Monthly Archives: June 2012

Goodbye to Audiobook Month 2012

Barbara Vey -- June 30th, 2012

 

 

joysann

Hi! joysann here. I’m feeling remiss for not taking an opportunity to say something about June Is Audiobook Month, as audiobooks are a big part of my life. So as June ends, I’m sticking in a quick note.

I speculate that I listen to one audiobook for every three books I read, either print or e-book. Since I go through a great many books, that’s a lot of hours dedicated to listening, and I usually enjoy every one. I very seldom “skim” while reading, and the same goes for using the fast-forward on my players: I want to hear every word the narrator reads of the book written. The ignition on my car is practically wired through the CD player, and my family doesn’t know what I look like without earbuds, though it’s not music I’m listening to.

Conceived by the Audio Publishers Association, June Is Audiobook Month is the celebration of the whole industry, from the books and authors to the narrators and productions. I found the best way for me to follow the celebration was on Twitter, with the hashtag #jiam2012. With audiobook publishers, narrators, authors and listeners sharing suggestions, giving away prizes, posting interviews with popular narrators, and linking to their own favorite blogs and webpages, there was more than plenty out there to entertain and entice. Publication audiobook reviewers and bloggers had plenty to share as well, notably PW’s own Listen Up Audiobook Blog with Adam Boretz.

It’s not too late. Just use the Twitter hashtag #jiam2012 or plug “audiobook month 2012″ in your search engine and you’ll find dozens of interesting links celebrating Audiobook Month.

Bottom Line: If you never have, you’re missing something special. Just try it once, and you’ll open yourself to a whole new world of enjoyment.

RomCon Adventures

Barbara Vey -- June 25th, 2012
Linda Conrad Intimate Chat

Linda Conrad Intimate Chat

RomCon is truly a reader’s weekend.  There are no agents, editors or publishers.  Just authors and their adoring fans.

I attended a few intimate chats which are held in a room with one author and a limited number of readers.  There are no rules, so you can talk about anything you want.  Linda Conrad surprised her readers at 9 a.m. with chocolate parfaits.  —– took us through the legal system in England since she sat in on several tries.  Her assessment, boring.  I was scheduled with Holly Jacobs, but since she missed the event, the readers decided to stay and have our own discussion.  It was actually quite nice and it’s always fun to talk with like minded people.

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Jade Lee and Elizabeth Hoyt

Jade Lee and Elizabeth Hoyt

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There was a trivia contest with Jade Lee and Elizabeth Hoyt.  The contest was terrific, but somehow I think the readers appreciated the gentleman adorned with only a kilt.  He passed out the prizes, so, needless to say, everyone wanted to win.

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Julia Quinn

Julia Quinn

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Julia Quinn had Bridgerton croquette set up in a room and the wickets were adorable stuck in paper cups to hold them up.  I kept having flashbacks to Alice in Wonderland and expected the mallets to be made from flamingos.

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There was Madlibs in one room, romance, and erotica panels in other rooms.  There was another Titanic Tea for those who didn’t get in the day before.

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Kat Martin and Readers

Kat Martin and Readers

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I attended an intimate lunch with Kat Martin who told us that she met her hubby when they were both real estate agents.  The author at my dinner table was Alexandra Ivy who writes paranormal.

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Just a few of the authors from the book signing.

Kelly Armstrong and Rebecca Forster

Kelly Armstrong and Rebecca Forster

Hillary Seidl and RM Sotera

Hillary Seidl and RM SoteraJ.

Kate

Kate Duncan

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I met Kate  Duncan who is a cover model on many romance covers.  She said she’s been on over 200 covers and currently has two pictures in Vogue Italia.  She’s from the St. Louis area and is just adorable.  I’ll be looking at the covers more closely now that I know what she looks like.

