Ruby Release: URL Love
Posted by Vanessa Barneveld Sep 17 2012, 12:00 am in ebook, inspiration, Ruby Release
The Story Behind the Publication Story
When our Darynda Jones won a RITA in July, she encouraged me rub her statuette after the awards ceremony. “For good luck,” she said. I believe everything Ms. Jones says, so I immediately took her up on that offer.
Darynda’s lucky RITA statuette
And wouldn’t you know it? Good fortune started pouring in faster than I could say, “There’s no place like the best-seller lists.” I scored a front-row seat at a Chris Isaak concert near San Fran two days before the gig without even trying. Swoon. It did cost a small fortune, but let’s not quibble. Guitar tech, Ken Cheatwood, was only too happy to chat with me about Chris’s guitars before the band went on. My hands shook as I snapped photos of him and the guitars. He smiled and told me there was no need to be nervous. I told him I was trembling due to the cold mountain air. In actual fact, I really was freaking out, but I didn’t want to seem uncool by saying so. Somehow I don’t think I fooled Ken.
Chris Isaak in a modest mirror-ball suit
Next night, I drove to the same mountain-top venue to see Duran Duran‘s gig, and narrowly avoided a low-speed collision with a tree and a parking attendant (Hey, I don’t normally drive on the American side of the road.) The parking attendant was very kind, and no there was no damage done to his limbs or the tree’s limbs. Lucky!
The following morning, Duran Duran’s frontman Simon Le Bon posted a suggestive tweet about the scorching Bay Area weather. I responded within 20 seconds and he retweeted me to his 80,000+ followers. Double swoon. Seriously, this was like close encounters of the third kind — contact with a higher life form, someone I’ve idolized for three decades. If we’re going be technical, he didn’t write back to me per se, but the episode turned me into a grinning fool for a week. It ties in spookily well with my next nugget of luck, the biggest of all…
The retweet that made my day
Upon my arrival from the U.S. in mid-August, I noticed an email from HarperCollins Australia in my inbox. Figuring it had to be a rejection (because how lucky can one person be?) I didn’t open it right away. But when I did… Oh, my. There was my very first acceptance letter for a work of fiction – a sweet short story called The Tweetest Thing, which was e-published TODAY as part of an anthology, URL Love: From Texting to Twitter, the Hottest Online Love Stories.
How does my short story tie in with Simon Le Bon’s retweet? I was inspired to write The Tweetest Thing after seeing Duran Duran live for the first time back in March. In the story, introverted and sensible Jess connects with a music icon via Twitter, but will they go one step further into the real world? In real life, introverted and often silly Vanessa connects with a music icon via Twitter. It’s a case of life imitating art, however, I can assure readers, my husband and the gorgeous Mrs. Yasmin Le Bon that the real-life cyber connection ended very quickly!
The URL Love anthology from HarperCollins Australia
HarperCollins Australia’s URL Love is a collection of ten short stories set in the age of lookin’ for love online. It’s available now in digital format from Amazon and iBookstore. Visit the Facebook fan page and listen to the Harper staff read out lines from the stories.
Thank you for bearing with the blog’s temporarily sedate server speed today. If you’re “Hungry like the wolf,” grab a snack and let’s talk. One commenter will receive a $10 Amazon gift card. Have you interacted with your idols through social media? Want to chat about Simon and Yasmin Le Bon, Duran Duran and/or Chris Isaak? Did getting up close and personal with Darynda’s RITA Award bring you good luck, too?