Monday, September 13, 2010

Meeting Joan Aiken

In December of 1998, the Greater NY Betsy-Tacy Society (or representatives thereof) went to Books of Wonder where Joan Aiken (seated, center) signed books and chatted with fans. It was such a thrill to meet her, and as you can see, she graciously posed for a picture with the group. I think she was pleased to hear I was also a fan of sister, Jane Aiken Hodge.* I am so glad not only that I met Joan just a few years before she died but she encouraged me to write to Jane (more on that another day).

In this photo, left to right, front row: Laurie, JA, Elizabeth; left to right, back row: I am blanking on the woman on the left, then I, Linda, and Ilene. Joan signed several books for me including the only hardcover I had with me, below:

It took persistence but Books of Wonder has supported Betsy-Tacy, albeit never with the quantities I suggested (and, of course, I was their Scholastic/Penguin rep, not their Harper rep).
By the way, I am distressed that Houghton Mifflin does not appear to be reprinting Joan's books as needed. I had great difficulty obtaining a copy of The Cuckoo Tree, which I do not own, for my niece's birthday. Boo!

* I will never understand how a poet like Conrad Aiken could have had so little imagination as to name his daughters, Jane and Joan!

4 comments:

JaneGS said...

I have been wanting to read Joan Aiken's books for years and I'm getting closer! How wonderful to be able to meet her.

LOL, regarding lack of imaginative names...maybe Conrad that the Aiken was distinctive enough.

Darsa and boys said...

How did I miss this gathering??? I was still in CT at that point.

So cool.

CLM said...

You must have had a conflict: I know that when you came in for the St. John the Divine tour we hadn't seen you for a while.

Lizza Aiken said...

Hi Constance, I am Joan's daughter, trying to contact Joan Aiken fans in or near New York to let you know about a Joan Aiken event coming up this month - details her on the Joan Aiken website http://www.joanaiken.com/pages/wolves_newyork.html
any chance you can join us or spread the word? Thank you! Lizza Aiken