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props for mangasm

props for mangasm

The big event everyone was waiting for started at 9 p.m. and was called Chocolate Mangasm.  It was sponsored by author Delilah Marvelle and Kim Killion of Hot Damn Designs.  It was billed as a giant bachelorette party and definitely fulfilled it’s promise.  Everyone was given a bag of goodies when they arrived labeled “Vixen” or “Slut.”  I was a slut (no comments please).  We were divided into several groups that rotated throughout the night.  Each group was a different “naughty” game to include dress the blow up male doll (anatomically correct), a form of musical chairs where a slippery part of the male body was passed frantically around a circle while the participant’s hands were lotioned up and a kind of scavenger hunt where you had to do several things listed on your paper to name a few.  The room was extremely loud with many squeals of delight.  Male models were there to have their pictures taken and lots of prizes given out.  Seeing how tired everyone was the next morning is a testament to the success of the party.

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Sunday morning was pretty quiet with readers gather to talk about what they enjoyed about the conference and to talk about books.  There was a brunch and I was honored to be asked to speak.  Then it was time for the awards.

Readers’ Crown Winners

Contemporary Romance:  Gnome On The Range by Jennifer Zane

Category/Series Romance:  Ivy League Cowboy by Helen Hardt

Contemporary Romantic Suspense:  While You Were Dead by CJ Snyder

Erotic Romance:  The Dom Who Loved Me by Lexi Blake

Paranormal Romance:  Immortal Hope by Claire Ashgrove
Sci-Fi, Fantasy, or Time-Travel Romance:  Haunting Embrace by Erin Quinn

 Historical Romance:  Invitation To Ruin by Bronwen Evans

Inspirational Romance:  Love On The Line by Deeanne Gist

Best First Book:  Gnome On The Range by Jennifer Zane

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From left: Cynthia Woolf, Hallie Kaiser, Karen Docter, Michele Callahan, CJ Snyder

From left: Cynthia Woolf, Hallie Kaiser, Karen Docter, Michele Callahan, CJ Snyder

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All kudos go to RomCon Founder Michele Callahan (and her volunteers) who calls RomCon, “DragonCon for women.  Why should men have all the fun?”  I agree.

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Bottom Line:  Readers make the world go round.

Tea on the Titanic via RomCon

Barbara Vey -- June 23rd, 2012
Delilah Marvelle, Deanne Gist and Tennesse Gist

Delilah Marvelle, Deanne Gist and Tennesse Gist

One of the highlights of Friday at RomCom was boarding the Titanic.  This special tea event, hosted by Deeanne Gist, sported a red carpet boarding and authors dressed for the time period hosting each table.  There were tables sporting Titanic memorabilia including newspapers and items from the time.  Tea and four courses were served while authors rotated tables offering clues to their books which were won by the members of the table.  Games were places such as dress the Titanic woman, who has the highest rank on board shop and what am I?  We were instructed on how to serve a perfect tea and how to communicate with just using a fan.  Everyone was given a passenger’s name and story for the ship and at the end of the tea, we learned our fate.  It was a fascinating experience and much thanks to Deeanne for all her hard word in organizing it.

Titanic memorabilia

Titanic memorabilia

 

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Lynn Rush drawing a snowstorm??

Lynn Rush drawing a snowstorm??

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Other creative events were Pictionary Quick Draw, Build a Hero and Slayers Inc. (you were a monster, slayer or civilian and many were quickly killed off.  I was a slayer, but not a very good one since I didn’t make it to the end).  There was speed dating with authors which gave two readers two minutes with an author before the bell rang and they had to change seats and meet new people.  Some decided to Strip a Hero or play Bingo  for Texas books.  Things were hopping all day.

 

Since this is a readers event, I caught up with a few to ask why they decided to come to RomCon.  It is Gina and Jai C. Kincaid’s first time and Gina said, “We came for the fun!  Other romance readers and authors.  People who share my interests.”  At the Titanic tea, while rummaging through their swag bags, Sada Meyer and Dana Yuen have been to RomCon before and agree, “We have a lot of fun, but came this year to meet Kelley Armstrong and for the Chocolatemangasm” (I think that’s happening Saturday, so I’ll let you know more about that later)!

