Category Archives: RWA

Happy Birthday, Marta Acosta; Cat with Books & New Vlog

It’s August 1st – Marta Acosta’s birthday. Give the gift of royalties by buying Happy Hour at Casa Dracula and Midnight Brunch, and pre-ordering The Bride of Casa Dracula. Miz Marta is doing RWA in San Francisco right now…

Received new books today by authors such as Keri Arthur, Colby Hodge, Marianne Mancusi and Richelle Mead. See them all here.

And here’s me yapping about the books. It’s over 7 minutes long because I wouldn’t shut up πŸ˜‰ Big file, so I couldn’t be bothered uploading it to Vimeo and Blip as well.

Melbourne Writers’ Festival, Webcams & Reading Wishlist

Melbourne Writers’ Festival
The schedule for the MWF was released today. Though there are really only two authors I’m interested in seeing, I will say straight out that the Romance Writers of Australia’s conference could learn a lot from the MWF. I only wanted to attend one session/workshop (about 1 hour) of RWA, on a Sunday, and they expect you to pay for all of Saturday and Sunday. Yeah, not going to happen. I’ll try to catch Keri Arthur some other time, because there’s no way I’ll pay for two days’ worth of stuff when I only want to attend a one-hour thing. But if that’s the go in America, I don’t see how y’all can afford to attend so many cons.

SUNDAY 24 AUG: 1-2PM: Undercover with Robert Muchamore (BMW Edge: Free Event)
WEDNESDAY 27 AUG: 11:15AM-12PM: Rachel Cohn in Conversation (ACMI Cinema 1)

Rachel Cohn’s one is actually part of the schools programme, so I’ll have to investigate to see if non-student me is allowed to attend, and what the price is. Students get to pay $6. I have a concession card; would that get me a discount? πŸ˜‰

A free event with Robert Muchamore? Count me in! Along with Alex Sanchez and Jacqueline Wilson, he’s one of my favourite writers of YA. The plots are great fun, but most of all the characters are so utterly believable. Which makes them less like characters and more like real people, which makes the writing all the more endearing. None of that Mary Sue/Gary Stu faff. Sure the characters are living the fantasy of being spies, but… If you haven’t read the CHERUB series, get to it.

Since the lovely Gwen/Faith Hunter requested, here’s the important stuff to know about webcams:

Is it compatible with your system? I have Windows 2000. Some webcams specify Windows XP or Vista. But the most common reason I saw for people selling their webcams on eBay is that they weren’t compatible with their Macs.

Does it come with a microphone, built-in or otherwise? If not, you’ll have to supply your own.

Does it come with an installation CD? No point buying the cam if it doesn’t have the necessary bits.

Does it come with an instruction manual? Hopefully with English instructions, and not just pictures. (I don’t know if IKEA and I will get along.) Because I’m afraid of screwing things up, I need to know what’s the right way, other than “not what you’re doing” πŸ˜‰

Did a quick check on JB Hi-Fi, and they sell webcams for $40-60, or something like that. I’m not willing to spend that much, so I hit eBay. I made sure to tick the box so I only saw listings where the seller’s in Australia. (Just makes me feel safer.) My search function always lists from cheapest to most expensive, so I worked through the entries, making sure they listed what I needed to know, and asking if they didn’t. Added some to my Watch List, bid on one, and I won it on Friday: $16 including postage. The seller’s confirmed my payment and left feedback, so now I await the delivery, which’ll probably be on Monday. “Webcam 8 LED 1.3 Mega Pixels USB 2.0” – don’t ask me what the brand is; I don’t know.

Reading Wishlist
I’m slowly working through the list with and UK, and then I’ll hit the Australian publishers’ sites. Where I’ve listed two dates for one title is where Amazon and UK had different dates. Mind you, that doesn’t mean it’s published in both the US and UK – probably just pubbed in the US, and the UK lists when they’ll get it imported. I’m up to the F authors.

Dog Felt Me Up, Midnight Brunch & RWA

A Dog Felt Me Up Today
I was delivering pamphlets (actually, just half a sheet of paper for each mailbox), when an unleashed dog with no person in sight started following me. Bumping against my legs. Trying to knock me over? That’s not very nice. Paws on my arse? Excuse me, that’s not appropriate… Sniffing my arse? You’ve got some problem, dawg!

Oh well, at least it didn’t bark at me. Dogs tend to bark when I walk past their homes. They’re behind fences so they can’t molest me.

Amendment to Yesterday’s Review
Remember when we realised the same stock photo was used on Keri Arthur’s Embraced by Darkness and Marta Acosta’s Midnight Brunch at Casa Dracula? It may not be used after all. Simon & Schuster (well, the US division, anyhoo) has postponed the book’s (originally titled Midnight Brunch) re-release, thus it’s no longer on the S&S site or Amazon. However, S&S Australia have still got the re-release scheduled for July 1st, according to their website. So my review has been edited to show both covers – but the release date listed is only for Australia. The book was originally published in 2007.

Romance Writers of Australia Conference (August 2008)
I was planning to attend (it’s in Melbourne this year) so I could meet Keri Arthur, but I didn’t know the pricing system. Because you can’t pay for just one workshop – you have to pay for the whole day. This sucks. I much prefer the Melbourne Writers’ Festival, where you only pay for what you attend. (Speaking of MWF, it’s also in August, and Rachel Cohn’s coming – yay πŸ™‚ )

Since Miz Keri was the only author I wanted to meet there, there’s no point going if I have to pay for extra stuff – I don’t have that kind of money to spare. But hopefully if the conference holds a signing session (here’s hoping it’s free), I might get to meet her. I’ll investigate more closer to August.

However, I still plan to attend the Australian Romance Readers’ Convention in February 2009 (also in Melbourne). Then again, prices may put me off.