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New York Comic Con 2013

On Friday, October 11th, I attended New York Comic Con! Comic Con is always a crazy, fun time, and this year was no exception. Actually, this was the best organized year yet, so maybe it was slightly less crazy than other years? For example, this year they placed microchips in the badges, and you had to tap your badges before entering the venue. When I first heard about this, I groaned and said, “It’s going to take even longer to get into the exhibit hall now!” But they actually set everything up outside of the Javits Center, where there is much more room. Better yet, there were no crazy long lines as everyone waited their turn to tap their badges. Once through, I waited my turn to enter the building, and then it was on to the exhibit hall!

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My first stop was, of course, to the booths run by publishing companies! This area wasn’t too crowded, so I was able to take my time and look at everything. Everyone there was super nice, too. For example, when I stopped in front of the Penguin booth, they asked me what I liked to read, and then went out of their way to open up a box of books so I could get an ARC of Rebel Springs. They were also giving away giant tote bags, which I grabbed and used for the rest of the day. When I passed Disney’s booth, I saw Victoria Schwab was doing a signing in a few minutes. I actually missed seeing her at BEA (her line was so long they ran out of books!), so it was nice to finally meet her and get a signed copy of The Archived.

014 (Medium)Free swag

After that, I wandered the floor some more, looking at merchandise for sale and all the different cosplayers, before heading down to the conference rooms. I don’t know whose idea it was to have two literary panels back to back in the same room, but I want to shake their hands and thank them. For two hours I got to sit down, put my heavy bags on the floor, and listen to authors speak.

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The first panel was “Once Upon a Time in Fantasy Lit…” featuring authors Bennett Madison, C. Robert Cargill, Catherynne M. Valente, Soman Chainani, Emily Croy Barker, and Gitty Daneshvari. They introduced themselves and their books, and then went on to discuss everything from Disney animated movies to what fantasy creature they wouldn’t want to meet in a dark alleyway. As a lover of fantasy, I had a great time and wished the panel had been longer, because the authors were both interesting and informative. I’m definitely going to pick up their books in the near future!

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After a fifteen minute intermission, the next panel, “Kill or Be Killed: Crafting a Powerful Female Protagonist” started, featuring authors Amelia Kahaney, Kendare Blake, Danielle Paige, Lauren Oliver, and Lindsay Ribar. Once again, each author was introduced and talked a little bit about their books, before discussing their awesome female protagonists in their current and upcoming novels. In particular, I was very excited to hear about Lauren Oliver’s forthcoming Panic, and Danielle Paige’s Dorothy Must Die. Both sound excellent. Ironically, they also discussed Disney animated movies. In fact, The Little Mermaid was mentioned in both panels (both favorably and unfavorably) by the authors!

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Once the second panel finished, I headed back to the exhibit hall. There was a book giveaway going on at the Harper Collins booth (spin the wheel, win a book), and I won an ARC of Cruel Beauty, a Beauty and the Beast retelling I can’t wait to start reading! I spent a little bit more time at the con (visited the Artist Alley to see all the beautiful artwork) before heading home, thoroughly exhausted. But I had a great time, and I’ll definitely go again next year!

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Fantastic Teen Reads 9/22/2013

If you follow me on Twitter, then you know Amy, my beta reader and best friend, came to New York last week! She comes once a year, and each year I try to think of new things we can do in Manhattan. This year, after hearing me gush about Books of Wonders and all their great events, she asked if they were having a signing while she was in town. Turns out, they were! So on Sunday, September 22nd, we attended the “Fantastic Teen Reads” event.

004 (Medium)(From left to right: Gene Luen Yang, Patrick Ness, Robin Wasserman and Alex London)

006 (Medium)(Another shot, so you can actually see Alex!)

This was, hands down, the funniest event I’ve been to yet. The authors filled us in on their horrible high school days (complete with stories on how they faked back injuries just to get out of gym class!), how they trained themselves to write (Robin Wasserman would reward herself with a brownie at 2 in the afternoon, every single day!), and why they’re not sorry for doing horrible things to their characters. I found it especially interesting that Patrick Ness needs to know the final line of the story before he can start writing. For my last two manuscripts, I’ve figured out the final line as I was writing the first draft, but never before! All of their books sounded amazing, and I definitely added them to my to-read shelf!

I was worried Amy and her boyfriend, who doesn’t read YA at all, would be bored during the event, but they had a great time. You can read about Amy’s experience here, and see all the signed books she ended up getting!

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Cover Reveal: SWITCHED by Cassie Mae

Today I have the honor of sharing the cover of Cassie Mae’s upcoming NA novel, SWITCHED!

Are you ready? (Hot boy alert, by the way!)

 

switched coverTold you he was hot. 😉

Here’s the blurb:

Ever since high school, Kayla has been crazy for gorgeous football player Talon. But before she could muster the courage to tell him, he became a hot item with her beautiful BFF, Reagan. The only person who knows Kayla’s secret is Wesley, Talon’s best bud—and he’s got it bad for Reagan. Now they’re all in college together, hanging out 24/7. For Kayla, seeing the two lovebirds together is absolutely unbearable. So Kayla and Wesley hatch a plot to drive them apart. But time is ticking and they must act now, before Talon gives Reagan the Christmas gift she’s been waiting for.