Readers Jai C. and Gina Kincaid

Readers Jai C. and Gina Kincaid

Readers Sada Meyer and Dana Yuen

Readers Sada Meyer and Dana Yuen

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Author Maureen O. Betith and pirate hubby, Stephen

Author Maureen O. Betith and pirate hubby, Stephen

Paranormal Dine-In for Interspecies Peace was a delightful interactive dinner.  Authors hosted tables and dressed as aliens and humans.  Some talked of war, some of peace and each offered a liquid to a large punch bowl.  At the end, a few brave souls drank from it for peace, but it didn’t look very appetizing to me.  My hostess was author Maureen O. Betith who writes pirate (steam)punk.  I can’t wait to try it.  There was a fun pirate theme to her table that I couldn’t resist.

 

Just one note about the entertainment, not just here, but at many conferences I have covered.  When there is a speaker or a show going on, stop talking.  These people put a lot of time and effort into what they are doing.  It is rude and disruptive to those who want to participate.  I’m sad to say there was one table that took this to a whole new level and made it almost impossible to hear what was going on.  Shame on you!  I have seen this happen at other places and I think it’s time we speak up and let these loud mouths know it won’t be tolerated.  Manners should have been learned a long time ago.  Okay….I’m done ranting now.

Monte Carlo night

Monte Carlo night

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Meanwhile, back at RomCon, it was time for Monte Carlo night.  Murder Mystery Theater surrounded by Roulette, Craps, Blackjack and murder.  Authors really got into their roles to delight of the readers.  Many just enjoyed the games and the ending to a perfect full day at RomCon.

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Bottom Line:  I loved when Highlanders and pirates were mentioned and readers gave a collective sigh…I’m right there with you.

 

 

 

RomCon: Where Readers Rule

Barbara Vey -- June 22nd, 2012

RomCon’s tag line is “Where Readers Rule” and this conference in Denver endeavors to make that happen.  There’s a whole list of events to whet every readers appetite covering every romance genre.

 

Leanne Banks Kat Martin

Leanne Banks and Kat Martin

 

Thursday evening was fairly quiet with the full events starting on Friday and running through Sunday.  Authors were sequestered in a room and given the outline of what to expect and looking at the timeline, there’s a lot coming up.  Titantic Tea parties, games, Highland adventures, intimate chats and speed dating with authors to name a few.

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Bloggers get together

Bloggers get together

Bloggers were given their own welcome and looked ready to get this party started.  I met many readers just wandering around, getting the lay of the land and making their own schedule of favorite things to do.  One mother/daughter duo admitted it was their first time and didn’t know where to begin.  They were hunched over the conference booklet studying each event, trying to get the most out of their first meetings with real live authors.

 

I can’t wait to get started today.  This kind of event reinforces what I strongly believe that readers are the strongest part of the whole industry.  Without readers, there would be no need for anything else.

 

Bottom Line:  Readers definitely do rule.

WW Ladies Book Club Blurbs

Barbara Vey -- June 20th, 2012
I’m headed off to a reader focused event tomorrow and I’m thrilled.  You never know what a reader will say, so you always get the most honest, sincere, passionate responses.  RomCon is held in Denver and aims to please romance readers of every kind.  I’ve never been to Denver, so let me know what I shouldn’t miss there.  Meanwhile, here’s what the WW Ladies have been reading and listening to.
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Heidi

Heidi

Honorable Intentions by Catherine Mann

Read by Heidi
Major Hank Renshaw is a combat veteran who has made a death bed promise to his buddy, Kevin. Take care of his wife Gabrielle. Duty and honor has called him to make up for his promise, even when he’s been in love with Gabrielle from the first time he met her. But since she was Kevin’s girl, he never stepped in. Now Kevin is gone, and Gabrielle is struggling to make ends meet while taking care of her sickly son, a child that Kevin never knew about. Hank is there to help, and hope for a future with her.
Hank and Gabrielle swirled around in this story from guilt, to obligation, to sense of duty to the child, to possible love. It was an interesting mix of emotions that caused the characters to look at the past as well as the future. Also, Hank is a billionaire, which makes for twists and turns that cause more conflict with the love they have for one another.
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Stacey

