Naughty Dog! (and other tales from pub date)

This is my dog Sunny. I love her, but today she is not my favorite animal. I was getting ready to go to BookPeople yesterday afternoon, so put Sunny in the car to drop her off at Becky’s parents’ house. When we got to the front door, Sunny decided to take off running down the street. Unfortunately, my hand was attached to the other end of the leash, and I’d gathered all eight feet of the leash around my fingers. Bad idea. I don’t want to make anyone wince, but if you’ve ever had really bad rope burn, you can probably guess what my hand looks like today. And of course, it was my signing hand, so I went off to BookPeople in bandages, unable to use my index finger. Ouch! I managed to scrawl my signature, but I couldn’t personalize any books. Thanks to everyone for being so understanding, and as you can see from the picture above, Sunny feels terrible about the whole thing.

Aside from that, the book launch at BookPeople was amazing. I didn’t think anything could top last year, but wow. The rock climbing wall, the gladiator fights in the arena, the Austin improv actors, the Oracle, the camp store . . . it was just a fabulous time. I had an ‘honor guard’ of young demigods making a line on either side as I walked from the store to the stage across the parking lot. So many kids! After the presentation, I signed books for almost four hours (I’m not kidding) but everyone — absolutely everyone — was patient, understanding, and in a good mood. Special thanks to Hailey, the very last kid in line. She is a true demigod!

What can I say? Austin sets a mighty high standard. And did I mention the centaur? Unbelievable costume (see below). I’m sure I’m forgetting a million important things that happened, but thanks to everyone who came out and especially the BookPeople staff who worked so hard to make the event a success.

Now I’m off to Atlanta. More later from the road.

Rick Riordan