New York, New York

Caution: Long blog post coming up. Image-heavy too.  And I apologize in advance for my camera’s totally inaccurate time stamps.

1. Pre-Departure

Everywhere I look, I see authors with other artistic talents.  They can paint, draw, sew, knit, quilt, garden, graphic design, compose, play instruments, and whatnot.  I play casual games and have nothing to show for it.  (Well,  lots of good memories with the kidlets but His Hawtness and I debate on whether that constitute as quality time.   I say yes. *g*)

But ever since the shea butter episode, I’ve developed an obsession with hand-making beauty products.  Not for myself, but as promo items.  For RWA Orlando I did bath bombs.  Facial scrubs for New Jersey RWA’s conference and RT Los Angeles.  In between I also made solid lotion bars as belated Christmas presents.

By the beginning of the year I’d already decided to make lip butters for RWA.  I’d really, really hoped that by June I’d have a cover for the first book in my 2012 trilogy, but since the release is still 11 months out, no.  All the same, my enthusiasm remained undimmed.  I love giving away good swag.  I love doing repetitive chores, especially fresh from deadlines.

Here’s the lip butter chronicle, for Janine especially, starting with empty jars.

And now they are being filled. 

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Shea Butter–Or, the Extent of My Crazy

Last summer, I went to Central Market, a fabulous Austin institution.  When I was there, I saw tiny little round tins of pure shea butter being sold for $4.95.  We are talking 1/4 ounce tins.  Highway robbery, I thought to myself.

Around that time I learned about this website called From Nature with Love, a wholesaler for quality beauty ingredients.  So at some point in the following months, I decided that instead of giving out bookmarks, I would have a promo product that I would be  interested in receiving.  I would offer the public little tins of pure shea butter–which otherwise cost $4.95–with the cover of my new book on it.

Fast forward to March.  Well, if I was going to have little tins of shea butter to give away at RT, I’d best get started.  I ordered a gallon of organic shea butter, five hundred 1/4 oz slide top tins, and a box of high-gloss labels just the right size to go on top of those little tins.

And I got to work.

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