Readers and Bloggers Luncheon 10/11/14

Readers and Bloggers Luncheon 10/11/14

Washington Romance Writers hosted their first annual Readers and Bloggers Luncheon yesterday (10/11/14). The Loft at 4935 restaurant in Bethesda, MD may have gotten more than they bargained for when 40 romance writers and about 60 readers/bloggers descended on the place. ¬†ūüôā

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Raffle baskets, trick-or-treating for swag, free books, signings, and meeting new friends filled the afternoon (and chocolate cake). It was so wonderful to meet and talk to¬†so many enthusiastic people who love reading just as much as I do! ūüôā

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As part of the festivities, the authors were assigned tables and asked to come up with a centerpiece. Anything goes. I’ll tell you, some of those¬†centerpieces were just fantastic!¬† They ranged from sedate (like ours pictured above) to drool worthy (think pictures of hunky guys hanging from branches of a small tree–their theme “Men Grow On Trees”) to chilling (books surrounded by skulls and creepy crawlies). So much fun!¬†For our theme we chose “Thrills and Chills” since we had a mix of Romantic Suspense and Paranormal authors. (You may not be able to see it clearly, but I have a “Glock” in the flowers¬†and a throat-mic/earpiece hanging from the branches.)

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My fellow authors (pictured from left to right above) at Table 10 were  Caryn Moya Block (Paranormal), P.A. DePaul (me), Rachel Rawlings (Paranormal), and Elisabeth Staab (Paranormal and Contemporary).

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Even Dean Winchester made an appearance! LOL.

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As I mentioned before, part of the fun was the raffle baskets. I put together a basket that included an Indigo blue Delta Squad T-shirt, a free download of EXCHANGE OF FIRE, a picture frame, and a few smaller goodies.¬† I’m pictured with Karlene Kipp, winner of my raffle basket. ūüôā

 

I want to to say THANK YOU to everyone who attended this event. I love meeting people who are just as passionate about reading as I am. To those of you who are going to download a copy of EXCHANGE OF FIRE, I give you a HUGE THANK YOU. I truly appreciate the support from the bottom of my heart.

Next up on my appearance schedule is¬†NJRW’s annual Put Your Heart In A Book Conference from Friday, October 17th to Saturday, October 18th.¬† If you have some free time Saturday from 4-5:30, there’s a large book fair and author signing open to the public. LOTS of romance authors participating in this one (Some really huge names will be there too). For more information and/or directions click here.

Until next time!

Sincerely,

P.A. DePaul

 

 

Lady Jane’s Salon Wilkes-Barre/Scranton

Lady Jane’s Salon Wilkes-Barre/Scranton

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On 10/2/14, I had the pleasure of visiting West Pittston, PA to¬†read an excerpt from EXCHANGE¬†OF FIRE for Lady Jane’s Salon Wilkes-Barre/Scranton satellite salon.

2014-10-02 17.34.20What made this trip special (outside of the other wonderful authors who I read with and the readers I got to meet…more on them in a moment) was the location. Pittston, PA is located in the mountains between Scranton and Wilkes-Barre, along the Susquehanna River.

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The scenery was absolutely breathtaking and the town was something out of a book. And with the fall leaves beginning to turn, the whole picturesque quality was made all the more beautiful.

 

You may¬†remember a post¬†back in May about an TV interview¬†and segment for a satellite branch of Lady Jane’s Salon in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton (If not, click here, I was¬†interviewed (with other authors) about writing romance for the local TV station).¬†I mention this because another aspect of this salon’s uniqueness is the fact it’s held at a winery. Bartolai Winery. How cool is that?!?!?

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So, now I’ve been enchanted by the scenery and dazzled by the host location, how did it get better? Why being treated to a free glass of wine and the company surrounding me, of course! ūüėČ

The other three authors reading last night were Judi Fennell (who writes in multiple romance genres), Roz Lee (erotic romance), and Kym Grosso (erotic paranormal romance). Everyone was phenomenal! I really enjoyed listening to the variety of excerpts.

