More wonderful news: Roy Bird, Director of the Kansas Center for the Book, emailed today to tell me that Airball: My Life in Briefs has been selected as one of fifteen Kansas Notable Books of 2005. Yowza! And, because my book is on the list, I’ve been invited to attend the Black, White and READ All Over Ball at the Kansas Book Festival. I love getting dressed up to party with the governor. (I mean, I assume I love to party with the governor. I guess I’ll find out.)
This recognition and the Thorpe Menn nomination (given by the AAUW to a Kansas City area author) are gratifying not only because they’re incredible honors, but also because they’re given by folks close to home. I grew up and still live in rural Kansas, and one of my goals in writing Airball was to paint a vivid picture of life in Stuckey, my fictional Kansas town. It’s rewarding when readers tell me, “You got it right. This is exactly what it’s like to live in small-town Kansas.” And now these two honors are coming from those same people, the people who live here and (I hope) recognize their home in the pages of my book.
Thank you to the Kansas Notable Books committee and to the Thorpe Menn committee. As soon as I find out the titles of the other books honored and nominated, I’ll post them here.