By Jason Harris
The 2014 New England Author Expo happened this past Wednesday night (July 30) in the Harborview Ballroom at the Danversport Yacht Club in Danvers, MA.
Find out about McCombs and his work here.
Find about Fava at her website here.
Find out more about DeLorenzo and here books here.
Find out more about Rice’s book here.
Find out about Tighe’s books on her Amazon page here.
Find out more about Watts on his website here.
Find out more about Silva and her books on her website here.
Find out more about Goncarous on his website here.
Find out more about Fechenda on her Amazon page here.
Find out more about Ann and her book on her website here.
Find out more about the Brodeur family and Lisa’s memoir, A Mother’s Journey, at her website here.
Find out more information about Samson here.
Find out more about Kane on her website here.
Find out more about D’Amico at her website here.
Find out more about Conley on his website here.
Find out more about Sawyer on her website here.
Find out more about Smales on his website here.
Find out more about Wong on her website here.
The New England Authors Expo will be attended by authors, artists, booksellers, publishers, and many more guests, companies and organizations, which makes it the perfect time for readers to meet and talk to authors and others in the publishing world about books and the written word. For an entire list of who will be there, click here.
Some of the authors and artists in attendance are Stacey Longo, Rob Watts, Dale T. Phillips, Vlad V., Michele McPhee, Nicholas Conley, Eric Dimbleby, Guntis Goncarovs, Edith Maxwell, Ursula Wong, A.J. Kane, and S.L. Johnson.
The Expo operates from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. and takes place in the Harborview Ballroom at the Danversport Yacht Club. The yacht club is located at 161 Elliott Street (Rt. 62) in Danvers, MA. There will be a free gift bag to the first 100 visitors. This event is FREE.
It’s afternoon, the beginning of June and I’m sitting outside of Starbucks in Concord, New Hampshire. This Starbucks holds special meaning, from the friendly staff to the two electric plugs that all of the laptop-happy-customers fight over. It’s very windy today and a Ben Kingsley lookalike sits in the parking lot watching me and blasting a news program from the windows of his Jeep. It’s surreal to be here, in a place that has been my home for so long, in the place where I wrote Death and Mr. Right, after visiting the gray and grime tinged rush of New York City.
I don’t belong here.
Last year, I pitched a novel to Kate Kaynak in New York City, as we carpooled back to New Hampshire together. It was my first time in America’s best city and I was overwhelmed with exhaustion, inspiration and lyrics from Interpol songs. Death and Mr. Right had a title and it had already been written as a short story. The premise: the agent of nightmares falls in love, loses his job and is exiled into the modern world. Kate loved the idea and asked me to write it and submit it to her. I returned home, my head buzzing, and wrote Death and Mr. Right in only a few months. I edited it and put the finishing touches on it Halloween 2012. The next morning I began writing The Unlove Spell, a novel I’d been kicking around my head for weeks.
Death and Mr. Right was accepted by Spence City in late 2012 and I wrote The Unlove Spell in a few brief, joyous months. Both books were comedies, full of light and dark, in-jokes, colorful characters and tributes to my friends, muses and heroes. They were the easiest books I’d ever written. Both were also surprisingly personal – much of Death’s backstory was linked to my own youthful neuroses, brought to life through the safety of humor. Viktor’s struggles to balance a demanding family member with responsibility and his own dreams of being a writer reflected my own familial troubles as an eldest child with a difficult relationship with a cruel parental figure. But both were full of bliss, a cathartic experience, a creative binge that left me worn out in the best possible way and glowing afterward.
When my publisher said we would have review copies of D&MR to sign at Book Expo America, I planned my whole year around the trip, reserving a room at the Jane Hotel as much for its special meaning to my best friend (her favorite building in the city) as for the inexpensive price.
All of my books are written like movies, with a complete cast of muses. The Unlove Spell had been inspired by Clemence Poesy as my impulsive witch, Marling, Lana Del Rey as my crazy fae queen (perfect, right?) and Dmitry Sholokhov as the honorable, rock star writer who is also hiding a huge secret – he doesn’t write about magical beings. He IS one.
