Wednesday, August 17, 2011

My AAD Philly 2011 Experience!


Last week I went to my 2nd book related con ever!  Authors After Dark was held in Philadelphia and I was so excited to go and meet all the awesome authors as well as meet some of my favorite Tweeps for the first time!!!!!  Squeeeeeeeee!!!

Welcome to Philly!


First let me introduce you to my road dog, Marquetta
I kept pronouncing her name wrong.
She still loves me though. (I think!)

Next up are my loves: my blogger and Twitter friends

Left side: Larissa, JoJo, Danielle, Mandi
Right side:  Pam, Marq, me, Mama Sally, Jen
This was taken the first night on Wednesday when we all got the chance to sit down and have dinner together. We had so many laughs that night!

My Twitter Twinnie Jen (@Twimom227)
I couldn't stop hugging her all weekend!


Larissa (@larissa_sarah) JoJo (@JoJosBookCorner)and
Danielle (@lush26) She's a dork!

Me, Mandi (@smexybooks) that I absolutely adore!
My DM buddy Penny (@sweetiepiepen) who gives me so 
much joy just by saying hi to me.  Pam again and she is
 the most adorable person that I have every met.  
Her she is once again taking part on a panel
titled, I have a Blog, Now what?  She did a great
job and I'm glad that I could be there to show her support!
Larissa was a part of the same panel and she
did a great job as well. She passed out some
t-shirts for her blog.

It's Joy (@JoyfullyReviewd)
Yeah I'm not going to say a lot about her.
We both had the same business card for our blog.
It was the equivalent of wearing the same dress to the dance. She is awesome!

There are lots of other bloggers that I loved meeting that I didn't get a pic of!
Trust me when I say that you are not forgotten!

Now let's get to the awesome authors!

It was a dream come true meeting Larissa Ione!
She is one of my favorite authors and was so nice
and sweet to all that was at AAD! She truly is a
talented author and I her books are the best!

The same could be said for Lara Adrian. She
was so gracious to everyone. I'm not ashamed to
admit that I totally girl crushed on her the entire
weekend. When she speaks her voice has a way of
putting you into a trance. It's very soothing. I
should have recorded her.

Here she is again with Meljean Brook who is absolutely
a joy to talk to. They both won multiple awards at the
Bookie Awards and along with Danielle, Jenn, and
Marq, we got to sit at the table with them and take part
in the joy of them winning! It was awesome!

This pic was truly a dream come true! Larissa and Lara
stopped by our hotel room for some birthday cake and
we all had the greatest time! There was a fly flying
around so we started calling it The Werefly! LOL!
So now we are now known as:
The Sisterhood of the Traveling Werefly!
(in pic) Jen, Larissa, Katina, Marq, Penny
Me, Danielle, Lara, Larissa
Adrienne (@DrensBspot) was the one taking the pic!

Ladies and gentlemen.  Let me introduce you to the star
of AAD 2011.  DAKOTA CASSIDY!!!!
Here she is with Nicole Peeler and Nancy Holzner
for the Secret Sauce panel. Dakota welcomed us with
this message on the board:
I felt so honored! LOLOL!

Here are the authors on the Urban Fantasy panel.
Carolyn Crane who had the cutest pigtails.
Erin Kellison who I enjoyed listening to.
Jeniffer Estep who I was so happy to meet in person!
Jess Haines and Kristen Painter were awesome as well
and I cannot wait to read their books!

Here I am with Melissa Ecker who writes some of the
HOTTEST cowboys books. In fact the card I'm holding in
my hand is Luke, one of my Book Boyfriends. Yes Donyale
@kuuipo_228, I said MY boyfriend!  It was so great
finally meeting her! 

This is the Demons The Next Big Thing? Panel
Larissa Ione (love her demons!  DEMON JUICE!)
Alison Pang (she was awesome!)
Dakota again (yes I was stalking her at this point)
Meljean Brook and Alexandra Ivy. 
 I was at several panels that Alexandra talked at 
and I was so impressed with her! You really get into whatever she is talking about and there is this wisdom that seems to come out of her when she is discussing books. It was an honor to sit and listen to her.

