I turned in a very rough draft of my next novel, Smash & Grab! So excited about this one--bank heists and romance and adventure!
I did 4 library visits in 4 days and this happened:
I'm fine, the car wasn't, but she's all fixed up now and running great!
I went to the Tampa Bay Festival of Reading and met these two authors--still can't quiet believe it.
Yep, that's right, RL Stine and Debbie Macomber!
I went to Gatlinburg, Tennessee for a ginormous writer's retreat with so many talented ladies, my head's still swimming (plus one surprise guest: Maggie Stiefvater!!!).
Maggie's awesome car.
It is weird and awesome to eat dinner and hang in the hot tub with authors I fan girl over myself! Here's the down low on what happens at this sort of thing--since I know when I heard about authors going on these that's all I wanted to know!
- You share a room with another author(s)--sometimes you already know them, sometimes you don't. Last time I did my sleepover time with the amazing EK Johnston, and this retreat I was with my buddy, Amy Tintera--so both times I won the roommate jackpot!
- Lots of writing happens during the day, but nighttime is CRAZY time. There is dancing (not me though 'cause you know I can't dance), hot tubbing, laughing, talking, and general hilarity.
- We share our goals, hopes, fears, and dreams. This is the part I love the best, the moments when I remember that I'm not the only one who's scared/elated/worried/excited about various stages of this whole publishing thing.
- Everyone pitches in. We share meal time prep and clean up duties. The food is always good and the company even better.
- You spend a lot of time hoping everyone will think you are cool/smart/fun because everyone else is so cool/smart/funny.
- You realize that all these people you look up to feel the exact same way about their careers and their writing as you do, that you are just an earlier, less well known version of them which is inspiring because if they can do it maybe you can too!
The back of our huge retreat house!
It was a twelve hour drive there and back, one I made with Christina Farley and Vivi Barnes. Still patting ourselves on the back for multitasking and making these two school visit videos while we drove.
Our "we are so overtired we're giddy" video:
This month things are going to slow down some, but not right away. Here's what's happening:
1. I will be in the Pasco section of the Tampa Tribune this Friday. I was interviewed by the very witty and wonderful Ernest Hooper about my writing and my journey to getting published.
2. I'll be heading over to New Orleans this weekend for the Nola Book Festival where I get to do a presentation at 4 pm with Lauren Kate, yep that Lauren Kate, author of the Fallen series and more recently Teardrop and Waterfall! So excited about this (and the possibility of sneaking away at some point for some beignets and bananas foster. Sugar high? YES PLEASE). Find out more about the festival here: http://nolabookfest.org/
3. I'll fly from New Orleans directly to Orlando to do a library event at the Alafaya Branch with the YA Chicks, Christina Farley and Vivi Barnes as well as Jenny Sanchez. We'll be there talking writing from 2-4 pm.
4. I'll be at the Barnes and Noble at Wiregrass Mall on November 22, from 3-5 pm signing books and hanging out.
5. On a personal note, I'll be headed to the Space Coast Marathon with the family at the end of the month to watch my husband run....while I watch...and eat a bagel. But I will be doing my first 5k in a while on Thanksgiving Day. Gotta try to combat the writer twenty (pounds that come with deadline stress and general angst). Wish me luck! I'm actually out of breath just thinking about it.
That's all for now. Hope to see some of you at one or more of the events above.