I love reader-author events. Big ones. Small ones. In-between ones. What's better than an opportunity to spend time with my tribe, chat about favorite stories and characters with fellow readers and bask in the glow of the authors who create them? Well...not much in my book. ;-)
I'd been aware of the Barbara Vey Reader Appreciation event since its inception but scheduling conflicts always prevented me from attending until last year. I had so much fun that I decided to repeat the experience. A couple weeks ago, I flew to Milwaukee, Wisconsin for #BVW18 where I thoroughly enjoyed three days filled with author bingo, romance jeopardy, hilarious mad libs, a fabulous author luncheon, a more casual author breakfast, raffle baskets galore, a terrific book signing, and more...more...more. Here are a few of the highlights:
|Danica Favorite & Julie Moffett|
Sheldon joined the festivities, courtesy of author Julie Moffett. Geek Girls - - and guys - - rule!
Historical Romance author, Rose Lerner came all the way from the West Coast for another fun weekend with happy readers.
|Lenora Bell & Eloisa James|
Prepping for the Royal Wedding? Lenora Bell and Eloisa James looking elegant in their fascinators!
I loved the centerpiece on Elicia Hyder's luncheon table. Lights Out Lucy, the first book in her new Music City Rollers contemporary romance series is so much fun!
|Marina Adair & Nancy Naigle|
Nancy Naigle had a fun Christmas theme at her luncheon table in honor of her book, Christmas Joy which will be part of Hallmark Channel's 2018 holiday movie lineup. How exciting is that! Here she is with fellow contemporary romance author, Marina Adair whose St. Helena's Vineyard books have already been made into movies and aired on Hallmark. Lots of talent at this table! (I still can't believe I managed to catch Nancy's antlers mid-blink!)
|Eloisa James, PJ, Kim Castillo|
With two of my favorite people: historical romance author, Eloisa James and her assistant, Kim Castillo. Have you started reading Eloisa James' new series: The Wildes of Lindow Castle? The first book Wilde in Love is already out and book #2, Too Wilde to Wed will be released May 29. They're so good!
|PJ & Mary Burton/MaryEllen Taylor|
If you love edge of your seat romantic suspense, you'll want to check out Mary Burton's novels. But if you enjoy emotional, contemporary women's fiction with mysteries from the past, check out her books written as Mary Ellen Taylor. Either way, she's an author you don't want to miss!
|Nancy Herkness & PJ|
Local reader, Karen Grage is a magician with a needle. This is the quilt she made for this year's raffle. Isn't it fabulous? All proceeds of the raffle were donated to a wonderful organization in the Milwaukee area that supports women battling breast cancer. Admiring the quilt with me is contemporary romance author, Nancy Herkness. Have you read her books yet? So good!
|PJ & Karen Hawkins|
With historical - and contemporary - romance author, Karen Hawkins. If you enjoy humor in your romance, you'll definitely want to check out Karen's books!
|Lenora Bell, Pintip Dunn, PJ|
You find the nicest people in the bar at romance events. I wonder what that says about us? lol!
There's a whole lot of awesome in this photo. Lenora Bell is a 2014 Golden Heart® winner and a 2018 RITA® finalist who, in her day job, has lived and worked on five continents. New York Times bestselling YA author, Pintip Dunn is a three-time Golden Heart® finalist, 2016 RITA® award winner, and the 2018 RWA Golden Heart® Awards Emcee. She's also a Magna Cum Laude graduate of Harvard University and a graduate of Yale Law School. If all that isn't enough, these women are two of the most genuinely nice people I've ever met. Like I said...awesome.
|Jade Lee/Kathy Lyons|
This is what happens when authors who have been tucked away in their writing caves are set free.
The always beautiful, always hilarious, superbly talented, Sonali Dev.
|Janna MacGregor & Kim Castillo|
Here come the brides! Janna MacGregor and Kim Castillo before the author luncheon. Janna's tablemates had great fun dressing as brides to celebrate her wonderful The Cavensham Heiresses historical romance series.
Elicia Hyder brought along roller derby star, Lady Fury to help readers celebrate her new roller derby contemporary romance series. She was great fun!
Chefs at work! Tracy Solheim's table had so much fun celebrating her new Men of the Secret Service novel, Recipe for Disaster. Check out my recent review of the book here.
Adorable Mary Poppins themed gifts for readers at Lenora Bell's luncheon table.
I have no doubt that the readers at contemporary romance author Shirley Hailstock's luncheon table all felt like Cinderella. And Shirley (in addition to being one of the kindest people around, that woman has mad skills) made all the decorations!
I hope you've enjoyed a glimpse into this year's Barbara Vey Reader Appreciation Weekend. Visit my Facebook page for more photos from the event.
More small reader-author events are popping up around the country. Would you attend if one came to your area?
Which authors would you most want to meet?
Are any of you attending the Wild Deadwood Reads weekend in Deadwood, South Dakota June 7-9?
How about the RWA Literacy Autographing in Denver, Colorado on July 21st?
