Jenn McKinlay's News #45
August 6, 2021
We are at peak summer here in AZ. I hope you, too, are enjoying these final days with awesome poolside and beach reads! This is a combo Jul/Aug newsletter because somehow I blinked and July vanished. Seriously, I checked everywhere -- under the couch cushions, in the backyard, in Hooligan 2's room where all things go to die, but July was not to be found. Huh.
In case you missed it, WAIT FOR IT will be released in just a few days on AUGUST 10th!!! I am very excited to share this story with you! Two self sabotaging people, trying to find their happily ever after amid the brutiful realities of life. What's not to love? It received a starred review from Booklist, and was picked by Loanstars, Buzzfeed, and Goodreads as a TOP pick for August for which I am just thrilled!
CONTESTS: One lucky subscriber to my newsletter will win a signed copy of WAIT FOR IT and a desert wishes bracelet! If you follow me on social media, there are loads more giveaways coming in the month of August! Woo hoo! Follow me on Instagram and Facebook to be able to enter!
AUG 10th at 5 PM PST: I'll be chatting with Kerry Winfrey at the Ripped Bodice (click their name to register)! Very excited for my first visit to this iconic bookstore!
AUG 11th at 6 PM PST: THIS HAS BEEN CHANGED TO A VIRTUAL VISIT ONLY. I'll be in conversation with the Poisoned Pen Bookstore live on FB.
MY ONLY IN PERSON SIGNING: AUG 14th from 12-2, I'll be hanging out at the Barnes and Noble in Scottsdale (on Shea and the 101) to chat and sign books. Come visit with me!
AUG 18th at at 6:00 PM EST: I'll be chatting with my pal, Lucy Burdette, and Oline Cogdill from Murder on the Beach! Email firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve your spot.
I'll also be visiting several book clubs (you can find book club kits on my website) and teaching a few writing programs this month - mostly virtual - still so fun!
AUG 24th, I'll be chatting with Olivia Fierro on Good Morning Arizona
SEPT 7th, I'll be visiting with Tom Maxedon on his program WORD on our local NPR affiliate KJZZ.
What's On My Mind?
Parenthood. Sort of. Hooligan 2 and his adorable Plus 1 adopted a couple of kittens. None of the parents of the new parents were consulted in this decision. One day there were no kittens and the next there were two. Apparently, one can find free kittens on Craig's List. Who knew?
While these two crazy kids are technically adults and they've both had loads of experience with pets, this was their first run at parenting their own critters. As us veteran fur baby parentals know, pets are awesome and they're also a lot of work.
Needless to say, I was drafted into kitten-sitting early in the game -- not a hardship. As H2 handed them off to me, he said, "Well, you are their grandma."
WHAT?! No, just no! Do not call me grandma!
Of course, one look at my horrified face and it only got worse.
Hooligan 2: How about Grammy?
We finally settled on Mimi. I can live with that.
Albert (tuxedo) Mochi (long hair) and Mimi :)
But, of course, free kittens come with free ear mites and free parasites and, well, you get it. Suffice to say, these cutie patooties have been a crash course in twenty-four seven care for H2 and his Plus 1.
It's an amazing thing to see your mostly grown child experience their first run at parenthood (of a sort) and see the attention and care they devote to a being that is so dependent upon them. H2 has always been an animal lover so when his babies were ailing, he was beside himself.
The hopelessness on his face reminded me of myself when H2 was a baby. At six months old, he had the meanest case of croup I'd ever seen. Every night at two in the morning, I'd put him in his carseat and drive a loop around the city of Phoenix with the windows down -- Hub and I called it the "croup loop" -- until his barking stopped and his breathing was easy enough so that he fell asleep.
"I just want the kitties to be healthy and happy," H2 said. "Whatever it takes."
"I know," I said. "Welcome to parenthood, a heart-melting, cuteness overload, anxiety and stress fest of unanticipated expenses."
And it was in that moment I saw the lightswitch flick on. In his gaze was every night I'd done a bedside vigil for him when he was sick, every meal I'd cooked, every lunch I'd packed, every hour I spent chauffering him to wherever he needed to be, and every time the only thing I had to offer him was a hug.
"Thanks, Mom," he said. "For everything."
"You're welcome," I replied. Then I hugged him - tight.
Update: The kitties are flourishing and they're going to be just fine and H2 and his Plus 1 are finally getting some sleep.
Happy Summer, Everyone!
Thanks for being the best readers ever!