Stacey

Overseas by Beatriz Williams

Read by Stacey
Two stories.  Sparks fly when Kate meets powerful hedge fund CEO Julian Laurence.  Their connection is immediate, abrupt, dangerous and takes Kate by surprise.  The potential of their relationship could change her life forever, taking her out of the security of the life and career she knows.  In the other, a young American widow named Kate fights her way through war torn Amiens, France to find a young British soldier named Julian.  She has information that will change the course of his life…if she can only get him to believe her.  These two stories are connected, and tell of a love that crosses time, contintents and seas.
Beautiful writing, wonderful characters and a story that has stayed with me long after I was done.  Beatriz Williams has spun a powerful tale of loss, time, and most importantly, of love.  I can’t believe this was a debut, and am very much looking forward to what she does next.
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joysann

Wicked As They Come by Delilah S. Dawson

Read by joysann

Tish Everett has been called to an alternate reality through an antique locket that held a magical attraction she couldn’t resist. The Victorian-ish world she finds herself in is populated with blood drinking humans and fauna. The Bluds, as they are known, are feared, persecuted and exploited, and Tish allies herself with the dashing and magical travelling show ringmaster, Criminy Stain, to seek to both freedom from an evil ruler and a way to send Tish home.

Both unusual and entertaining, I found Wicked As They Come a page-turner from start to finish, I greatly enjoyed the creative descriptions of the people and places, and was charmed by the interaction between the main characters. The introduction of Criminy Stain was easy enough to visualize, and a fine picture he makes. I highly anticipate the next Blud Novel.

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Heidi

Heidi

Death, Taxes, and a Skinny No-Whip Latte by Diane Kelly

Read by Heidi
Tara Holloway is a hot shot investigator for the Criminal Investigations Division of the IRS and is in the toughest case of her career. Marcos Mendoza is a seedy loan shark with connections in Mexico. He looks completely clean on paper. But Tara and her partner Eddie must continue to dig to find the illegal activity. She can’t tell anyone who she is close with who is investigating and why, because she can’t take a chance on putting them at risk. Brett, her boyfriend is very worried for Tara, but not as worried as she is for herself.
I enjoyed this book so much!! I preferred Tara’s character so much more than other women crime fighters. I laughed out loud when Tara was attacked in a laundry mat because she seemed like an easy target, and instead pulled out her gun and arrested him while undercover. Not to mention a flasher, a killer, and her cravings for lattes!! I can’t wait to read more of Tara!! She’s awesome!
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joysann

The Proposal by Mary Balogh

Listened to by joysann

War hero Hugo Emes, Lord Trentham, needs a wife, and he glibly promises to marry the first eligible lady he encounters. That turns out to be the widowed Lady Muir, Gwendoline, whom he finds fallen on a rocky beach with a severely sprained ankle. Hugo, finally recovered from the injuries of battle, reluctantly carries the lady back to the estate at which he is a guest, where they begin to learn they can support and strengthen each other.

There is, of course, so much more to the story, and Mary Balogh doesn’t fail to deliver it in the wonderfully romantic manner which we’ve come to expect. Reluctant lovers and devoted friends abound in this series about a small group of aristocrats touched by the Napoleonic Wars. The Proposal is the first in The Survivor’s Club Septet, and I know I will enjoy every one as they are released.

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Bottom Line:  The Denver Visitor site’s motto is Denver: Truth or Dare…hmm.

 

Southeastern Wisconsin Festival of Books

Barbara Vey -- June 18th, 2012

This weekend the Southeastern Wisconsin Festival of Books was held for the third time.  I’d love for this little book fest to grow into something big and fun, but I think the idea of a Friday/Saturday gig is not so great.  Why not have it Saturday/Sunday when the majority of people can attend?  Just a suggestion.

I moderated two panels on Friday afternoon.  Both were terrific and fun, but unfortunately not at the best time and with six other workshops at the same time vying for an audience, it spread everyone a bit thin.  It was a shame too because the authors had terrific things to say.

