It’s weird how you have a date marked on your calendar for so long and it seems so far away and WAY IN THE FUTURE and then all of sudden it’s here.
That’s April 7th for me. Which is today in case you aren’t clear.
This is the day that my third book, Nobody’s Cuter Than You, is officially out in the world and I’ve had it circled on my calendar for almost a year. Actually, I don’t have a paper calendar anymore so I’ve just had it on my iPhone calendar which is the 2015 version of having it circled on your calendar.
And in case you’re in any of these areas, here are some places where I’ll be signing books in the next few days and weeks:
Wednesday, April 8th – Barnes & Noble San Pedro in San Antonio at 6:30 p.m.
Thursday, April 9th – Barnes & Noble Lincoln Park in Dallas at 7:00 p.m.
Saturday, April 11th – Walmart at 1604 & 281 in San Antonio at 2:00 p.m.
Saturday, April 18th – Barnes & Noble River Oaks in Houston at 7:00 p.m.
I know I’ve talked about the book a little bit but here’s the story. This wasn’t the original book I was going to write last year at this time, but I knew it was a book I wanted to write eventually. And then I flew to Chicago to meet with my publishers and we agreed I should go ahead and scrap the original plan to write a book about friendship instead. All of a sudden I went from extreme writer’s block and massive anxiety to having a million ideas all at once because, while I don’t have it together in many areas of my life, I am surrounded by good friends who have taught me what it means to be a good friend.
The title comes from something Gulley and I say to each other when we’re having a bad day. It doesn’t matter if it’s true or not, but it’s just become our shorthand way of saying, “I’m your biggest fan” and there are all days when we need our biggest fan to make us feel better about ourselves and life and all that goes with those things.
(I also briefly debated calling it “Chicken In The Bed” which is another thing Gulley and I say to specify a day that would be nice to sit around and do nothing together, but that title doesn’t exactly suggest a book about friends as much as life on a poultry farm.)
Anyway, what I’m trying to say is God knew that this was the book for this moment in time and directed this path. When I began to write it a year ago, I had no idea what the next twelve months would hold. I didn’t know that one of my dearest friends, Jen, would be fighting cancer again or that we were going to lose Gulley’s grandmother, Nena, who meant so much to us all. I couldn’t have known what it would mean to me on the other side of turning in this manuscript to have spent all those months looking through old photo albums and retracing the lines and history of friendships that mean more than the world to me. And in the end, to have something tangible to let these girls in my life know that in so many ways they saved me and continue to be my sanity and bring more joy to my life than I could ever convey.
I am seriously sitting here with tears running down my face because there is nothing like a book release to put you on an emotional roller coaster and this one is just so dear to me. And, ultimately, I hope that you read it and it makes you hold your friends just a little bit tighter. Life can get so busy and throw us all in so many different directions, but there are times we just need to remember what a gift we have in our girlfriends. They are the ones who know us, love us, encourage us and challenge us.
I’ve already received so many emails from women who have bought it to give to their bridesmaids or to send to several of their best friends or to read for their next book club and I hope that continues. That in some way it inspires us all to love our people fiercely, which may be a lofty goal for a book where I tell the story about the time I left Gulley to sleep in the lobby of a hospital in downtown San Antonio for hours and then pretended I didn’t know who she was.
I thought I’d share a little excerpt. The pictures aren’t included in the book, but they make me so happy.
“I’d found something deeper than what I always thought I wanted, because God knew what I really needed: friends who carved out a permanent place in my heart. And those friends ultimately helped me find my way back to the God I’d left behind all those years before. He knit my heart together with the people he knew would hold my hands as I walked the path of the Prodigal Son.
Each of them brought out something in me that I couldn’t have found alone and taught me what it means to be a friend who shows up, wipes tears, laughs hysterically, cooks a meal, and eats raw cookie dough right out of the bowl. They taught me that friends share their clothes, their hearts, their dreams, and their study notes.
