On Saturday, my publisher Mona Fertig from Mother Tongue Publishing and her husband Peter Haase travelled from Salt Spring Island to help me launch my new novella, Patrin. We met at a local restaurant and they gave me an unexpected gift: a bottle of sparkling Italian wine with a sweet card. (The plum gin was presented later, at our house, by the fire…) But why should I have been surprised? Everything about the process of publishing this particular book has been note-perfect. Mother Tongue may be a small company but Mona is also generous and thoughtful.
So the launch was wonderful. I’m still glowing. The beautiful Arts Centre in Sechelt filled with friends and well-wishers, the long tables laid out with food and drink, books, flowers, and of course a scattering of leaves in honour of Patrin Szkandery (whose name means “leaf” and who is told by a Roma woman in rural Moravia, “your name is your best prayer”).
Some lovely surprises at the launch: Jeffrey Renn, our actor friend, who came in the door with a huge smile. And Kathy Munro and Bill Mann from Whitehorse! (They should get a prize for coming the longest distance…) I’d love to post some photographs but John’s are blurry. I think Mona will send some photos later — the cake in particular was spectacular! But luckily my young friend Isabelle drew my portrait while I was reading and so I can show you what an author looks like, dressed for the celebration of her novella. (Isabelle must have thought my reliable black dress was too dull so she gave me some colour.)
P.S. Here’s Mona’s photo of the cake!