Have you heard about Avon's KissCon in Atlanta, GA on October 20th?
Did you know Avon's also planning a KissCon 3-day weekend in Chicago April 5-7, 2019 with 20-30 authors in attendance?
One randomly chosen person who leaves a comment before 11:00 PM, May 20 will receive a package of books and swag from this year's Barbara Vey Weekend.
(U.S. addresses only)
Lots of questions from which to choose today! Some of the romance authors I’d like to meet are Julia Quinn, Lisa Kleypas, Sherry Thomas, Tessa Dare, Eloisa James and Loretta Chase. Thanks for a fun post.ReplyDelete
I'm hopeful that you'll have an opportunity to meet at least some of them one of these days!Delete
I am hoping to make it to Kiss Con in Atlanta this year. I've also enjoyed going to The Strand in NYC for author events.ReplyDelete
I'm hopeful you'll be there too, Santa! :)Delete
I always enjoy your pictures when you return from an event. I am thinking about going to the Avon KissCon in Atlanta.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Cheryl! I'll be attending RWA in Denver mid-July so watch for more photos later that month.Delete
I'll be at Avon KissCon in Atlanta. Maybe we'll finally get to meet in person! :)
I would love to go the one in Chicago normally. I have children who live there, so it would be a win win for me. Next year we are going to a wedding at that time.ReplyDelete
Sorry you won't be able to make Chicago, Pamela but weddings are such special occasions.Delete
I haven't gotten to any of these wonderful looking book gatherings yet - but it's on my bucket list!ReplyDelete
One of these days, hopefully!Delete
I'll be attending a new conference in KC called Show Me Your Books later this year. It will be my first big con so you can imagine how excited I am! Thanks for the pictures. I can tell you guys had lots of fun <3 =DReplyDelete
What fun! I hope you have a wonderful time.Delete
i've gone to a few author-reader events -- some multi-day cons and some afternoon luncheon events. it's nice to get a chance to meet & talk w/ authors & fellow readers. hope to be able to do some more in the future.ReplyDelete
They're wonderful fun, aren't they?Delete
One of these days I will get to go to one of these events. Some of the Authors that I would love to meet are Shana Galen, Anna Campbell, Tessa Dare, Mary Balogh, Eva Leigh, Hannah Howell, Eloisa James, Janna MacGregor, Amelia Grey, and Alexandra Hawkins. I could go on and on but there are way too many others to mention. Thanks for sharing all the great pics.ReplyDelete
Diane, are you anywhere near Orlando? The Alafaya Branch Library and Lorelei's Lit Lair will host their third annual Romance Wine and Chocolate event the evening of August 31. Author guests include Kristan Higgins, Sarah Andre, Valerie Bowman, Madeline Martin, Priscilla Oliveras, and more.Delete
Hi PJ, I'm down in Boca Raton. August 31st is my granddaughter's birthday, so I won't be able to attend.Delete
I always love seeing your photos from these events, PJ. It's the next best thing to being there. I am hoping to attend KissCon in Atlanta. If I make it, it will be my first romance conference and my first chance to meet some of my dearest friends face-to-face. :)ReplyDelete
Janga, I don't think you realize just how excited so many people are at the prospect of finally meeting you in person. <3Delete
Ive never been to one of these. Manhattan is where all the author signings are and I live in a completely different boroughReplyDelete
Natasha, hopefully you'll have the opportunity to attend one of these days. How difficult is it for you to get into Manhattan? RWA's annual conference will be at the Marriott Marquis Times Square July 24-27, 2019. The Literacy Signing is open to the public (no admission fee) and features 400+ romance authors.Delete
I would LOVE to attend a local (Connecticut) reader/author event, especially if some of my favorite authors were there. Maybe even nicer to meet some new (to me) authors who would also become favorites. My favorite types of books include historical mysteries, historical romance, and all other types of mysteries. In the past (fairly long past) I attended a number of Malice Domestic events and enjoyed every minute of the long week end.ReplyDelete
The only problem was I spent way over my budget on books. Fortunately a local independent bookstore took pity on me and each time took my books, packaged them up and shipped them home to me.
Thanks for the scoop on the Barbara Vey event. I especially liked that you labeled all the photos with everyone's name. There some authors I recognize by sight, but others I can only recognize through their books. Not all caption their photos when they post them.
