Much to my surprise and dismay, I learned this Wednesday morning that author, Karin Gillespie was going to have to let go of running the fantabulous southern authors blogspot. As I sat in stunned silence, I muttered, "No, this must not end!" Before I had time to even think about what I was doing, I emailed Karin, and asked her if she would mind of passing the torch on to me.
I could do this. There is nothing more in my life than I love doing than promoting authors, books, reading, and literacy. "Could we talk?" I asked and talk indeed we did.
As of Monday, I indeed will have the torch, baton, whatever, passed on to me of continuing this incredible venture of sharing the BEST of southern authors. Karin will be guiding me through this transition period and I pray we have a smooth and even journey as we showcase all your invaluable advice, stories, and talents.
But first, many of you may ask, "Kathy, who?" All I can say is "Welcome to the Wonderful World of the Pulpwood Queen!"
To learn who I am let me first begin with my day. I am running late with scissors as first, I talked too long to Karin on the phone and I am late to work, Second, the scissors part, (which I run with point down like my mama told me), as I also happen to own and operate the ONLY Hair Salon/Book Store in the country, Beauty and the Book, WHICH also happens to be the headquarters for my book club, The Pulpwood Queens and Timber Guys Book Clubs, 320 chapters running from New York to California, Alaska to Florida, everywhere in between, BIG TIME IN THE SOUTH, but also members and chapters in TEN foreign countries. Yes, I am a hairdressing bookseller who happens to think books are the best thing since sliced bread, that is if it's homemade slathered with real butter and Blackburn's Apricot jam!
You might remember my book club as we kicked off Good Morning America's Book Club READ THIS with Diane Sawyer or Charlie Gipson! Or perhaps remember my book club and I being featured on Oprah's OXYGEN NETWORK with this little unknown singing group called DESTINY'S CHILD. Yes, Beyonce' and I began are real careers at the same time. Or again for being featured on The Oprah Winfrey Show that's focus was on Queen Latifah and her then feature film BEAUTY SHOP! I call myself the Forrest Gump of the book publishing world as I always seem to pop up with the most famous of people. I assure you, I am an ordinary person. I just happen to believe we can do extraordinary things if we are passionate about what we really believe in!
Kathy L. Patrick still doesn't ring a bell, that's okay, because who really wants to be all that famous! Would anyone really want to trade place with Elvis, Marilyn, or Michael? I don't think so but then again they are long gone, not a place I want to be at this point in my 53 year old life, I assure you. I have too much work to do!
My mission and sole purpose, as my book clubs is, is to promote authors, books, reading, literacy all while helping undiscovered authors get discovered in a really big way!
That's my day job which seems to run alot into being a moonlight job too, but I digress. Damn us southern authors, always getting so far off the tracks we miss the train!
I also wrote a book, "The Pulpwood Queens' Tiara Wearing, Book Sharing Guide to Life" published by Grand Central Publishing. It's my life story of how books saved me and why I am on this crazy mission to do all of the above. That book took me six years from start to publication to get published. I did the big book tour, 27 stops in 10 midwest to southern states with Pulpwood Queen book club members in tow and BIG HAIR makeovers at each stop, courtesy of Raquel Welch Hair U Wear! Been there, done that, wore the shirt, and now where am I?
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to heaven, we were all going direct the other way - in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.
Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities
English novelist (1812 - 1870)
You get the picture! We have our work cut out for us! My book just went into remainders, I have been advised by my agent that perhaps my next book I should self publish, and you know what, that flat out gets me excited. It's a whole new world! Wait, back on another Disney song, whoops. Why is my life so much like Disney songs!
So back to "The Bare Necessities, those simple bare necessities, forget about your troubles and your strife!" Karin Gillespie has done most of it and now here is where I come into the picture, but I digress, again.
Today explains me to you. I arrive at my shop and I remembered I forgot to call back my adopted brother, (this man is perfect, so I decided since I never had a brother, I would adopt him as such), author, Michael Morris. I call Michael. My call gets dropped like a kazillion times, damn Alltell selling out to Horizon. I am trying to tell him how he is going to be a part of my book video which will involve us doing a parody of this iconic television show, DALLAS, where I play SueEllen and he will play Bobby, click to see below our inspiration, (full book video will debut at Girlfriend Weekend, and warning, it's going to be one that will make you pee your pants, so wear your Depends)!
The call drops again and I realize I am late to my Rotary Club of Jefferson, Texas Board Meeting. I'll call Michael later, he knows me. God Bless my little brother.
