Indie Book Fest 2015

  
This past weekend I attended Indie Book Fest 2015! It was an amazing experience! 

It was hosted by Tawdra Kandle and Mandie Stevens at the Caribe Royal hotel located near Disney and International Drive. 

Sadly, I bought my tickets too late and was only able to get general admission and not the blogger ticket. 

Day One: Friday

Friday was the first day of the convention. Panels started at 9am, but I was working until 12pm (I ended up getting off later since someone forgot to get their shift covered and we scrambled to find someone) and had to pick up my new phone at 3pm. My phone pick up should have taken less than 30 minutes but the phone guy I was supposed to talk to was held up by a distraught customer who could not get a phone. My phrase for the day ended up being “shit happens.” 

If I had gotten my phone on time, I would have made it to fan-fare. Sadly, my friend and I got there 30 minutes before they were cleaning up and only got to talk to two authors. That’s okay right? Shit happens and you go along with it. 

We got to register ourselves in thanks to the lovely Tawdra Kandle (one of the hosts of the event). We had asked a few people earlier if we could register but no one knew if we could. Thankfully I spotted Tawdra when she was pulling for the raffle tickets prize. She quickly gave us our packets and hooked us up with a wonderful swag bag. 

With the gap to go grab dinner before the Gothic Romance Party, my friend and I drove to the closest Golden Corral to get our grub on (classy, right?). Once we were done we headed back to the convention center and got dressed/did our makeup in one of the bathrooms. To our surprised no one came in so I sprawled out all of my makeup on the counter. 

   

The Gothic Romance Party was great. There were some “nibbles,” aka a good amount of yummy trail mix for the party goers and a cash bar for those who can drink. Author Melissa Lumis was dressed up in a gypsies costume and did tarot readings. I’ve never had one done before so that was a nice experience.

The music was kept family friendly with a lot of older songs. I’m not a great dancer, but I did dance the Cupid shuffle. It was fun watching everyone else dance. I’m pretty sure if I got up there and let loose peopl’s eyeballs would burn from the sight of terrible dance moves and rhythm. 

Every table also had goodie bags for the party goers to take. 

  The “swag” I picked up on day one. 

Day Two: Saturday

We were pretty tired from the day before so we ended up leaving out of our area late and got there at about 11:45.  We ended up going  to the 12pm panel for getting your story out there. As we waited for the next panel to start, we got awesome badges where you get to pick what type of fairytale character you want to be. I chose to be a werewolf queen. H.D. Smith was really awesome and gave me a short story called Onyx that is about werewolves because of this! 

  

The panel was very insightful and it made me wish I had made it to the panels the day before. Dan Woods from DRAFT2DIGITAL was the speaker and made some great points about what to do with your stories and how to get more people in your audience. One point that he made that I appreciate so much is the point to put your stories through different sales channels. Recently, I’ve been looking at books by some indie authors and their only sales outlet is Amazon for e-books. I don’t have a kindle or e-reader. I use my I pad and get books off from there. People may have the same situation as me, so having the story in more places makes t available for more people. 

After the panel, we had a gap to get our lunch. We found ourselves at Pollo Tropical. This is when I realized that I left my debit card (aka my only way to buy books) and my license at home. Great. I was so bent on purchasing Dark Awakened by H.D. Smith. 

On the plus side, I did have $6 with me to use for food. At least I wasn’t hungry! I decided that we would drive back to my house to grab my debit and license after the book signing portion and get ready at my house for the “Fairytales and Happily Ever Afters”/Beach party then drive back to the event. It sucked not to be able to buy books, but I had no way of driving home and then driving back in time for the signing. 

The book signing was so much fun! We were given a scavenger hunt to do where we had to go visit all the authors and get their square signed in order to be put in a drawing for an iPad mini. I think we mostly went to every author for all the “swag” rather than for the raffle, though. 

I had an amazing time talking to all of the authors. We even spoke to the ones who weren’t on the sheet too. I was bummed out that I couldn’t get any signed paperbacks, but that totally changed when Ceci Giltenan gave me a free signed copy of her novella Highland Revenge. She said I could have it as long as I would read it and of course I took it! 

When I hit up H.D. Smith’s table I told her what happened with my debit because earlier I told her I would purchase her book at the signing when I got my badge. She offered to give it to me for free but I said no. She still tried to give it to me, so I took it and I told her I would pay her back later. Bless her heart. She said she trusted me. (I did pay her back at the party if you were wondering.)

