Bunny Slippers With Teeth, Thrillerfest & Michael Palmer Tribute

BunnySlippersWithTeeth

I had the most comfortable feet at the after-party!

I’m just back from Thrillerfest where my bunny slippers with teeth were again a hit–and one of my fav authors was honored in a Michael Palmer Tribute (scroll down for the video). As always, feeling revitalized, energized and writer-ized (is that a word?) for the future. Kathleen Antrim calls the event “Summer camp for thriller writers” and this year, the week-long event boasted Craftfest (for aspiring writers) including a Master Craftfest and insights from FBI experts; Pitchfest (where writers could “pitch” their book to agents); and culminated in Thrillerfest with still more panels for fans and authors to meet and greet, get books signed, and more.

After getting up at 4 a.m. Thursday to catch my plane, I was delighted to pick up my registration materials and discover no less than FOUR free books in the bag as a give-away. Wow. Then I attended a great add-on session and learned more about Apple and the iBookStore. You’ll notice I’m now an Affiliate and there’s even a nifty widget on my book page listing iBooks available. Or you can just click here and go directly to the iBookstore.

Thursday evening at the opening reception is a terrific time to reconnect with friends and meet new ones, and I had a lovely time. Much of networking takes place in the bar (ahem!) even if one doesn’t indulge in beverages.

Now, I planned for this trip for a year, plotted which sessions to attend, and prepared to “stalk” (in a good way!) all my favorite writers and readers. I got to meet Aubrey Hamilton from an online readers list when we decided to share room expenses (hey, she loves cats, too!). And then all my plans went sideways–and I was sick all day Friday, able to only attend one session, URK! Oh, how frustrating! I found out later that I wasn’t the only one afflicted with this–whatever it was. I even had to bail early during a meeting with my awesome editor Jen Talty–but we did have a great conversation then and later as well, and I’m eager to get plans ramped up.

Fortunately by the end of Friday, I’d finally recovered enough to go out to dinner with my thriller-gal-pal Paula Lanier, and new friend Stefanie Stolinsky at the Beach Cafe. Seriously, this is a fantastic restaurant and owner Dave Goodside makes everyone feel so welcome.

photo 1

Thrillerfest Panel: “WHAT MAKES AN ENDING UNFORGETABLE?” L-R (back row) Tom Young, Joanna Penn, Sean Lynch, Amy Shojai (front row) Ward Larsen, Donald Bain.

Saturday morning I felt great! The 8 a.m. Debut Breakfast was inspiring, this year with 24 new authors (and that many more in the program present in spirit). Just last year it was me up there in the dais, wearing my bunny slippers, and scared to death I’d never get my second book done. Steve Berry’s “second-book-itis” talk got me over the hump–check out the new review on HIDE AND SEEK!–and now I’m working on my third thriller, whoda-thunk-it? This year, Brenda Novak was the Silver Bullet Award Winner and speaker at the breakfast.

I had to slip out early to prepare as Panel Master for my 9:30 talk, WHAT MAKES AN ENDING UNFORGETABLE? Check out the picture, above, with the best possible lineup of author speakers ever! Wow, they made the time go fast, with great discussions and comments. Incidentally, those unable to attend can purchase audios of the presentation and I have to say this is one panel you won’t want to miss. 🙂

photo 2The author signings have to be one of the highlight of the event. Literally hundreds of authors sit elbow to elbow and sign books together, with Barnes and Nobel host bookstore providing the support. The one downside is the crowds at this time but it’s worth it to actually get to speak with your fav author, meet new ones, and share the love of reading with fans. I ended up with so many purchased and donated books that I had to ship them home, to keep the plane from being too heavy.

photo 3

Thriller buddies Kevin Singer, Paula Lanier and Jon Land.

photo 4The final Saturday evening reception leads to the Awards Banquet where the Thriller Awards are presented. I was honored this year to be on a preliminary panel to help choose the best Ebook original and urge you to make a point of reading ALL these winners! What a lineup! Read the list of winners here.

