I think we can all agree that I stink at blogging regularly. I’d promise to do better, but I don’t want to lie.
Anyways, I want to talk about a moment I had at work (I work for a small independent publisher located in the garment district of Manhattan) that really touched me. No, it’s not about science fiction or fantasy, but it is about dreams.
It’s not every day that you get to hang out with a published author for a couple of hours, and not many people can say that they get paid to do it. Today I think I experienced one of the highlights of my internship in publicity at a book publisher, and that was when I got to meet and have a conversation with Tania Grossinger. She was in the office signing copies of her forthcoming children’s book, Jackie and Me: A Very Special Friendship, and I was tasked with helping her label the envelopes for each book that was signed. Ms. Grossinger is a true gem. I had already read Jackie and Me because advance copies of it have been in the office for a while, and part of my job is to make sure these advance copies go out to book reviewers. The book is beautifully illustrated, and the story is a classic tale of being an outsider that I am pretty sure we can all related to on some level. While I was labeling envelopes, I got to ask Ms. Grossinger some questions about being an author and about her life in general. She’s a fascinating lady and a delight to talk to.
The first thing I learned about Jackie and Me was that the book idea was brought to her by our publisher when she was trying to sell an idea for a different book. Tania is proud of the fact that she is “one of two million of us Americans who are childless by choice,” so writing a children’s book had never crossed her mind. The idea came about because of her childhood friendship with baseball legend, Jackie Robinson, and the children’s book was born. Fortunately, she was able to strike a two book deal, and her other book, Memoir of an Independent Woman: An Unconventional Life Well Lived will be out in June. Her previous biography, Growing Up At Grossinger’s, gives insight into what is was like to grow up at a resort in the Catskills frequented by celebrities and historical figures while Memoir will be about Tania’s personal life and her reflections back on the choices she’s made. Ms. Grossinger hinted to me that there might be some controversial topics covered in her memoir, and as the former Director of Broadcast Promotion for PLAYBOY magazine, a travel writer, a book reviewer, and a consultant, I’m sure she has some very interesting stories to tell.
So, after many years working in media as a publicist and PR consultant, Tania Grossinger has finally realized her dream to publish her memoir. She described the project as near and dear to her heart, and she kept expressing how she couldn’t believe that it was really happening. Her delight over reviewing the final jacket copy for Memoir showed, and she just glowed as she personalized each autographed copy of Jackie and Me. She seemed in awe of being able to finally realize her dreams, and I felt so inspired to just sit and chat with her about publishing, publicity, and life in general. This is why I’m in publishing, and this is why I want to work in publicity. It’s all about the author, and it’s all about getting the word out about amazing stories and amazing people.