Thursday, February 21, 2013

The Ottawa Blogger Mix and Mingle

Me with my large bag of books
Well this is a little late but I figure better late than never.    After many weeks of planning and waiting in anticipation on the 10th of February we had our Ottawa Blogger Mix and Mingle.  There is already a group of us that meet up regularly and while we do see each other quite often we had agreed to an annual event open to all Ottawa bloggers.  We weren't sure how many other people would join us but we were surprised to have a few new people come to the meet up. 

Goody Bags!
The day started nice and early.  I got up, got pretty and headed over to pick up Kathy (A Glass of Wine) and all the goody bags that the lovely publishers graciously set us up with.  After that we met with Katie (Bookishly Yours) and Ciara (Lost at Midnight Reviews) at Emilie's (Emilie's Book World) house.  There we frantically tried to get all the goody bags organized and all the prizes set up.  We also put together a little gift for our special guest.  When we were done there we headed over to KS on the Keys (a great little restaurant in the South Keys area that serves anything you can think of but has THE best pizza!).  We had a whole area of the restaurant ready for us and we set up all the goody bags at the tables. 

A view of the table
This is when our new bookish friends started showing up.  We were lucky enough to meet these lovely ladies:
Kelsey from Kelsey's Cluttered Bookshelf
Stella from Fire Star Books
Ashley from Fire Star Books
Kim from Pingwing’s Bookshelf
Alexandra from the Only Connect
Maria from I Believe In Story
Jessica from Read My Breath Away

In anticipation of the event I had begun chatting with a few of these ladies before the event via Twitter.  I just love how Twitter brings together so many people.  We enjoyed our lunch while discussing many bookish topics.  We argued about the need for love triangles in our books, the excessive cover changes made throughout a series and our love of reading.

The lovely Allison van Diepen and other Ottawa bloggers
We were lucky enough to have a special guest as well.   The lovely Allison van Diepen (author of Takedown, The Oracle of Dating, The Raven and several other novels) was able to join us at the restaurant.  She really gave us some good insight into the publishing world.  She told us how she has no real say in what the covers are like but that she is quite happy with her newest cover.  We also discussed the lack of bookish events in the Ottawa area.  As a blogger, I know that I am always having to travel to Toronto for these events and it would be nice to have some of the bigger names come to Ottawa.  I didn't realize that for an author living in Ottawa this could also be slightly discouraging.  Overall I really enjoyed getting to know all the ladies and I am hoping to meet up with some of them again soon. 

After lunch we had a book exchange.  We essentially took over another table of the restaurant, put our books down and went to town.  Including my goody bag and the swap I made out like a bandit; here are the books I received:

The Goody Bag:
The Enchanted Life of Adam Hope by Rhonda Riley
Invisibility by Andrea Cremer & David Levithan
Wasteland by Susan Kim & Lawrence Klavan
Creeps by Darren Hynes
Poison by Bridget Zinn
Loop by Shandy Lawson
Takedown by Allison van Diepen

Book Exchange:
Alice in Zombieland by Gena Showalter
The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff
Paper Valentine by Brenna Yovanoff (borrowed by Kathy)
Mind Games by Kiersten White
Blaze by Laurie Boyle Crompton
The Bunker Diary by Kevin Brooks
You Killed Wesley Payne by Sean Beaudoin (borrowed from Ciara)
34 Pieces of You by Carmen Rodrigues

 Overall it was a wonderful day and I can't wait to do it again!

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