Tuesday, September 29, 2015

#BristolCon Blues & October Auctions #cancer #charity #books #free

So, after all the build up, planning, effort and excitement, BristolCon was a bust. Not because of the wonderful organizers or guests or attendees or hotel. Nope. It was a bust due to a cracked expansion tank in my car that left us stranded less than halfway to the convention. Despite not being a serious problem, it wasn't reparable at the roadside due to being a specialized part, and the only solution was for a tow truck to carry us and our car home. I cried repeatedly from the moment I realized our trip was off until we got home some seven hours after leaving. Then I cried again the next day. It wasn't just the disappointment of missing the con. I felt bad for letting down fellow Brigader Misa Buckley, the other members of my reboot panel, and the organizers. I felt bad for my eldest after arranging for her to interview her favourite author face to face, and all the panels she wanted to go to. I felt bad for those people expecting to see me there, for those that I was taking books or swag to the con for, and for the rest of my family hoping for a fun break in Bristol.

It was nobody's fault. The break wasn't something that could have been checked for or anticipated. Just a part finally worn out on an old car that chose a bad moment to give up the ghost. Just one of those things. But none the less disappointing and frustrating for it.

My convention table that should have been. Sigh
I have to thank Joanne, Mark and Meg of BristolCon for doing what they could. They moved Misa so she wasn't alone, covered my absence on the panel, and even refunded my part of the table - an unexpected kindness. I still had to pay for hotel rooms we never got to use, but at least our roadside rescue was part of the car recovery service we were already paid members of, so didn't cost us any extra. All my convention stuff is paid for, packed, and ready to go to another convention, although we *had* to eat the chocolates I'd have been handing out. Well, they won't keep! :P

My unused reboot panel notes.
Also a hug thank you for all the virtual hugs and sympathy. It's much appreciated. While it still sucks that I've missed BristolCon, there *is* a silver lining. Well, several. We made it home safe and alive. The car repair isn't a huge deal, nor expensive - just a time consuming inconvenience. But best of all, we *will* be trying again next year...with safety nets planned in. We'll be leaving earlier and probably in a hire car. I already have my gear bought, prepared and packed, but now I can spend the next 13 months (BristolCon 2016 is back to its normal October spot) to buy in some extras. My husband is proposing to do some of his artwork to add to the table (he paints in acrylics). I will also have at least three more titles, with possibly two of them in print. I don't think I'll sign up for another panel - I don't want to let people down again. Hopefully by leaving earlier then worst case scenario we can abandon a defunct car for train/bus/taxi to get there in time. Missing BristolCon 2015 still sucks, but at least there's next year! In the meantime...


The cancer charity event Scream! For the Cure began this week and will run to the end of October, and first up is a Science Fiction/Fantasy bundle worth over $100! It includes two of my titles (Keir and Tethered), books by Jessica Subject, Anna Hackett, Cate Peace, and CE Kilgore (authors that I highly recommend), and more. You can check out the bundle HERE, check out the auction rules HERE, and bidding opens on Friday the 2nd of October. Pretty much my entire backlist will be part of the several bundles over October, and one will include a print edition of Keir. There will also be a very personal post by me about why I'm taking part in this event. Please stop by and show my friend Cate Peace your support for this cause by visiting the blog HERE. All book bundles will be open for viewing on each Monday, with the auctions taking part each Friday, so be sure to stop by each week to see what's on offer.

October is an insanely busy month for me this year, both in real life and my writing life, so here's a quick itinerary of where and what I'll be doing book-wise:

1st - Cynthia Sax swings by my blog to talk cyborgs and other scifi heroes, and she wants to know which is your favourite.
2nd - When Dark Falls is featured on my blog as part of the SFRB Showcase, and my decopunk superhero romance will also be FREE at Amazon for the 2nd and 3rd. Plus the SFF bundle is being auctioned off at Scream! For the Cure. And I'm at Cate Masters' blog talking about spooky happenings, sharing a Halloween recipe, and giving away a digital format of my Halloween-themed short story.
3rd - I'm part of the Halloween-inspired one-liners at Allie Ritch's blog, and Zombies are the theme in the Love Romances Cafe Yahoo group.
5th - my personal post is live at Scream! For the Cure.
7th - read an interview with the ever so creepy Siah-dhu from Keir in Villain Visitations at Audra Middleton's blog.
8th - guest post on my blog with SA Check and his latest release, a kind of scifi/paranormal fusion of The Matrix with Ghostbusters!
16th - I'm posting about magic, spiced elderberry and brownies at Romancing the Genres.
21st - I'm part of the Halloween event on Natalie Wright's blog.
29th - author feature at Deanna's World.
31st - LRC Halloween party.

Also, All Romance eBooks are doing random giveaways during October to anyone buying books from their site. Keir and Hallow's Eve will be two of those titles in the giveaways.

Status update
First round edits for Keir's Fall went back to my editor on Friday, just in time for first round edits for my gritty space opera short to arrive the same day. The latter is my project for this week...and however much longer they may take. My editor's notes are quite...comprehensive. :P
I was aiming for a November release for Keir's Fall, but I think this may have to be pushed back until December. Sorry!

Ping Pong
Both Greta and Donna have posted about the importance of diversity in fiction, and Heather Massey of The Galaxy Express (a huge supporter of SFR and diverse books) posted a selection of resources for finding such books in the comments of Greta's post. Go check them all out!
And check out Laurie's post on first lines. In my opinion it's a great hook, but I can understand it's not for everyone. What's your view on the use of expletives?


  1. So sorry BristolCon didn't work out this year. <3 Hopefully the rest of your year will be smooth sailing!

    Also, thanks for mentioning the auction ^_^ much love to you, my dear!

    1. Thanks Cate! Yeah, if that's the worst that happens in 2015, then it's not so bad.
      And no worries - of course I'm going to pimp the living daylights out of it. :P

  2. Hugs on the missed con! That's a tough one for sure. Glad you are all okay, though.

  3. Thanks Pauline. Yeah, feeling quite relieved it wasn't anything more serious.

  4. Yup. These things happen. Heck, I missed three RWA Nationals in a row!

    Glad it's nothing serious and kudos to you for starting to plan for next year. Now I have plenty of time to send you more stuff!

    1. Yeah, feeling a bit better now the car is fixed and has been given the all clear on anything potentially more serious as a result. And yup, time to send me stuff, time to put some more of my own stuff together, and make my table even more shiny!

  5. I'm so sorry about this Pippa! So glad that you have been able to keep your chin up. I know it was a major disappointment.


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