Archive for the ‘ Events ’ Category

Olympic Women’s Marathon

  I’ve been looking forward to the Olympic Women’s Marathon for a long time. I’m an avid follower of Runner’s World and loved following the USA Olympic hopefuls on their journeys to the Olympics. It’s inspirational to read about these great athletes watching them train and become extraordinary competitors.

I set my DVR to record the live marathon this morning when it began at 6am (while I’m an ardent follower, I still value my sleep!). Then, avoiding all things Facebook, Twitter, and other potential spoilers, I eagerly sat and watched like a hawk as 116 women from 67 countries vied to become the next gold medal winner.

I won’t spoil it for you if you haven’t had a chance to watch, but it really was a great race. The course itself was amazing as it took the runners through twists and turns through the streets of London. It also marked the first time that the marathon didn’t finish in the Olympic stadium instead finishing near Buckingham Palace on the Mall. And to add to all the unusual turns, it POURED for quite a while at the beginning and end of the race. Crazy!

While I’ve loved watching much of the Olympics, there is definitely a special place in my heart for the marathon. Can’t wait to watch the Olympic Men’s Marathon next Sunday! 🙂

Happy running!

Why BEA Rocks

  I had the best, best time at BEA this year. For those of you who have gone you’ll know what I’m talking about when I say it’s like a kid in a candy store. Plentiful exhibitors with their shiny ARCs just waiting to be plucked by the likes of bibliophiles like moi. It’s glorious. If you’ve never been you need to make plans to attend when you can.

To entice you a little more, here are my favorite things from the expo this year:

1. Listening to debut YA authors including the highly buzzed about Gennifer Albin and her novel Crewel. Which brings me to…

2. Getting a signed copy of Crewel! Woohoo! (It’s being released this October)

3. Talking to people from all over the U.S. You meet the most interesting people and it’s a great place to network too.

4. Having a Libba Bray moment. I stood in line that stretched across the floor of the Javits Center of people eager to get a signed copy of Bray’s newest book Diviners. Fortunately, I got there way early so I was towards the front of the line and there was a great group of women around me that I chatted with the whole time. When I got to Libba I said, “Thanks for deciding to become a writer.” She stopped signing and took my hand and said, “Thank you.” She probably won’t remember in her whirlwind of fandom, but it was a perfect moment for me. 🙂

5. Feeling refreshed and rejuvenated by the great energy of being surrounded by books and writers and publishers and others who are passionate about all things books.

Only thing I was really disappointed about: In chatting with another attendee she mentioned she really loves the books that Bloomsbury puts out. Excited I hurried over to their exhibit and inquired about the getting one of the ARCs they had. The woman at the booth looked at me and said, “Sorry, we only have a few copies of those books left.” Period. No, how about a different book or explanation or anything. In other words, you, our readers, aren’t worthy of these books in my eyes. I am saving them for someone I deem more important. No matter what her reasons for refusing to pass out her remaining ARCs, I didn’t enjoy my interaction with Bloomsbury. Disappointing.

Overall, I had a fabulous time with the good far outweighing that one experience. Hope to see you there next year! 😀

Memorial Day Fun

  My weekend was filled with sun, family, bbqs, and swimming. And lots and lots of reading. I checked out a couple of Kathy Reichs’ forensic mysteries just so I could sit on the porch and read something I knew I would love.

The pools in my complex opened this weekend so a lot of the weekend was spent relaxing poolside. The water was still freezing but very refreshing after basking in the sun. Got a little burnt because I forgot to bring sunscreen to the pool, but fortunately I’ve been blessed with a complexion that will allow it to fade into a healthy glow. 😀

I love grilling in the summer. Everything just seems to taste better. I’ve been loving all the fresh fruits and veggies that are starting to come into season and can’t wait for corn on the cob on the grill! Yumumum!

It was a wonderful, relaxing weekend. Hope you had a great Memorial Day weekend too however you chose to celebrate it.

BEA Here I Come!

  It’s still a couple weeks away, but already I’m nerding it up with planning my trip to BEA (BookExpo America). Even though I work at a library, I registered as a book blogger. I hope to use this to meet other bloggers and make some great connections. I’m also planning on bringing some networking (aka business) cards. Would it be wrong to leave them surreptitiously around the expo for people to stumble upon? Hmmm…

When I was younger I wanted to be Penny, Inspector Gadget’s niece, and walk around solving mysteries with her computer book. Finally my lifelong dream is coming true. I downloaded the BEA app onto my iPad and have already researched and plotted my plan of attack. Right now I have my handy, dandy agenda mapped out so I already know what I want to see when. That way I won’t miss any vital authors or books during my time there. One thing they don’t have that would totally rock is a virtual map of the floor at the Javits Center that tracked me as I walked. Maybe that’s a little creepy but how much fun would it be to see little bubbles of my favorite vendors and authors with me walking around so I know when I reach them? I can’t even begin to tell you how confusing that labyrinth of booths at the Javits Center is having been to several expos there before.

I think I may have to start ratcheting up my strength training and running regimes in order to be in prime physical condition for BEA. I can’t wait! 🙂 Hope to see you there!