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2014-10-02 19.07.30I read an excerpt¬†from EXCHANGE OF FIRE. The scene I chose was filled with¬†high-action–bullets were¬†flying¬†and Grady and Sandra were¬†trying to escape death. (For those who have already read the story, I chose Chapter 39.) Not only did I get to read from the book, I got to sit on a “throne”! Nice!

The readers I met were so supportive and so enthusiastic,¬†they¬†helped refuel my creative juices. I’m going¬†to buckle down and hammer away at Book 3 in the SBG series. I truly appreciated every person and thoroughly enjoyed the conversations.

If you ever have the chance, I’d definitely recommend visiting this region of Pennsylvania and joining the wonderful folks at Lady Jane’s Salon in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. ūüėÄ

Sincerely,

P.A. DePaul

 

Lady Jane’s Salon Silver Spring Reading

Lady Jane’s Salon Silver Spring Reading

On Saturday evening, September 13th I got to share the podium with four other authors for a Lady Jane’s Salon reading event.2014-09-13 19.41.37

For those unfamiliar with Lady Jane’s Salon (LJS)¬†I’ll try to explain. The Silver Spring location is a satellite branch of the original LJS in New York City. What LJS strives to do is¬†foster a place where¬†romance authors and readers can come together to hear selections from¬†latest works in a comfortable environment. LJS is now nationwide and hosted all types of venues that allow discussions and the ability for readers to connect with the authors (and vice versa).

Last night’s reading was hosted at La Madeline in Bethesda, MD. A comfortable French bistro that welcomes LJS participants.

I read a selection from Exchange of Fire. To spice things up, I decided to read a high-action scene from Grady (hero)’s¬†point of view. For a moment in the Salon, we have bullets flying while Grady and Sandra (heroine) try to escape¬†a sniper’s deadly attempt on their lives. Even my heart was pounding (though that could have been the nerves from standing in front of a group and reading out loud <wink>).

I had a lot of fun and will be participating in another LJS event on October 2nd, this time in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, PA at Bartolai Winery. Hope you can join me for the event! ūüôā

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Authors L-R Merry Bond, Sandra Bunino, Ellen Butler, Kastil Eavenshade, P.A. DePaul
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Authors L-R Merry Bond, Sandra Bunino, Ellen Butler, Kastil Eavenshade, P.A. DePaul, and Miguelina Perez (LJS-SS Coordinator)

 

Sincerely,

P.A. DePaul

 

 

 

Writer’s Police Academy 2014

Writer’s Police Academy 2014

From¬†September 4th-7th, I¬†traveled to Greensboro, NC to attend¬†the Writer’s Police Academy for the second time. What is Writer’s Police Academy (WPA)? Great question! To quote their website (because they define it best) “The Writers‚Äô Police Academy offers the most hands-on, interactive and educational experience writers can find to enhance their understanding of all aspects of law enforcement and forensics. This is a one of a kind event, featuring real police, fire, and EMS training at an¬†actual police academy. Top instructors and experts!”

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Oh yeah. That’s me above channeling Wraith as I learned more nuances about the sniper world. Captain Shepherd of the Guilford County Sheriff’s Office took the time to explain how he holds and adjusts the rifle as needed. He then was kind enough to let me hold the 15+ pound weapon and line up behind it (he even took pictures for me). So cool!

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2014-09-04 20.45.06On Thursday evening (opening night), I attended two awesome sessions: 1. Aviation and Aerial Surveillance, and 2. Disarming the Bad Guys.

1. Aviation and Aerial Surveillance explained about how the police department uses airplanes to aid them in their searches. We even got to take a field trip to the airport so we could see the type of planes they use. I’m pictured above in the TFO seat. That stands for Tactical Flight Officer. This person acts as a spotter who relays information to the ground team as they continue their pursuit.

