Day 1: Got to Las Vegas in the afternoon. My skin immediately started crying out for water. My hair immediately had no frizz. (What is this sorcery?) Got settled in Caesar's Palace. Ordered a room-service sandwich that cost a small travesty. Got ready for the LBYR dance party!!!
First I got to go to dinner with the wonderful LBYR staff and several other authors. Including Laini Taylor. My inner fangirl was, well, fangirling. I love, love, love her Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy. (The writing! The characters! The plot! All genius! I recommend it to everyone). I think my rabid fangirl did a good job of keeping herself hidden.
The dance party itself was so much fun! I got to meet and greet and chat up librarians. Plus hand out with some really, truly amazing authors. Holly Black showed up later in the party and I got to meet Jim DiBartolo (the insanely talented illustrator of In the Shadows, who also happens to be Laini's husband).
The party place itself was a tad dark, so it was hard to get any truly good dancing shots. But trust me. We danced. And it was marvelous. By the end of the night I was ready to collapse in bed and never get up again. But I did get up. For...
Day 2: It was an early morning (for me), as I was the first one signing in the LBYR Booth. There were 260 pretty, pretty ARCs stacked by my publicists Jenn and Faye and my husband.
The pile was signed and gone in about 30 minutes! I was kind of stunned at the end. The time felt like nothing! I've found that I really enjoy signing books for people. Meeting enthusiastic readers face to face is such an encouraging experience. So different from sitting alone in front of a computer screen in your dog-hair covered yoga pants...
Anyway. After the signing the husband and I explored the floor and hung out in the LBYR booth some more. I got to pose with my uber fabulous editor Alvina Ling (Y'all seriously, she's so talented. I'm so bleeping lucky to have her!)
Husband decided to become a Viking for the day:
He makes a pretty good Viking. IMHO.
Outside of a few other events, we had some time to explore Vegas. I'd never been before, and it was definitely an experience! The Bellagio fountains, Chihuly glass ceilings, slot machines... The place was so busy and neon and abundant.
Day 3: Once my ALA duties were over, we said goodbye to glitzy Vegas and the fantastic LBYR crew and went out into the wilderness. Just as I'd never been to Vegas, I'd also never experienced the Grand Canyon. So the husband and I drove out for a few days and hiked a nine mile trail into the canyon and back.
We stopped at Hoover Dam along the way.
The canyon was... majestic. And HOT. The temp sweltered up to 111 F while we were there. (Which is quite the opposite from the -30 F we experienced in China a few months ago.)
Flora and fauna were both in abundance. There were several fearless squirrels along the path who had no qualms trying to dig into our backpack for trail mix. We also came across this beauty:
He was massive. And almost as fearless as the squirrels.
Our drive back from the Grand Canyon was eventful. We had to get back to Vegas for our flights home. We took a wrong turn and didn't realize it until we were in the wrong state. (WELCOME TO CALIFORNIA. Oops.) An hour in the wrong direction. Husband started driving a bit (okay, much) faster than the speed limit. Which was, of course, when state trooper saw us and pulled us over. He was very, very nice and understanding when we told him we were late for our flights and let us off with a warning (THANKS, CALIFORNIA!). We followed the speed limit when our gas light came on in the middle of nowhere. Fortunately there was a gas station five minutes up the road, and we managed to refill and get to Vegas. They were boarding zone 3 when we reached the plane.
At least the drive was pretty.
All in all a fabulous ALA!