And the AFTER party goes on for hours and hours–and yep, that’s where I re-introduced the bunny slippers.

But the most moving event of the weekend for me was Daniel Palmer’s funny and poignant tribute to his father, Michael Palmer–authors and readers everywhere miss him, too, and we ALL want to be like him. I missed getting the first few seconds of the song, but here’s the rest of the tribute.

I love hearing from you, so please share comments and questions. Do you have an ASK AMY question you’d like answered? Do you have a new kitten and need answers? Stay up to date on all the latest just subscribe the blog, “like” me on Facebook, listen to the weekly radio show, check out weekly FREE PUPPY CARE newsletter, and sign up for Pet Peeves newsletter.

Monday Mentions: Thrillerfest & Bunny Slippers with Teeth

Tfest 054I’m just home from Thrillerfest. What an amazing experience! This wasn’t my first attendance but was special and a stand-out in so many ways. That’s me at the Debut Author table on Saturday morning with 26 others in our class who were able to attend the July 13 breakfast. There were 60 in the whole class this year–wow! Here’s a Library Journal article.

Each of us had 60-seconds to say anything we wanted. Many talked briefly about themselves, their book, and their journey to reach that wonderful goal, and I was so honored to be among these talented writers, and inspired by their dedication and effort. And yes, a little teary that I’d managed to climb that thrilling mountain, too. Six years ago, I sat in the audience and felt lost…and truly didn’t believe I’d ever have that opportunity. But I went home, put on my bunny slippers and wrote the thriller I’d always wanted to read. LOST AND FOUND was born at Thrillerfest and because of ITW, today my bunny slippers have TEETH and I write Thrillers With Bite!

Tfest 056And yes, I wore my bunny slippers with pointy teeth to the breakfast–you’ll notice the ears also have bling. Enjoy a few of the pictures from the weekend (below) and then you can click on the Thrillerfest 2013 Set for more pictures. Be sure to scroll down to catch the short video from the banquet–I will have some more fun video from the weekend soon, too!

Tfest 003

My roomies–Carol Shenold and Paula Lanier. Thursday evening dinner outside at a terrific restaurant owned by Paula’s friend David.

Tfest 001

The always classy Steve Berry graciously allows a photo op.

Tfest 040

Lee Child at the Friday evening “Fan Fest” (one of my many fan-girl moments!)

Tfest 039

Again at the FanFest event, that’s me with the gorgeous thriller gals–August McLaughlin, Carol Shenold, Paula Lanier

Tfest 041

More famous authors! August, Doug Lyle, Carol, moi and the gorgeous Twist Phelan. (Can you tell Doug is in heaven?)

Tfest 033

We were guests at FanFest courtesy of the WONDERFUL Diane Capri (far right). We even color coordinated…great minds. *s*

Tfest 046

Me with the WANA-Mama Kristen Lamb!

Tfest2 004

Paula, John Land and me…our “annual photo shoot.”

Monday Mentions is the mash-up-day of all the neato-torpedo writer links and videos, pet schtuff and bling and writer-icity crappiocca collected over the past week. Check out the Simon’s Cats pet-astic videos at the bottom, too. For new followers to the blog, welcome! and you can expect more cat and dog specific schtuff later in the week on Wednesday and Friday.

 WRITER-ICITY SCHTUFF

 Russian Ebook Market Growing

B&N CEO Resigns

Ways to Boost Books After Awards Wins

Reading/Writing Boosts Cognition well…duh!

5 Book Marketing MYTHS

Marketing Maze–A Guide Through the Jungle?

 Kristin Nador’s Blog with some important videos for keeping your writing hands healthy

outsmarting catsPET-CENTRIC SCHTUFF

Outsmarting Cats by my colleague and terrific writer/artist Wendy Christensen, is an update of her 2004 terrific Outwitting Cats. You won’t want to miss her terrific illustrations (and great info!).

