Monday, June 24, 2013

Here's looking at you kid, or in this case Young Adult

On Saturday I went to Bogart’s Bookstore and Cafe in Millville to attend a local young adult author panel.  I love Bogart’s and I wish that it was closer to my current location (or that they could open another Bogart’s in The Voorhees Town Center and then I could walk across the street and visit anytime I like).  Bogart’s is delightfully charming with just the right dash of quirk.
Their drinks are tasty and they have a great supply and variety of new and used books.
I loved my lavender lemonade.
There were five young adult authors on the panel.
They each discussed and then read an excerpt from their novels and then came the part of these types of events that I sometimes hate. The question and answer time.
A Rant if I May
There is a particular etiquette that should be followed when asking questions at author panels.  You should never start out your question with “I” unless it is, “I read your book and I  really loved it.”  You should not start out your question with , “I wrote a book and I was wondering if you could…..because these questions never end well.  I believe that authors enjoy talking about the art and process of writing.  They like discussing their novels but I believe that probably for the most part the publishing world is still just as mysterious a maze as before they were officially published.  If the purpose of the panel is geared toward getting published then you can ask questions but if it is geared toward the writers and their works, questions should be kept to those topics.  Authors cannot, hook you up with their/an agent.  Authors can’t help you get in with their publishers.  Authors are not going to read your (a complete stranger’s) manuscript and critique it for you (unless that is a paid service the author provides). They are not there to answer questions and discuss your yet to be published project during the open panel (though if you purchase one of their  books and get them to sign it you could probably slip in a question or two…no more than that though). Thanks for letting me vent that out.
I thought all five authors were great and each had a different interesting story. Since I already had a pretty good stack of books at home to read I told myself ahead of time that I would adhere to a two book minimum.
The two books I purchased were
Dr. Bird's Advice for Sad Poets-by Evan Roskos- After he read the first few pages I knew I had to read the entire book.  How could I resist a teen who wants to be like and speaks like Walt Whitman and talks to an invisible pigeon. I was excited to see that Evan was added to the Collingswood Book Festival's list of authors.  It will fun to hear him speak again after I've read the book.
I enjoyed his reading and that his superhero teen boy had thoughts probably more related to what a lot of us would actually think when you are a superhero.  Not like “a monster is before me and I will vanquish it with my superhero powers, but more like,(with sarcasm) great a giant monster, with tentacles, yippee, can’t wait to fight that.  Pab also won some points because I ended up realizing that I met him in the past.  I knew he looked familiar and when he said he did Nanowrimo I knew I had met him at past write-ins.  Of course I had to buy a book by a fellow Nanoer.
The three other authors were women
Trinity-by Lauren D. Fraser - I may have to pick this one up sometime in the future. It is about three sisters who begin having strange dreams and in order to uncover the meaning of their dreams they must travel to Scotland and have an amazing adventure.
Earth Child: The E.D. Piper Chronicles - by Laura J. Kaighn - Since I arrived a little bit late I actually missed Laura's talk and excerpt reading.  The story looks interesting.  It is about a girl who is a shape shifter who is being pursued by a geneticist who wants to exploit her abilities and use them to build a super army.
From Hunt to Teen -by Renata Brodie - This seemed a bit reverse Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  A girl is brought up to hunt down, fight and kill all manner of evil creatures and after fifteen years she decides she wants to find out what it is like to be a regular teen (of course you can never truly hide from evil).  What I thought was fun was that the villain turns out to be a descendant of Elizabeth Bathory.  She is one of the most creepy real life historical villainesses ever to have lived.  She even has her own card in the Evil Baby Orphanage game.   
All of the authors were very nice and gracious and I'm glad that Bogart's hosted the event.
Note: Evan had free stickers that promoted his book.  Brilliant, I know.  Who doesn't like stickers?  I'm an adult and I still enjoy the occasional sticker. That was an impressive marketing idea.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Sarah. I'm so glad I found your blog.

    This is a great post. I wish Bogart's was in the Voorhees Towne Center as well. It would be easier to get to. I'd love to taste the lavender lemonade.

    Great advice to offer people who go to author readings. And these authors and their respective books sound interesting. I'll have to look for them. Thanks again, Sarah. ~Victoria Marie Lees