I am ashamed to say that Indie Bookfest is the first book convention I have ever attended. To be honest I didn’t even know there was such events that took place through out the year until this year and now my life has changed.
How do you mean you may ask? Well I have planned 2 separate long weekends around book conventions and the first was Indie Bookfest 2013 which was the brain child of Peggy Martinez. It is my understanding that the initial idea was a small coffee shop get together but what we ended up with was something so much bigger and better.
The entire event was a way to celebrate indie authors and artist and their freedom of expression. Buena Vista Palace was the location of this event and they did an outstanding job of letting us roam and sometimes get lost (um I did) but were kind hosts that stayed available but didn’t get in the way.
Our day began at 8 am with coffee, tea, water and an assortment of danishes as far as the eye could see. Yours truly indulged in 2 apple danishes and they were awesome.
We then settled in for our first speaker of the day, Rachael Wade. Her passion for her craft came through loud and clear and I was in awe of her charm and honesty while she spoke about her history and her love of the indie author community.
We had a short intermission and then were thrown into the controversy of “New Adult vs Young Adult”. On the panel were Chelsea M. Cameron, Kristie Cook, Amy Miles and Raine Thomas with the ever witty and charming Carol and Adam Kunz. (Carol even encouraged us to throw things at Adam if we needed to. What a riot these two were on stage.)
This was a fascinating topic in part due to the recent questions that surround this new genre that has been labeled New Adult. My takeaway is that this genre can be whatever we the readers want it to be and that is exciting as it gets for readers and authors alike.
Our next session “So You Think You Can Write” was again moderated by Carol and Adam (These two would make a great stand up act, I’d pay to see! Oh, wait I did.) The panel included Ben Hale, Michelle Madow, Rachael Wade and Isaac Marion. The look behind the author’s self contained world fascinates so many of us readers and I’m so thankful for the opportunity to be granted access to such outstanding talent.
At this stage I had been sitting for three hours and didn’t want to miss out on the author’s booths next door so I slipped out in the next break heading to the other room. Wow! Authors as far as the eye could see and what did I do? I started at the closest table and worked my way around the room.
This took way longer than I had anticipated and I’m not complaining but I missed the Build a Book Hunk Session with Kristie Cook, Quinn Loftis, Tabatha Vargo and Rachel Wade with Jennifer Martinez moderating. But a gal can only be in one place at a time unfortunately.
So I spend over an hour visiting each table talking to authors and their assistants while being astounded at the amount of book goodness in one place. It was book heaven which was interrupted by lunch.
Lunch included fruit followed by these amazing baskets which contained a sandwich, mine was Turkey and some yummy cheese, with potato chips, and cookie. At the end of the line we were also greeted with soda cans that were sitting in ice water and wait staff handing out glasses with ice.
Then came the quest for seat mates. I walked up to a table that had two authors that had earlier signed for me and asked if I could join them. They couldn’t have been more gracious and hospitable. By the end I believe our table had at least 4 authors and I think the table talk was hilarious. Everything from the food we eat or don’t eat to meeting new people. I look forward to continuing to run into my table mates at the next event.
Book signing continued after lunch and I had a mad scramble to get to all the last tables including Isaac Marion’s. Luckily for me I had only a few more signatures to acquire on my third lap of the room when I got back to Isaac’s table and there was only one person in line. I jumped on that fast.
Once I had finally completed the entire circuit 5 times I found a comfortable chair and relaxed for the next hour. I was glad to sit down and check into Twitter.
The final session was primarily Question & Answer time. The panel included G.P. Ching, Kristie Cook, Tiffany King, and Isaac Marion with the Dynamic Kunz Duo back again to moderate. Once the floor was opened up to the audience the first question was pointed to Isaac asking about an air conditioning unit that had just been installed that wasn’t working right. Great way to start the session and Isaac just rolled with it.
To end the conference there was a number of giveaways including a Kindle Fire giveaway which I didn’t win but I had a wonderful day meeting, chatting and gathering joy from others who love reading and the written word as much as I do.
Indie Bookfest 2014 is already in the works but is being expanded to a 2 day event. I’ll see you all next year.
But I wanted to share the love with our readers so I brought two canvas bags with me for this event. I had every author I could track down and a few assistants sign both bags and I’m going to be giving away one. The other is a visual reminder to me of how important books are to so many of us and the joy that authors and bloggers bring to the lives of all readers.
List of all the authors that attended Indie Bookfest 2013:
C.A. Kunz (Carol & Adam Kunz aka Dynamic Kunz Duo)
This contest is provided by Me! (Shirene!)
One lucky reader will win an autographed tote from Indie Bookfest 2013
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