 

J.R. Turner, Elizabeth, David Thome, B.A. Binns

J.R. Turner, Elizabeth Ridley, David Thome, B.A. Binns

Romance With a Twist featured B.A. Binns, Elizabeth Ridley, David Thome and J. R. Turner.  It was a lively discussion made entertaining with David Thome on the panel.  His focus seemed to be on the fact that he is a male writing romance and is that an acceptable thing.  But mainly it seemed like he wanted to talk about Fifty Shades of Grey (yes, everyone groaned at this point).   One of the questions was “With the popularity of fantasy, paranormal, and supernatural elements in romance today, how much romance does a book need to have to be considered a romance?”   The authors pretty much agreed that there is no set percentage.  It was felt that it depended on the publisher.  One author told how her story was deemed not romantic enough by one publisher, while another thought it too romantic.  I guess the same applies to readers.   Some of us like a lot and others like a little.  It’s up to the author to put out the best story that fits each situation.

 

The second panel I moderated was Make Room for Romance with Adrienne Giordano, Sherill Bodine, Tracey Devlyn.  Because of the audience, this panel talked more about the process of writing the book.  One of the questions was “What is my favorite part of the book writing process?”  Everyone seemed to enjoy the research element.  Discovering new things they didn’t know before.  But they all took different roads to get their books finished.  Adrienne appears to be the more outline kind of writer while Tracey admits to writing by the seat of her pants.  She admits that at times she’s not sure where the story is going.  Sherill is very old school, preferring to hand write her stories in notebooks and then transferring them to the computer.

The book signings are held after each workshop and unfortunately on dead end corridors.  I felt bad for the authors seated in such out of the way places.  I wish they would do a huge book signing in a large room a la RWA (Romance Writers of America), where readers could wander the aisles and stop and chat with the authors.  As it is, one would have to come to each event to see every author and get a signed book.  Two full days is a big commitment for that.

There was an author cocktail party held in the library with guest speakers Tawni O’Dell and an interview with Jean Feraca of Wisconsin Public Radio.

Saturday, the Mystery Writers of America held their MWA University.  For an additional fee, aspiring writers could sit in on workshops to help hone their craft.  It was open to the public.

There really was something for everyone with a Cookbook Stage that offered cooking for kids, with cheese and gardens with Jane Austin.  Poetry, literary books, children’s writers and illustrators and a discussion about challenged and censored books.  There was even a concurrent event for teens and tweens.

I think local book festivals are wonderful and have so much to offer.  I just wonder how much the time of the year they have them has to do with attendance.  Summers in Wisconsin are so short and everyone seems to want to be outside when the weather is beautiful.  Would it make a difference to have it in the fall?  Or is it because of the location (UW-Waukesha) that makes it harder because of school being in session at that time.  Just some things to think about.

Bottom Line:   Support your local Book Festivals.  “We read to know we are not alone.” ~ C. S. Lewis

Happy Father’s Day

Barbara Vey -- June 17th, 2012

Happy Father’s Day to all you father’s out there.  Father’s come in many sizes and shapes.  They go by many names, Dad, Father, Pa, Pops, Daddy and I’m sure a lot more nicknames.

 

I grew up calling my father Daddy, which changed to Dad in my teen years.  But, he will always be Daddy to me.  He embarrassed me by walking around in his boxers, telling the same old corny jokes over and over again, and always called my mom Toots.

 

Every Christmas and birthday I bought him Old Spice.  Once I really got wild and bought him soap on a rope.  As I got older, I would take him out to dinner instead of gifts.  He’s been gone over 20 years now, but every time I smell Old Spice I think of him.

 

So, here’s to all the Dad’s out there today.  May your day be filled with happy memories for years to come.

 

Any special memories you’d like to share about your dad? 

 

Bottom Line:  “Any man can be a father, but it takes a special person to be a dad.” ~ Proverb quote

Lori Foster’s Reader & Author Get-Together

Barbara Vey -- June 8th, 2012

joysann

Hi. joysann here again to tell you about the Annual Reader & Author Get-Together.

