It's past time I posted about Vegas Valley, where I had an amazing time meeting so many authors and readers!
I got in Thursday night, just in time for a reception in honor of opening speaker B.J. Novak. I took no good pictures, but the official festival page has some great ones. I did take some good writing advice. Novak says, "Write for the kid sitting next to you," meaning, write what's going to be fun for the kid who sits next to you in class to read.
Friday, I teamed up with Maurene Goo, author of Since You Asked ... for a visit to the Nevada dessert and Indian Springs School. We were apparently very close to AREA 51! Probably we've been replaced by aliens!
We were given amazing armchairs to sit in for our presentation . . .
Maurene and I were both really enamored of the school mascot, the Thunderbirds!
Friday night, we had a YA author hangout at the pool at the Golden Nugget, where there is a literal shark tank. Luckily YA authors are way nicer than sharks, and I got to meet many of my fellow 2014 debuting authors face to face for the first time.
On Saturday, the Festival proper took place with author panels and signings all day. I was on the "More Than a Love Story" panel with Kelly Fiore, Carrie Mesrobian, Lisa Schroeder, Angie Stanton, and Sarah Tregay.
Then we had a signing in the bright, bright sun.
This pic was taken by Stacee, aka @book_junkee, who wrote a great roundup of the festival. The day ended with a great talk from Aimee Bender and an actual rainbow at the historic 5th Street School.
I did not gamble, but I did walk all over Vegas taking in the craziness of Fremont Street and the Strip, and checking out the interiors of the Bellagio, Caesar's Palace, The Paris, The Venetian ... basically all the Europey ones.
Want to get authors into your schools? SCBWI-IL has a lot of great advice.
Illinois is a talented state. Among the books displayed, I spied Sarah Aronson's BELIEVE and BEYOND LUCKY, Carol Brendler's RADIO GIRL, M. Molly Backes's THE PRINCESSES OF IOWA, and so many more!
News, events, fun stuff, serious stuff, and online doings. I kept a personal blog for years at The Storybook Girl, and I'll slowly be migrating some of those posts to this blog.