2. Disarming the Bad Guys was an interactive class led by Eli Jackson,¬†a mixed martial arts expert who holds multiple black belts (pictured left). She (along with her lovely assistant, author AJ Scudiere) demonstrated how a person could disarm a “bad guy” when faced with a gun and/or knife. I’m pretty sure that I’m in no way prepared to actually use this new information myself,¬†but I can now write about it a little easier! ūüôā

 


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On Friday morning, we were treated to a demonstration from EMS and Fire. They simulated an accident scene involving a drunk driver and a group of people he plowed into as they set up for a yard sale. WPA went all out for this too. They had make-up simulating burns and bloody gashes and even had the “drunk driver” stumbling as the police officers carted him away.

For my classes on Friday, I took 1. Domestic Murder (domestic violence that resulted in murders), 2. Microbial Forensics: Using Microorganisms As Weapons (very interesting, yet, scary class), 3. Researching Exotic Crimes (given by Dr. Katherine Ramsland about exotic (gruesome) deaths over the decades), and 4. Broken Bones, Ballistics & Backdrafts: Technical Stuff That Writers Get Wrong (Given by author John Gilstrap–awesome class).

 

On Saturday morning, we were treated to a demonstration on Breaching Methods. The above pictures shows how a team (usually comprising 6-8 people) could use a small explosive to open a locked door. The picture on the left shows a small explosive affixed to the door knob and the picture on the right shows a strip of¬†explosives affixed to the hinges (sorry, I wasn’t fast enough to capture the actual explosion). It was very cool and very informative.

For my classes the rest of the day, I took: 1. Special Ops: What¬†Are They Good For? (given by Chief Scott Silverii. Very awesome), 2. Self-Defense for Women (Dee Jackson taught¬†about self protection), and 3. Handcuffing and Arrest Techniques–I now¬†know how to¬†handcuff and zip-tie correctly!

The main presenters were awesome (Michael Connelly, Lisa Gardner, and Alafair Burke) but I didn’t take any pictures. Sorry! I got so caught up in learning this¬†year that I barely remembered to take a picture.

Hope you enjoyed my brief (at least I tried to be brief) recap of an awesome multi-day event.¬† ūüôā

Sincerely,

P.A. DePaul

 

WBRE Morning TV Segment

WBRE Morning TV Segment

On April 30th, I joined¬†9 other authors in a TV segment featuring the¬†launching of¬†Lady Jane’s Salon Wilkes-Barre/Scranton branch for a local TV station. I think I need to say that again, I got to be on TV! Woot! Woot! ¬†<Ahem>¬†Adolescent moment over…for now.

Oh heck. I know you’re anxious to see my small moment with my DROOL-WORTHY Exchange of Fire cover. I’m seated¬†at the right end of the table.¬†You’ll see me right¬†away when they pan down the line,¬†but keep watching because my interview is at the end (around 1:45 mark).

 


 

Ok. Ok. I know. DORK, right? Well, I’ll be honest, I thought¬†Jasmine was¬†headed for¬†the author next to me. Soooo, I had to think on my feet (obviously not my forte) but fun, right??¬†And honestly, the cover speaks way better than I do.

 

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To set the scene, it was a dark, cold, rainy morning, and when I say morning, I mean, I had to report to Bartolai Winery at 4:30A.M. The local morning news show airs from 5am-7am and we were being filmed as part of their show. They were supposed air 3 live segments but the lack of cell phone service had the news crew scrambling to tape the three spots in a hurry so the camaraman could drive the van until he found cell service to upload the film. NUTS!

After our fearless news reporter, Jasmine Brooks, led us through a whirlwind of taping (BTW, my¬†glamorous spot in the limelight occurred during the¬†2nd¬†taping and we were told anyone chosen had about 15 seconds to talk. Let me repeat. 15 seconds. That’s quick!), she then relaxed a little and interviewed some of the authors who had not had a chance to speak in the other 2 segments. By mid-day, WBRE edited all the footage together and came up with a 2:13 segment. I’ve included this below. While I’m not speaking in this version, you’ll see me pop up every now and then when the pan all the authors.