Friends give grace, advice, fashion tips, a shoulder to cry on, and some of the best memories a girl could ever want. A real friend will help you push your car across a busy intersection when it stalls, pull you out of a trash can when you fall in, listen to you analyze the same situation over and over again, speak the truth even when it hurts, help you find your way when you’re lost, and hold your hand when you have to say a final good-bye to someone you love.
It turned out that my soul mate wasn’t just one guy, but these girls who are some of the greatest loves of my life. There is rarely any other time in your life when you’re given the gift of living day in and day out with people who ultimately become your family.
If I had grasped that then, I would have cherished it even more and maybe looked into staying in College Station for enough years to earn a doctorate in something. My time in college and these people whom God placed in my life had healed what was broken in me, and it broke my heart to say good-bye to them.”
(That last picture was when my Tiff got married and I think our hairdresser was like Annelle from Steel Magnolias and her work tended to get a little poufy when she got nervous. The good news is the hair helped balance out those sleeves. Bless.)
And our friendship has remained. From the days of hot rollers and all getting ready at Gulley’s mom’s house.
to days of unfortunate hats and big perms
from Harley-Davidson costume parties
to rehearsal dinners and weddings
(I can’t talk about that vest. I just don’t know.)
to having babies
We have loved and laughed and fought for our friendship.
I so hope that you love this book. And I’m so excited that it’s officially available today.
You can download it on your Nook or your Kindle or whatever. Or you can walk in a Barnes & Noble or a Walmart and buy a real copy. Or you can order it online from any of the retailers you see on that fancy thing below. Just click on whichever one you prefer and it will take you directly to the site.
I will never be able to thank you or even find the right words to say how much I appreciate the way you cheer me on and encourage me. Thank you in advance for buying the book and spreading the word. If you need anything to pin or tweet or broadcast live on network television, you can find it on the official Nobody’s Cuter Than You book page. Truly, nobody is cuter than y’all.
And just in case you haven’t seen the trailer, these are many of your sweet faces. I love every minute of seeing all the friendships this represents.
Congratulations and happy book release day to you!! I look forward to picking up a real copy when I am in the States in a month 🙂
I have read your blog since Caroline was little, and have read both of your books. I am so, so excited to read Nobody’s Cuter! Congrats on your third book release.
My two are arriving today- one for me and one to give to my BFF!
I can’t wait to read the new book! Also, I just finished your podcast this morning, please tell me again the name of the daily sunscreen you mention. I tried Googling but I think I am completely wrong on the name/spelling??
Congratulations on your big day! I can’t wait to read this one! Thanks for sharing your stories and your heart with us.
Just picked up a copy! Can’t wait to read it! 🙂
I have “go to bookstore” on my to-do list today just for this book. Can’t wait to read it! I loved your other books.
Um, I was thinking that I liked that little vest. It’s fun!
Anyway, can’t wait to read the book! Heading to Barnes and Noble during my lunch break to get it!
Thanks to Amazon pre-order I really hope this is on my front porch when I get home tonight. 🙂
When you said that line in the trailer? About standing & going to bat for the people you love on days when their world is falling apart? Yeah, that’s when I choked up…
You didn’t just write these words about friendship — you have *lived* every one of them.
Lived them like a gold medal champion.
I will never, ever forget — and I couldn’t love you more.
(((teary, smiling, messy hug)))
CONGRATULATIONS! We all NEED the message of this book — you say it all like no one else.
Know how I mean these two words: THANK YOU.
Can’t wait! Two of my college friends are leaving for a fun New York trip together on Saturday, and I have bought one for each of them to give at the airport!! I had to laugh at your pics. . . ours exactly like that, just different hairstyles, ( equally as bad ) as well as fashion . . .taken 20 years earlier!! Have loved following you all these years, so I feel like this is a story about MY friends, too!! Congrats!
I already received an email from Amazon this morning telling me your book has been downloaded to my Kindle. Can’t wait to read it. Hope your book signings go well.
I pre-ordered 5 copies. My girlfriends and I have been going to see (stalking) George Strait since he sang his first song. We’ve seen him at least 30 times since the early 80’s, including the first and last stops of his final tour. Now that we are forced to move on, we have tickets to the ACM awards show next weekend and GEORGE will be there. It became less about George and more about the girl trips long, long ago. I will give each of the girls one of these books as their award show SWAG bag gift because they mean the world to me.
