Thursday, November 6, 2008

Books, Stores, Readings, Parties, Oh MY!!!

The difference between our imaginings and reality are so comically acute sometimes. Since I found out that my book was getting published, years ago, I had this image of going to the Union Square Barnes and Noble, "my" Barnes and Noble and ceremoniously buying my book. Instead, the actual purchase happened in a much different way. As I walked through the rain yesterday I remembered that I had to buy a book for a research paper I was writing. I was at an obscure Borders in Midtown that I had never been to before. As I was typing in the author's name I had this inkling that there was another book I should be looking for. It wasn't until minutes later that I remembered, oh yeah, I should look for MY book...hee hee. But it did feel amazing actually purchasing Kid Rex, and even nicer that my credit card didn't bounce.

Last week, as a lot of you know, I was interviewed on Sirius radio for an hour. A couple of you especially liked when I was referred to as "Emily Moisin" (awesome). The show was interesting, (I think), and it was really fun doing radio- something of a throwback to old genres of communication. Luckily, I'm into retro these days. I'm going to try and post that show on my blog soon. Also, I'll updates upcoming readings, events, etc. My book launch party is next Saturday the 15th on the Lower East Side, but hopefully everyone who I invited knows/ remembers that. For all of you coming, all I ask is that you get drunk and rowdy...and maybe buy a copy of the book (I am a businesswoman, after all).

Finally, thanks to all of you who have written and called me with positive feedback about the book. It's an odd feeling simultaneously being such a private person, and also having such an honest, exposed memoir of my old self, my old life that is now, currently in the world. The mix of time, of lives, of worlds can be dizzying. So thanks to all of my friends, to my family (my mom who's been buying books all around town...), who keep me grounded and encouraged.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

My Baby is Born...Here's a Preview!

First of all, to all of you who pre-ordered Kid Rex and have called/emailed/facebooked (is that a verb?) me to tell me that you've gotten it and are reading it, thank you so much! For people who haven't bought it yet, or who aren't sure whether this "topical" memoir may not pertain to them, let me say that I only wrote this book because I believe it represents a universal, human struggle for self-knowledge and identity that we all go through at some point or another. To prove my point, here are a few of my favorite passages from Kid Rex...

From Chapter 8: The Big Black Dog

If I had never taken this simple respite I would have missed that gorgeous autumnal scene. I wondered what else I had missed, and what other scenes I would have missed if I continued on the way I was. If I were as brilliant as Einstein I would create my own theory of relativity. It would have been the relativity of color. It would speak of how, in the same span of months, a sick girl could go from dying in the solitude of a gray of winter to living a life of color in a thin border of trees along a small stretch of road somewhere between New York and Boston. It would explain big black dogs in our minds, rather than big black holes in our universe, and it would prove the existence of second chances brought to our awareness in a sudden burst of sunlight flashing for a moment through the sweet thicket of maple trees...

From Chapter 10: Venice Again, for the First Time

On our second day we stopped for lunch at a well-hidden cafe' where only locals dared to tread. Over cappuccinos and snacks the four of us sat, joking about nothing and everything. We laughed harder than we had in years, and it felt foreign to laugh instead of cry into our perfectly brewed coffee and thick froth. The laughter was exaggerated, almost harsh. It took up every neuron, used every corner of our brains, so we didn't stop and realize that we hadn't laughed that way together in years. Sitting in the basement-like Venetian hideout, surrounded by rough fishermen and middle-aged, dark-haired waitresses, I felt another Laura emerge. She was wearing a bright, turquoise velvet skirt that contrasted with the dark, rough teak of the bench that it rested on...

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Book of Bohemia

It occured to me today, walking through the West Village and going from one, small independent bookstore to another that New York has never felt this way to me before. It feels oddly new to me. I lived in midtown for nearly five years and now I'm back downtown. I haven't lived downtown since my sister and I lived in SoHo during the 9/11 attacks. Being in my neighborhood now feels like I've come full circle, though that circle has had a wide circumfrance. I feel much more excited at the prospect of doing book readings at these tiny neighborhood stores than at the huge mega stores like Barnes and Nobles, and Borders. In many ways this book, along with the marketing and promoting, is a grass roots effort, a child of a bohemian writing methodology. And though I hope this book accomplishes its primary goal of encouraging and helping people, I'm most proud that it's a Manhattan child. It was born in the city that I most love. As autumn approaches I too feel as though I am entering a new stage in my life. I feel like I'm shedding an old skin and moving into something that feels somehow more airy, more freeing, more profound.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Kid Rex Meets the World...

