Why Do Blog Book Tours? (and some news)

OrionI’m home again after four fascinating and eventful days on the road doing book promotion. My talk on gardening with a heart in Fort Collins attracted an audience of around 200; I read and discussed Walking Nature Home with a much smaller but very enthusiastic audience at Tattered Cover Bookstore Avenue in Denver (nearly everyone there bought a book, and some bought two–I like that!); I taught an over-booked workshop on creating your own garden refuge at Denver Botanic Gardens to a lively group who snatched up the display copies of my books, and I baked a peach clafouti for an early 79th birthday celebration for my mom before Richard drove us home over the mountains.

Those four days on the road were successful, but very stressful, prompting these five reasons to tour via the blogosphere. (I posted them in a slightly different form on the Women Writing the West listerv earlier today.) Here they are:

1. To save driving more than 500 miles in four days.

2. Because road trips mean weather, and last Thursday’s weather on Colorado’s Front Range was a classic spring blizzard, which meant Richard and I spent five hours driving the 98 miles from Fort Collins to Denver in places in white-outs so bad that we could barely see the reflective markers on the side of the highway (it reminded me of calving weather in northwest Wyoming!).

3. Because I like sleeping in my own bed and writing from my own couch.

4. To save the lives of the wildlife like the elk herds we passed in snowy South Park that commute across the highway between their bedding areas in the forest and their daytime grazing areas on the snowy flats (no, we’ve never hit one, and I’d feel horrible if we did–there’s too many of us and too few elk).

5. For fabulous posts like this one at Deb Robson’s Independent Stitch blog, the tour stop for today.  Deb wrote such a beautiful and thoughtful look at this book of my heart that I’ve already sent the link to my publicist at University of Texas Press.

And the news: Story Circle Network Book Reviews, one of the most comprehensive and interesting book review sites of books by women for women, just put up a glowing and insightful review of Walking Nature Home. Here’s how the review opens:

Walking Nature Home: A Life’s Journey is one of those rare memoirs that is much more than a life’s story (as if that were not enough). It is a memoir that not only tells us about a lifetime’s worth of experiences, but shows us how experience is shaped by knowledge, how knowledge is experienced through nature, and how nature can guide a human being to a fuller, healthier understanding of her place in the world.

In addition to calling the book “elegantly-crafted” and pointing out that “walking” in the title and the book serves not only as a “powerful image for purposeful forward movement… but for her growing confidence and personal independence,” the review ends with the words all authors want to hear:

You really must read this book.

How about that!

The image is Sherrie York’s illustration of the constellation Orion, from the first chapter of Walking Nature Home.