And drying the tears again. God ordained this story & it’s such a beautiful picture of grace and love.
You know what? The friendship yall shared is going viral…in a good way. I see the way Jen’s friends love her in Dallas and it is godly and “community” in the purest form.
Praying over this book. So many of us going to go flip through old pics & praise God for the gifts of friends in the past…loving and fighting for friendships in the present.
Happy release day….I think this is as exciting for all of us as it is for you! I’m on my way to Lifeway…they best have it this time, then to The Chicken to start reading it!
Congratulations! I can’t wait to read it!
Ohhhhh! I can’t wait to read this one! And share it with very special friends too :)….. thank you, Melanie!!
Ann in Maryland
What a great post! Love all the pictures. I’m looking forward to reading this book (and how lucky are the people in Texas, who get a chance to have their book signed?).
Melanie, there’s no doubt you’re blessed to have friends who have stood by you for so many years, but I think it’s also due to the special person that you are. I’m sure your friends have valued your presence in their lives every bit as much as you have valued them in yours.
Kelly @ The OK Momma
The elves at Amazon have hopefully made good on their promise to have this magically appear on my kindle today. Can’t wait to read it. How sweet would this book be as a bridesmaid gift? Or as a way to ask friends to be in your wedding? That ship has sailed for me but I may have to strongly suggest that my future sister in law do that!
I can’t wait to read it! I preordered it from Amazon and it is hitting my doorstep today. I’m sad I will miss your Dallas book signing. But I will be on a beach in Mexico so I can’t really complain too loudly. Just know I will be laying on the beach, reading and laughing and thanking you for writing this book.
Perfect timing! Ten of my dearest friends from TAMU (we met 30 years ago when we pledged together) are getting together for our annual girls weekend this weekend! I will be bringing a copy of your book as my “Favorite Thing” (our annual tradition)! Wish I could come Thursday night to Dallas signing but can’t – UGH!!! Congrats!!
Congratulations on your newest book, Melanie, and on knowing what’s important in life and sharing it. You’re very wise and centered.
Congratulations on your big day!! I can’t wait to get my hands on this book! Thank you for sharing the joys of friendship with us. You have a gift and I’m so glad you are sharing it with the world!
Congrats, Melanie!! Can’t wait to read this one AND purchase copies for some of my dearest friends!! We’ve laughed, we’ve cried, we’ve hugged, we’ve grieved, we’ve shared, and we’ll continue to do all that as more years pass for my girls and me! Love that you’ve put all that in book form for us- thank YOU!!! And keep on writing!!!
Congratulations, Melanie! Can’t wait to get my hands on a copy.
Congrats!!! You are blessed beyond measure with life long friends.
Yeah for the book release! Can’t wait to download it at lunch. Thank you for being so real Melanie and touching all our hearts everyday!!
I’m so excited to read this! Yay! Congratulations!
Looking forward to Melanie’s newest book. Talented writer who can blend truth with laughter in a unique way.
Congratulations! I can’t wait to read it!
Congrats! I have pre-ordered copies for my best gals and I can’t wait until they arrive on my doorstep!
I just SO CRIED when watching the trailer for your new book!! :”’) So special!!
Congrats, Melanie!! Love the pictures! I just ordered two copies – one for me and one for my dear friend. Can’t wait to read it. Enjoy your book signings!
I have been waiting for this day so I went to B & N in Kennesaw, GA…they didn’t have it!!! BOO! But I am not giving up…looking online right now! I know it will be great!! Congratulations!
i just can’t wait to read this! sending off to friends this week. i know we will all love it.
Congratulations!! I’m so excited about this book. I am going to have to send my best friend a copy too. When will the Audible version release? I love listening to my favorite books. 🙂
Congrats!!!!! Wishing you much, much success and happiness (and relief!!) with the release of this book! Also, I’m really hoping for a future blog post dedicated entirely to that vest, because oh my word! It could literally just be a post with that picture copied over and over. It’s amazing.