Doggy Anxiety Tips

Iran Bans Dogs in Public Places

Planet Dog Foundation Gives $1 Million! I love this company, they donate a portion of every sale to service dog organizations…and they make GREAT products! (Magical-Dawg luvs their schtuff)

Dr. Sophia Yin’s Guide to Low-Stress Handling hey y’all, it’s FREE for a limited time!

TV Channel for Dogs

 

I love hearing from you, so please share comments and questions. Do you have an ASK AMY question you’d like answered? Do you have a new kitten and need answers? Stay up to date on all the latest just subscribe the blog, “like” me on Facebook, check out weekly FREE PUPPY CARE newsletter, and sign up for Pet Peeves newsletter. Stay up to date with the latest book give aways and appearances related to my  THRILLERS WITH BITE!

Monday Mentions: Lee Child, Reacher & Speeding To Publish

.The long promised short clips from the 2012 Thrillerfest finally will be posted–and here’s the first, with the awesome Kathleen Antrim interviewing Lee Child about his Jack Reacher novels–and the movie. Honestly, I can’t imagine having written so many novels. It’s waaaaay different than writing nonfiction, and my first thriller has just about done me in.

I’m gasping, filled with Sisyphus-icity as the launch date draws near for my thriller. After screwing up my courage and sending out oh-so-polite requests for well known folks to read and maybe offer a kind word about the book, I’ve been blessed beyond my wildest dreams. But I can’t slow down. This hamster wheel is on a roll and speeding up.

So this past week, Dr. Marty Becker, D.P. Lyle and James Rollins kind words were included with polite invitations to savvy book reviewers to take an advance look. For a book to be successful it must be found, so authors can’t afford to be shy.

In the days and weeks ahead, I’ll post some of my efforts in the hopes it might also help others traveling similar publishing journeys. Fair warning–I may ask for your help because it takes a tribe to get folks to notice a new book. And I know y’all have the power to get schtuff noticed, especially thrillers with bite. 🙂

On to our regularly scheduled Monday Mentions, the mash-up-day of all the neato-torpedo links and videos, pet schtuff and bling and writer-icity crappiocca collected over the past week. Some of this “schtuff” can be hard to categorize and may fit more than one topic so I urge you to at least scan them all. The second short video of SQUEE! cute cats is sure to relieve stress (it did mine, anyway!).

WRITER-ICTY SCHTUFF

Agent as Publisher–Sorta-Kinda

New Kindleboards Blog this is something to watch, Indies!

Bonfire of the Straw Man an awesome post from David Gaughran that debunks some of the strangest arguments AGAINST indies

5 Keys to Writing Success from social media maven Kristin Lamb

Panic Attacks and help for writers and other creative folks from Kristin Nador

8 Easy Social Media Tips from Jenny Hansen

The Science of Disgust who knew it was a protective mechanism?

How To Self Pub and Ebook some good general info

NetGalley for reviewers finding great books

FAKE Reviews? Say it ain’t so!

50 Shades of Grateful a peek into new (old) realms for writers from Tameri Etherton

PET-ICITY SCHTUFF

Recalled Metal Pet Bowls …can you say RADIOACTIVE?! Sheesh

Call for Winn Feline Foundation Research Grants

Readers Raise Funds to Save Bookstore Cat Awwwwwwwww…

Dog Training Controversy–Or Not? Great blog for those with questions!

TNR Pilot Program Success!

Video of Mugsy-Cat Fighting Gators wow

Keeping Puppy Feet Clean

Scary Coyote Encounter

Pet Population Shrinking?

Kitty Cams what the cats do–but is the evidence skewed? Check out this one that proves not all cats are killers and then decide.

Wonderful fun video below the Lee Child interview, sort of a cat’s eye review of a new cat tree, from Janea Kelly. Enjoy!

