Sunday, April 3, 2011

Breathless Reads Re-Cap

Alright, so I have been meaning to write this re-cap for days and weeks, but thankfully not months. Whew. 

I went to the Breathless Reads tour stop here in North Carolina and got to meet authors Ally Condie Matched, Andrea Cremer Nightshade, Kristen Miller The Eternal Ones, Beth Revis Across the Universe and Brenna Yovanoff The Replacement.

So I start off and the drive was relatively uneventful; I went by myself, so I just cranked tunes, thought over questions and drove. When I got there (very early, might I add) there were very few people milling through Quail Ridge Books and Music, so I decided to grace them with my mill. 

I walked through the store and eventually found myself in the YA section where I promptly re-organized their favorites shelf and took this picture: 

Yes, that is Lisa’s book, The Mermaids Mirror. At this point Lisa’s passing had been publicized and no, you haven’t missed a post from me on it. I didn’t want to do something that looked like I was using her death to make my blog more... whatever, because I didn’t know her and by the time I began asking authors for interviews and tweeting with them Lisa had announced her cancer. I never got to work with Lisa, we weren’t friends, not even in a We-Tweet sense, but I did cry when I heard the news of her passing and I took all of her books and put them on the “Staff-Picks” shelf because it was the only thing I could do without being a major Drama-Queen.

Okay, back to happier times. So I am working my Mill when all the sudden, ‘Hello pretty ARC!’ There is Andrea Cremer’s second work, Wolfsbane. I snapped a picture, petted it and got the stink eye from a lady who works there. It wasn’t her day, apparently. Another woman was SUPER nice and asked me about this blog, where I came from, who I was most excited to meet, my favorite books and the like, so I nick-named the two ladies Yin and Yang. 

Before I took a seat I went to the ladies room to freshen and the WHOLE THING was COVERED in framed 4x4’s of authors who signed their head-shots. I oohed and awwed over those for a good ten minutes and forgot to snap a picture when people started rapping on the door rather insistently. Oh, well, you’ll have to imagine...

So I sit down right in the front row, thank-you-very-much, and I’m waiting and listening as the chairs fill in behind me. The energy in the air is crackling, you can tell everyone is uber excited and we’re all wondering “Where are they?” Well, while the authors were on route I had two people tap my shoulders, the first whispered, “Is that seat taken?” The second asked, “Can I sit here?” Of course I said, yes! To them both. I didn’t recognize either of them, but then they said the names of their blogs. The first said, “I’m Shannon, from Books Devoured,” the second said, “I’m Michelle, from Hooked To Books.” My response? “Oh, yes, I think I’ve heard of those.” Inside? My mind screamed, “I LOVE YOUR BLOG!!!!!” Shannon, Michelle and I are now good friends and I hope they are laughing reading that. I was very demure, however, I wanted to squeal like a child. 

The authors arrived, fashionably late, as all good rockstars should, and the event began! 

They were all so funny, sweet and open, telling all of us about their experiences writing, editing, publishing and how much they loved their characters. 

My favorite quote of the night came in the form of an answer to a question posed to Beth, it went something like this “Would you ever consider publishing those books [speaking of the books Beth wrote before Across the Universe] now that you’ve published AtU?” Beth took a beat, dragged the mic stand across her table, tucked down and gave us the punchline, “They all sucked.”

Then the authors took our questions and I 
was the last chickie to get to ask them something. Of course I asked about their character names and what the naming process looked like for them! Andrea Cremer, author of Nightshade, grabbed for her mic and announced, “I’ve got to answer this first!” Come to find out Andrea is a closet Name-Nerd, like myself, and we have since Tweeted a bit on the subject since both she and I are particularly interested in Celtic Names at the moment. (Yes, that was a tid-bit on both of our current projects, but you caught that, because you are reading carefully...)

Then it was time to stand in line and get our books signed. I already had all my books and
 bought AtU the moment I entered the store, so I was set. I happened to catch sight of my friend, James of Book Chic, before he slipped back in line to stand with his other friends. I stood with Shannon and we talked about our own writing and how the vibe of the event was so invigorating! I shared how badly I wanted to go home and write, write, write after hearing the authors talk. She felt the same. 

I was an epic dork and got all flustered in line, not asking for pictures with the authors, forgetting to hand over business cards and the like. Huffy Breath. I get to Kristen Miller, who is author of The Eternal Ones and the Kiki Strike series and realized I forgot my Kiki books at home. MotherFlippinFriedChicken! I apologized, profusely, but it’s just bad, bad etiquette to say, hey, I have nothing for you to sign but these book marks and my poster! Oh, well, we laughed it off... kind of. Either way, Kiki is very upset. 

If y’all don’t know Beth Revis and I are pretty good pals, we bonded on Twitter over a similar love in music and reading/writing books where things explode and the like. I was really excited to meet her in the flesh and when I got to her I said “Do you know who I am?” She said yes, of course, and how excited she was to meet me! I was about to open my mouth and point out that we matched when she gestured wildly between us and we laughed. Go green and purple! 

I stuck around after getting my books signed because I forgot to get pictures with the authors, I still only got pictures with Beth and Ally because by the time I got to them they were signing enormous stacks of stock, a task quite harrowing as Brenna demonstrates with eye-widening. *snicker*

So who did I get to take pictures of the authors and myself? This lady: 

Know who that is? I didn’t, but she knew who I was! That is Beth’s mum and when I told her my name she said, “Oh, I know who you are! Beth has told me about you!” I. Dropped. Dead. That was so flattering and made my night! She and I chatted it up, talked about photography and how proud she was of her daughter and then she very graciously snapped away for me! I spent all of an hour with her and I have to say she is one of the sweetest people I’ve ever met! I just adored her! 

I hope y’all enjoyed my re-cap! The next event I go to will be the book launch for Sarah Dessen’s What Happened to Goodbye on May 10th! Leave me a note in the comments if you are hoping to make it! Until then, enjoy these pictures and live vicariously through my geographical good fortune. 


WildIrishRose33 said...

Sounds like a fantastic time!!!

Erin said...

So cool! Thank you for sharing your pictures and your experience! I am still saddened that I chose this year to move from nc to mi because I missed the tour! It was fun to live vicariously through you, though!

Erin said...

So cool! Thank you for sharing your pictures and your experience! I am still saddened that I chose this year to move from nc to mi because I missed the tour! It was fun to live vicariously through you, though!

Andrea Cremer said...

Thanks for the beautiful photos and awesome recap!! I miss my Breathless Reads sisters; the tour was amazing! :)

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a great time! Thanks for sharing the photos.

BookChic said...

Great recap and wonderful photos! Sorry we didn't get to chat more- it was crazy there!!

Whose Wolfsbane ARC was that? Was it just out and about for no reason? I would love to pet it too and maybe steal it; I want that ARC cover!

I am going to do my best to come to Sarah's launch on May 10 but we'll see what happens.