It's nearly October, which means that my book will be in bookstores everywhere in a matter of mere weeks. My emotions are very mixed. I'm extremely excited to have my work finally out into the world. In a way it's a last chapter to a few very tumultuous years in my life. Though the book deals with anorexia, it's been years since I've actively struggled with that issue. It's odd that I'm going to be regarded as someone who "knows" about that illness, when I now consider myself a survivor, not an expert. Still, in my early twenties, when I was struggling so greatly with this disease, I never would have thought it possible that I would live a happy, normal life. I have to remind myself that there is some element of the miraculous there.
These days I'm mostly preoccupied by the reception that Kid Rex, my baby, will receive by the rest of the world. I talk to my publishers and discussions focus on marketing and booksales, the commercialization of a bit of my soul. But when I imagine the "marketing" of my book, I think of myself doing readings to a small gathering of downtown bohemians in hidden alcove bookstores. I just stumbled upon one the other day on 10th street, called Three Lives and Company Booksellers. I walked in and could see my book happily living there, appropriately going home with that rare breed of human known as the book lover...the real reader. I imagined myself wearing a tweed jacket and my purple Prada glasses (which I don't actually need for reading) and discussing the philosophy of living, the complexities of life, the dangerous, wrenching struggles and the happy, ebuliant times that is the great equalizer among us all.
Finally when I think of my book launch I think of the people who are no longer present in my life since I wrote Kid Rex. Most notably among them are my grandmother, Elena, who died this past February, and my ex-boyfriend Josh. I dedicated the book to my grandmother before any of us knew that she even had lymphoma. I didn't tell her that my work was for her, that she was my primary inspiration in word and in deed...ever. I believe she knew, but I would have loved to see her reading my book and to see her drinking a glass of red wine at a Manhattan bar on the night of my book launch.
As for Josh, he represents heartbreak to me in many ways. He is still a presence in my life, a looming thought and feeling that sometimes manifests itself in the form of a superficial phone call or email. He is with me, but not there. He lived through the anorexia with me, and to my shock it was after I had recovered that the gravity of everything we went through together hit him. We fell apart and I know that he is on his own road now, searching for his own little bit of truth in a world that can seem so huge, so bleak, and simultaneously so manageable, small...even fragile. Josh and I are friends now, joined by a past that only the two of us really know. I hope he finds his way.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

25 Years You'll Want Back

A recent article from Canadian Newspaper The National Post in which studies have shown that women with eating disorders could take 22-25 years off their life expectancy. You can read it here:

Laura Blogs!

Though I've never previously considered blogging before, the actual process of publishing, releasing and marketing a book, as well as the intricate complexities of starting over in life, as we must all do at some point or another, are all worth writing about. Daily life in Manhattan is a topic that I'm currently most passionate about, as this ever-changing city provides a continuous lesson about letting go and beginning anew.

My book, Kid Rex, is a journey based on many aspects of growing into one's self. It deals with coming into adulthood in New York City, complex inner struggles like anorexia nervosa, and about actively searching for answers to what identifies us, as individuals. These are issues that we all must face at some point or another. It is a book that is specific enough about anorexia to help people actually get better. But it is also a well written piece about humanity and hope and the struggle we all go through to discover who we are in this short, tumultuous journey of life. In this way it is relatable to everyone, as the anorexia is not just an illness but a metaphor for the kinds of challenges that we all must face.
This book is also about the amazing joined and individual power of women. My strength to overcome my illness and explore my fears derives greatly from a network of supportive women that I am able to surround myself with. This notion is carried out through the entire text.
Kid Rex takes place mostly in New York, and the city becomes another of the interesting and vivid personalities that are explored along the way. Finally, it is a story about family and the kind of strength found in love, that amazingly powerful force that is beyond our understanding and our human notions of right and wrong, good and evil, acceptable or not.