By Erica Buist

Grief, Joy and Spilled Rum at the World’s Death Festivals

Wednesday, 20 January 2021

The books are here, my hand hurts from signing and I'm drowning in biscotti, how are you?

Hello, pre-orderers extraoirdinaires! Publication day is a mere 29 days away. Which means my life has become exciting and somewhat ridiculous.

The books are here, and they're beautiful

I cannot believe what a stunning job the designers have done. Take a peek at the video.

I'm signing books...COVID-safely

Of all the things this virus has taken away, I don’t think my not being allowed to go to the warehouse in Basildon to sign the books is even in the top 1000, but it’s certainly made me a bit sad. However, the folks at Unbound have come up with a smart solution: several hundred bookplates have just landed on my doorstep, which I’ll be signing here at my kitchen table. The warehouse staff will slip them into the books when packing them up, and you can stick it on whichever page you choose. 

I'm going onstage in my pyjamas tomorrow

The wonderful charity Cruse Bereavement Care are interviewing me about This Party's Dead tomorrow night (January 21st) in a webinar for their volunteers. They're expecting 500-800 people, and it's open to the public as well. If you fancy joining it's at 6:30pm GMT, and the footage will be recorded and uploaded to YouTube. Register here.

So much biscotti... but some of you are getting an upgrade

I thought about eight of you would order the Biscotti Edition, but SIXTY-EIGHT of you did. Very funny. I was up to 40 batches – all baked, placed into bags and tied with pretty bows – when I was informed by Unbound that the biscotti going to the USA had run into a problem. It seems the FDA are a bit weird about ingestible items coming in (I pictured the biscotti going through a saloon door and of course the cowboys go quiet, everyone puts down their drinks, and someone stops playing a banjo). They *would* agree to let your biscotti in, but only in exchange for a quite breathtaking fee. So, for the 19 people in the USA who ordered the Biscotti Edition, Unbound thought a better idea was to upgrade you FIVE LEVELS, free of charge, to the Cover Art edition. They should be emailing you about this soon, but I thought I'd let you know.

I'm very sorry, American lovers of biscotti! If you're bitterly disappointed and minded to make your own biscotti then dammit, here’s a recap of how to make them. Please tag me in on me your efforts on Twitter or Instagram!


The author David Nicholls (One Day, Us, Starter for 10, Sweet Sorrow) is doing a good deed for authors like me who are publishing a book during lockdown: he's tweeting regular threads of new books with the hashtag #TwitterBookLaunch. He's including This Party's Dead in the roundup on February 18th. Do check them out in the meantime, I've discovered so many new titles I might have missed.

If anyone wants another copy of This Party's Dead, these guys have you covered: (a UK website that supports local bookshops)
Waterstones (ships internationally – the book won't be in US bookstores until August)
Blackwell’s (also ships internationally)
Amazon – if you must, whichever country you're in, it's on there
Ebook only: Barnes & Noble or Unbound

That's all from me! Those of you also in lockdown, I hope you're all having a less-than-hellish time. 

Erica. x

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Todd Hannula
 Todd Hannula says:

The book looks FABULOUS! Wow. Incredible production value. Excited to read.

posted 20th January 2021

Ian Plenderleith
 Ian Plenderleith says:

Congratulations, Erica, it's a wonderful feeling to cradle the finished work in your paws. I'm really looking forward to this - and I also hopes it helps us to change the way we deal with death and talk about it, and even celebrate it.

posted 20th January 2021

Jeannette Brown
 Jeannette Brown says:

Maybe you could just hand deliver?
So excited to get this and for you, too.

posted 20th January 2021

Paulette Livers
 Paulette Livers says:

I'm so happy for you, Erica! I know how hard you've worked to arrive at publication. Congratulations!

posted 20th January 2021

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