I love hearing from you, so please share comments and questions. Do you have an ASK AMY question you’d like answered? Do you have a new kitten and need answers? Stay up to date on all the latest just subscribe the blog, “like” me on Facebook, listen to the weekly radio show, check out weekly FREE PUPPY CARE newsletter, and sign up for Pet Peeves newsletter. Stay tuned for more news about my forthcoming THRILLER, LOST & FOUND!

Monday Mentions: THRILLERFEST!

Finally back from my annual whirlwind Thrillerfest conference–this year even more awesome knowing that I’m now an ITW Debut Author in great part because of this wonderful organization. I’ll have some short videos later, too, but wanted to post the pictures (they’re out of order, sorry!) as soon as possible.

Please also scroll down for the usual Monday Mentions link luv about publishing, writing, pets and more. Stay tuned for some quick excerpts from some of the panels and interviews. And don’t forget, the NAME THAT DOG and NAME THAT CAT polls will be posted this week for you to choose some of the pet characters in my book!

Panel: How Do You Create Spellbinding Series Characters?

The book signing–wow, next to the awesome Wendy Corsi Staub.

Yes, I came–I saw–I BLINGED!

David Morrell, co-founder of International Thriller Writers. You may know him as the author of Rambo. *s*

Doug Lyle, Craftfest Director and VP of National Events (with LOTS of great thrillers and nonfiction forensic books), with Paula and my friend Teresa Chandler.

Jon Land, one of the ITW vice presidents…and best seller, too. There’s a lot of great authors at this conference…just saying.

THRILLERFEST AWARDS

Saturday night July 14 the International Thriller Writers (ITW) announced the winners of the 2012 Thriller Awards.

Best Hard Cover Novel:
11/23/63, Stephen King (Scribner)

Best Paperback Original Novel:
THE LAST MINUTE, Jeff Abbott (Sphere/Little, Brown UK)

Best First Novel:
SPIRAL, Paul McEuen (The Dial Press)

Best Short Story:
HALF-LIVES, Tim L. Williams (Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine)

ITW has also announced the addition of two new Thriller Awards next year–Young Adult, and Original Ebook.

MORE WRITERICITY SCHTUFF

6 Reasons to Celebrate “BAD” Reviews

HarperCollins Buys Thomas Nelson

Smashwords Publishes 138,070+ Books

Ebook Pirates–Open Fire or Ignore?

Publishing Jobs from Disney, Hachette Book Group, Little Brown, etc.

PET SCHTUFF

Sasquatch Lives?! from Doug Lyle’s awesome blog

Pet Supply Catalogue–shopping that helps pets! Check it out!

Cat Myths from Sally Bahner’s awesome blog

BLOGPAWS Gives Back donates $12,120 to several worthy animal causes, kudos!

I love hearing from you, so please share comments and questions. Do you have an ASK AMY question you’d like answered? Do you have a new kitten and need answers? Stay up to date on all the latest just subscribe the blog, “like” me on Facebook, listen to the weekly radio show, check out weekly FREE PUPPY CARE newsletter, and sign up for Pet Peeves newsletter .

Don’t forget to check out the NAME THAT DOG/CAT character in the forthcoming THRILLER, LOST & FOUND! Poll with SEMIFINAL NAMES for you to vote to be posted this WOOF WEDNESDAY and FELINE FRIDAY so get your suggestions in ASAP.

Monday Mentions: Thrillerfest, Pet Whisperers & Veterinary Hospice

After an exhausting but exhilarating opening weekend of the show Fiddler On The Roof, I’m ready to return focus to the writer-icity schtuff. Oh, the show runs every weekend this month so I’ll have that to look forward to.

