Aunt Olla watches Anne of Green Gables

Aunt Olla called yesterday. The local public television station was on a fundraising break during their broadcast of Anne of Green Gables, and she kind of wanted me to tune in.

Olla's roommate at the Hilton, Bernice, shares so many of Olla's tastes. It is so fortunate that they have found each other. Bernice's family has claimed Olla as their own, so Bernice's company is Olla's company as well, and visa versa.

Olla is intent that I come in to entertain at the Hilton before I leave for Tucson. I think their schedule is already full, but Olla has decided that the activities director could cancel "word games" on the 18th of December to clear the way for Brother Joe and I to do some music. We'll see how that works out.

HAVING A PLACE already rented in Tucson for January first does my mental health so much good. I do not know what state I would be in if I had to face an entire winter of this drudgery. I will be back for March, and that is bad enough.

There will be the holiday parties to attend first, including one at my house for the nursery employees. That will be fun. I was going to have it catered, but then Joe, who just got home from 10 days of serving a couple of dozen people three meals a day at a meditation retreat, seems ambitious enough to take on the project of cooking up some prime rib. More power to him.

I was slated to sign books at Waldenbooks in Columbia Mall December 13, but that has been canceled for bureaucratic reasons. Even though I have a box of books in my office, I cannot bring them to Waldenbooks for the signing. They have to order them from the wholesaler, who orders them from the publisher, and somewhere in that chain somebody's sitting on some paperwork, so they can't get books to Grand Forks in time for the signing. Whatever. We'll do it next year.

Some of you might have gotten a mailing promoting the Pirates on the Prairie book. The publisher in Iowa sent out the flier. I gave them the nursery mailing list for them to use. I didn't figure many of our customers would consider one piece of mail promoting a book by the owner of the nursery would be an abuse of their address. I hope I was correct in that assumption.

It is such a relief not to have to be responsible for selling the book. If I ever publish a book on my own again, and I suspect I won't, I will farm out the promotion to somebody who markets well. I can promote a nursery, but a book is another matter. It takes so much hype.

Speaking of hype, here is where you are able to order Pirates. It will be shipped to you in time for Christmas. A little while from now, the audio book version will be available as well.