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Sad Anoraks
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So we have this band…

Okay, we don't actually HAVE any such thing, but we ARE the Sad Anoraks, the best virtual band in the world featuring Sharon (Shaz) Wheeler, Louise Ure (on drums), Andi Shechter (chick singer), Cornelia Read (lead guitar). I think we figured out at some point that Shaz actually had been in a band.

And I checked with my bandmates about what I can tell people. Cornelia thought that we shouldn't mention the, er, weird disease that went around but then said "oh, why not" and Louise said "sure, just don't tell folks that…" oh, wait, she said don't tell….phew. Then Shaz said better not to explain about that whole episode in Limerick (see below)…but other than that, I'm free to explain.

Given that Shaz lives in England, while Louise, Cornelia and I are on the west coast of the US, things are tricky as far as rehearsal time. We're a cohort, an affinity group, a mutual aid pact, a girls' night out, a support group, a claque, a clique and a mutual admiration society. One of us has her first mystery out called FORCING AMARYLLIS from Mysterious Press. That's Louise. One of us has sold her first mystery which will be out in about a year also, interestingly, from Mysterious Press. That's Cornelia. If you don't know the name, take note NOW. One of us has a work in progress which she has trusted to her bandmates who all think it is really quite spiffy and want to see more of it.. And one is the cheering section with the pom poms.

We are surprisingly, fantastically in sync with each other at times; what really gets insane is when the Americans are on line and Sharon links up with us. It's like instant messaging only not and it's gotten pretty awesomely funny at times.

Louise, as you know from various comments here and elsewhere is on her very first book tour. I saw her Thursday afternoon at Seattle Mystery Bookstore which as I mentioned was so busy I barely had time to talk with her. Since separate from our friendship, I've been doing some publicity for her, there's a bit of a thin line in talking about the person and the author. But you need to know that my agreeing to work for her came only after she sent me an ARC of the book and I was completely wowed by it. And I CAN keep them separate because no one is paying me o say I like the book. I really really do. I've done a little free lance publicity work in the past, so you may know that I wouldn't/couldn’t agree to do it without liking the work. Keith Snyder sent me SHOW CONTROL and after I wrote him about how wonderful it was, it was still quite a while before he approached me and asked me to work for him. The publicity thing was actually Jane Dentinger's suggestion to me quite a while ago, and when I asked some people what they thought, one said "I'd hire you". That was Aileen Schumacher, bless her. She already knew a lot . A lot of doing publicity is doing jobs that anyone can do, but sometimes the author a) doesn't have time and b) it seems more "legit" and impressive to call and say "I'm so and so's publicist" rather than "hi, I'm an author and"... At least sometimes.

That by the way is all a very large footnote-y type thing to explain that when I praise FORCING AMARYLLIS, as I probably will continue to do, I'm not doing it because I'm paid to. YES, the author is a friend and client, but she has written a knockout book. And I'm trying to be careful not to say too much because the lines WILL blur and it'll feel odd. Am I blathering? Sorry.

Unfortunately, Louise's book tour has meant she's missed a number of band rehearsals, and will continue to miss them because her fraggin' tour (which has been going really rawther nicely thank you) (except for last night and this morning but never MIND that now) will be going on for a while. She gets a few days off and then is spending the greater part of July on tour in the Southwest (see for details.)

Then 3/4 of the band reunites at Bouchercon. Keep in mind that we're sort of like the Musketeers. Okay, not much like them; we don't ride horses, shoot muskets nor are we especially skilled with swords, and feathers make me sneeze, though I do think we'd look spiffy in those hats, BUT we're sort of "all for one and one for all" in some ways: mess with one of us, you've have to deal with the wrath of the Anoraks. All fierce ferocious four of us.

Admittedly not our deepest song, but welcome to "Sad Anorak", from our first CD MEET THE SAD ANORAKS: (we know, but we meant it as homage, we're of the age where we can sort of do that.)

Sad Anorak
Sad Anorak
It's got a broken zipper
And a monkey on its back
My mom's a lousy tipper
And my railroad has no track
So won't you please forgive me
For my sad anorak
And if you can't feel sorry
Then you gotta cut me slack

Our second CD is TANTRIC RAINFORESTS - and WAIT til you see the music video for that cut

Our third CD as well as the title of our award winning volume of poetry is entitled WILD YOGURT

And oh, man, wait 'til you hear our thrash version of "Papua New Guinea" to the tune of "Fascinatin' Rhythm"

And our cover of Arrogant Worms' "Malcolm" ("Malcolm solves his problems with a chainsaw") - we're giving away chainsaws with the limited edition CD)

We've got a tour bus; we've renamed it "Amaryllis" for 2005; we're pretty pleased with it, worked hard getting it in shape with a specially upholstered chaise longue for each band member.

Our souvenir merchandise, is still of course in development:

Along with the logo tee shirt (which we'll have as soon as Stu draws us a logo) we will be offering

A tee-shirt reading "When Ronald Reagan managed to be elected president I realized There Is NO God...."

Lots of other tees, but I can't find all the emails about them.

And a sweatshirt from our alma mater (ask Shaz, it really existed, for a very short time, she SWEARS it), the Collegiate University of North Tyneside. (We don't make this stuff UP you know).

Then there's our famous tour jacket. On the back, there's a list of all the places Sad Anoraks will not be playing on our fabulous 2005 tour:

Singapore, Branson, Missouri, All of Mississippi, All of Utah, Coventry. Bedford. Limerick. Syracuse, Paris, Limerick, Vallejo, Hastings-on-Hudson, Yonkers, Buffalo, Albany, Renssal.., Rennsa.., Troy (part of the "we don't DO upstate NY" tour)

We are booked in Stepford, though, and we WILL be playing Madison Square Garden though. And the Greek Theater in Berkeley - for TWO shows at least. We've booked Nepenthe in Big Sur for a dinner show, and we have a Very Special concert near San Luis Obispo, an outdoor gig on the grounds of the Madonna Inn.

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