Sunday, September 14, 2014

Raleigh, NC meets Kim Harrison

On Friday, September 12, 2014, I had the pleasure of meeting +Kim Harrison at a book store in Raleigh, NC.  Kim is on tour for her new book, The Witch With No Name. It's the last installment to her Hollows series starring Rachel Morgan.  The anticipation of this release has had me on edge ever since I heard about it, and the day has finally arrived!

(If you haven't started this series yet, what's wrong with you? Go get the first book now! You won't regret it. In fact, you might as well get all of the books if you can. You'll be saving yourself extra trips to the store.)

For this book signing, there wasn't any real prep work involved on my part, other than following Kim's blog to see if there was anything I should know about before getting to the event.  Reading about her signing in Cincinnati, where the tour kicked off, and the sheer number of people that showed up to the event had me on edge.  I had no idea how many people would be swarming to the book store in Raleigh, and I had a three hour drive to get there.

So how early should I get there? I asked myself.  Well, mother nature answered that question for me.  My husband and youngest son came down with the flu, so I had to pick up my oldest from school.  After that, I was on the road solo!  My first time taking a long trip like that alone, it was liberating!  I faced my fear head on, determined not to miss out on a milestone. I was going to meet, greet, and have fun at Kim's event!

I was so excited about getting to the big event that I neglected to eat. I also forgot to bring the canned tomatoes (spaghetti sauce) I bought just for this event, as requested by Kim on her blog.  It was part of her tour, collect tomatoes, and deliver them to the local food bank.  As I drove, I listened to an audiobook, which made the time seem to fly by.  I had the best luck ever with the weather and traffic, it was a sign for great things to come.

I arrived at the book store at 6:20 p.m., about an hour before it started. When I walked in, there were a few people already claiming their seats in front of the podium, but not too many, sweet!  I purchased The Witch With No Name (the special edition with the blue butterfly), and needed a desperate potty time out.  The restroom was the most fascinating restroom I have ever seen!  They had put up 5x7 pictures of authors, which were all signed!  These pictures covered every wall, it was crazy!

After my break, I took a few pre-Kim pictures of the set up that the store had for her and her fans. Since I was so early I walked around for a bit and decided to check in with my husband. By the time I returned to the store it was 7:15.  I noticed quite a few more people had arrived since I first got there.

The first person I spied was a woman that looked awfully familiar.  I approached with caution.  As I got closer to her, she spotted me walking her way, and smiled.  Oh good, she's a friendly!  I introduced myself to her and commented how much she looked like someone I knew.  She smiled and responded, "I am dressed like Rachel Morgan". Faux Rachel's real name was Jennifer, from Spartanburg, SC.  Jennifer has been the biggest fan I have met to date of Kim Harrison's!  It was nice to meet you Jennifer, and thanks for the picture!

As Jennifer walked away, I decided to find a seat.  There was a bench with my name on it.  I sat down accompanied by two women, one with two young children with her.  Just as I took a seat, the store dude, didn't catch his name, speaks with a microphone to announce the raffle, and if you haven't bought Kim's book, this is where it is, blah, blah, blah.  I really wasn't paying attention, something about signing up to join their book club.  The raffle announcement caught my attention though and just when I was getting ready to ask, the woman sitting next to me turned and asked if I had gotten one.  I said NO!  Using a tone that indicated how outraged I was for the store staff to forget to give ME one!  Apparently it was supposed to come with the book purchase? WTF?  So I get up and go to the counter and nicely ask for one. Hmph...

As the crowd anxiously waited for Kim's arrival, I chatted up the woman next to me, the nice one that asked me if I had received a raffle entry.  Her name was Elecia, from Burlington, NC.  Elecia was nice enough to let me ask her questions for my blog.  She also engaged me with her story of when she read her first Kim Harrison book.  Now 26, she was 16 and on a cruise when she read her first Harrison book.  My comment to her was, "must have been a crappy cruise, lol." That made her laugh.

I asked her how she thought the newest book would end.  She had to think about it, and her answer was pretty vague, like how Rachel and Trent stay together, and the Demons coexist with the Elves and Witches.  I joked about how awful I am with predicting endings, and the woman with the children agreed.  We then discussed books, and she recommended a couple of different ones for me to check out, they really did sound intriguing.  Thanks Elecia btw!

It was time!  We both stopped talking and switched our attention to the podium, where dude from earlier came on the mic to announce Kim, YAY!  He goes into this long monologue of an introduction, and I'm just like enough already, where's Kim!  We are all aware of her accomplishments, we are her FANS!  Get on with it!  And now please welcome Kim Harrison...

To Be Continued...

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