What an exciting day! Can’t wait to read it, hopefully find time to review it and, certainly, gift some copies to my own people. Enjoy these next few weeks!
Congratulations on your Big Day, Big Mama!
So thrilled for you that today is the day!! And, so happy for us that we get to enjoy book number three!! Just reading your book’s description brings tears to my eyes because I cannot imagine my life without dear friends that God saw fit to enrich my life with and who have become family.
Just opened my package from Amazon and found the 2 books I ordered – 1 for my BFF and 1 for me! I have LOVED both of your books – can’t wait to start reading this one!!!!
Downloaded and read the entire book already. Thank you for the laughs & tears. It’s a gem! Keep writing!
Congratulations on the book, I am just getting ready to read mine! Keep enjoying your friends.
Went to my local B&N today to find your book. They didn’t have it, and said that none of the B&N bookstores in the Raleigh area had it and they would have to order it. (I have already ordered one off Amazon, but wanted to pick up an extra for a friend). Dilemma…. I thought they would be carrying it!
Congratulations Melanie. I just came from my Sam’s in San Antonio, and they have them locked and loaded right next to the Bibles and Devotional books. Perfect. I happened into the B&N this afternoon and saw the poster announcing your signing tomorrow. I forgot it was tomorrow and wished I had waited one day to go book shopping. Have a wonderful signing. Your words keep me laughing and crying and thinking about all the wonderful people God has placed in my life. I am so thankful for all of them, and for the timing of when they came to me. God knows just what we need and puts it there for us to grab and hold on to. Your books are like a good friend and I love reading and re-reading them. I feel like you are my friend too.
Melanie, I have read your blog for some time now, and words cannot describe how much I look forward to reading it! I LOVED your first two books and there’s no doubt I will love this one too. You have a special gift of making everyone want to be your friend. You are a funny, talented, God-loving, beautiful mom (friend, wife, and daughter) who is an inspiration to me. I hope I get to come to Texas some day and meet you in person! Thanks for sharing your stories and reminding us all what’s important!
p.s. forgot to mention that I just ordered the book on Amazon! Congrats on your big day!
I finished the book tonight (thank you Tyndale for an early copy) and I LOVED it! The stories had me laughing out loud on several occasions. It also made me wish I had done a better job of keeping up with my friends from my childhood.
Congrats on the great book!
GuMel (surely I am not the first person to coin y’all into one name),
If this comment goes off the rails, please know that I have a puppy with a cone of shame SO things are hanging by a thread. I got your book today ( shout out to Amazon Prime) and loved it. Now, I am obsessing about y’all and your people in Dallas, your Jen. So, please tell me that you know that at JD’s Chippery that the cookies are the STAR but the cherry limeade is the unknown hottie. TRUST ME. Take a Tervis and order one and get popcorn too. Such a blessing of a place. Second, please tell me that y’all sit around Snuffer’s and laugh and eat. I so badly want to order for y’all. It is my ministry – no bad food in Dallas on my watch. SERIOUSLY. I need to know that y’all know about cheese fries, burgers and the chicken sandwich. I know they are Pepsi BUT I carry in a Diet Coke and they don’t even blink. Okay, enjoy your book day and if you could let me know that y’all know about Snuffers and JD that will help this Mama who is nursing a puppy with cone. A ROOKIE puppy mom (you would think I would have this down since I birthed FOUR children, but no I DO NOT). And thank you for a new book on Cone Day, I needed it.
I have three very good friends that I went to college with that were in my wedding; we’ve been friends 36 – 37 years. I have another friend I met 30 years ago at one of my first jobs. And another close friend, it has been nearly 16 years. In fact, she, my daughter, and I will be heading to NYC this weekend. Then there are these girls (we will always be girls), three others that belong to a group of friendship that arose out of our church and school – we call ourselves the “church ladies.” And my longest friend? She just turned 53 in December and I have known her since the day she was born. That would have to be my sister, Natalie.
I am looking forward to buying this book for each of them. And, you know why? Because of this – because you nailed it for me. They have been with me through it all and held me up through a devastating farewell. Thank you.
