You guys, Oblong Books is literally worth the long drive for events! HOLY WOWZERS. So last Sunday, despite having work the next day, I drove a grand total of 8 hours (1 hour to pick up my friend, 3 hours to event, 3 hours to drop off friend, and 1 hour home) for Stages On Pages. Highlights of the drive include: Allison pointing out a bear farm and me driving off the road because I was so distracted by this bear farm, my inexplicable need to drive faster than this New Jersey driver, and lots of gossip about my hometown.
I should probably mention that Oblong Books in Rhinebeck has a HUGE YA and children’s section. Seriously, it’s friggin awesome. And of course, we spent like the half hour before the signing just browsing and talking books with Em of Love YA Lit, who is freakin awesome.
Right-o. We totally knew the signing was ready to start because Jessica Martinez (Virtuosity) started playing her violin like a total boss. Girl was Itzak Perlmanning it up, yo. After Martinez’s performance each author talked a bit about their experiences with the performing arts,
Jessica Martinez had a fabulous story about how her violin instructor let her play a $4 million dollar violin when she was 15, which sparked the idea of ‘What would happen if I dropped it?’ which then in turn kind of sparked Virtuosity. Unfortunately, Jessica Martinez had to leave early to catch a train, so I was unable to get my ARC signed, although I did purchase a hardback signed copy of Virtuosity.
Roseanne Perry author of Second Fiddle said her favorite thing about writing Second Fiddle was coming back to playing the violin. She also mentioned that she had two novels under contract with Random House. One is going to be a contemporary middle grade novel set in Astoria, Oregon.
Stasia Ward Kehoe talked about how she grew up as a dancer. She said for her, Audition was able to connect her love of dancing with her love of writing. She also said she’s working on another contemporary novel, potentially in verse, but wouldn’t say more because she’s superstitious about that.
Gretchen McNeil justified being at Stages On Pages by stating that there is a really brief music scene in Possess. Also, she’s a classically trained opera singer. She actually sang some opera for us and it was awesome and glass shattering. OMG AND GET THIS SHE WORKED ON ADULT SWIM. I know, that is like the coolest thing ever. And then she talked a little bit about her upcoming novel which sounds like it is going to be the bomb dot com. Pretty much Gretchen won the cool author award of the night, seriously. She is awesome.
Sheela Chari author of Vanished, a musical mystery, was born in India, grew up in Iowa. She talked about how she loved reading mysteries with girl sleuths growing up but how she had never read a book with an Indian girl solving a mystery, and thus, Vanished was born. She also mentioned how the right teacher at the right time can put you on the right path. AND she also said she got to put in a ton of input on her cover, which friends, is really awesome looking.
OH and we had an informal poll about what matters more – title or cover, and the answer was overwhelmingly cover. And someone from the audience asked about querying. I tuned out because my brain cares little about that stuff.
THEN we got our books signed. The end.
BUT WAIT! Readers, I have benefits for you!
You can enter to win all these (Jennifer Donnelly books included because they are signed and I still haven’t given them away yet!!