Friday, July 22, 2011

Before & After: Cat Patrick

Cat Patrick is an author of books for teens, beginning with Forgotten (Little, Brown, June 2011). She lives in the Seattle area with her husband and twin preschoolers, and is afraid of heights, planes and zombies.

For more information on Cat Patrick, visit her website at

It’s the day before my first book comes out.

Today’s the day before the day I’ve been talking about for nearly two years; the day I’ve been dreaming about my whole life. It’s the day before my most significant professional milestone will officially be achieved. Except, wait…does that mean that people I don’t know—and people I’ve known for ages—are going to read my book?


Right now, one day before launch, I feel like I’ve had too much caffeine even though I gave it up a while ago. Like I said on my blog, I’m obsessively checking Facebook and Twitter like they’re going to tell me The Answers…or somehow make me calm. I feel like a jumpy deer in headlights, wandering onto the literary street, hoping not to get mowed over.

My sister and I were chatting the other day about how we’re both the type of people who just do things without getting emotional about them in the moment. Through some of the best times in my life, I was like a ram, head down, charging forward.

(What’s with the animal analogies? Sorry!)

Anyway, Sis and I were laughing about how we tend to get emotional after the fact. I’ve come up with a label for our kind: Hindsight Sentimentalists. Being a Hindsight Sentimentalist, I didn’t cry when the first copies of the book arrived at my door or when I saw an early stack on the New Releases table at my local Barnes & Noble. I’m incredibly nervous about my first public appearance as an author tomorrow evening, but I’ll get through it…and then later this week or next month, I’ll tell the story of how wonderful it was with tears shooting out of my eyes like in cartoons.

For now, I’m bouncing off the walls, eyes dry, but with a big smile on my face. Because any way you slice it—whether I’m a ram or a deer or a Hindsight Sentimentalist—one of my biggest dreams will come true tomorrow.

And I think that’s pretty stinking cool.

(June 24, 2011) Two weeks and two days ago, Forgotten launched in the U.S., and it’s been an exciting 16 days! In fact, it feels more like the book launched two months ago.

On the day of launch, I celebrated with friends and family at a great Seattle bookstore called Secret Garden; the following week, I had the pleasure of meeting 20+ local booksellers and librarians at a private dinner at the delicious Canlis restaurant. My sweet neighbor threw me a neighborhood book signing party, and my immediate family surprised me by writing their own books in my honor.

In between events, I’ve been trying not to completely stalk my agent and editors about how the book is doing worldwide (so far so good!), wrapping up edits on Book 2 (not a sequel), and daydreaming about Book 3. I’ve received many amazing fan emails that I’ve loved reading.

Beyond that, things are sort-of back to normal, which makes me feel a little panicky, like if I’m not thinking about Forgotten 24 hours a day, it’ll be forgotten by readers. My rational brain knows that these things take time. But now that I’m over the fear of my book being out there, I want it out there big time!

I’m working hard at balancing being a published author and being a mom/wife/friend/daughter/sister. (And I still can’t believe I get to call myself a “published author.”) I’ve been smiling a lot, laughing a lot, making plans for upcoming events and to see friends and to go on trips and okay, fine…

I’ve cried a few times.
  • I cried when my sister brought over a homemade cat T-shirt like London’s.
  • My eyes welled up when I read the books my family wrote for me…until I got to my Dad’s. Then, I just laughed.
  • I cried when the audio version of Forgotten arrived at my door.
  • I got giddy-misty when I saw Forgotten on the “Hot Teen Picks” shelf at Barnes & Noble.
  • I fought back tears when I saw the amazing window display at Dymocks in Australia.
So there you have it: further proof of my Hindsight Sentimentalism.

Right now—this second and this week and this month—is one of the best times in my life. Every day, I’m a little nervous. Every day, I’m curious about what will happen. And every day, I’m thankful. Because I’m a debut author (OMG!).

And I’m enjoying every second of the wild and wonderful ride.

It just so happens that I have an extra copy of FORGOTTEN that I need to get rid of. For your chance to win it, simply follow the instructions below.

· Must be a blog follower.
· Giveaway is INTERNATIONAL.
· You must enter by midnight on July 30, 2011.
· A valid e-mail must be provided so I can notify you if you win.

Fill out the form HERE.

Good luck!


mfay2 said...

This was so interesting to read! I like knowing about how authors feel or did on their release date. Cool!

Nina said...

I like this post! :)

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