I also had the chance to meet someone who impressed me from the first moment he opened his mouth to speak.  Kris Cook was wonderful and I can't wait to read his books.  In fact when we had a moment alone, I told him how much he impressed me and that he was going to be the 1st new author that I meet at AAD whose book I was going to read first.  He was honored and I'm so happy that he was touched by what I said to him.  I've only meet you once Kris, but I love ya!  

I had a WONDERFUL time at AAD!  I got the chance to sit and chat with people that have become my friends over the last couple of years.  Yes I say friends even though this was the first time I actually meet most of them face to face.  They are exactly how I thought they would be in person and I am grateful to have them as part of my life now.   Ladies, thank you so much for giving me so much laughter this past week!  I shed so many tears laughing with you and I can't wait to hang with you all again!

I know that some of you have heard by now that there were some issues at AAD.  Yes there were a number of them, some of which I was a witness to.  I can honestly say that seeing the ugly side while at this con has made me decide not to go to AAD2012.  Even though there were some negative moments, I left the con with a positive feeling due to all of the awesome people that I had the opportunity to meet.  AAD 2011 allowed me the chance to do this and for that I am grateful.

I want to end this post with something that I read on Twitter.  Felicia (@thegeekyblogger) said it best when she posted this: 

: remember you choose to remember the positive or the negative! Positive much more fun!

Well said Felicia, well said.  


  1. Awesome post and I agree with you 100%! I choose to dwell on the good, because the good was not good, it was fan-freaking-tactic!

    It was unforgettable meeting you all! I love you so much more now! Xoxo

  2. Awesome Post! I had a blast too and just choosing to ignore the things that were not in my control :) Fortunately my attitude is something I can control!

  3. Love this post! LOVEEEE Dakota's hair!!

  4. Larissa - It was so great finally meeting you! I hope we get to do it again!

    Felicia - You are awesome and so right! All I'm thinking about is the positive. *mwah*

    RRR - Thanks mah dear. Dakota's hair is awesome! The 1st time I saw her at Lori Fosters, I was afraid to go up to her because there is so much energy buzzing around her. She'll have to watch out for me next time cause I may tackle her!

  5. AWWWWW I LOVE YOU BELLS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This is an AWESOME post. I love it so much, you really captured the fun and love that was there. And that tweet by Felicia is perfect. BRAVO, My friend!!!!!!! BRAVO! <3 xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo

  6. What a fantastic post. You can tell that you had a wonderful time. How incredible to meet all those awesome authors and other bloggers. Some day I will attend a function. I love how you ended your post with the Twitter quote.
    Thank you so much for sharing your photos and experience.

  7. OK I just have to comment again and say that I feel EXACTLY the way you do. You captured what I wanted to say. It's so weird how we all met and just clicked, and were instantly a family. It was my first Con and I am still so high from the love I am planning more more more! :P Thanks for being you, Bells.

  8. Great recap Bells! I too ended up inadvertantly stalking Dakota Cassidy. She's a friggin' riot! It was great meeting you and being able to thank you for your smutty Monday book excerpts. ;-)

  9. Looks like you had an awesome time Bells!!!! Yay!!!!

  10. I now can't write a post because I think you said it best, lol. I agree. Believe me, there are much more negative things at a con, but they are too gross to go into...and unfortunately, I experienced them first hand, lol.
    Getting to know everyone, putting faces with names on twitter etc was wonderful and I can't wait for NOLA!

  11. Bells, it was great meeting you, too. Hopefully, we'll see each other again soon.

  12. Pam - *channeling Cuba Gooding Jr. in Jerry Maguire* *pointing at you* Pamela...You are the ambassador or my smuttyness! Thank you for so much joy and support and awesomeness and just...freaking everything! Seriously, it's an honor to know you.

