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Some Enchanted Evening

San Francisco traffic: shudder.

I did arrive early and only a little harried. I saw my dear literaticat first – she was busy getting the most critical part of the evening in order: the cookies and mini-cupcakes! Alas, I never did partake of their desserty goodness – once things got underway, I was too busy.

We had a little time before the event started, so I said hi to Sara Zarr, met Allen Zadoff and Barry Lyga … then met some of the other MG/YA authors in the crowd who had come out to support us: Sarah Quigley, Cheryl Renee Herbsman, C. Lee McKenzie, Heidi Kling, Courtney Sheinmel, and Daisy Whitney! Three Debs, two Tenners, and lovely Courtney, in a class by herself. (I've met Cheryl and Lee before, but it was so good to see them again.) Thanks so much for coming out, you guys!

I also got to meet some new agent-sisters: Ilene Wong and Whitney Miller. Stay tuned … I’ll bet it’s not long before we’re hearing that their books have sold.

And of course the evening would have been tragically lacking without the amazing Martha Flynn in attendance! She needs to come visit me in Portland. I also met Debbie Duncan, aspiring novelist and busy reviewer.

I met lots of other people, including some young book bloggers … forgive me for not listing everyone. I’m supposed to check out of my hotel room in ten minutes (literally!) so I’m rushing.

Andrew Smith was the fifth YA author on our panel, but I didn’t actually meet him until the event was over. His book is called IN THE PATH OF FALLING OBJECTS, and sounds sooo chilling. Can’t wait to read it.

Barry spoke first, and read an excerpt from GOTH GIRL RISING (about boobs). Then Sara talked about the inspiration behind ONCE WAS LOST, and read an excerpt. Then Andrew got up to talk, and I said to Allen, “Let’s do boy-girl-boy-girl. I’ll go next.”

When it was my turn, I talked a little bit about FLASH BURNOUT, read an excerpt, and talked briefly about next year’s book – THE MERMAID’S MIRROR. On Twitter, Heidi had mentioned that she hoped I would read a teaser from the mermaid book … so I did! (The prologue, nice and short.)

Then it was Allen’s turn, and he read an excerpt from his debut YA novel – FOOD, GIRLS, AND OTHER THINGS I CAN’T HAVE. Within minutes we were all laughing so hard we were crying. I can’t wait to read the whole book! And selfishly … I’m really glad I didn’t have to follow him. Can you imagine?

We answered some questions, signed some books, and then the Third Annual Fall Book Bash at Not Your Mother’s Book Club was over! Sob.

I got to spend time chatting with Heidi about writing and parenthood and contemporary realistic fiction versus fantasy, and all kinds of deep topics. She’s awesome – and she gave me an ARC of her upcoming YA: SEA. Squee!!

I got back to my hotel around midnight, but I don’t think I fell asleep until around two. I was just so buzzed from the event. Thanks so much, Jenn, for making it happen. <3

I woke up this morning, poured some coffee down my throat, and went for a walk on the beach.

Even though Half Moon Bay is only 30 miles from the crowded metropolis of San Francisco, the beach was empty, except for one fisherman and two surfers in the distance. I love being on a deserted beach. It was more than an hour before any other people appeared.

(Again, camera-phone quality photos.)


The surf was high this morning, and loud.


It’s one thing to surf in Hawaii, or some other tropical locale. But you’ve gotta have some fierce passion to surf in the cold waters of northern California.


Finding a whole sand dollar always feels rare. I kept this one.


I admired this big blue and gray shell, then gave it back to the sea.


Some people like to enjoy the ocean from a sheltered, dry deck … and some of us like to feel the cold water and the sand.

Okay, I’ve got to run before they kick me out of here!

Later, friends!

P.S. I wore jeans last night. :-)


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Nov. 14th, 2009 09:11 pm (UTC)
Yay, LK & Flash Burnout!!
It was so fun to meet you in person, wish I could have stayed longer and gotten a chance to chat more. But there's always the Literaticat retreat 2010 :)

I am sitting next to my personalized copy of Flash Burnout and can't wait to dive in. The beach pics gave me goosebumps, and I noticed that not only are we agent sisters but also blue toenail polish sisters. Nice!

Have a safe trip home. You were awesome last night.

Nov. 14th, 2009 09:35 pm (UTC)
You are so awesome, Lisa.
This brought happy-tears to my eyes. :)
It was so lovely meeting and talking about all things writerly life with you.
And hey, remember that whole sand dollar when you read SEA.

