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Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Steamboat Springs trip!

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Hey everyone!

I just got back from a gorgeous weekend in Steamboat Springs, Colorado-- a lil hot-spring-laden-mountain town three and a half hours by car from our house-- just head west down a winding canyon road along the rushing Poudre River and over pine-covered mountain passes. I went there with Hubbie and Toddler for a vacation/bookstore signing. We stayed at the groovy Rabbit Ears Motel in a room with a balcony overlooking the Yampah river.

The signing was at Epilogue, an extremely adorable bookstore on the main street. If I owned a bookstore, I'd want it to look something like this. Notice all the charming features.

*atmospheric lighting* (one quirk of mine is that I'm super-sensitive to lighting-- infuriatingly so, according to my husband, who has tried in vain to have us switch to all fluorescent lights, but that's one sacrifice I just can't make...)

Lovely, golden quote on the wall

tea and cupcakes!

Pat, the events coordinator, me, and Erica, the owner-- I could've stayed on that cozy couch talking to them all afternoon...

Several of these girls are writing their own BOOKS at the moment! So impressive!

Mary and I got lost in a fun conversation about one of our favorite topics... OAXACA!

soaking in the hot springs... ahhhh....

Hubbie striking a pose at Creekside restaurant, where we ate a yummy brunch accompanied by guitar music on Sunday (Epilogue's gracious treat!)

Still snow in the mountains!

So now that I'm back in Fort Collins, I've been revising The Cerise Notebook, which is actually pretty fun. The hardest part was getting that first draft done. It's much smoother sailing now that I know (and love) the characters and setting and story and everything.

The ARCs of The Indigo Notebook are floating around out there (hopefully being read and enjoyed)-- and I just got an early review (most reviews won't come out til this fall.) I'm relieved and overjoyed that it's a good one! Voila:

***** Five out of five stars!!! "This amazing book blends coming of age, romance, mystery, and a little mysticism to build an enticing story. The characters become real and I hated to turn the last page and leave them."--Diana Tixier Herald, genrefluent (a fiction review website) & goodreads

I can't wait until it's out there for everyone to read-- it's so hard to have patience during this in-between time...

Please join me for a live chat on readergirlz tomorrow (Wednesday, May 20) at 6 p.m. Pacific time/9 p.m. Eastern (which means if you're in Colorado, like me, it wil be at a convenient 7 p.m.) It's really, really easy to join in the discussion, and I hope you do!!!

Thanks for reading! And please sign up for my every-other-month newsletter if you haven't already-- a new installment is coming soon...


Lots of old, pretty chandeliers in my life lately... this one's in Epilogue.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

New York Trip!

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Hey everyone!

It's a gorgeous spring day in Colorado. Got back from NYC last night (where it rained nearly every day, but I didn't mind-- I love the smell of rain on pavement... and it was fun to use my pink umbrella, since I hardly ever get to use it here.)

view from my hotel window

Before I forget, here's some good news about The Indigo Notebook (to be released in October.) It's been nominated as an ALA Best Book for Young Adults-- hooray! I'm so grateful to whoever nominated it and absolutely thrilled that it was deemed a worthy read!

Okay, so my NYC trip--

My main objective was to visit my editor, Stephanie, and my publicist, Emily, and all the other people at Delacorte/Random House involved in my books (turns out there are so many more people than I realized, and they're all magnificent!)

The Random House offices occupy the first 23 floors or so of this building. Stephanie and Emily brought me to a bunch of different offices to meet people, which involved taking two separate elevators. A Charlie and the Chocolate Factory- style elevator would've come in handy...

I had a wonderful afternoon hanging out at Random House. Stephanie and Emily and I had yummy Greek food for lunch at a nearby restaurant. Then we went to the RH offices and I met many people (whose names I've failed to keep straight!) It was touching and a little overwhelming (in a good way) to meet these people who've been so excited about my books and have worked so hard behind the scenes to promote them.

Here's the lobby of Random House-- the walls are lined with old classics they've published-- a very exciting atmosphere!
I did short readings from Red Glass and The Indigo Notebook for a lovely crowd of RH people, signed books, and then went upstairs to record a podcast interview. I got to see the final version of the interior illustrations for Star in the Forest.... wow! Thank you, Gary Blythe! (That's who illustrated them so beautifully.) I can't wait til the book is out in the wide world and you all can see them!

a funny antique toy from a Williamsburg flea market store

Over the weekend, my dear old friend Amanda, who lives in Williamsburg (neighborhood in Brooklyn), showed me around.

Amanda and me at an old Italian restaurant-- Bufanti's-- where a shoot-out scene for the Sopranos was apparently filmed.

My favorite two restaurants both had pink walls and funky chandeliers and cool portraits.

This one was called something like the Hotel DelMonte-- it featured an old-fashioned American atmostphere-- early 1900s.

The waiters wore cute suspenders.

In front of the MOMA (modern museum of art) restaurant (seems like I have something mysterious hiding under my shawl, doesn't it...?)

On my last day, I was happy to meet an Ecuadorian named Marco-- he was my cab driver to the airport, and was enthusiastic about my upcoming books set in Ecuador (The Queen of Water and The Indigo Notebook). Gracias, Marco, por la buena compania y conversacion!!

On a different note, be sure to check out the readergirlz website periodically all month long. There are ongoing conversations about topics related to Red Glass. Join us!

Thanks for reading!


Friday, May 1, 2009

Readergirlz May Issue!

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Hey everyone,

I'm so excited-- today is the first day that RED GLASS is featured on the very cool readergirlz website and blog! Check it out-- there's an interview, playlist, party ideas, discussion questions... and even a poster to download!

Please make sure to post comments on the blog discussion during this month of May-- I'll be checking often and posting comments myself. This is a great way to explore RED GLASS...

AND be sure to mark your calendars for Wednesday, May 20. I'll be doing a one hour long *LIVE CHAT* that starts at 6:oo p.m. Pacific time, 7:00 p.m. Mountain time, 8:00 Central time, and 9:00 East coast time.

Isn't the readergirlz manifesta great?

It's such an honor for RED GLASS to be chosen for this... readergirlz is such an awesome site... that's how I found out about The Adoration of Jenna Fox, which I wrote about in my last post. You can check out the other books and authors they've featured in the past and put together a great reading list to last you through the summer...

I'm really happy that the readergirlz feature also talks about the Dream Act , which is proposed legislation that would address the problem of the huge number of teens who are great students and want to go to college and get professional jobs, but they can't because they're undocumented. Many of the teens in this situation were brought here as little kids by their parents, and have spent most of their lives here. Read more about the Dream Act ! You can sign a petition here

Okay, on to other news:

I'm extra-excited today because I'm headed to NYC tomorrow to visit my editor and the gang at Random House... and also my good friend Amanda who lives in Williamsburg. Toddler and hubbie are staying at home, which means I'll get to sleep in past seven (pure luxury). And I'll get to go to MOMA and hip lil restaurants and ride the subway (hopefully without a mask...) Can't wait!

Okay, check back again in a few days for my NYC pictures...

Thanks for reading!