Launching Torch Ginger has brought great reviews and bitten nails. Deeply, badly bitten. It's an ugly habit and flares up like warts when I'm stressed.

Upon much reflection, I’ve decided the feeling of launching a new book is like when you send your five year old off to kindergarten.

(Apologies to the great mass of nonparents and single people out there. Perhaps something you worked long and hard for came to pass and now is being judged and there’s not a thing you can do to help anymore. Not exactly same, but in the ballpark)

Other writers have likened this to giving birth.

Ugh, no. Too messy, and stressful, and you’re exhausted and the pictures are always bad, bad, BAD. Pleasedon’ttakeorshowthemeverBAD.

But when your precious baby turns five and you dress that adorable child in their first set of new school clothes, help them slide their skinny little arms into a backpack so new it crackles, pack the first peanut butter’n’jelly sandwich and optimistic ziplock of carrot sticks into their shiny new lunch box, and drop that child off at the doorway of a new classroom with all the other sweating, darting-eyed parents smiling overlarge to hide hope and terror…Yes, that’s the same feeling you have when you upload a book and it goes live on Amazon and the world can now take a whack at it.

Torch Ginger, sequel to Blood Orchids, came out this weekend.

I have lost and gained ten pounds, been unbelievably distracted “where are my keys? WHERE ARE MY KEYS? Oh. I’m holding them” and not slept well for days. But so far, my second kindergartener is walking just fine in her older sister’s wake.

Take a look. Watch her go. And if you like what you see, praise her. It’s the best thing you can give a parent.

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