Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Robin D. Owens just blew my mind.

I was logged in here because I was going to write something. It might have been about my internship with the literary agent. It could have been about the RITAs. But I had an email in my beta-reading account. So I checked it. And it was Robin D. Owens.

I've actually spoken to Owens in real life, at last year's RWA literacy signing, but my part in the conversation largely consisted of grabbing Heart Journey(which I already owned) from her piles and shoving it in her direction, mumbling 'Sign please. I love your books.' I am hoping to somewhat redeem myself this year. However, I'm irrationally excited about the possibility of an avian Fam, a native species no less, and going by how I already babbled about this to her editor, it doesn't bode well. I foresee myself grabbing Heart Search from her piles (which I already own), shoving it in her direction, and, in a crackly voice, saying 'I can't wait for Heart Secret and a bird Fam, that's so cool, native species too, that's awesome, can't wait to read it. I love your books.'

So when Robin D. Owens sent me an email, let me tell you, my brain just exploded. Especially since it went to my beta-reading account and I didn't realize at first how she got it and my instinctive reaction at seeing her email address was 'I AM NOT BETA-READING FOR ROBIN D OWENS, IT WILL RUIN THE MAGIC AND I'D RATHER CONTINUE TO PESTER BERKLEY FOR ARCS OR SUFFER THE AGONY OF WAITING THAN LOSE THE MAGIC.' Then when I realized she read the review I wrote for Enchanted Again, I freaked again, because I knew I'd been disappointed in the book and WHAT DID I WRITE?!?

Luckily, while I was clear in my disappointment, my die-hard fangirlness tempered my usual bluntness. The review turned out to be more 'The first book was great, I don't know what happened with this one, but it's Robin D. Owens so we'll just not talk about it, m'kay?' than what I probably would have done if it'd been almost any author, i.e. 'Why are her books by Publisher A so much better than her books by Publisher B?' Which, I guess, I just did it, but it's Robin D. Owens, so let's not think about it too hard, m'kay?

Anyway, the email was short and Owens was nice and said she was sorry I didn't like it and directed me to excerpts for the next book. I'm not gonna be reading those excerpts for three reasons.

  1. Sometimes I'll read an excerpt, like if it's for book 2 at the end of book 1, but then I'll start reading book 2 when it comes out and I get confused because it'll be familiar. I read at least, at least, 300 books a year. I don't always remember what I've read so if something seems familiar, I have to double-check my GoodReads account to make sure I didn't read it as an ARC or something. Therefore, as a general rule, I don't seek out excerpts.

  2. When I do read excerpts from a book, it generally shapes my opinion of the book. So if I wrinkle my nose at the excerpt, I'm likely to pass on the book. Since I've already been disappointed, I don't want to take the chance that something in the excerpt will send up red flags. As long as I don't look, I can continue to live in hope. 

  3. A book by Robin D. Owens is on my auto-read list. Smart Bitches, Dear Author, Romantic Times, GoodReads, whoever, could all say Book X by Owens is made from remnants from the Staten Island landfill and sprinkled with bat guano and my reaction will be 'Really? That's kinda extreme. I better read it to find out if it's true.' I might not buy it, but I'd definitely read it. Hell, I'm still up to date on Lora Leigh and Laurell K Hamilton, and I think we can agree some of their books were heavily flavored with bat guano.

Re-reading this post. Was there a point to this? What's a good ending? I don't know. I'm slowly coming down from the high of ROBIN D. OWENS EMAILED ME. *sigh* I'm totally gonna make an ass of myself in July...

Monday, June 25, 2012

Incoming!: RWA 2012

So, my plane for RWA and Anaheim leaves 29 days from today. I am beginning to freak out. You wouldn't think it would be that big of a deal because it's not like I have anything riding on this. I'm not trying to make a sale. My career doesn't rest on making a connection with an agent or an editor. Indeed, aside from attending Librarians' Day on Wednesday, most of my time will be spent at Disneyland.

I think what I'm really worried about is missing something. I haven't been to Disneyland since I was ten and a lot of new things have opened. We are big Disney people so I'm also excited about having the chance to pick up some Disneyland-exclusive merchandise. The summer is the busy season for Disney, of course, so there's a lot of strategy involved to make sure I hit all the important stuff: Cars Land, the Little Mermaid ride, World of Color, the Storybook Canal, etc. My best friend who moved back to CA last October is driving over to join us on Saturday and she's asked me to pick up some things she can't get there (i.e. Dunkin' Doughnuts coffee).

I've been invited to a publisher party and I'm a little apprehensive. What do I say? What do I do? What should I wear? My tentative plan at the moment is to try to hook up with an author I know who's with that house and try to hang out with her. While I don't have a book to sell, I would like to try to network a bit. My future career plans are kinda nebulous, but I definitely want to stay in the book field. Whether that means staying in libraries, jumping to publishing (most likely an editor-type position), or, maybe, thanks to a shiny new internship, trying out agent-hood, I don't know. Therefore, it's important for me to go against type and try to talk to as many people I can. There are going to be a LOT of people in the romance business in a mile and this is a great opportunity. No pressure, right?

Money is also a factor. I'm definitely doing the literacy signing, but the question is how much I can afford to spend. My usual strategy is to go through the author list and figure out which signed book I want the most. I'm also thinking about doing an autograph book. Some bloggers will bring canvas tote bags and have authors sign the bag, then do a giveaway on their blogs. Authors are usually just thrilled that someone knows who they are. It's definitely true that the romance genre is one of the best communities to be a part of.  I can count on one hand the number of people who treated me poorly in one capacity or another. So you wouldn't think I'd be too nervous.