I Didn’t Die From Writing a Post About a Book I’m in Called ‘But Did You Die?’


I’m just not good at some stuff.

Some stuff you know about. You know, portion control and getting my hair cut at regular intervals. Okay, and there’s that keeping-your-car-clean thing, too. I’m also not good at promoting a book that I have a small part in.

And it’s a book an author who knows her way around the New York Times best-seller list has compiled, with a ton of marquee names.

The book is But Did You Die: Setting the Parenting Bar Low, and it features names many of you know. Jen Mann of the blog People I Want to Punch in the Throat has compiled a series of New York Times Best Sellers in the series I Just Want to Pee Alone.

My blogging friend Victoria Fedden, with her self-named blog, encouraged me to enter an essay when Jen came calling for this book. So, one night, I tossed something together, called Lessons I Learned from the Soccer Pitch.

Holy shit – Jen accepted it.

u6 championship

Things I might have done better

I totally acted as if I’d been there, though. I have – but maybe not to this grand a stage. I hit cleanup in a book called Clash of the Couples with an essay about how to talk to women. I might have spoken more eloquently about portion control!

[Friends of Coach Daddy, such as Allie Burdick, Chris Carter, Jodi Flaherty, Meredith Spidel, and Mary Widdicks appeared in that book.]

I would never burst out on Facebook with “OMG, what am I doing here?” or “I’m definitely the worst writer here – OMIGOSH!” because I don’t feel that way. It’s the same, I don’t know, uneasy feeling, though, I get as a club soccer parent.

I’m not the same as the others.

Not worse, mind you. But, not of the same ilk. In But Did You Die, you have writers arranging interviews with Jenny McCarthy. You have top-of-the-table rollers, such as Samara Rose and Kim Bongiorno and Aussa Lorens.

You have movers and shakers, and, at least, writers who can actually afford to buy a box of the book they’re in to promote and autograph and sell out of the trunks of their cars (probably nicer than Pontiacs) and at social events.

Not that I’m feeling whiny. I get that way only when it comes to seasons the Denver Broncos don’t win the Super Bowl or my kids polish off my box of Capn Crunch. Among my sisters on the But Did You Die? ship are people you’ve seen on this blog, such as:

lessons 2

What am I waiting for?

I’m learning, from these all-stars.

It’s like being voted to an all-star game, but you’re Nolan Arenado among the elites such as Bryce Harper, David Ortiz, and Mike Trout. Yes, you belong. And yes, you hope to show just how much you belong, someday, somehow.

Maybe when you publish your own book, or Elephant Journal finally says yes.

Or when you get a chance to go to a book signing with another author, as I will. Alessandra Macaluso and I will be at Park Road Books in Charlotte on Thursday, June 29, at 7 p.m. There will be live readings that I probably should rehearse for.

See, writing posts like this, and telling you about stuff like the readings and signings at Park Road Books feels like Zumba class with lots of mirrors to me: Wholly, totally uncomfortable, yet kind of necessary if you want to play the game.

Here’s a link you can use to buy the book.

Also, I’m open to making an order of a few books if there’s enough interest. Other writers are offering signed copies at $15 each. Email me at bloggingeli@gmail.com and let me know if you’d like one, and I’ll see about putting in that order.

Also: The Charlotte Mecklenburg Library will host Alessandra and me for an author meet-and-greet in January. Stay tuned for those details.

That’s it. I’ve finally reached the end, and have done my due diligence. I’ve read the other essays in this book – holy smokes. There are some funny mofos out there in the parenting ranks (and one writer without any kids, which, as you’ll see, makes perfect sense.)

Thanks for indulging me. I have an awesome guest post scheduled for Wednesday and more Go Ask Daddy questions, and a new Sunday reads feature I’ll debut. So it’ll be back to the routine, you know? Thanks.

Now, if you don’t mind, I need to find a haircut coupon.


43 thoughts on “I Didn’t Die From Writing a Post About a Book I’m in Called ‘But Did You Die?’

  1. Congratulations Eli! It can definitely feel a little awkward to toot our own horn, but you absolutely should! Being part of a book is truly spectacular!

  2. congrats, eli. and yes you belong , you are truly one of them! like you, i think it’s easier to promote anyone else other than myself, but you deserve it, and it’s not a fluke. if you put in an order, i’d like a signed copy, please, after all, i raised you. kind of.

  3. That’s so great, Eli! Congratulations. 😀 And yeah, it can be awkward to promote yourself in this way. But these big moments are the ones that your friends, family, and readers want to celebrate with you. Good luck with your reading on the 29th!

    Btw, has anyone ever told you that you come up with fantastic titles for your blog posts? 🙂

    1. Thanks, Sara. I say it was awkward, and yet included 37 links to buying the book in the post! I’ll start practicing reading out loud now.

      Glad you like my titles! There’s an online tool I sometimes use (for the best SEO, but most times, I just wing it!

      Irreverence is my super power.

  4. I just saw this book on a list of 11 Must Reads for Summer on Scary Mommy and I no idea you were in it! That’s so awesome! I will definitely be reading this book! And now I wish I lived close to you so you could sign my copy!

  5. Well done!!!! That is FANTASTIC!!! Your writing is stellar (the way with words – I love the “like pizza sliding out of the box!”), and it shows. The book looks hilarious!

    It’s SO hard to promote yourself, especially if you’re not a bestseller and used to it, but boy – I bet this book will do very well. Keep promoting it – this is great! Very proud!

    1. Thanks, Katherine! It’s funny, I didn’t feel great about the essay when I turned it in, but wasn’t sure what else to do with it – I couldn’t find someone to give it a read on short notice.

      Glad you liked that quote! You won’t believe what gold is in the other essays. It’s good stuff.

      This book is part of a successful series and backed by people who know what they’re doing, that’s for sure. Thanks again!

      1. Must’ve just been a great draft. Seriously good resume line for you. 🙂 I’m getting the Kindle edition right now….

        Hey, if you ever want a writing critique or just a sanity read-through, I’m willing! I’m not Hemingway, but I do write as a hobby and creatively with a group. I’ve edited a few books, too. Definitely keep me in mind.

      2. It’s best to just write and not think too much. I wrote a guest post for a friend this morning, and it sounded all so serious and dry.

        I tore it up and rolled through much lighter and enjoyed the process more. not sure if it will make for a good product!

        I would love to send you a draft. I’d love to get feedback. Just email it?

  6. Congratulations! Your writing is as funny as any I’ve ever read. And spot on with the imagery too.

    I once caused a homemade pizza to slide down the back of my oven. Gosh was that a disappointment!

  7. Holy cow, that’s friggin awesome! And good on you, for going to the signings and putting yourself out there and pushing outside of your comfort zone. I’ve heard that’s where change happens (according to every annoying meme on the planet). Anyway, I am excited for you and this news… I can tell people I knew you when 🙂


    1. Thanks, Charlotte! The signing is next week, so I have some time to get nervous. I’ve definitely done much more harrowing things I wasn’t prepared for (a one-time stint as a singing telegram comes to mind.)

      I tend to see more memes that deal with bacon, but that might just be me …

      I’m just a dude with a blog and a jar of peanut butter in his work desk drawer and a couple of Darth Vaders on his desk …

  8. Well you obviously lived to tell the tale! LOL! I will have to check out the book because I am familiar with these awesome women you speak of and I love their words… thanks for getting around to sharing it with us! 😉

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