Again, because I didn’t have my debit I couldn’t buy anything but I did grab all the post cards, fliers, bookmarks, and business cards on every authors table so that I can remember to check out their books; whether it be e-book or paper back. They all worked really hard to write their books, so I think it would be right to get at least one from each (if my wallet allows it)

When we were finished doing our rounds through the tables of authors, we totes our full bags over to the front table to slip in our sheets for the raffle. We took a well needed seat outside to rest our near freezing toes. The AC was up high and probably nearing a polar freeze. A little girl came up to us at one point and said that they hid some books around the place and that we should go look for them…so we did. We walked maybe ten steps and found the copies. 

We had our fill of fun talks with the authors and freebies so we headed over to my house to get ready. Next year, I’m definitely going to try to get a hotel room so that I don’t have to be driving back and forth!

  
The party that night was great too. I love how the authors, readers, and bloggers were hanging around together and having fun. This time there was food (deserts and pretzels), so we gorged our self on cookies and other desserts. I went as a last minute attempt at a mermaid and my friend went with more of a beachy style. They had some rad fortune cookies where some of them had hidden prizes. To my surprise, I won a signed paperback where I can choose between a book from H.D. Smith or Ceci Giltenan. I chose one of Ceci Giltenan’s books since I already had H.D. Smith’s books. 

This is the stuff I picked up that day: 


   
Day Three: Saturday

Sadly, I could not make it to any events on this day since I had work and copious assignments to do. Next year, I will definitely plan accordingly! 

Here are the books I picked up during the weekend: 

 

I hope I can get to these books soon!

I can’t wait for next years festivities. Maybe I’ll see some of yall there? 

Until next time yall!

Brek Shea Signing

 
Okay, I know this isn’t really book related but I got to meet Brek Shea today! Ugh it was such an awesome experience. My friends and I got in line right on time and got the last wrist bands that guaranteed us that we’d get our stuff signed. I had him sign my copy of Lion’s Roar which is Orlando City Soccer’s game day magazine, so you could say this is kind of book related ;P. I honestly just really wanted to share this moment. 

I was drawing while we were in line since the wait was a while and finished my drawing before we got up to him, so I decided to give him the drawing. He likes to paint and what-not so I thought that it would be something he’d appreciate. He actually did seem like he genuinely thought it was cool and his manager person with him thought it was cool too. A-plus for me right? I was ready to pass out from happiness. A-plus-plus for me keeping my cool. I was super awkward though, like I always am. By the way, he smelled great. Weird, I know, but I’m super into smells. I could probably be considered a dog. 

  That white rectangle piece of paper on the table to the right is my drawing. 

Thanks Brek for being rad hope to see you on field soon! 

Lib Con 2015 Pt. 1

 The Rick Yancey Experience 

Yesterday, I attended Lib Con 2015 at the Orlando Public Library in downtown Orlando. Overall it was a pretty amazing experience. 

We shuffled in late to Rick Yancey’s Keynote speech due to me hitting a curb last night and having to go get a new tire put in at 8 a.m. (Which , by the way, took two excruciating hours plus I live about 30 minutes away from downtown and I had to pick up my bestfriend after my tire change). That wasn’t planned in the schedule, but mini adventures are always fun. 

Getting back to us coming in late to the speech, was an amazing speaker. We got their late, but we still made it in time to listen to most of it. I had my wolf journal out and took notes while he spoke. I think he noticed because he kept looking my way, but who knows. He wore sunglasses most of the time so I wouldn’t know. I’m not too sure if I was allowed to take notes, but I saw a woman taking a video the whole time so I thought that it would justify me taking notes (I like taking note since I have a terrible memory and I would like to remember these moments).

  
I really loved that he had a lot of humor when he spoke and seemed extremely down to earth. Here are a few notable things that I wrote down from the speech:

  • The third book for The 5th Wave is finished and is going through editing.
  • Authors do see most of the posts that you make about their work.
  • Sony Pictures wanted to buy The 5th Wave before it was written.
  • If someone ever asks to use your house for a movie, say no. 
  • Ringer is supposed to be amer-asian.
  • We may or may not see Yancey in the movie. 
  • “No it was supposed to be a Buick” – Rick Yancey
  • The third book will be released after the movie
  • There will be special editions
  • The movie comes out sometime next year (I don’t think I’m allowed to tell y’all the exact date, so I’ll keep my mouth shut). 
  • The first trailer will be coming out sometimes soon.
  • If you have writer’s block, great way to get motivation is looking at your mortgage
  • Why aliens? -> “because they scare the crap out of me.”

