• News,  Publishing

    THE MEMORY COLLECTORS is on bookshelves now

    I am so happy to announce that THE MEMORY COLLECTORS is now out in the world!! Yes, this announcement IS a week late!

    The truth is that my book launch did not go as planned. 

    My family and I are currently recovering from COVID-19. We are okay!! We had mild cases and are recovering well. But I tested positive a week and a half before publication day, and spent every day leading up to March 16th in bed, exhausted and stressed. I know our story isn’t unique, but it was still a shock, after a year of being so careful and following all of the public health guidelines, to find ourselves in this situation. Shocking and scary, and the timing (not that there’s a good time to get COVID-19) was especially bad.

    On the big day, it was all I could do to post a quick, bleary-eyed Instagram photo and share some reviews. After that, I saved up every bit of energy I had in me for the evening launch event.

    The event, hosted by Mysterious Galaxy Books went SURPRISINGLY well, in large part thanks to my excellent friend and conversation partner, Bryan Camp, author of THE CITY OF LOST FORTUNES and GATHER THE FORTUNES. I did a short reading and we had a good time talking about the book and the writing process in general. You can view a recording of the event here. And you can still receive a custom signed bookplate if you order a copy of THE MEMORY COLLECTORS from Mysterious Galaxy Books.

    The reception to the book so far has been incredible. Here are some of the best-of lists that have included THE MEMORY COLLECTORS over the last couple of weeks:

    GoodReads: 6 Great Books Hitting Shelves This Week

    POPSUGAR: Best New Books of March 2021

    Bustle: Most Anticipated Books of Spring 2021

    BiblioLifestyle: Most Anticipated Spring 2021 Literary Fiction Books

    Off the Shelf: Our 16 Most Anticipated New Reads of March

    LifeSavvy: Mark Your Calendars for These 13 Exciting New Books in March

    It’s also been wonderful to see the many messages and photos from friends and family showing me their copies that have arrived in the mail, or pictures of the book on shelves at their local bookstores. I hope to be able to see THE MEMORY COLLECTORS out in the wild myself soon! Please keep those photos coming, and if you have read and enjoyed the book, consider leaving a rating and/or review. Thank you all for the support!

  • Books and reading,  Bright Things,  Writing life

    Bright Things #20: First Story

    One of the themes of The Memory Collectors is our relationship to physical objects — the memories, emotions, and power they hold for us. Every week leading up to the book’s release, I’ll share the story of an object that’s special to me.

    This is one of my very first stories, written in Grade 2 and definitely heavily influenced by my book of Grimm’s fairy tales from last week’s post. In the story, the magic key grows legs and walks away from me, leading me to a door that it opens and then shuts and locks behind it—The End. I guess I didn’t know what happened next. 47 year-old Kim can empathize with 7 year-old Kim here. Writing is hard.

    Second grade was a long time ago and the paper feels and smells like the inside of an old book, which makes me feel simultaneously delighted and ancient. Although I didn’t start writing fiction seriously until I was almost 30, my love for stories and creative writing began when I was very young. Special thanks to my mom for holding on to some of my early schoolwork!
  • Books and reading,  Bright Things

    Bright Things #19: Grimm’s Fairy Tales

    One of the themes of The Memory Collectors is our relationship to physical objects — the memories, emotions, and power they hold for us. Every week leading up to the book’s release, I’ll share the story of an object that’s special to me.

    If I had to choose a favourite childhood book, it would be this copy of Grimm’s Fairy Tales. It’s the only book I still own from when I was a kid. It has over 200 stories in it, and I know I read them all because I checked them off in the table of contents with a pencil crayon. I received it as a gift when I was about seven, and it was such a revelation to read the original versions of stories that I thought I knew.

    I remember vividly how I felt reading the Grimm’s version of Cinderella, especially the moments when her stepsisters cut off their own heels and toes in order to fit into the glass slipper. I am lucky to have had a lovely and idyllic childhood, so the idea that such brutal ambition existed in the world was shocking to me, but also terribly fascinating. I guess it should be no surprise that my own stories often go to dark places.

  • Books and reading,  Bright Things

    Bright Things #18: Bookshelves

    One of the themes of The Memory Collectors is our relationship to physical objects — the memories, emotions, and power they hold for us. Every week leading up to the book’s release, I’ll share the story of an object that’s special to me.

    When my husband and I got married, my father wanted to give us a gift that he’d made with his hands. Naturally, I asked for a bookshelf, imagining something small and simple. When he asked me to count and measure my husband’s graphic novels as well as my trade paperbacks, I remembered that simple isn’t really my dad’s style.

    These took him over a year to finish. Each individual shelf is a box, and the whole thing comes apart and can be reconfigured without actually removing the books. This isn’t even all of them, there’s a fourth in Shane’s office that didn’t fit in our bedroom. They are probably—no, definitely—the most beautiful pieces of furniture that we own. Bright things to hold more bright things.

    Next week I’ll talk about one of my favourite books on these shelves.