Tuesday, November 13, 2012

2012 Readers n 'ritas Recap + Giveaway (International)

Oh. My. God. This was my first year to attend Readers n Ritas and I am going back again next year. It has been decided.

There were so many awesome authors there and what I loved most about this event is the fact I was able to fangirl over some of my favorite authors one-on-one. Or two-on-one in some cases. Other cons you end up being all Edward Cullen in the corner creepy because everyone else is swarming the author or monopolizing all of their time. Or there's not enough time during the weekend to hit up every author you want to stalk, er, talk with.

I shall give you a quick rundown of what I did in photo form with little captions. The trip to Medieval Times (found by accident because Jenn --yes, THAT Jenn-- and I were driving all over Dallas trying to find a restroom *don't ask*) and  dinner at Olive Garden (our waiter prayed for Lela) after a bottle or two of Mike's shall only be mentioned in this paragraph. That is all.

Let us begin...

Friday: We went to Heather Long's welcome party and bought two books from the Fevered Hearts series. Okay, so they were Studio Smexy shot covers but I loved Brave Are The Lonely. Plus, Heather signed them for me so...win!
Okay, the pictures are tiny because I couldn't pull them up on instagram to download them because I am a dofus. But you can see the half nekkid man chest, can't you?

Then we went to look at all of the fabulous raffle baskets donate by authors and publishers. There were really great ones that had e-readers, tickets to RnR for next year, bundles of books, coffee, bags, mugs, movies and all sorts of other goodies. The one I want to share with you is Jenn's. This was one giant mutha of a PIIINK bag. Confession: I put most of my tickets in that bag because I needed something to take all my RnR haul home. Unfortunately, I didn't win it but I'll be on the hunt for it this week at a certain cosmetic store...
Three bottles of win, a wine glass, a giant pink rolly bag, bath stuff, chocolate, posters, The Giant Pink Book, fuzzy blanket, towel, door sign and so much more! Tell me you wouldn't have put all YOUR tickets in that bag.

Then there was the opening/welcome pizza party hosted by Entangled. The emcee for the weekend, Candace Havens welcomed us and then had each attending author share a little bit about themselves and their books. That was a good time plus we got some Entangled releases. I grabbed a copy of WEST OF WANT by Laura Kaye. Whaat? It had some serious man chest and Adonis line going on. 

After that, we went next door to Two Rows for Melissa Schroeder's Harmless Addicts get together. I got an awesome t-shirt, A Little Harmless Military anthology, and cool swag. 

Saturday: Save A Horse, Ride A Cowboy--The first panel we went to featured Heather Long, Winnie Griggs and Alexandra Allred talking about cowboys and why we love them. 
There was much laughter, a little inappropriateness, a mention of Captain Tightpants and doing a photo shoot of a cowboy calendar. Dibs on hosing them down!

We snuck in a little late to the Historical panel which featured Cathy Maxwell, Elizabeth Boyle and Lauren Willig. Uh, why has no one ever told me how hilarious Cathy and Elizabeth are? Together, they gave my sides a workout. Oh, why yes, we're on a first name basis now. 
Instead of breaking up by text or Facetime, there were handwritten messages that took a while to arrive. Something about kilts and how they're skirts. Uh, not if they're not wearing any underwear!

Lunch and Eloisa James--Tex-Mex lunch was yummy. I may or may not have stolen the sopapilla off of a custard dessert while waiting in line. There's no photo evidence so it didn't happen. 

Elizabeth Boyle invited me to sit at her table because there were three lonely goodie boxes. This is my thanks from Jenn:
So if you saw any weird tweets, it was all her. She commandeered my phone because I left it at the table. I couldn't get back to my seat because the chat with Eloisa James started right as I was dashing towards Elizabeth's table.

Eloisa shared how she and her husband met and when she knew he was the one. She is a remarkable lady whose books you should all read. 

Then off to the Author Lounge where we sat for two hours. High on candy and laughter, we proceeded to discuss books, men and other random things. Someone please make a shirt that says, "And then what happens next?" (Cathy's catchphrase for the weekend)

So eager to find out what happens next but don't touch the Snickers candy!

Above and Beyond Fifty Shades-- This panel featured Melissa Schroeder and Missy Jane.  
Yes, there is life after 50 Shades and a whole new world for you to explore. Readers have been reading erotic and erotica books since the introduction of the e-reader. It's nothing new. It's just more prominent because of 50.

Book Signing--This was utter fangirl heaven. I bought a book from Melissa Schroeder (her new Desire by Blood vampire book), stood in line to get Wendi Corsi Staub to sign Live to Tell
I fangirled over Eloisa James and told her how much I love, love, love AN AFFAIR BEFORE CHRISTMAS. Poor book's spine is cracked and pages are out of order. I was pretty nervous and slightly shaking when we took this picture. No big deal!
I caught Sarah Maclean and Sara Ramsey in the hallway before the signing. Then rushed to their tables to have them sign their respective books. 
I love how Brandy's thumb is in this shot.
I stalked her all weekend. She was probably
annoyed. lol
I stood in line FOREVER for these two.

After the signing, we headed out to dinner. You can troll twitter for out Olive Garden induced tweets complete with pictures.

Sunday: We were running a little late for breakfast with Jade Lee so there wasn't much left at the buffet. This was sort of a last hurrah kind of thing for people who stayed until Sunday. Jade answered questions about her books and we learned a bit about tantric sex. Yup, you had to have been there to understand because it was freaking hilarious!

Extra prizes were given out. I won a basket of vampire-y stuff from Collette Saucier, whose table we were sitting at. There was Vampire Wine, DVDs and books.

Alas, it had to come to an end but I am definitely putting Readers n 'ritas on my conference schedule for next year.

Leave a comment with your email address, ninja style: yourname at yourhost dot com. I will choose a winner to receive a fun swag package of all the extra swag I picked up at Readers n 'ritas. Giveaway ends 11/30 (International)

QUESTION: What cons have you attended or are planning to attend next year? 

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