Lori Foster, Duffy Brown, and Linda Keller started this little “Get-Together” near Cincinnati eight years ago to be just what it sounds like. They invited a few authors and put out word to a few fans through a loop, and somewhere between 50 and 100 people gathered at the Cincinnati Marriott North to enjoy an informal opportunity to meet and visit.

 

Now the hotel is overrun with 500 book enthusiasts for most of two days, and it’s become quite an event. Readers can meet favorite and find new authors, authors can work at building their readerships and meet with editors and agents, and everyone can simply enjoy a couple of days of fun in a relaxed and casual atmosphere. Lori says she believes that a big part of the sense of community that develops is from the huge ballroom, open for the whole of the event, allowing participants to come and go as they please, providing plenty of seating, and allowing friends to gather and visit.

Author Island hosted a Country Western costume party with games and prizes

This year there were two book signings: Friday evening with Digital, POD, and other non-traditionally published authors, and those with donated print books to giveaway; Toni Blake, Jill Shalvis and Shiloh Walker. Saturday was the traditional book signing, sponsored by Barnes and Noble, open to the public, and taking up almost every foot of the hotel’s huge open atruim and into the restaurant and bar. Author Sherrilyn Kenyon signed at both events, with her excited die-hard fans waiting patiently for their turn to meet her.

At these events Lori Foster has been organizing an anthology book with donated novellas by herself and other authors, the proceeds of which go to a charity of her choice, this year benefiting the AAF – Animal Adoption Foundation – a no-kill animal shelter in Hamilton, Ohio.

Four of the five Love Bites Authors; Brenda Jackson, Lori Foster, Jules Bennett, Virna DePaul

Love Bites includes stories by Lori, Brenda Jackson, Catherine Mann, Jules Bennett, and Virna DePaul. It’s a remarkable endeavor.

In fact, the whole event is remarkable in that it is an high-energy, inexpensive event which packs a lot of punch for the money. A $50 registration fee includes a pizza night, 2 delicious buffet meals, and a Saturday morning Continental breakfast. One wonders how that can possibly be, but talking with Lori and Duffy Brown, one learns that the whole operation, which runs like clock-work, is done with very dedicated, enthusiastic and inventive volunteers, and the support of sponsors, like Liquid Silver Publishing, Turquoise Morning Press, Secrets Craving Publishing, Samhain Publishing. All of it…registration, the welcoming committee, raffle coordinators, transportation, troops donations coordinator, and official photographer, all of the work is done by volunteers.

One of the biggest features of the event is the Raffle Drawings. Everyone loves winning prizes, and when the money for the raffle tickets goes entirely to a special charity, donations are generously made. There were 175 raffle baskets donated this year from authors, reviewers, agents, editors, publishers, enthusiastic readers, and even the Marriott Hotel. The funds raised were donated to The One Way Farm Children’s Home, a non-profit organization that cares for the abused, abandoned, neglected, troubled youth, and children with disabilities. And the funds raised on this occasion? Nearly $11,000. Quite remarkable.

Lori Foster, Duffy Brown, and Linda Keller, and their intrepid fleet of volunteers are already planning for next year’s event, finding ways to make it run even more smoothly and provide the best of reader entertainment. Watch for registration in January… this year it sold out in less than one week.

Bottom Line: Lori? Duffy? Save me a place for next year, please.

BEA Book Bloggers Day

Barbara Vey -- June 6th, 2012
My table: Front row, Jennifer Rummel, Christina Franke, Valerie Greer, Sandy Greer, Back Row:  Darla Greer, Lindsay Jones, Aliya Merhi, Jen Ryland

My table: Front row, Jennifer Rummel, Christina Franke, Valerie Greer, Sandy Greer, Back Row: Darla Greer, Lindsay Jones, Aliya Merhi, Jen Ryland

The BEA Book Bloggers Convention was held Monday.  It was my first time and we were seated at round tables.  Authors would rotate every 15 minutes during breakfast and lunch.  I ended up with 2 cookbook authors, a YA author, one who wrote about the Iraqi War, a picture book author and one who wrote a book about 1969.  While I normally don’t write about these genres, the authors themselves were very interesting.  Alas, I didn’t see any romance writers at this event.

