I went to a blogger event hosted by Simon and Schuster yesterday. It was a lot of fun!
They had an author panel with four different authors (Ali Harris, Robert Ryan, Dean Crawford and Wendy Wallace) for an hour or so and I got a couple of questions answered.
I asked about the best and worst things about being a writer and how to keep motivated on bad days. It was interesting to hear their answers and also with the motivation one to see some similarities with how I try to find motivation – particularly the going to write somewhere out of the house one that I use at times. The stories about hearing they’d got publishing deals were also fun and the comments on dealing with bad reviews. In a way I wished it could be recorded to it was there to listen to again so I could remember all the bits I thought worth remembering or that I’d have to tell my friends but now I’m going “there was something about…” somewhat forgetfully.
After that we went into another room where there were masses of books and wine and snacks and people mingled and chatted and got books signed. You could take as many books as you wanted and I may have been a bit like a kid in a sweet shop. Honestly when I got back to Waterloo and met my mate for a drink she was fishing in the bag so she could look at them she commented that the books “just kept kept coming.” I wasn’t sure until we were sat in Starbucks with the entire table covered in books exactly what I’d got or how many books (14) – I just lost track with all the “oh! look! free books! I want!)
I had a chance to speak to all of the authors – some more than others and get books signed. I also talked to some Simon and Schuster staff (mostly about books but also about wheelchair basketball with one) and other bloggers. I tried to ask all the bloggers I spoke to what there blog was but to be honest I’m not sure how many I remembered today. I clearly need to improve my networking skills. Certainly I’d only heard of one of them (Novelicious) before meeting them. I did find a few on Twitter this morning to follow though.
Here’s what I got:
The perks of being a wallflower by Stephen Chbosky – I’d actually been looking at that last weekend in Waterstones when I went to the NaNoWriMo meet up as I said to mum that’s one time where my being in an indecisive mood paid off. My mum has declared she will be borrowing this.
Three books by Dean Crawford – Apocalypse, Immortal and Covernent. He was one of the authors there and signed one of them for me. Those are thrillers featuring the same character and I think from what I heard they could be intriguing. I do like a thriller now and then.
Dead Mans Land by Robert Ryan. He was another of the authors there and this is signed too. Before the event I was emailed a thing with a bit about each of the authors and their books. I really wasn’t sure about Dead Mans Land when I read that and thought it probably wasn’t my sort of thing. I have to say listening to him introduce it and talk about how it came about and being a writer changed my mind. By the time he finished I was like I have to read this book. The friend I met after took one of the books I picked up (not on this list because I can’t remember what it is – I’ll read it at some point and find out then) and would have taken this one with her too if I’d have let her!
Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire – I think this might turn out to be a bit of a Jackie Collins-esque chicklit. The cover appealed to me. This probably shows how shallow I really am but I don’t care.
The Painted Bridge by Wendy Wallace – this is signed (she was the third of the authors there). It’s not strictly speaking my sort of book but based on what was said about it there are one or two points in it the idea of which intrigued me and I wanted to get at least one book from each of the authors there.
First Last Kiss by Ali Harris (signed with a lovely message) – She was the only one of the authors there that I’d heard of before. I reviewed her first book Miracle on Regent Street this time last year and really enjoyed it. I’m particularly excited by this book and have been ever since I first started hearing about it on twitter a few months ago. And now I get to read it before it’s even out. Yay. This is on the top of reading list at the moment I think. (it’s this or Perks of Being a Wallflower simply because I know Mum wants her hands on that soon. This is winning).
The Lawgiver by Herman Wouk This sounded intriguing. A little hard to classify I suspect and I’m not sure what I’ll make of it. I wasn’t sure whether to take it and ummed and ahhed a bit. But they said I could have as many books as I wanted and it’s little and there was room in the bag…
Fever by Mary Beth Keane This is historical fiction which isn’t always something I’ve gotten on with. Someitmes I enjoy it and others (like Phillipa Gregory) just annoy the hell out of me and I put them to one side. But lately I’ve been talking books a lot with a friend who reads a lot of historical fiction and made it sound good so I thought I’d pick this up and give the genre another go.
Black Roses by Jane Thynne. This looks brilliant. Based on real events in Germany of the 1930s (I’ve always been interested in that period of time ever since I studied it at school). It looks and reads like it should be chicklit but with a touch of mystery and suspense to it.
Silenced by Kristina Ohlsson – on the cover it says “for fans of The Killing”. I’ve not seen that but my entire family loved The Bridge so I couldn’t resist picking it up. My Dad and my brother both like reading this sort of books too and as I read the back I thought “we’re going to be passing this around the family if it’s as good as it seems it might be.”
With All My Love by Patricia Scanlan – I read loads of her books when I was in my late teens and early twenties but haven’t read any for absolutely ages. I’m looking forward to giving her books another try.