It’s Monday, What Are You Reading?


It’s Monday, What Are You Reading? is hosted by Sheila @ Book Journey. Want a good book to read? Stop by and see what’s new in the world of literature!

Another amazing weekend! Not only did I get to go to my favorite trail for my long run, but I also went to NYC to watch the half marathon. Members of the American Olympic running team, Meb Keflezighi and Kara Goucher, participated as well as other amazing runners from around the world.

We got front row spots right along the finishing chute and were able to see the runners sprint (SPRINT!) past us then run back within touching distance with the flag of their countries draped across their shoulders in a victory jog. Incredible. I felt a runner’s high just from watching. 😀

I have to admit, I’ve been too distracted by bright and shiny cookbooks to finish any of the novels I posted last week. I love cooking and I wanted to integrate more seasonal ingredients into my dishes and find more fun vegetarian recipes to try. Here are some of the books I picked up this week:

  Bean by Bean by Crescent Dragonwagon – First, this cookbook might sound a little gassy, but it is chock filled with dips and stews and salads that are filled with healthy goodness that look and sound delicious! Second, how can you not read a book by someone named Crescent Dragonwagon? I mean, really.

  Cooking Light: Cooking Through the Seasons – A perfect start to more seasonal cooking, this cookbook offers a wide selection of dishes that make use of the freshest ingredients in every season. While this book offers a selection of meat based meals, it also has recipes like Roasted Baby Spring Vegetables and Banana-Rum-Coconut Cookies. Yum!

Farmstead Chef by John Ivanko & Lisa Kivirist – Highlighting foods that can be homegrown or farm fresh, the authors are the owners of the Inn Serendipity Bed & Breakfast and want to bring their passion for eco-friendly foods to people everywhere. This cookbook has recipes from pancakes to breads to pizza, pasta and sandwiches.

  Welcome to Claire’s by Claire Criscuolo – A collection of favorite recipes from Claire’s Corner Copia, a vegetarian restaurant in New Haven, CT. Some of the 350 recipes include: Spicy Thai Sunflower Noodles, Summer Tomato and Basil Quiche, and Grilled Cheese Florentine. I may need to run to the grocery store soon!

Despite all the healthy, fresh ingredients found in the pages above, all this food makes me happy I run regularly! 🙂

Happy reading!

It’s Monday, What Are You Reading?


It’s Monday, What Are You Reading? is hosted by Sheila @ Book Journey. Want a good book to read? Stop by and see what’s new in the world of literature!

I officially signed up for Book Expo America this June in NYC. Yay! It’s like a mini vacation for me as I get to meet new people in the world of books, pick up some fun ARCs, and listen to great speakers about the craft of writing. If you love books and have never been, definitely check it out! And this week is the big Pitchapalooza event. I’ve been working on making this event a great experience for the community, so as excited as I am I’m also looking forward to it being finished after all the work and planning! 🙂

I’ve been reading some great books as well:

  Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury – I’m listening to this book on CD and the narrator does a great job of bringing Bradbury’s classic tale to life. The descriptive language alone makes Something Wicked a wonderful book to listen to.

 

 

  Batman: The Black Mirror by Scott Snyder – I just started this graphic novel and so far, so good. The illustrations are classic superhero with their bold colors and ideal figures. It begins with Dick Grayson as Batman after he took over the cape and cowl when the original Batman was supposedly dead. But Batman has returned as well as a fun litany of evil villians – a recipe for excitement!

 

  Wonder by R.J. Palacio – This juvenile fiction book is one of the best books I’ve read in a while. August is a typical 10-year-old boy starting his first year of middle school. Except August was born with severe facial defects that, countless surgeries later, have made breathing and eating better but haven’t changed the aesthetics of his face. Told through several people surrounding August, Palacio’s story paints a wonderful picture of being different and how it’s the love and kindness that makes all the difference.

  Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson – The first book in the Mistborn series, Sanderson, who I was first introduced to through his collaboration with the late Robert Jordan in finishing his Wheel of Time series, has written a high fantasy book where evil reigns and there has been no salvation in sight for the past thousand years. This series has been recommended to me several times, so I’m excited to finally be reading it!

 

I hope you’re reading week is just as enjoyable as mine is! Happy reading! 🙂

Racing through the Holidays

  After finishing the Philadelphia Half Marathon this past weekend, I’m looking forward to taking time off from having to train so much. But that doesn’t mean I’ll stop running! Because there’s already enough stress and running around for the holidays, I want my runs to be laid back and fun. No stress, no training, no record-breaking times. Just a t-shirt and a good time. 🙂

Here are three great races that are guarenteed to make you feel great all around:

Turkey Trot – These races are almost always held on Thanksgiving morning and usually involve people dressed in turkey hats, pumpkin pie prizes, and spirited participants. What better way to start a day filled with eating than by burning a few calories that morning?

Jingle Bell Run – Usually around Christmas, these runs also feature fun hats (Santa, elves and reindeer abound), food prizes, and the sounds of jingling all the way.

