March 14, 2014

FISH KICKER, the novel, was officially published on March 7, and on March 9 I had a launch party to celebrate the occasion. It was held in Mid Manhattan and was hosted by the National Writers Union. We had beautiful weather. The sun was out, the air was nearly spring like and there was not a cloud in the sky.

Photo by Susan Sermoneta

There was cheese and crackers, and more than enough wine for everyone. I made a companata, a kind of pickled eggplant relish dish, one of my favorite appetizers, to complement the cheese. Everyone milled around meeting old friends, making new friends and there was room enough for even the few stragglers who showed up at the last minute.

Photo by Susan Sermoneta

Several people who used to live within blocks of each other were reunited after many years of separation. And what was so interesting was that I was able to blend my old neighborhood with my new neighborhood, with friends coming from many locations in New York.

photo by Susan Sermoneta

There were lots of smiles.

Photo by Mike Gass

There was a couple moments of quiet contemplation.

Photo by Susan Sermoneta

And there was some serious conversations between the younger guests, and one kid, a major gamer, who put the Ipad away when I read from FISH KICKER.

Photo by Susan Sermoneta

All right gang, the reading is about to start.

Photo by Mike Gass

Tim Sheard, representing the National Writers Union, gave a short explanation of the Union and its importance to writers and then he introduced me.

Photo by Mike Gass

Fortified with a swallow of white wine, I read from the first nine pages of the novel.

“Sharon sat in a small patch of sunshine outside Willie’s weigh station, resting her back against a scrubby pine tree, her face raised to the warm light. The heat from the afternoon sun dulled her mind like a drug. The end of summer was unseasonably warm this year on the Kenai Peninsula. The Alaskan fireweed had already finished an early bloom, which meant the first snowfall could come any time now. Sharon wondered where she’d go when it turned cold.”

Photo by Mike Gass

“A pick-up truck loaded with a fresh catch of salmon rambled up the road and backed into the weigh station. Open net fishing season, a short run of excess salmon during spawning season, put into play a frenzy of underemployed men and women scrambling for the mother lode of sockeye and reds heading up stream and into the interior. Willie owned a stretch of land on a bluff overlooking Cook Inlet and in the summer he turned an old shed on his property into a weighing station and became a middleman for the fish canneries.”

Photo by Mike Gass

Then the launch party was over. There were still a few chunks of cheese left, a couple spoonfuls of companta on the bottom of the bowl, a bit of wine left in one bottle, but it was time to say goodbye. I hope you can come to my next book launch. Drop me a line and I’ll be sure to put you on my mailing list.



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  1. Susan Sermoneta on March 14, 2014 at 8:58 am

    The launch party was lots of fun – and delicious. I love what you have done – as a writer – creating a narrative out of the photographs. Terrific “story.”

    • Pushing Time on March 14, 2014 at 9:05 am

      And thank you Susan for all the great photos that you contributed. I was so happy to see you there.

  2. Deb on March 14, 2014 at 9:37 am

    Marge, I’m so happy for you and enjoyed the tender way you shared the love circulating throughout the room at your launch party. Felt it here!

    • Pushing Time on March 14, 2014 at 9:46 am

      Thank you Deb!! It really was a very lovely time!!

  3. thelma straw on March 14, 2014 at 9:37 am

    Congratulations on your new book, your launch and becoming a member of the National Writers’ Union. Sounds like an excellent organization – and what a benefice to have their quarters for a literary event. May you have many more such happy events in the coming days! T. Jackie Straw in Manhattan

    • Pushing Time on March 14, 2014 at 9:49 am

      Thanks Thelma!! Yes, the NWU is a great organization to belong to. They will go over a writer’s contract and let the author know if there are any nasty surprises lurking in the small and large print.

  4. Susan Bernhardt on March 14, 2014 at 9:54 am

    Congratulations again on Fish Kicker. You had quite the release party. Fun to see the party on photos and loved your photo captions. Best wishes…Susan Bernhardt

    • Pushing Time on March 14, 2014 at 10:26 am

      Thanks Susan. Maybe I’ll make it to one of your celebrations some day, or we can hang out and hoist a toast in tribute to mutual triumphs!!!