Sure enough, the once-happy couple is fighting, Reagan suddenly can’t get enough of Wesley’s goofy sense of humor, and Talon seems to be paying more attention to Kayla than a guy who’s “just a friend” ever should. But something just isn’t right. Then Kayla and Wesley accidentally spend a night together, and discover a hitch they never considered: that switching partners may not lead to a perfect ending after all.

This one sounds excellent and I can’t wait to get my greedy little hands on it. You can pre-order it here and add it to your Goodreads shelves here!

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Cassie Mae is a nerd to the core from Utah, who likes to write about other nerds who find love. She’s the author of the Amazon Bestseller REASONS I FELL FOR THE FUNNY FAT FRIEND, and is the debut author for the Random House FLIRT line with her New Adult novels FRIDAY NIGHT ALIBI and SWITCHED. She also has a three book deal with Swoon Romance Publishing, including her book HOW TO DATE A NERD. She spends time with her angel children and perfect husband who fan her and feed her grapes while she clacks away on the keyboard. Then she wakes up from that dream world and manages to get a few words on the computer while the house explodes around her. When she’s not writing, she’s spending time with the youth in her community as a volleyball and basketball coach, or searching the house desperately for chocolate.

 

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BEA2013: Day Three

Today was my shortest day at BEA and yet so much happened in those few hours that it definitely was the most memorable. I chatted up some authors, met my agency-sister Theresa for the first time, met both wonderful ladies (and Snarkles!) from Tea Time at EpicReads (and spun a wheel to get a free book!), hung out with my friends (who got what looks like every single book that was handed out today!), and got a drawing from cartoonist and author Stephan Pastis. Wow, what a day!

booksdaythree (Medium)Today’s books! Top row is signed.

stackdaythree (Medium)The stack.

Eventually I’d like to do a writeup for all three days. I’m not sure if it’ll be one giant post, or three separate ones. Do you guys want to hear every single detail? Can I even remember every single detail? Everything is a blur right now. I met so many authors in such a short amount of time, I can barely remember what books I ended up with. But I will do my best to give you an accurate account of BEA2013.

Now, which of the 47 books to start reading first…

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BEA2013: Day Two

Day Two of BEA was a little less hectic and I’m not as tired or overwhelmed as I was after Day One. Like I said yesterday, I learned from my mistakes and got to the signings early. I wanted to see Holly Black, and waited 45 minutes *before* her signing started just so I could be at the front of the line (the line stretched so far back I couldn’t even see the end of it!).

booksdaytwo (Medium)Today’s haul! Top row plus the first two books (book and sampler, actually) on the left side of the second row are signed.

stackdaytwo (Medium)A lopsided pile of books.

I currently have books EVERYWHERE, and I love it.

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The Eve of BEA2013

Heading to Book Expo tomorrow, hooray! I can’t believe the day is finally here. I think I’ve been talking non-stop about BEA for the past three MONTHS. Am I excited? Yeah, just a little.

I’m not going as a writer, but as a book lover. I can’t wait to get my hands on all the shiny, pretty ARCs. I will try and post about each day, but I’m probably going to be too drained to do it after I get home. Maybe I’ll just share pictures of my daily haul, how’s that sound?

On an unrelated note, my blog turned one yesterday. (I wouldn’t have even known if WordPress hadn’t sent me a little trophy.) Here’s to another great year of blogging!

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Teen Flights of Fancy 2013

Today I attended the Teen Flights of Fancy event at Books of Wonder in Manhattan. It was my first event since October, so I was super excited about it. Not even allergies with a constantly running nose or the frigid NYC air could keep me away!

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The authors for this event were Brodi Ashton, Jocelyn Davies, Cynthia Hand, Jodi Meadows, and Teri Terry. I’d never met any of them before (but have read all of them except Teri Terry), although I did see Jocelyn Davies MC an event at Comic Con last year. They were all wonderful, interesting, and incredibly funny (Brodi Ashton had the crowd in stitches!). First they each introduced themselves and talked a little bit about their books/series, telling us how they first conceived the idea for their stories. Then the crowd asked them questions, which included everything from how much input did they have in their covers (little to none, but no one minded as they all have gorgeous covers!) to who their literary boyfriends would be. The authors also did trivia questions and the winners received some neat swag!

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(Brodi Ashton, Jocelyn Davies, Cynthia Hand, and Teri Terry)

003 (Medium)(Jodi Meadows)

Afterwards was the signing portion! I first had Cynthia Hand sign my copy of Boundless, the final book in the Unearthly trilogy. I’ve only just discovered the Unearthly series, but I love it to absolute pieces. I’m afraid to read the final book, though. Last books in a series ALWAYS scare me. Next, I met Jodi Meadows, which was really exciting as I’ve loved Incarnate since I read it last year. Can’t wait to read Asunder! Jodi is an avid knitter, and she had little Ana and Sam knitted dolls, along with an adorable and awesome dragon! I should have taken a picture, but when you get up there and are talking to a favorite author, your mind tends to blank out. But they were really cute! I also met Margot from Epic Reads and Tea Time, which was really, really awesome. I felt like I was meeting a celebrity!
014 (Medium)011 (Medium)It was a great day, and I can’t wait to read my new books! Author events are always fun, and they end up inspiring my writing. Looking forward to the next one!