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Some of the authors who visited my table:

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Jenny Han and Sioban Vivian

Jenny Han and Sioban Vivian


TR BurnsTR Burns

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Sonia Manzano (you probably know her as Maria on Sesame Street)

Sonia Manzano (you probably know her as Maria on Sesame Street)

 

Jennifer Weiner

Jennifer Weiner

 

The keynote speaker was Jennifer Weiner.  I loved Jennifer’s book, Good in Bed, and they made a movie out of her book, In Her Shoes.  She talked about her experiences in blogging and social networking.  Jennifer admitted she feels that being on Twitter is “like being at the biggest, best cocktail party.”  She was born to be funny in 140 characters or less.
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There was a panel discussion and Patrick Brown from Goodreads said that “Blogging is the beginning of word of mouth.”  I’ve seen this happen many times and I’m sure many authors can attest to the fact that they’ve seen their sales go up after a great blog post.

The interesting thing, for me, at this conference was the diversity of bloggers.  While they all mainly reviewed books, it was the approach, the age of the blogger, genre they preferred and what was important to them.  It was what makes them all draw the types of community they reach.

At the same time this was going on, there were sessions for librarians.  I wish I could have attended both events because each one offered so much to learn.  There’s always new and exciting things happening in publishing, both traditionally and digitally.

I think I can safely say that the attendees enjoyed their day and marveled over the swag bag they received.

As a side note, I lost my camera yesterday.  My NY luck continues.  If anyone finds a Nikon Cool Pik, purple, let me know.  My apologies to all the people I took pictures of who won’t make it in the blog, but if anyone finds the camera and ends up keeping it, at least post the pictures of the authors.

Bottom Line:  Swag is the queen of BEA.

Bootleg, Babes and Bodies at Duffy’s Speakeasy

Barbara Vey -- June 5th, 2012
joysann

joysann

Hi, it’s joysann here.

When the Ravioli, Manicotti, Cannelloni and Pepperoni Families, et al, meet up for a Mystery Dinner at the hottest juice joint in town, it’s going to be murder. Sixty or so early attendees visiting Cincinnati, Ohio, for the Annual Reader & Author Get-Together were invited to author Duffy Brown‘s home on Thursday for a fun-filled evening, playing their roles and trying to figure out “whodunnit”.

Hoochie Coochie Cannelloni (author Keri Stevens) rouged her knees and danced to all that jazz

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Gangsters and flappers and counterfeit money galore kept the action going while guys and dolls searched for clues and shared their secrets. It was great entertainment for everyone involved, even though the end of the outdoor party was a bit rushed when the thunder and rain blew in. Duffy and her family worked very hard to write a mystery and set it all up so everyone could have a good time, a good Italian food buffet, and bootleg hooch.

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My Pepperoni Family: L-R: Joan Short, Kym Lucas, Alina Federspiel, Kathy Andrico, Rosie Murphy, Niny Negron, author Annette Blair

 

Author Duffy Brown

Speaking of writing mysteries, Duffy Brown’s new Consignment Shop Mystery series will be out this fall with Iced Chiffon.

Having worked for several years in one of the Snooty Fox Consignment Shops around Cincinnati, Duffy found interesting material there with which to work on her books. And since so many Get-Together attendees enjoy finding deals at consignment shops, she arranged a bus tour to those shops, providing beverages and box lunches through the few hours it took. It was delightful; I found the grandchild-sized girl clothes especially dangerous to my wallet. I wasn’t the only one who found treasures impossible to pass up, which wasn’t a bad thing at all, considering.

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Consignment Shop Shoppers

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Donna Speigel & The Snooty Fox

The owner of these shops, Donna Speigel, uses proceeds from sales to help fund the Conductive Learning Center of Greater Cincinnati, which she founded, a special school for children with disabilities like spina bifida and cerebral palsy. This brings us back around to the Annual Reader & Author Get-Together, from which a percentage of bookfair sales will be donated to the Conductive Learning Center.

More on that exceptional event to follow…

Bottom Line: It was Elorana-the Eliminator Pepperoni