   
 Right after the speech, Yancey had his book signing.  The line wasn’t bad at all. The staff was nice and we even chatted with one about Disney and selfie sticks while we waited for our turn to go up. I’m pretty awkward when it comes to book signings and I kind of just slid my book on the table for him to sign. 

You know when you have so much to say and ask before hand and then it all leaves you when you actually meet the person and you stand there awkwardly? That’s me. 

After we got our books signed we were given 5th Wave bracelets. Black or yellow. Rick Yancey said black would go well with my outfit, so you can pretty much guess which one I picked up…yellow. Just kidding. Of course I’d get the black one. 

    
Here are some pictures of the program:  

  

      

Check out part 2 of my Lib Con experience here

Lib Con 2015 Pt.2

The Author Fair

  

The author fair was great. I hauled over with me four books to get signed. I only found out about the event about three days prior, so I didnt have enough time to find all the books (let alone the money I needed to get them). Minus The 5th Wave, I brought:

At the book signing I purchased:

A local store called Bookmark It was there to sell the books. 

 

I also picked up tons of bookmarks for my books and was given a couple of posters. 

   

Amy Christine Parker was super nice and kind of quirky! I liked her outfit that she wore too. She hooked me up with a few posters and bookmarks. One of the posters was signed by her, Christina Farley, and Vivi Barnes (she wrote Olivia Twisted). Freaking awesome! 

   

 Holla at my girl J.A. Spiders for giving her book out for FREE at the event! I’ve been looking for this book everywhere before the event and couldn’t find it! Turns out it was being sold at the Books-A-Million near my house. Guess what? She lives near me too! It was great speaking with her and learning that an author lives so close to me. 

   

I had to awkwardly sit and stalk and wait for Lynn Waddell to get back from one of the panels she was speaking at to get my book signed.  She was cool and even gave me a temporary tattoo! She was wearing hers on her forearm which made her look like a bad ass. 

   
  


H.D. Smith was also at the panel so we waited for her too. I thought that the stamp in the book was pretty awesome. I didn’t realize that the book was already a signed copy when I bought it but she was nice and offered to personalize it. 

   

 Lynne Matson was kind and very friendly. She wore a cute dress that I forgot to compliment her on. I’m very excited to finish up this book. 

   

 Lori Goldstein was another of the authors that we had to wait for to come back from the panels. She had a bracelet on her table that looked exactly like the one that’s on the cover of the book and she was also giving out silver colored rubber bracelets. I forgot to pick up one because I was too busy being awkward while I got my book signed. 

   
 

Christina Farley was extremely friendly! I loved talking to her even f it was for a short moment. She told me that all her characters were based off her students that she taught in Korea. How cool is that?! Freaking Awesome! I would be so honored if I was one of her students.  

In all, the event was great. All of the authors were nice and had their own quirkiness to them. I’m definitely going to come to this event again if there will be one next year. Next time, I hope that I’ll find out about the event on an earlier date so that I can grab at least one book from each other and read them beforehand. These books have definitely made their way to the top of my TBR pile (sorry An Ember In The Ashes and Afterworlds). 

I’m definitely going to try to go to Indie Bookfest! Book events are just way too great of experiences to pass up. I also hope to be able to attend the panels next year too! 

I can’t wait for next year! 

If you missed part 1 check it out here

    Let Me Die In His Footsteps Book Signing

    The book:

    • Title: Let Me Die In His Footsteps
    • Author: Lori Roy
    • Publisher: Dutton
    • Published: June 2nd 2015
    • Synopsis from Amazon:

    “In the spellbinding and suspenseful Let Me Die in His Footsteps, Edgar Award–winner Lori Roy wrests from a Southern town the secrets of two families touched by an evil that has passed between generations.