But meanwhile I only have a bit more to go on the thriller edits before sending back to my editor. AND I got my panel assignments for Thrillerfest where the awesome Allison Brennan will again be panel master. Our topic focuses on HOW DO YOU CREATE A SPELLBINDING SERIES CHARACTER? Other folks on the panel include:

Allison Brennan (Panel Master) is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of 18 romantic thrillers and multiple short stories, and the author of the Lucy Kincaid series.

Jan Burke is a critically acclaimed and national bestselling author of fourteen books—twelve of crime fiction, a supernatural thriller, and a collection of short stories.

William Dietrich is the NY Times bestselling author of 15 books, including the Ethan Gage series of Napoleonic adventures that has sold into 28 languages.

Jack Hoban served as a US Marine Corps officer and is a subject matter expert on close combat who “trained” Nick Heller of the Joseph Finder thriller series.

Avalon Books published Victoria M. Johnson’s fiction debut. As a filmmaker, Victoria writes and directs short thriller films. Her upcoming thriller, The Sea of Cortez, introduces Connie and Jeff York.

Sharon Linnéa is the author of the bestselling Eden Thrillers, featuring Army Chaplain Jaime Richards.  These Violent Delights is the first of her new Movie Mystery Series.

Amy Shojai is the award winning author of 24 pet care titles, and channels her “inner bitch”  to write in dog-viewpoint in her debut thriller LOST AND FOUND which introduces series character animal behaviorist September Day and Shadow, the service dog she’s trained.

Debra Webb is a multi-published, best-selling author who writes spine-tingling romantic suspense and has just launched her first thriller series, the Faces of Evil, with the debut novel OBSESSION.

Yes, I’m feeling seriously outclassed and hope to learn a LOT from the other panelists. I’d encourage y’all to post any questions you might have for the panel and I’ll pass them on to Allison, and give a recap after the conference in July. Incidentally, the Craftfest classes and Agentfest (speed dating with agents!) will again be awesome this year.

Monday Mentions is the mash-up-day of all the neato-torpedo links and videos, pet schtuff and bling and writer-icity crappiocca collected over the past week. Some of this “schtuff” can be hard to categorize and may fit more than one topic so I urge you to at least scan them all.

WRITER-ICITY SCHTUFF

WANA INTERNATIONAL LAUNCHES! the brainchild of Kirsten Lamb, this is a community of and for artists with more than 40 online instructors, a great resource for stay-at-home writers who can’t attend conferences. I’ll be teaching “virtual” classes here in the future.

What Does “Content Abundance” Mean and should you care?

BlogPaws Registration, a social media marketing conference especially for pet writers (do you channel your inner fur-kid?). And don’t miss voting for your Petties (pet blogger awards)

Facebook Counts “Viral” Shares

Pinterest-Friendly Blog Posts from the terrific August McLaughlin

Whispering Prairie Press contest info

How Amazon Saved My Life a great essay from a traditionally pub’d author (and daughter/co-author with mom Susan Conant of the dog lovers mysteries)

Self Pub’ing with Book Baby

KOBO Self Pub’ing Program Launched I understand this is similar to the Kindle program

Interesting Survey of Self Pub’d Authors, who does it, what’s the success rate, and more

10 Facebook Marketing Mistakes to Avoid

PET SCHTUFF

The Dog Whisperer Show Cancelled

Dogs In The City trainer a fraud? hoo boy…is it too much to ask for the “experts” to really be experts???

CATS.About.com Franny Syufy Interview, now here’s a REAL expert!

Feral & TNR Facts interesting schtuff here

Pet Requiem offers house call veterinary service and end-of-life care for pets, what a compassionate and innovative practice!

I love hearing from you, so please share comments and questions. Do you have an ASK AMY question you’d like answered? Do you have a new kitten and need answers? Stay up to date on all the latest just subscribe the blog, “like” me on Facebook, listen to the weekly radio show, check out weekly FREE PUPPY CARE newsletter, and sign up for Pet Peeves newsletter with excerpts from the forthcoming THRILLER, LOST & FOUND, and pet book give-aways!