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The other participating authors include: Veronica Forand, Susan Scott Shelley, Amy Riccetti Gale, Diane Alberts, Jen McLaughlin, Ruby Bassett, Roz Lee, Tina Gallagher, Magdalen Braden, and Tori MacAllister.

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Below is an example of us helping her with the teasers  Jasmine recorded to be aired before and after commercial breaks.

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All in all, this was an exciting fun time, I’m glad I got to be a part of. As promised, below is the edited clip of all the filming they compiled:

 

Hope you enjoyed!

P.A. DePaul

WRW’s In the Company of Writer’s Annual Retreat

WRW’s In the Company of Writer’s Annual Retreat

Washington Romance Writer’s Annual Retreat kicked off on Friday, April 4th and ended on Sunday, April 6th. We descended on Westminster and took over the Best Western hotel.

It was wonderful to reconnect with authors I hadn’t seen since last April and to meet new authors who I look forward to seeing again.

But, I’m pretty sure you tuned back in because in my last post I promised to show you my interpretation of Steampunk. Well, without further ado, I give you:

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Horrendous, right? LOL! As it should be! One of the biggest events in the conference (besides the pre-retreat signing…and I’m still enjoying my stay in the fantasy world) is Romance Jeopardy. In the past, only the committee members got to dress up but in the last two years they’ve allowed us to participate. This year’s theme was Steampunk. After my parading around in my full Scottish garb last year, I knew I needed to give the corset a rest. Viola! Instant “Punk” with “Steam” coming out of her mug.

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St. Martin Press’ SVP Jennifer Enderlin helped emcee Romance Jeopardy

Even some of our esteemed guests of honor joined in on the fun.

The Jeopardy committee did a wonderful job organizing the event and raucous laughter could be heard from the other side of the building!

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Me with Lori Dillon (who seemed to have a better handle on the theme than me.) ūüôā

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A huge round of applause should also go to the retreat committee for organizing such an awesome, relaxing event. I can’t wait for next year!

 

Sincerely,

P.A. DePaul

 

 

 

Book Signing with Nora Roberts at Turn the Page

Book Signing with Nora Roberts at Turn the Page

Washington Romance Writer’s Annual Retreat kicked off on Friday, April 4th and ended on Sunday, April 6th. There were so many wonderful moments, but I’d have to say that for me, the highlight was the pre-retreat booksigning.

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Nora Roberts and I after the booksigning ended

 

I’m still asking for¬†someone to pinch me because I was chosen to join fourteen other¬†authors¬†to sign with¬†Nora Roberts on Friday, April 4th to sign in her book store, Turn the Page.¬†I mean, wow. Okay. So I guess I don’t want anyone to really pinch me because I¬†like this current fantasy world. ūüôā

This signing turned out a star-studded range of authors representing all types of romance genres: Robyn Carr,  Robin Perini,  Liliana Hart, Tara Janzen, Cathy Maxwell, Diana Cosby, Kimberly Kincaid, Kieren Kramer, Sally MacKenzie, Leigh Duncan, Meredith Bond, Mindy Klaskey, Mary Strand and Diane Gaston.

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All of us after the book signing was over. I’m in the middle, in-between Diana Cosby and Robin Perini!

I met a lot of wonderful¬†readers on Friday and it’s an experience I’ll cherish for life.

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Me with my table mate Meredith Bond.

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Stay tuned for next post where¬†I’ll include¬†pictures from the retreat. Would you like to see my interpretation of Steampunk and why I’m dressed up? It’s quite interesting, I assure you. ūüôā

Sincerely,

P.A. DePaul

 

A Novel Idea, Chapter Two Book Signing 12/21/13

 

Saturday, December 21, 2013.

Picture a beautiful sunny day. The weather a balmy sixty degrees. Just a few clouds in the sky. It’s beautiful…and unusual for the Northeast in December. But I’ll take it!