I met Dmitry at his Lord & Taylor event to launch his capsule dress collection and told him how much he’d inspired me, both because he’d worked so hard to get where he was (a kick for me to get moving!) and as a muse for Viktor. Fast forward to May and Dmitry was gracious enough to take time out of his busy schedule to drop by the Javits Center for a bit, as my guest.
BEA seemed busier this year than the year before, but as I sashayed my way through the Javits in my gorgeous Sholokhov dress and six-inch heels, I noticed a more subdued attitude in the crowd. There weren’t nearly as many free books and from what I could tell, the biggest draw of Friday would be Grumpy Cat.
My signing took place between 12:30 and 1:30, deep inside the air-conditioned safety of the Javits. Handing my book to bloggers, librarians and reviewers was absolutely enchanting and nerve-wracking, in the right portions. One gentleman caught sight of it as he walked by, wandered over to investigate and ultimately asked for a copy. I guzzled two water bottles to suppress nerves, and received a steady stream of compliments on my dress, shoes and book cover.
Books and fashion? Win-win!
Dmitry arrived at the end of my signing and I handed him a special unbound copy of The Unlove Spell’s unedited manuscript, told him all about Viktor and then posed for pictures. Though it was a blur, I do remember looking out and seeing a line of ten? fifteen? digital cameras, professional cameras, cell phones and a pink iPad. It was crazy.
After wandering a bit, laughing about Grumpy Cat’s impending appearance and signing some silly messages in Dmitry’s copy of my books, we said our goodbyes and headed out into the blistering afternoon. All I could think of, over and over, was The Great Gatsby. My friend Megan and my sister hopped into a cab with me and we escaped to Greenwich Village, intending to hide out in the cool of our hotel, just as the protagonists of Gatsby had. I’d only taken a few steps away from the cab when my shoe broke.
I took this as a good omen. I’d traveled to the big city, brought along some dear friends, been aided by several fairy godmothers (complete with lip balm, tissues, and bottles of water!)
Death and Mr. Right lives in the hands of bloggers, reviewers, librarians, teachers, a few authors, a lovely young woman who travelled from Maryland to meet me and Dmitry. Between now and October 1, I will have interviews and promotional events to keep me busy, but June in New Hampshire might as well be the dark side of the moon in most respects. I’m ready to hear what everyone thinks of little blue haired Death and his misadventures, ready to unleash The Unlove Spell on the world, and I’m dying to return to New York City.
If the broken shoe is any sign of the future, I should be headed back that way soon, ready to begin a new volume in the book of life.
The New England Independent Booksellers Association Fall Conference happens at the Rhode Island Convention Center at 1 Sabin Street in Providence, Rhode Island from Wednesday through Friday.
During the three-day conference, there will be exhibitors, lunch with booksellers, wholesalers and reps, panels, and plenty of other activities. You can check out the entire schedule by clicking here.
Some of the panels taking place during the conference include Best of Both Worlds: Understanding the Young Adult and Adult Crossover Market, Social Media 2.0: Beyond the Basics: Using Social Media to Drive Sales and Customer Engagement, Meeting the Literacy Needs in Your Community and ABA – E-book Solution.
There will also be autograph sessions with a number of authors inlcuding Joe Hill (Heart-Shaped Box), Nancy DiFabbio (Midnight Magic: Be Careful What You Wish For) and Kristy McKay (Undead) throughout the three-day event.
The 2012 Independent Spirit Awards will also be given out on Friday.
If you want to support NEIBA member stores in any of the New England states, click here.
Readercon 23 starts tomorrow and runs until Sunday, July 15, at the Boston Marriott Burlington.
There will be four New England Horror Writers’ members, Don D’Ammassa, Craig Shaw Gardner, Jack Haringa, and Paul Tremblay, at the convention. For a list of other guests, click here.
Tremblay mentions his Readercon schedule on his website, which you can click here to see it.
Guests of Honor include authors Peter Straub and Caitlín Kiernan. The memorial guest of honor this year is author Shirley Jackson.
If you have a smartphone, you can download the Guidebook app then have the Readercon program at your fingertips during the entire convention.
If you tweet about Readercon, the official twitter account for the convention is asking people to use the hastag, #Readercon.