Resolution Run – Sometimes called a New Year’s Run or something similar, these runs are growing in popularity as participants are eager to start the New Year on the right foot (then the left foot, then the right…). Usually held later in the day on New Year’s Day to give participants a chance to recover from the night before, it makes for a great way to get a jump start on any fitness resolutions one might have!

To find these races and more near you check out: runnersworld.com or active.com.

Happy Running! 😀

Running Around

I feel like I’ve been running around all week – both figuratively and literally. Between getting in some last training runs before my half marathon on Sunday and working on my novel, I haven’t gotten many opportunities to blog as much as I usually like. Despite next week being Thanksgiving week, I’m looking forward to the free time I’ll have as a result of NaNoWriMo winding down and my race training coming to an end.

I’ve managed to find blocks of time to concentrate on my writing which has been awesome! It’s always rewarding to see that word count go up even though I know it’s only my first draft.:) I hope you are faring well in the writing of your novels as well – whether you’re participating in NaNoWriMo or not. The only downside to working diligently on my novel is that I haven’t had as much time to devote to blogging or visiting other blogs. ARRRGGGHHH! Do you think it’s possible to duplicate myself in order to multitask to my heart’s content??

And the Philadelphia Half Marathon is finally here! This Sunday (at 7am – the race organizers are sadists) I’ll be running with thousands of others participating in both the marathon and the half marathon. I’ve been training steadily for this race since the spring as I was coming back from an injury and wanted to give myself plenty of time to up my weekly mileage and my long runs without injuring myself. Fortunately, it seems like my plan worked and I feel great! Because this is my first long race after an injury though I’m not looking to set any PRs instead focusing on crossing that finish line strong. 😀 Even better, two of my uncles and my cousin are also running so I’ll have a built-in support system on race day. Sweet!

Does anyone else feel like this month has them being pulled in twenty different directions?

Write on my friends! (The finish line is in sight!)

This is Halloween

  I love Halloween. It’s fun to see all the costumes, watch scary movies that aren’t really scary (ie. Nightmare Before Christmas), and eat candy until I feel sick. Ahh, the joys.

This year, I’ll be working on Halloween, but am a little bummed because I still haven’t thought of a good costume. Stink. One problem is that I don’t really want to spend any money, so that definitely limits my options. So if you have any good – and cheap – ideas let me know! On the plus side I’m totally decking out the house this year. I picked up some cardboard boxes that I’ve cut and painted as gravestones, sketched some scenes from Nightmare Before Christmas to hang and got a few nick-knacks from a craft store. Now all I have to do is string some lights, get my Halloween playlist set, fill my crockpot cauldron with mulled apple cider, and fill my pumpkin bowls with candy. Should be spooktacular! Oh and I’m trying to decide what to watch: Nightmare before Christmas, American Werewolf in London, Hocus Pocus, or The Walking Dead. Decisions, decisions…

I’m planning on having a huge pumpkin carving party (okay, maybe it’ll just be me, my girlfriend and my dog, but still…) this Friday to kick off the Halloweekend, so I have to get planning on what elaborate design I want to carve. Hmmm…

Comic Con!

 This past Friday I attended the New York Comic Con. It was insane! And a little overwhelming… I loved it, being the nerd that I am, and found every minute of my time there packed with exciting things to do and see.

Having never gone to a comic con before, I had only the Internet and word of mouth to go on for what to expect. MTV had a helpful website filled with a bunch of posts on “Top 10” lists on how to navigate the unfamiliar territory. Despite the whirlwind of events, here are the things that stuck with me the most:

1. The welcome packet mentions: You can’t bring swords or other weaponry into the event and showers help make for a fun event. Just the fact that those things need to be mentioned showed me early on what I was in for.

2. Wall to wall people in costumes. Most are happy to pose for pictures as they get to imagine they are the heroes they dressed as if only for the day.

3. Panels rock! I got to sit in on several great, great panels including: It Gets Better Through Comics, a screening of a TV adaptation of Locke & Key (looks good, but creepy), and a discussion with the writers and cast of the SyFy series Haven (a favorite of mine….I may have actually drooled just a little when they came out on stage.)

4. Writer & Arists & Agents, oh my! One of my favorite parts of the experience was being able to talk to people. Everyone I met, even if you didn’t buy something, was super friendly, kind and more than willing to chat about their work, their philosophies and their upcoming projects. They get to publicize and you get to chat with some amazing, talented individuals.

5. Meeting one of my graphic novel heroes, Terry Moore. He wrote Strangers in Paradise, Echo, and, currently, Rachel Rising. If you ever want to read a phenomal story with equally wonderful illustrations, he illustrates his graphic novels too, read Terry Moore. With strong female characters who can kick butt one minute and show a sensitive side the next, it’s impossible not to be drawn to these tales.

6. Artist Alley. While some artists will charge a buck or two for a sketch, most will make a sketch for you because they are so nice. I brought a small sketchbook that is now dotted with great illustrations from some of the best artists in the business. If I were to go again, I would bring dollar bills and also something to trade as artists seem to work on a barter system as well.

Definitely check out Comic Con if you can, it’s worth experiencing at least once. 🙂