  5. Jeri on March 14, 2014 at 10:23 am

    Great launch party and great photos by Susan Sermoneta (who always takes amazing photos!). Fish Kicker is a beautiful book written by a beautiful person, author, and photographer. You deserve every accolade that’s coming!

    • Pushing Time on March 14, 2014 at 10:28 am

      Thank you Jeri!! So fun to have you there and to be able to celebrate with such great friends. Yes, Susan and Mike took great photos!!! They certainly helped to tell a tale about the day!!!

  6. Sharon on March 14, 2014 at 11:45 am

    So happy for you and your success! Congrats again on this wonderful achievement.

    • Pushing Time on March 14, 2014 at 3:28 pm

      Thanks Sharon!! See you in a couple of months!! Can’t wait to smell that fresh Northwest air!!

  7. Susan on March 14, 2014 at 9:27 pm

    What a great book launch you had. I was there in thought and wish I could have been there. See you soon in the Northwest!

    • Pushing Time on March 15, 2014 at 7:34 am

      Yes, Susan, it was a great day. I wish you were there, too. See you soon!!

  8. Joel Nethery on March 15, 2014 at 11:58 am

    Looks like such a lovely time. Congratulations Margaret! I sure wish I could have been there.

    • Pushing Time on March 15, 2014 at 12:21 pm

      Joel, you would have had a great time. Perhaps another time!! Maybe I’ll do a west coast trip with the next novel!!

  9. Deborah Valentine Valentine Smith on March 15, 2014 at 12:04 pm

    This is so enjoyable to read and look at,Marge – as was the party! I had a great time and loved those nine pages! Can’t wait to read the rest. I downloaded it from Amazon.

    • Pushing Time on March 15, 2014 at 12:23 pm

      I’m so glad you were there, too, Debby!! Hope you enjoy the other 164 pages!!! See you soon.

  10. Toddi/Claudia on March 15, 2014 at 2:53 pm

    It finally came and you succeed in not fainting. LOL Congratulations on your new adventure and success. I too wish I could have been there; it looked exciting and fun. Cannot wait until your next book launch; maybe I can be there. See you soon. All my love to you.

    • Pushing Time on March 15, 2014 at 3:47 pm

      Yes, I survived, Toddi!! Now I’m working on the next novel, editing and getting it ready to be sent off to the publisher. Thanks for virtually being there.

  11. Angela T.W. on March 15, 2014 at 3:59 pm

    How wondeful this event looks. Wish I could have attended. Congrads! Margre you are one amazing gal!

    • Pushing Time on March 15, 2014 at 4:08 pm

      I wish you could have been there, too, Angela!! I know you are always with me in spirit, if not in person!! Thanks for stopping by and leaving such good thoughts and wishes!!!

  12. petra patitucci on March 15, 2014 at 5:43 pm

    Margaret, I am late but how absolutely wonderful it is to follow this, to witness how
    someone, you, see your dream coming true, when writing was always what you loved to do.
    And the images, the stories about them…delightful.
    Thank you for letting me part of your world a bit.
    It is a lovely, warm world.
    Congratulations and all my best wishes, today and always.

    I would have loved to be there, Margaret


    • Pushing Time on March 15, 2014 at 7:26 pm

      Petra, it would have been wonderful to see you smiling face with us that day. Your words are always so perfect and assuring!! Thank you!! Thank you!!

      • petra patitucci on March 15, 2014 at 7:36 pm

        You are welcome, talented lady. :)))

  13. Teri & Jeff on March 16, 2014 at 4:17 pm

    Congratulations again!! It looks like a really good time was had by all, and we’re only sorry we couldn’t be there. We wish you much continued success – you truly deserve it!!

    • Pushing Time on March 16, 2014 at 4:22 pm

      Thanks, Teri and Jeff!! I’ve got you on my invite list for the next launch!!

  14. Pam on March 17, 2014 at 12:19 pm

    Late in replying as usual but doesn’t mean I wasn’t thrilled to be there for your first launch. You inspire me for your persistence and determination and your passion for writing. Looking forward to sharing your next journey wherever that may take you…

    • Pushing Time on March 17, 2014 at 12:28 pm

      So far Pam, you’ve been there with me on many of my “launches” and I with yours. But this one was really quite special and I’m so glad you were there to share it with me.