Monday, August 11, 2008

Is Darcy Here?

JENNA BAYLEY-BURKE

Currently: Keeping busy with the baby so as not to think about what we'll get to FIRST IMPRESSIONS in due time means in editor speak and getting ideas for a new book. So far I have lawyer jokes, wedding cakes, half a synopsis, Becki Newton and Simon Baker.


Mood: Sadly, still daydreaming of sleep...
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The hotel ballroom was sectioned off into the haves and have nots. Those with editor or agent appointments, and those waiting to pick up the scraps left by writers who failed to show up. The haves showed up twenty minutes before their appointment and stood in one line and then another. The have nots waited on chairs, swarming towards a volunteer who dared approach the hungry mob with news of who had an open seat across the table.

You can imagine the tension buzzing in the room as I waited for my appointment with an editor (for a now defunct line, but that's not the point). I was so relieved to see a local chaptermate. She'd spent the better part of the day in the room, scoring more appointments than my nervous stomach could handle.

She's just began to tell me of her latest chat with an agent whose mere name made my palms sweat when she screamed and jumped at least a foot in the air!

When she landed I looked swiftly for cameras (not a Punked or Candid Camera crew member in sight). As I was scanning the room I noticed where she was pointing...to the floor. There stood proud a cockroach half the size of her shoe!

Oregon is thankfully cockroach deprived, so I nearly let out a yelp of my own. Only every eye in the room staring at the girl who screached kept my own mouth closed. One of the hotel staff sauntered in (surely, a scream qualifies as something you need to run for, but obviously this guy never worked at Les Schwab ). He asked what the problem was and my still breathless friend pointed at the vermin.

"Oh, well, that must have come in one of the boxes of books."

Sure it did. Because there wasn't a book in the room and something that size would have gone unnoticed. Uh-huh.

All I could think to say was, "Could you step on it?"

Hotel service with a crunch. My friend made a bee line out of the room, probably to shower from the experience. I had to pretend all the way through my appointment that I wasn't thinking about roaches!

6 comments:

Jessa Slade said...

I Snoped this story ;) but turns out it's true -- you can tell because the cockroach stays the same size in every telling.

Oregon might not have roaches but we do have slugs. Luckily slugs don't scuttle, or fly like palmetto bugs do. Despite the number of squash, bean & cucumber plants we lost to slugs this year, I'll take 'em over roaches. Do roaches like beer?

Genene Valleau said...

Jenna, I applaud your control in not shrieking! With something that size, even stepping on it could involve some risk. LOL!

But at least the cockroach took your mind off the upcoming appointment. So maybe you weren't quite as nervous -- at least about the appointment. But I hope you checked under the sheets for some of its' relatives that night. :)

Jenna Bayley-Burke said...

Roaches give me the creeps..and I'd only seen bigger ones in the zoo. If I didn't have two boys of the 'look at this bug, mommy' age I would have squealed.

Jenna Bayley-Burke said...

Oh...and slugs...the boys love catching them so they can pour salt on them. I think we have a rep with the slug population and they avoid us...should I send the boys over to you?

Delilah Marvelle said...

Omigosh, I remember this!!! I was there! Wasn't this in Dallas last year??? My husband was there to witness it too, LOL I absolutely hate, hate, hate roaches. Ugh.

Maggie Jaimeson said...

LOL, Jenna. All of you have spent way too much time sequestered in the beautiful northwest. Many places in the south have these delightful creatures. When I lived Mississippi, they were so pervasive we had to have a monthly pest control contract. The one good thing I can say about them is that when you do step on them the crunch is very satisfying. :)