I had a terrific time this morning speaking at a meeting of the Sonoma County Forum, a group of women community leaders who gather for breakfast at a local hotel twice a month. The list of speakers they invite to their meetings is pretty impressive, and I was honored that Celeste--whom I met when I did my cartoonist-in-residence gig at the Schulz Museum--thought to ask me.
This was a challenging, unique speech for me. Most of my talks are to either "comics people" or "cancer people," who are interested in very different things. Not that I do anything by rote, but I've got "off-the-shelf" presentations for those two types of audiences that I can dust off and tailor pretty readily. But I'd never spoken to a group quite like the Forum before, which wasn't focused on either of those topics but just wanted an interesting speaker. I think I put together a nice custom blend of comics, publishing, Mom's Cancer, World of Tomorrow, and me that seemed well received. It was fun.
One very nice surprise was that a couple of the Forum members actually knew my Mom and family. One was a family friend whose daughter went to school with my sister Lis ("Kid Sis"), another knew my parents more recently. They shared lovely comments and memories, and made it an extra special event for me.
Many thanks to Celeste and the ladies of the Forum for their warm reception. I shy away from doing local talks, books signings, press and so forth (not that there's much demand) because I'm uneasy when my Book Life intersects my Real Life. I grew up in this town and have to live here. But the couple of times I've broken that rule (more a guideline, really) have turned out so nicely I may have to rethink it.