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Meg's Blog

Author Guide To Surviving a Booktour, Tip #2

I blew it.

I totally forgot to mention when I was at the Borders in Ann Arbor that the heroine of the book I AM TOURING FOR is FROM Ann Arbor.

What was I thinking? I mean, a whole chapter of QUEEN OF BABBLE is actually set IN ANN ARBOR. And I was IN ANN ARBOR. And I completely spaced telling anyone.

Look, people. When you have been on as many planes as I have over the past three weeks, YOU'D forget where YOUR book is set, too (also what city you are in).

But I don't think it mattered, because people still seemed to have a good time at my last event. I got to see an old elementary school friend, Ann D, as well as fantastic readers Kari and Brooke, who provided me with TaB (for which I thank them. I do have to get new TaB in every city because you can't take it with you on the plane, and often I don't have time to go to the grocery store in each city). They also made me a gorgeous pink necklace.

And I got a fun card from Lauren and Olivia. And the sequel to the book I'm reading now, BLOOD HOLLOW by William Kent Krueger, which the awesome folks at Borders very nicely gave me.

Anyway, people always want to know if I am taken to and from my signings in a limo. Almost, but not quite. In my continuing one of a kind and cutting edge series, Meg Cabot's Author Guide to Surviving a Booktour, I will now clear up the mystery of author transportation to and from book signings:

Meg Cabot's Author Guide to Surviving a Booktour Tip #2:

MEDIA ESCORTS: NO, THEY ARE NOT HOOKERS
Despite what you might be thinking due to the word “escort,” media escorts are the hard-working people who drive authors around when they come to your town for a book signing.

Some authors travel with their publicists. But for those who don't, publishers depend on media escorts to help pick up and deliver their authors to their signings on time…a daunting task, authors being a notoriously unreliable lot.

But media escorts do much more than escort authors. They sometimes liaison between the publisher and the bookstore, and sometimes between the publisher and the travel agent, helping with the author's schedule in ways only a local who knows the area can.

And sometimes media escorts act as caregivers to authors, when authors are too sick/drunk/dirty to perform their duties. Media escorts bring them medicine, sober them up, and will even get them to do their laundry, if necessary.

Because you spend so much time with your media escort, especially if you are driving long ways to various bookstores, a certain intimacy can be developed, which 99 percent of the time is kept on a strictly professional level. You and your escort will chat about current events, harmless gossip about other authors your escort has driven, or even listen to books on tape. Some of the media escorts I have had in the past I consider my friends, and we even exchange emails during non-tour times, just to keep in touch.

But because media escorts by nature tend to be vivacious and outgoing, they can dazzle authors who have spent all of their time until recently holed up in an office, writing. So there is that 1% of the time when things aren't kept professional.

Yes! There have been media escorts and authors who have gotten the hots for each other, left their own spouses, and gotten married!

SHOCKING!!!! But true.

If you happen to be an author who is vivacious and outgoing yourself, and that causes your media escort to fall in love with you, but you don't return his or her feelings, then you are dog meat. Because that person still has to drive you around.

So just make up some story about how you have taken a vow of celibacy until your book tour is over. Then after you leave that escort's city, never return his or her calls, and don't ever agree to tour in that city again.

But don't tell your publisher why, because you don't want to get your escort in trouble for something that is all your own fault for being so irresistible.

Remember, I am sharing these things with you because, let's face it—who else will? But I am not saying any of them have ever necessarily happened to me.

Tune in tomorrow for Meg Cabot's Author Guide to Surviving a Booktour Tip #3: NEVER LOOK AT THE END OF YOUR SIGNING LINE.

And if you are going to be in the Roseville, MN area on Tuesday, June 6, be sure to come to see me at 7PM at Barnes & Noble # 2614
2100 North Snelling Ave
Roseville, MN 55113

More later.

Much love,

Meg

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