The fact that you found one gave me the chills. You'll see why.
Nov. 15th, 2009 01:35 am (UTC)
Sand dollars, beaches -- you're making it hard for me to wait for your book, Heidi! (I wonder if sand dollars like colder water more, because we have lots of them up here. I love them!)
Nov. 15th, 2009 01:36 am (UTC)
Ahaha, I just realized my icon might've tipped you off to the fact that I love them. ;)
Nov. 15th, 2009 04:26 am (UTC)
Lisa has a copy. Perhaps she could be bribed. :)
Nov. 14th, 2009 10:52 pm (UTC)
What a happy, brilliant post, Lisa. I read it twice because it made me feel so joyful for you.
Nov. 14th, 2009 11:46 pm (UTC)
Hi, Lisa - so wonderful to meet you! I'm already a few chapters in to FLASH and love your use of the photography metaphors & quotes. Seeing your Half Moon Bay pictures made me think of Marissa's compare/contrast photos (esp the toenail one). Hope you had a good flight! Ilene
Nov. 14th, 2009 11:56 pm (UTC)
The atmosphere was so positive and energizing last night!

I am a shoo in for a Portland road trip. When you have to come back to the Bay Area to learn how to surf in freezing cold water for "research" for the mermaid story, lemme know. I'll bring the boards, and I'm sure we can get Whitney-up-for-anything to join us.
Nov. 15th, 2009 12:05 am (UTC)
Loved the event last night! So great to see you again! And lovely post! Can't wait to dive in to Flash Burnout!! :D
Nov. 15th, 2009 12:17 am (UTC)
Sounds like a lovely time! And you are being very much the mermaid book writer there on the cold shore!
Nov. 15th, 2009 01:32 am (UTC)
Sounds like such a fun event! And gorgeous beach... there's nothing like having the beach almost all to yourself. :) (My DD is one of those crazies - I mean, passionate surfers - who surfs in the winter in Tofino (Vancouver Island, BC). Brrr!)
Nov. 15th, 2009 04:19 am (UTC)
It was so great to meet you LK! And of course I called Suzanne on the way home and told her I met another awesome Oregon author. I'm excited to read your book and it's on my nightstand calling out to me! And thanks too for asking the other YA authors in the audience to stand up because it was my first time getting to do so and that was a real treat!
Nov. 15th, 2009 09:55 pm (UTC)
Loved hearing about your enchanted evening. The SF area is so beautiful.
Nov. 16th, 2009 06:23 am (UTC)
Great pictures! It sounds like an amazing trip and a wonderful event. I'm really looking forward to SEA--and to your book, which is on my Christmas list!
Nov. 17th, 2009 04:02 am (UTC)
Thanks, Jessica! I hope Santa is good to you this year. :-)
Nov. 16th, 2009 10:36 pm (UTC)
SO GREAT to meet you -- and can't wait to get started on your book! xoxo
Nov. 16th, 2009 11:10 pm (UTC)
I was really happy that I could be there, Lisa. It was a great event. Jen does throw a good party. BTW Can S.F. really turn your toes that blue? :D
Nov. 17th, 2009 04:03 am (UTC)
It was wonderful to see you again, Lee. <3
Nov. 17th, 2009 04:02 am (UTC)
Thanks, Courtney - it was wonderful to meet you, too!
Nov. 17th, 2009 05:57 am (UTC)
What a terrific post! (Well, all except for the SF traffic - shudder!)
Nov. 21st, 2009 11:17 pm (UTC)
Hello Lisa!

I'm a little late finding your blog, but thank you for attending the event and THANK YOU especially for reading an excerpt from THE MERMAID’S MIRROR. I'm so excited that there's going to be a YA book about mermaids! I hope you come back to the Bay Area to sign for that!


Nov. 22nd, 2009 05:49 pm (UTC)
Thanks, Christine. It was a wonderful event!

I hope you like THE MERMAID'S MIRROR when it comes out - I know there are a couple of other mermaid YA books out there, maybe they can tide you over till mine comes out. :-)
Nov. 24th, 2009 02:35 pm (UTC)
What beautiful pictures! And I can't believe I was in San Francisco THIS weekend, instead of last. I wish I could have met you! I'm so happy it was a fun event! Very jealous that Heidi (and everyone else) got to hear an excerpt from your mermaid book, and I DID NOT ;)
Nov. 24th, 2009 09:05 pm (UTC)
One day we will meet.

But it's too bad our weekends did not overlap.

Looking forward to your SF post!

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