    Jen D. - I loved meeting you and I'm so happy that my Monday Smutty Goodness came in handy. When you tweeted me that I cracked up! Can't wait to see you again!

    Mollie - I did and I'll never forget!

  13. Great post Bells!! I loved meeting all of the authors and readers. Such a fun experience! I will always remember it.

  14. I didn't get a chance to attend AAD this year, so I didn't hear about any of the bad stuff. I'm sad, though, that it will keep you away from NOLA next year. (I actually will be at that one!)


    This was a very Nices post I wish I could have been there to hang with Bells and the rest of the gang!
    (don't believe Bells the cowboy is Mine)

  16. great post Bells! glad that the RL meeting of the bloggers was so amazing!

  17. Great post Bells. I had a blast hanging out with you all weekend. You and the fellow bloggers totally made my con. I still can't believe how amazing all of the authors were and I loved that we got to hang out with them all. I completely agree with everything you posted. Especially the comment about Lara's voice. So hypnotic. I hope that we can meet again. =)

  18. What a great post! I think that quote at the end says it all, and I'm glad that some bad experiences didn't ruin your whole weekend.Plus, I am super jealous of everyone you got to meet!!

  19. I wish I could have been there to see you!!! I'm glad you had a good time and am sorry that there were some negative aspects to it. Sadly, the negative is always around to balance out the positive. But, I think your ending comment & the Twitter is perfect. I *heart* you, Bells! :)

  20. This was an awesome post! I'm glad I got a chance to meet you this year, but I'm super bummed that I won't see you next year. :(

  21. Great post Bells! Really great post. :)

  22. Melissa Schroeder - I'm sure anything that you write will be great! Thanks for stopping by to comment.

    Kris - I hope so! :)

    Mandi - It was great spending time with you again! Being with all the girls was a dream come true!

    Jen - I'm sad that I won't be going either and will miss out on meeting new people. Perhaps we'll see each other somewhere else. :)

    Xee - I wish you were there as well! (He's MINE!)

    Jay - Thanks for stopping by girlie!

    DG - It was great meeting you and hanging with you! :)

    C - I can't wait to hang with you again at Lori Foster's.

    Bridget - I *heart* you too!

    Bronwyn - It was great meeting you as well!

    Julie - Thanks. :)

  23. I was oh so happy to have met you finally and almost made you pee your pants during the author signing.

    Balls to the walls! :P

  24. It was lovely meeting you, Bells! :)

  25. Man, I wish one would come my way... you look like you had an amazing time.

  26. KB - I'm so happy that I got the chance to meet you! You were so much fun to hang with and had me cracking up. Balls to the walls! AHAHAHAHA!

    Sylvia - I loved meeting you as well! :D

    Jessilyn - I had the best time! I hope you get to attend one in the future.

  27. I'm so upset that I missed out, but I'm happy that y'all had such a great time! I'm talking to PK about it, but it's looking like I'll be able to go next year. Not for the entire time because of my school schedule, but for the majority of it, at least. :)

  28. Love this post, Bells and I agree wholeheartedly with it! So glad I got to meet you & the rest of our con crew!!! Too much fun!

  29. Mama Kitty - I'm sure we'll get to meet soon. :)

    Penny - I adore you and it was my pleasure to finally meet you. It was a moment of pure joy when I looked through the glass and saw you standing there. :)

  30. I just can't say it enough! I MISS YOU GUYS!! Doing the #Roadrunner and #SQUEEHUG to everyone!! Great post Bells!*Muah*

  31. I thought I had already commented when I read it the first time. Huh... (yes, I have read this post more than once!) Meeting you was truly one of the top moments from last weekend. You and I started together and you've always been there for me. I am so honored to call you friend! LOVE YOU! xoxo

  32. This was a great post. Looking back at AAD, I can't believe how many people I missed talking to. It was a whirlwind for me and I think next time I should make a list of who I want to be sure and meet.