The story of the little book that could: Recapping the launch.

I don’t know how many hours sleep I got on Saturday night last week. My parents had arrived into Vancouver the night before and I was out with them having dinner. Thankfully, two of my closest friends, Rory and Amy were there too. I was drinking wine, trying to play it cool. Tomorrow was the big day. A day I thought would never come. Just One More Drive was “officially” launching and friends and family had travelled far and wide to be here for the launch. Susan, my sister and her fiancé, Zebulon (we call him Zeb, but what a name) had been delayed in LA and wouldn’t be in Vancouver until after midnight. But this was happening, whether I was ready or not.

Getting home just before midnight, I tried to relax by watching some old Deep Space Nine, specifically the episode where Commander Riker’s evil twin steals the USS Defiant. Watching that ship jumping to warp had me considering doing the same thing. It wasn’t out of fear as such, more blind panic and total uncertainty. We had joked over dinner that all I was doing was releasing a piece of work that could potentially expose the whole family! Still, it was out of my hands now. I eventually went to bed and slept poorly.

At 7:30am on Sunday morning, I was up and preparing. Rory and I had to get the food before 12pm and I was due to arrive at the venue by 1pm. I had not been in XY for many years but knew it was a beautiful spot. My first thank you has to go to Jenn Mickey and the XY staff for hosting this event. They were amazing and so relaxed. The bar was huge. It looks very small from the outside but is massive on the inside. The colour theme for the day was decided to be blue, based on the book’s cover and the bar counter changed from a bright green to a cool Tardis-like blue. That to me was a good sign.

The food had been laid out and I was ready to go on stage supported by a projected slide show. I sat down and looked through the pages of the book that I would be reading from. I had three picked out and rehearsed. This back stage area was essentially a small dressing room and I couldn’t help but smile at how I was back again in another dressing room. Years of actor training and one live TV appearance later, I wondered what would come after this launch. I joked about appearing on Ellen and then imagined all the money I’d earn and then got stressed because I couldn’t decide what to buy first; an Xbox One X or PS4 Pro. The bar owner, Jenn called me out to set up the stage and I quickly forgot about my video game console confusion.

The stage was a perfect size with the slide show now projecting. I had a rough idea what I was going to say and I knew Dad would be the first speaker up with me. The M3 is his car and it seemed like a nice place to start. I had asked Dad if he would be willing to speak the week before and he said “yes”. Everyone else at home who heard thought I was mad. But this is his story as much as it is mine. I read a small extract about our adventures driving to school. How myself and my sisters would be flung around the car as we raced to the school gates on a daily basis.

Imagine my surprise when my father stood up on stage and was lost for words. I was expecting him to make a joke about the car or me or something and he genuinely seemed very moved and unsure about what to say next. After Dad had said a few words, I read about one of my closest friends here in Vancouver, Rory. Now, people say I am hard work and I would assert that Rory had the hardest job of all. He met me when I was literally like a lost puppy in Vancouver. Scared and shy and suspicious of humans. He learnt that all I needed was gentle persuasion, frequent cups of tea and cartoons to get me out of my shell. We spent a month living together watching Avatar: The Last Air Bender before I began to trust him. I was honoured to have him talk. Like my father, he was unsure what to say. We had joked about things he could say and things he shouldn’t say. He knows me too well. I was holding my breath in the hopes that he would say something inspiring or at the very least socially acceptable. Thankfully, he said some very nice words, praising me and the book. I smiled knowing that he hadn’t read it yet. All joking aside, he was and is amazing and comes off like a star in the book. The final speaker was another person who has been on this journey with me for a number of years. I like to call him “Doctor Ed” and he spoke in a professional capacity as a clinical social worker. I deal with suicide in the book and it was something I wanted to give a few minutes to. However, I didn’t feel qualified to speak on this topic. Ed is knowledgeable and professional and has a vast amount of experience in this field. It was great to have him speak and round off the talking portion of the launch. The experience for me was surreal. Sitting there on stage with the lights blaring was something new and exciting.

It was hitting me that as of this day, I was an author. A real-life author. I had written this book and over the five years it had taken to get it to this point, I had never really imagined it would happen. Here I was staring out at a great gathering of people wondering what was to come. There were over 100 people there and the bar really was the perfect venue. I was sharing with these people myself and the journey of the book and finally handing it out to the world.

We cleared the stage and I got a quick glass of water. It was time for the signing and I had a highly capable (and beautiful) woman called Nina managing the sales and I got to sign my books for paying customers for the first time. I was living the dream for sure. I had never signed books before and I was terrible at spelling. Poor Zeb had to return his book to me three times as I couldn’t spell his mom’s name correctly. After a few more books, I was settling into the routine of signing and thanking people for their support. Truthfully, I had no idea what I was doing. After an hour, the signings were done and the boxes were empty. We sold 88 books on the day and I have sold a few more since then. I can’t believe I effectively sold out and couldn’t have asked for a better day.

I can say without doubt, all the endless nights of writing and editing and pitching have been worth it. This is the perfect time to give the book away and put it out in the world. My hope is that it will encourage conversations around the various issues I talk about and let people laugh at the absurdity of life and see that we are all so much more alike then we think.Getting down from my soapbox, there are so many people I need to thank and I will probably forget someone, so I apologize now in advance if I do.

The first person to thank is Brent. I know him as “Big Bear” and he is in the book! He secured the bar for this event and I couldn’t have asked for a better place. Brent, thank you.

The photos that are here in this blog and on social media were taken by Jenn Co-McMillen. Jenn, your work is amazing and thank you.

To Nina on cash, you have been a coach and friend to me over the last nine months. The man I am inspired to be, is in part because of you. Thank you.

To “Squad” (also featured in the book) you are all my second family and this launch wouldn’t have happened without you. Thank you.

Rory, you are my rock. Thank you and I do firmly believe that hyperdrive speed is based on emitter strength rather than power sources but I am prepared to debate that with you again. Thank you.

To Amy, you have inspired me to keep playing big. Thank you.

To my family. I have no words. I love you, forever. Thank you for making the journey out here to see me.

A huge thank you to everyone who has supported me along the way, bought a book and reads these blogs. I have no idea what I am doing but am having a ball finding my way. The final photo below sums up how I feel right now. Here is to the future.


For more information on Jenn Co-McMillen visit her website at

Also check out XY’s website for more information on this great bar at