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Unlike the snow and ice storm during my last book signing, nature decided to be kind and send some warm weather to Vineland, NJ. A Novel Idea, Chapter Two hosted a signing event with myself, Ruth A. Cassie, Nicole S. Patrick, Emma Kaye, and Lita Harris (That’s right, same group of authors who tackled Jack Frost on December 8th) from 1-3pm.

 

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Standing L -R: P.A. DePaul, Ruth A. Cassie, Lita Harris
Seated L-R: Emma Kaye, Nicole S. Patrick

An Amish Market! What a fun place to have a signing. I thoroughly enjoyed sampling the food and taking home bakery items to the family.We also had a four-legged friend share our space. Meet Buddy!

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Nicole S. Patrick holding Buddy the dog with Emma Kaye

Such a well trained dog!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I want to thank everyone who came out to see us today. Appreciate the support as well as meeting new friends!

 

Sincerely,

P.A. DePaul

 

BookTrader Book Signing 12/8/13

On December 8th, 2013, BookTrader of Hamilton opened their doors to allow me and four other authors to read a selection, answer questions, and sign our books.

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Left to Right: Lita Harris, Ruth A. Cassie, Emma Kaye, Nicole S. Patrick, P.A. DePaul, Jenn Sabol (Store Manager-kneeling-left), Tegan Cenni-kneeling-right)

 

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Unfortunately, the weather decided to throw an ice/snow storm our way but we still had a lot of fun. BookTrader of Hamilton rolled the red carpet out for us and welcomed us with open arms. They had an informal set up where lounged on couches and chairs and got to hang out with the readers who braved the elements.

 

They were even kind enough to dedicate a part of their endcap for my books.IMG_20131208_160427_527

I truly appreciate all the readers who came out as well as Joan Silvestro, the owner of BookTrader of Hamilton, for a fun time.

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Sincerely,

P.A. DePaul

 

 

Writer’s Police Academy–Sept 2013

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Putting on the Kevlar bomb suit. This thing is HEAVY!

On September 5th, I had the pleasure of traveling to Greensboro, NC to attend the first day of
Writer’s Police Academy. What is Writer’s Police Academy (WPA)? Great question! To quote their website (because they define it best) “The Writers‚Äô Police Academy offers the most hands-on, interactive and educational experience writers can find to enhance their understanding of all aspects of law enforcement and forensics. This is a one of a kind event, featuring real police, fire, and EMS training at an¬†actual police academy. Top instructors and experts!”

Friday Night High Speed Chase
They simulated a high speed felony stop

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The experts ranged from active duty police officers, firemen, Fire Marshall EMS, detention supervisor,¬†Chief of Police, Sherriff, undercover agents to federal agencies such as secret service and ATF. The expertise didn’t stop there either. Professors and leading experts in their field also gave workshops and lectures on forensics psychology,¬†forensic anthropology, DNA, and micro-organisms.

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Dr Kathy Reichs (Forensic Anthropologist and inspiration behind TV show “Bones”

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Building searches was so much fun. Our instructor, Captain R.B. Sheppard (pictured on the right) led our class through the techniques on how to correctly search a room for bad guys. My team (pictured on the left) was awesome.

I also got to attend a FATS (Firearms Simulation Training) session. This was an interactive “live fire” workshop where I was issued a Glock and allowed to point it at a projection screen and shoot bad guys. HOW FUN IS THAT?!? Sorry, I don’t have a picture of me in this workshop to show you. ūüôĀ¬† But trust me, I didn’t kill any innocents (didn’t exactly kill any bad guys either, but, hey, you can’t win them all).

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 During the driving simulator, I became an EMS Ambulance driver, attempting to navigate through a city to find victims of auto accidents. I did really good and managed not to crash or hit any cars in the different scenarios.

(Beside me is an EMT in-training, who had the misfortune of walking in the room in full uniform. He got drafted to be my partner for this photo)

I am definitely planning on going back as soon as I can…hopefully next year. The contacts I had exposure to and the hands on experience I gained could not be beat.

For more pictures and descriptions, visit my Facebook page at www.facebook.com/padepaul  I have three posts chronicling my days at WPA.