The short story is that I was supposed to meet a lot of friends in New York City this weekend. Those plans fell apart, but the editor of Hot Mess, Rachel, brilliantly realized this was an opportunity to set up a reading. When she suggested it, I enthusiastically agreed – enthusiasm is a good way to keep from realizing how panicked you are until it’s too late to back out. No matter how freaked out the idea of reading your story to an audience makes you, I don’t know many writers who wouldn’t jump at the chance. You have people. In a room. And they’ve come to listen to you read your story to them. Once you get past the anxiety attacks, it’s just about the best thing ever.
Speaking of panic and best things ever, I don’t know what to say about the awesomeness of my friends on Twitter. The support everyone showed for us was incredible. My appreciation is so appreciative that it wants to thank you. Thank you, everyone. I need to give a special thanks to NYPinTA, though, for coming up with what just had to be the official hashtag of Not Losing It During A Reading. #dontfuckup. I even marked the top of my reading with it.
Rachel did an amazing job emceeing the event, every reader was great (having not heard myself, I’m just assuming I was great, because, y’know, it’s no fun to assume the opposite) and the discussion that followed the readings was not the silent, awkward letdown that discussions sometimes are. It was lively! It was fun! Even if Rachel decided to put me on the spot right at the top of the discussion and lead me straight into an Eric Is Alcoholic joke.
Thank you to everyone who came (extra-personal thanks to CLImagiste, who I got to meet for the first time!) to hear our first reading. It was an incredible night, and worth all of the panic.
Since my wife is awesome, we have pictures of the reading and of the celebration at the Peculiar Pub that followed. Since I am benevolent, you get to see them. Enjoy.