We are so excited that our Dinner with an Author Gala is just one week away, and even more excited that you’ll be there with us! The event is officially at capacity with 250 guests, and your gracious participation along with 26 other amazing authors is what will make it unique and so special.
Excitement was building for me as I read this email update on the Raising a Reader MA gala. I would be rubbing elbows with other authors, some with a major publishing house, others whose novels had been made into major motion pictures, Like Lisa Genova, author of Still Alice. When I arrived at the swank Newbury Hotel the following week, I was whisked to a reception area for cocktails and mingling. Photographers snapped our pictures and wait staff served us beverages of our choice along with creatively arranged hors d’oeuvres.
TV personality Liz Brunner and I had a lovely conversation about our local television news careers and her podcast. Jennifer De Leon and I agreed to strike a pose for the camera, her with her novel, Don’t Ask Me Where I’m From and me with The Talking Drum.
At the appointed time all of us authors took a group photo in front of the “step and repeat” like they do at the Oscars. While the photographer was setting up the shot, I reminded Lisa Genova that we had met years earlier when I was the president of the Women’s National Book Association Boston Chapter and she gave a reading at one of our events from Still Alice. She must have been in negotiations with Hollywood at the time because she mentioned that there was some “buzz” about her book but she wasn’t at liberty to get more specific.
By evening’s end, we had succeeded in helping to close the literacy opportunity gap among young children and their families in under-resourced communities across Massachusetts. More than $358,000 was raised!