Hi Teddi! I don't have any info on reader-author events in CT but a friend is exploring the possibility of a historical author-reader event on Long Island's Gold Coast. And, see my comment above for 2019 NYC info.Delete
Looks like fun, a lot of good authors attending. And yes I loved Nancy Herkness Wager of Hearts books. Thanks for the chance for a surprise pkg of books.ReplyDelete
I love her books too!Delete
I would certainly go to one of the conferences if it were held in my area. There is a long list of authors I would love to meet: Linda Howard, Alisha Rai, Jennifer Ashley, Sherry Thomas, Tessa Dare, Thea Harrison, and Patricia Briggs are only a few who come to mind. Would love to attend the RWA literacy signing or KissCon (had not heard of the latter, but I bet it would be fun).ReplyDelete
I haven't been to any of the KissCon events yet but friends who have gone have had a wonderful time!Delete
I'm not sure how you were able to put that fun-filled weekend into this article PJ. It was so much fun sharing time with you there. I knew about the Wild Deadwoods weekend because Lizbeth Selvig attends. You forgot about RAGT18 which is the same weekend as the Deadwoods one. I've attended the same two BVW you did and will attend RAGT. I like the smaller settings. Thanks so much PJ. PS - love our lunch table picture.ReplyDelete
I can't believe I forgot RAGT! I've never attended (always seem to have a scheduling conflict) but I've heard great things about it. I'm so glad we had time to chat more at this year's BVW!Delete
Readers: RAGT is a Reader Author Get Together in Cincinnati that is hosted by Lori Foster. It's held in early June.
What a wonderful event. I have seen the announcements for it in the past and never realized just how much fun it would be. RT was fun but a bit overwhelming. I think I would enjoy the smaller events more. I did attend RomCon in Colorado Springs about 5 years ago. It was small enough we got to meet and spend time with many authors. I actually checked out the Deadwood event, but we can't head that way then. KissCon in Atlanta is only 4 hours away, but we will be on our way to San Diego, CA then. Chicago is on my must see list. I'm not sure what April will bring, but it would be great to be able to mix that and a family trip. I'll have to figure out what to do with my husband. (For RT in Dallas a few years ago, I drove out and my husband flew out the last day or so to join me, then we left for a trip out West.) As for authors, there are so many I would like to meet and get to know a bit. Julie Garwood (I know it won't happen), Lindsay McKenna, Mary Connealy, Pamela Clare, Cheryl Pierson, Janet Chapman, Linda Lael Miller, Elizabeth Hoyt, Lisa Gardner, Iris Johansen, Kathy Reichs, Karen Witemeyer, and so many more.ReplyDelete
Sounds like you've had some fun experiences! Did you know they've moved RomCon east this year? It will be October 5-7 in Richmond, VA.Delete
Julie Garwood is at the top of my author wish list. She was at RT Kansas City a few years ago but I wasn't able to go. I was so disappointed!
I was lucky enough to meet Janet Chapman before she died. She was a lovely woman and very patient with my fangirl ramblings. LOL
PJ, I had no idea Janet Chapman had died. She lived in one of my favorite places. The year I discovered her books, we took a vacation to Carrabassett Valley, Maine which is close to the setting of her Highlander series. I read all 5 books I had to my husband on the way up and while we were there. It was great being where the stories "took place."Delete
I really wasn't aware of RT until the 2015 when I went to Dallas. If I had known about RT in 2013 and that Julie Garwood was attending, I would have certainly gone. Her historical Highland books were the first romances I read and hooked me on the genre.
She died last October after a battle with cancer. She was one of my favorite contemporary authors. I loved her Maine Highlanders.Delete
It sounds like you had an amazing time PJ! I would love to attend any of these events - however, scheduling is beyond difficult sometimes for me. I keep saying I'll go one day....ReplyDelete
Keep that hope alive! :)Delete
Your photos are wonderful and the event very special. I would love to meet so many of these talented authors. Memorable and unforgettable experience.ReplyDelete
It was very memorable!Delete
Such fun. Lovely photos and meeting Nancy Herkness and Eloisa James would be great.ReplyDelete
Eloisa James and Nancy Herkness are both lovely women. I know you would enjoy visiting with them.Delete
Would love to meet Jill Shalvis, Debbie Macomber - would be great, did watch the Royal Wedding today. Lovely.ReplyDelete
I watched the Royal Wedding a few times. ;-)Delete
If I could get to any reading event, I would love it. Loved hearing about all this. I would love to meet historical authors first but there are many others I would enjoy meeting too. I'll pick a few - Grace Burrowes, Sue-Ellen Welfonder, Kathyrne Kennedy and Jill Shalvis.ReplyDelete
I'd enjoy meeting Sue-Ellen Welfonder. I love her medieval romances.Delete
One of these events sounds like fun. I'd like to meet Julie James, Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Meredith Duran and Sherry Thomas. It would be nice to meet Judith McNaught, too, but it's been years since her last book.ReplyDelete
I keep hearing rumors about McNaught writing another book but haven't seen anything concrete.Delete
Never been to any conferences!! Would love to attend one though. Sharon Sala, Jayne Ann Krentz, Karen White, Jill Shalvis plus too many more to list!!ReplyDelete
Sharon Sala is one of the most genuine, down to earth women I've ever met. You would definitely enjoy meeting her!Delete
Would love to attend one of these conferences one day. I would love to meet any suspense or suspense romance auhors.ReplyDelete
I was very excited to see that Katie Ruggle will be signing at July's RWA conference in Denver. I love her books and can't wait to meet her!Delete
I would love to meet Janna MacGregorReplyDelete
Janna MacGregor is one of the nicest people around!Delete
She truly is. I sat at her table and she just spoiled usDelete