I have finally recovered from the Ann Dvorak: Hollywood’s Forgotten Rebel Official Book Launch Party on Tuesday. I think it’s safe to say that it was more than successful and is probably one of the few Los Angeles parties where people actually showed up early. Guests were filtering in while I was sitting there getting my hair done!
There has probably never been so much Ann Dvorak piled into one room, and the response was overwhelming. The Library Store ordered 40 copies, and at the end of the evening, there were only two left. The Ann Dvorak recipes seemed to have gone over well and the food table was empty by the end, other than some of the fudge which was admittedly too sweet with a weird molasses aftertaste.
The turnout was way better than I expected and it felt like my own episode of “This is Your Life,” with some people showing up who I hadn’t seen over 25 years. There was also a good amount of people who I did not know or am related to, which reinforces that Ann Dvorak is someone others give a damn about. Being able to have the party at Central Library, which is my home away from home, made it even more special.
Thanks to everyone who came out or sent well wishes. After 15 years, it’s still bizarre to have the book out in the world but now feels much more real.
I am still recovering from last night’s book launch party which I think is safe to say was a rousing success! Once I am able to go through all the photos and take some deep breaths, I’ll give a full run down on the festivities.
In the meantime, Lisa Napoli over at KCRW (one of our local NPR affiliates) put together this wonderful piece. Those of you who have been following this blog for the last couple of years know that the bulk of the Ann Dvorak book was written during my commute to work on the subway. I am so pleased Lisa found this aspect of the Ann Dvorak story interesting and I hope it will inspire others struggling writers to get creative with their time.
This coming Sunday & Monday (11/17 & 11/18), I will be heading over to the Silver Screen Oasis discussion board to answer questions about Ann Dvorak, book research, Los Angeles history, and anything else you might have in mind. Be sure to stop by so I’m not lonely!
Just a reminder that the official launch party for Ann Dvorak: Hollywood’s Forgotten Rebel is tonight! From 6-8pm in downtown Los Angeles, Central Library’s Meeting Room A will be all about Ann. “Authentic” foods made from Ann Dvorak recipes will be served, memorabilia will be on display, and schedule permitting, actress Mary Carlisle will be in attendance. Of course copies of the book will be available for purchase. Kids are welcome!
Parking can be found at 524 South Flower Street which is underneath the building and full details are at the Los Angeles Public Library’s website.
Hope you can join us!
There is much news to report today so here’s the rundown.
Bright Lights in going to air on Turner Classic Movies on Tuesday November 12th at 3:45am PST. One day, TCM will screen an Ann Dvorak movie after sunrise. Until then, I recommend trying to catch this 1935 feature starring Ann and Joe E. Brown which doesn’t air too often. It’s a fun film and the pair have great chemistry as husband and wife. Hopefully there’s a Warner Archive release in our future. (You listening Warner Archive??)
This morning’s Los Angeles Times features a nice little promo for the book and launch party. Special thanks to Susan King for getting Ann some coverage.
Just a reminder that tomorrow is the Ann Dvorak: Hollywood’s Forgotten Rebel Official Book Launch Party! As soon as I post this, I will be heading to the kitchen to prepare Ann Dvorak fudge and pralines.
Finally, on this Veterans Day holiday, I wanted to make note of Ann’s contribution to the war effort. Not too many of us would have so willingly traveled through hostile waters as civilians during Christmas of 1940 to get to a London being bombarded in the midst of the Blitz. Ann Dvorak did just that, and spent nearly three years in the UK. One of her many contributions was as a member of the Mechanised Transport Corps (MTC) where she drove an ambulance though a war-torn city, rescuing the wounded after air raids. Above is a photo of our gal in her MTC uniform, a true veteran.
There’s a link to the event calendar on the sidebar under “Pages” and the bottom of the sidebar will list upcoming events. There’s also an option to subscribe to the calendar if you’re paranoid you might miss out on something.
Right now, I just have the book release and the launch party listed, but there are more L.A. events to be posted soon. I am also hoping the calendar will soon list 2014 appearances in Chicago, Boston, and Pittsburgh, but those are still in the works.
If the Dvorak loyal will find it useful, I can also list upcoming airings of her films on TCM. Let me know if that’s of interest.
We’re officially at less than two months until D(vorak)-Day, so let the event planning begin!
Everything seems to be running smoothly over at the University Press of Kentucky, and Ann Dvorak: Hollywood’s Forgotten Rebel should be meeting the projected November 4th release date. Just to be on the safe side, the official release party is going to be held on Tuesday, November 12th from 6-8pm.
I am going to have the party at Downtown’s Central Library, which serves as my home away from home and is where I did a hell of a lot of research for the book. Plus, there are many people in the building that have had to endure A LOT of Ann Dvorak for the seven years I have been working there. The least I can do is give them an easy way to come and celebrate with me (or give them a difficult way to avoid me and Ann, depending on how you look at it).
It’ll be a modest set-up with plenty of “authentic” Ann Dvorak cuisine being served, which should actually be kind of disgusting if you recall the “Dvorak Cooks!” post from guest blogger Mary McCoy a few months back. Even if raw walnuts are not your thing, it should still be a fun shin dig and I hope some you loyal Dvorak devotees will be able to make it. If not, I’m planning some out of town events next year and maybe will be coming somewhere in the proximity of your town.
If I may stray away from the Divine Miz D for a moment, I would like to give Los Angeles residents a heads up that the 3rd annual Archives Bazaar will be held at the University of Southern California on October 25th. Over 60 institutions with local history collections will be participating, including the Los Angles Public Library where I am employed. I will be representing the Library at this event, so please stop by the LAPL table and talk to me about how much you love Ann Dvorak!
Additional info can be found here:
Hope to see you there!!
Archives Live! – 3rd Annual Los Angeles Archives Bazaar
Saturday, October 25th 2008 – 10am – 5pm
USC Davidson Conference Center
3415 S Figueroa Street (at Jefferson Blvd.)
Los Angeles, CA 90089
Admission is free, though parking is $8