After Lonestar, I hit the ground running. Work was crazy and I didn’t give it another thought as I delved into the many balls that were flying around in the air. I’d been joking that those balls were bouncing on the ground and smacking me in the head.
Like my character, Codee, in The Termination, what occurred on Friday made me
question whether one of those balls had smacked me so hard in the head that it was all just a bad dream. It wasn’t. So now I think I owe everyone a recap of Lonestar instead of the dribble I posted last week. Better late than never!
I can’t claim losing my virginity again because that already happened last year when I did my first reading and sat on my first panel. You’d think I would be old hat at these things by now, but you’d be wrong.
Right before I had to do my reading, I got so nervous I had to leave a panel I was very interested in to use the washroom and avoid an embarrassing accident. I won’t go into any gory details. Use your imagination or not. I recommend not. Sorry Elle, but you wonderful turnover…went right through my system, do not pass go, do not collect $200.
So…I was third in line and everything as going along swimmingly. The two previous readers did an amazing job and now I was up. I’d decided to do something a little different. Yup…me…something different. Big surprise, huh? Not! I’d just posted an emotional blog about the inspiration for my latest book, Captivated and I decided to read that as a preface to my selection instead of trying to explain what I was about to read.
My wife encouraged me after hearing me read her the blog. She thought it was a good idea. Thanks honey. She agreed to video the reading and she did. While I was doing the reading, I thought things were going okay, but I had this niggling feeling that maybe the reading was a tad bit too long. It was. Eight minutes too long to be exact. I think we were supposed to read for ten minutes and my wife whispered to me after the reading that she had videotaped the whole thing and it was eighteen minutes long. I groaned. She laughed and said she might have seen someone rolling their eyes. I was mortified.
Lesson learned: Don’t be a pantster at a reading. Practice and time your reading before actually doing it.
After my reading, I was part of a panel with Melissa Brayden and when she presented my book, Locked Inside for a signature, was I gracious and smooth…oh hell no. I actually asked if she was serious. I wanted to look around for the hidden camera and see if I was being punked or something. I don’t even know what I wrote, something entirely fangirlish and incredibly stupid I suspect, but I was shocked to the core.
Any yet, it didn’t stop there. During the panel when asked how we set up the chemistry between characters, I said I had no idea and I hoped that it occurred because when I write about love it usually happens organically for me. I actually said I didn’t believe in love at first sight but preferred a slow burn. I emphasized that real love was about people embracing or even celebrating a person’s imperfections versus merely accepting them like it was their lot in life. I called out my poor wife’s incessant vacuuming because I find it endearing (and it keeps our condo very tidy). Note to self: calling her out did not make it to her endearing list.
I do hope I will be asked back next year because I adore this festival. The people who plan it are fabulous and I get to see my Affinity pals. Everyone is nice to me, even the cool kids. I feel like I belong and that is a nice feeling.
I also have a wonderful feeling regarding my latest book, Captivated, that sold out in paperback at Lonestar and is staying in the top 20 thanks to all the supportive readers who bought it. If you want to check out Captivated or any of my other books, you know the drill…click the links below.