“Friends give grace, advice, fashion tips, a shoulder to cry on, and some of the best memories a girl could ever want. A real friend will help you push your car across a busy intersection when it stalls, pull you out of a trash can when you fall in, listen to you analyze the same situation over and over again, speak the truth even when it hurts, help you find your way when you’re lost, and hold your hand when you have to say a final good-bye to someone you love.”?
Your book arrived yesterday from Amazon (thank the Lord for Prime) at 5pm and I finished it by 9pm. I did cook supper and eat, too. Melanie, I just loved it. Can’t wait to pass it on to my friend. You exposed your frailties and shortcomings in such an eloquent way. I feel like I know Gully and you from your blog and podcast, so it was so fun to hear more details on how the friendship began.
Okay, had to comment again, because I was going to save my book for our NY trip, but decided to read the first chapter last night. . . that turned into about 4 chapters! But it made me underline a few things that I want to highlight in my friend’s books that they will get a kick out of…..the partying in Waco reference ( hey, we’re Baylor Bears, but yes…. especially in the 90’s ???) and every time you mention Weiner’s , I just about bust a gut! My son and I still laugh about an outfit we got HIM at Weiner’s on the outskirts of Austin one time ! Gosh awful !!
I went to Barnes and Noble yesterday and ordered 8. One for me and 7 for dear friends. I was sad they didn’t have it in stock and now I have to wait to read it. I know I could get it for my iPad, but I know I’m going to cry, and my husband doesn’t like it when I soak the iPad with tears. Can’t wait!
I just purchased this and I am now counting down the hours until I can go home and read. I can’t wait!
Bought the book on Monday and stayed up half the night reading it. I laughed and I cried as I thought about all the girls who have been my friends during different times and phases of my life. I plan on getting 5 copies for my 5 college girlfriends. We met at Abilene Christian University in the fall of 1984.. We’ve been through so many stages together (college life, dating/breakups, marriage, work, having babies (18 children between the 6 of us!), breast-feeding, potty training, raising teenagers, sending kids off to college, aging/deaths of parents and divorce. We have gotten together every year since we graduated in 1988 even though for a long time we were spread across 4 states. It is my therapy for the year! Thank you so much for this book and capturing the emotions of female friendships in such a humorous, yet poignant way.
Well, I love your blog. and tell Caroline that I haven’t met my Gulley yet either. I can’t wait to read the book.
Aaww… i love your pictures of y’all’s friendship and i cant wait to get the book!
Bought 6 copies and have already give away 2 of them.
The video at the end of this post…I was bawling by the end. Thank you for reminding me of the beauty of friendship…in all of my life.
Noticed that your book is ‘out of stock’ on the Walmart website! Congrats!
Love all the instagram promo photos. Hope to read it soon!
Wow you guys made the 80’s look good! You are all so beautiful! Hope to read your book on the kindle, better yet I’d love to win it from pioneer woman! Congrats keep smiling:)
I just realized that may have been the 90’s? LOL Im getting old…..
Congratulations on the book! It’s so exciting for you, and for us because we get to read another good story.
I am reading your new book right now and love it! I can relate to so much of it and love all the 80’s references! Great job!
I purchased my copy during lunch. I plan on reading it this weekend.
Hi Melanie! Oh, I’m sad I didn’t get to connect with you more on Thursday night in Dallas- what a turnout- your hand must be ACHING!!! I absolutely LOVE this post, your pictures, and the PERFECT timing of your book. With Jen’s cancer, 2 other besties who are moving away from Dallas, and 1 sweet friend who has fallen away from the Lord and has destroyed her marriage… there’s a lot of change in the area of friendships going on right now in MY life right now. Thank you for writing a book to make me laugh and cry in the midst of this time- and to acknowledge how deep and beautiful friendships really are. PS: I had you sign a book for my dear friend, Aimee, whom (as I said) is far from the Lord- but PRAYING God will use this time to redeem her life and that, one day, I can give her your signed copy of the book and tell her I have been waiting for her to come back and that I knew all along that the Lord’s kindness would lead her to repentance. Thanks for being apart of this story He’s writing in my life right now. XOXO