I'm off to The Jefferson Hamburger Store where we have our meetings as they always involve pie, mile high pie. Today's was lemon meringue! I only missed like 15 minutes and we are on track discussing goals for the year, me as Literary Chair. I have two guests arrive, Lu and Dan Monk, new residents to Jefferson, so we have a nice chat then it's back to the shop for meeting with my Minister Allison Byerley and our NEW Junior High Youth Director Sara Elizabeth Whitaker with me, the High School Youth Director. We are well into discussing our Christian Screamo Rock Concert Youth Group Kick Off to be held outside on the grounds of my shop and the Lock-in at our church when in walks one of my dearest friends I have not seen literally in years who I use to work at Barron's Books with, Janet. I tell Janet we are almost finished with our meeting when in walks the Looney family, their name not condition, for hair cuts, not on my appointment books but in dire need of hair cuts. Jeremiah wants a faux hawk and Dominque a trim on her blonde swing bob. I finish up my church meeting, all the while catching up with Janet as I begin haircuts working around my 3:30 p.m. appointment, Russell, whose band will play at our Screamo Christian Rock concert called Moons Over Mars along with A Sequence of Ghosts and Modern Miracle that was already on my books when the phone starts ringing.
"Did Waffle House call me about the fundraiser for their author event that would be in September?"
City Councilman Joe Lee enters and needs to talk to me about a book that I am helping get published, a photography book on the historic homes of Jefferson? Preston, my webmaster calls, "Do you have time to talk?" My neighboring business owner calls, "Do you have five copies of your book that I can get signed for my girlfriends as we are having a get together?" Then everybody proceeds to drop by including Johnny Nance who is letting me host my book club's Summer Book and Concert Series Tuesday night at his boat landing on Big Cypress Bayou. Woo! Jaybird calls, my husband. It's six, "when are you coming home?"
This is not abnormal, this is the norm. I feel like a Texas Tornado with octopus arms as I wheel around my shop my head trying to keep everything straight. So big deal, we are all busy, right? You are darn shooting we all are busy but it's just like they always say, right Karin, if you want something done look for the busiest person you know. They will find a way to make it work.
So here I am, LORD. Here I am. Not a Disney song but at least I'm still singing even if it's just a hymn. My mind is gone into superfire random thinking on how we can take this southern author blogspot to the next level. I am up to the task because it is just that important. I am as bad as all of you for not commenting as much as I should on our blogspot. Shoot, my last blog I forgot to post on time. But when I read what Karin had written this morning, I realized just what I would miss if I did not have all of you to read and start my day! Boo Hoo, there would be a huge empty, vast hole that I would probably try to fill with vast cups of extremely dark and venemous coffee. Did I mention I love coffee, big time!
So pass me the baton please and call me The MUSIC MAN! I'll march proudly to keep this "band" of authors going. And Karin is right, we invest a lot of time in writing these blogs, I have spent hours just working on this supposedly spontaneous brainstorming concoction of words, sentences, and paragraphs. I will indeed make a concerted effort to not only comment but share and share big time! Let us all in honor of all of Karin's hard work and determination in getting this blog up and running like a fine tuned engine, go forth roaring into real readership.
Now let us begin by me again saying, Thank You Karin Gillespie, for creating such a beautiful thing. I will be working with Karin on this transition and will with the help of Karin have the schedule to you a.s.a.p. She was the taskmaster and I am realizing as I run with this baton and juggling scissors, again point down mama, that she was underappreciated too. This will be work but I happen to enjoy hard work when it comes to promoting fine authors. Bowing to the feet of our southern author blogspot Queen, Karin!!!!!
This will be a priviledge and a pleasure to work with all of you and my hope as I get to know you all better is that this pebble thrown into the "reading" pond will carry far and wide to increase you all's readership!
The Pulpwood Queen reporting for Southern Authors Blogspot Duty!
Kathy L. Patrick
"Hairdresser to the Authors", and yes, some celebrities!
Author of "The Pulpwood Queens' Tiara Wearing, Book Sharing Guide to Life", Grand Central Publishing
Founder of the Pulpwood Queens and Timber Guys Book Clubs
Beauty and the Book
608 North Polk
Jefferson, Texas 75657
P.S. And I expect comments from each and everyone of you and I will do the same. Singing, "We are all in this together!" Okay, that's from Disney's High School Musical too but you get my drift!