gay = effeminacy and emasculation but hero = manly man man, I said “It’s not gay unless the teabags touch.” I was making a good-faith effort not to say “balls,” except teabags ended up sounding so much dirtier. (Also, it was my STAB AT RELEVANCE, what with the hot hot teabagging shenanigans going on that day.) Then I talked about how some authors fully embrace the teabags touching while others scramble frantically to keep the teabags away from each other. Teabag forcefields, if you will. Which I illustrated with hand-gestures and sound effects.

The high point of the book signing came when my good friend T. asked me to autograph her rack, and then plant a lipsticked kiss right above my signature. Photographic evidence of these SCANDALOUS SHENANIGANS below:

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Check out that pucker! Hotttt!

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T., me, and my buddy J. acting like the hilarious spaz that he is in the background. I also feel the need to brag about the fact that I was wearing a T-shirt that said “Cogito Ergo Nom.”

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T. showing y’all how this book needs to be read. UNF.

Anyway, last night was riotous, wicked fun, and I can only hope that the other book readings will provide similar levels of hilarity and intelligent discussion. Thanks to everyone who was there, therefore saving me from the ignominy of talking to an empty room. Thanks also to Powell’s. I mean, holy shit, motherfucking Powell’s. I popped my author appearance cherry at Powell’s, and I can’t think of a bookstore I would’ve rather given that particular tender bud of femininity to.

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  1. 1
    Glynis says:

    Well dang, it was a lot of fun. Thank you for being so fabulous.

  2. 2
    Shaina says:

    ok, first of all you rock cuz you’re funny.
    second of all, you rock cuz YOU’RE WEARING A QC SHIRT. and that makes me do a happy dance.
    i cannot WAIT to get home and get me a copy of this book…‘s gonna have to wait til June, and every day is torture!

  3. 3
    Leeann Burke says:

    It sounds like you had a blast and entertained everyone who attended your presentation. I only wish I could have attended. I’m picking up my copy of your book this weekend. Can’t wait to read it!

    Congrats Candy!

  4. 4
    ev says:

    Could you attach the link please? for some reason I still get no videos. I have no idea what my husband did this time.

  5. 5

    Our public library foundation was putting together a poster for an upcoming appearance by author Diana Gabaldon, and there was an excess of man-titty.  When I pointed this out to the Foundation president, she embraced the “man-titty” phrase, and it has become a favorite now with the female board members.  The men are just confused.

  6. 6
    Barb Ferrer says:

    I love the deer in the headlights expression of the guy who walked behind you just as you said “mantitty.”

    And then ran away.

  7. 7
    Emmy says:

    Congrats on the successful reading! The teabagging link does not work, though – can you fix it? My Friday could really use some hot teabag action.

  8. 8
    StarOpal says:

    The guy in the back is a scream! Being so far away and unable to come, I’m really enjoying, and grateful for, these snippets.

    ev> If you’re running Firefox as your browser it sometimes won’t allow video. If this is the case (and if it’s not, um, nothing to see here move along) you just need to “allow” or “temporarily allow” the site you’re looking at or right click the video window if it let’s you see it.

  9. 9
    Candy says:

    Whoops! Fixed the teabagging link. For those of you who don’t want to click on the entry all over again, this is the URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vYXGq4X8naE Rache.l Maddow is amazing.

  10. 10
    Breanna says:

    I was there! You were great. Now, if only I had money.

  11. 11
    Elaine L. says:

    Hey Candy, Congratulations, looks like it was great fun!  Is there any chance you will be able to make it down the coast to San Francisco???

  12. 12
    SonomaLass says:

    I second the motion for you to do a reading in the Bay Area.  I will so be there, with a posse!  Just not in late June or the first half of July, when we make the summer trek to the homeland.

    There are excellent romance authors in the area as well—Carolyn Jewel and Pam Rosenthal off the top of my head, and many others I’m sure.  Now that could be an awesome book signing!

  13. 13
    ev says:

    If you’re running Firefox as your browser it sometimes won’t allow video. If this is the case (and if it’s not, um, nothing to see here move along) you just need to “allow” or “temporarily allow” the site you’re looking at or right click the video window if it let’s you see it

    No, no firefox on this one. I just get a big box with a little X in the corner. It’s not just on here either. He did something.

  14. 14
    Miss Moppet says:

    As if I needed another reason to love you (in a platonic interweb way), you are wearing a Questionable Content shirt!

    Also, you sounded good, very funny and approachable which I would guess is a good sell for the kind of book you helped write.

  15. 15

    I so wanted to be there!  Cursed job!  *headdesk*

  16. 16
    jill says:

    My daughter and I were there and enjoyed your talk (and the heckling) immensely! We didn’t have the money to buy a copy that night, but hope to soon. Did you leave signed copies behind at Powells? Thank you for a fun evening – I wished it could have lasted longer.

  17. 17
    Jocelyn says:

    Yes, you must come to the bay!  I’m sure there are tons of bookstores that would love to host you (I know Bay Books, for one, has a good used romance section, though I’ve never been to one of their events: http://www.baybooks.us/).

    I’m picking up my copy of the bosoms tomorrow.  JOY!

    …spamfilter is western45.  I wouldn’t look for it in that section, but there’s photographic evidence it might be there.

  18. 18
    Candy says:

    Dudes, I would LOVE to read in the Bay Area. It would be so insanely fun, between all the Bitchery members who live there and personal friends of mine. Suggest more bookstores, and I’ll see what we can wrangle.

    And Jill: Yes, I did sign some extra copies. There were only about five left at the end of the night, though.

  19. 19
    Elaine L. says:

    Kepler’s Books in Menlo Park, CA is a great independent bookstore in Silicon Valley, one of the few independents left standing around here.  I remember going to a signing for La Nora Roberts here about 6 years ago, so they do have a romance section.  Ha!  http://www.keplers.com/

    As a bonus, there is a fabulous romance friendly UBS just a few blocks away in downtown Menlo Park, called The Book Rack.
    http://www.thebookrack.com/Menlo Park

    Green Apple Books in San Francisco has both new and used books.  Alas, I don’t think they have a romance section (it appears to be illegal for any non-chain bookstore in San Francisco to admit that the romance genre exists), but they’re still a great store.  Website is http://www.greenapplebooks.com/cgi-bin/mergatroid/index.html

    And of course, there is always Borders.  Though I don’t know what their policy is on the use of terms like “man-titty” and “holy cuntmonkeys” at in-store events.

  20. 20
    Kate says:

    What, you were in Portland and I didn’t know about it?!?! Where you out at Cedar Hills instead of downtown? Oh, damn, damn, damn! I can’t believe I missed this!

  21. 21
    Kate says:

    Were not Where…hit submit before proofing…

  22. 22
    Jocelyn says:

    Kepler’s would be good – the other two independant bookstores that I’d recommend have gone out of business (Cody’s in Berkeley and Stacy’s Books in SF), Kepler’s serves the same niche and is the only one still running.

    Here’s a link to the News & Events page on the Northern California Independant Bookseller’s Association website: http://www.nciba.com/news/index.html – I’m guessing bookstore with events listed would probably be happy to have you come to read from The Bosoms, but Keplers or my earlier suggestion of Bay Books would probably be the best choices.  Like Elaine said, the independants often have anemic or nonexistant romance sections.  Though I hate to say it, one of the big-box Borders or Barnes and Nobles might be a good choice since a. they have romance sections, and b. they have parking.

    I’m excited to see some Bitchery in my neighborhood!

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