    On a dark Kentucky night in 1952 exactly halfway between her fifteenth and sixteenth birthdays, Annie Holleran crosses into forbidden territory. Everyone knows Hollerans don’t go near Baines, not since Joseph Carl was buried two decades before, but, armed with a silver-handled flashlight, Annie runs through her family’s lavender fields toward the well on the Baines’ place. At the stroke of midnight, she gazes into the water in search of her future. Not finding what she had hoped for, she turns from the well and when the body she sees there in the moonlight is discovered come morning, Annie will have much to explain and a past to account for. It was 1936, and there were seven Baine boys. That year, Annie’s aunt, Juna Crowley, with her black eyes and her long blond hair, came of age. Before Juna, Joseph Carl had been the best of all the Baine brothers. But then he looked into Juna’s eyes and they made him do things that cost innocent people their lives. Sheriff Irlene Fulkerson saw justice served—or did she?

    As the lavender harvest approaches and she comes of age as Aunt Juna did in her own time, Annie’s dread mounts. Juna will come home now, to finish what she started. If Annie is to save herself, her family, and this small Kentucky town, she must prepare for Juna’s return, and the revelation of what really happened all those years ago”

    My thoughts:

    The cover is what initially caught me, like most of the books that I read. The striking purple color and the girl laying in white seemed quite interesting and to top it off it was a hardcover.

    The book took me about two and a half days to read due to having work and other commitments.

    The beginning, for me, was a bit slow but it quickly picked up. The deeper you get the deeper you are pulled into the lives of the characters. As I read more and more, it was getting harder to pull away from the book. The thing about Lori Roy’s writing is that you feel as if you were walking through the book with the characters. It is as if you are there feeling the dark dampness of the home of Sarah and Juna. You can feel the light touches of the lavender plants brushing across your skin as Annie makes her way to the Baine’s. The book definitely transports you to this Kentucky county and grips onto you until the novel is finished. I’m pretty sure that when I would put down the book to go do something I came out with a slight country twang in my voice.

    On June 11th, I went with my one of best friends and my mom to Mount Dora to celebrate my 19th birthday. We stopped by a german bakery in Yalaha on the way there. With full bellies, we took to walking the streets of the beautiful town. I have been to Mount Dora a few times before hand so I was showing them around. One stop that was a must was Barrel of Books and Games.

    Barrel of Books and Games is a small used bookstore that has pretty good prices. Their books are usually in really good condition and they even sell new books and board games. Maybe I will do a review of them soon.

    Fast foreward to June 20th. I had picked up Lori Roy’s new book Let Me Die In His Footsteps in hopes of coming back for the book signing. I have never been to a book signing before and thought that this would be a wonderful experience (technically I did go to one in Elementary school but I don’t remember it so I’m not counting it).

    My friend and I were pretty nervous. We didn’t know what to expect and we had gotten there a bit early. We roamed a bit before we headed to the bookstore. We still got to the store early so I decided to grab some more books to add to my hoard at home.

    There were only a few of us at the book signing. By a few, I mean two other people, the store owner, my friend and I. I did like how the group was small since it did not make it so intimidating.

    Lori Roy started off by showing us documentations of one of her first big writing awards for a non-fiction piece right there in Mount Dora a few years back. Which is pretty dang awesome. She also spoke about her recent trip at a convention/expo (I can’t quite remember which) in which she was in a panel with other authors. From there, she went on about some of the questions that she receives quite frequently about the book.

    One thing that I totally loved her for was when she spoke about how sometimes an author does not have a deeper meaning to their work and how many readers (teachers) try to pull the writing apart to come up with some kind of deeper nonsense. But really though…can Lori Roy get and amen? AMEN!

    After we she discussed her book we ended up talking about her next book and how she is planning to have it set somewhere in Florida. Somehow, we got into the talk of Cassadaga. I’m pretty sure it was the store owner bringing it up, but my memory is a bit unreliable.

    Cassadaga is known to be a spiritualist camp site here in Florida and seems to have the adjectives dark, eerie, and creepy attached to it. Because my friend and I have been there and I took a few trips there myself for fun with some other people, we told her about the place. She seemed to be very interested in the town and was hoping to visit the place soon. I’m crossing my fingers that she will add Cassadaga to her setting in a future book. One…because it’s a pretty interesting place. Two…because it would be cool to have known we helped spark that idea.

    Lori Roy was friendly and it was nice getting to meet an author of such a great book. After meeting her, I am definitely pumped up to read her other two books. I hope that Lori Roy will grow to be a well known author soon. Her book was wonderful with rich setting and a twisting plot.

    I wish all the best to you Lori Roy and I hope you don’t forget the five ladies in the little Mount Dora book shop!

    Make sure to check her out here: http://www.loriroy.com/