You guys know I like to drive. Give me a car and a destination and I'll get there. Good company and rockin' tunes are also appreciated, but if I had to roadtrip without them I suppose I could.
This post is about Ohio, lonely winding roads, creepy houses, lots of cool ladies, and strange but wonderful accomodations. Oh yeah, and these ladies...
|Smart Chicks Dayton: Kelley ARmstrong, Jen Lynn Barnes, Kami Garcia, |
Melissa Marr, Alyson Noel, Jackson Pearce, and a special appearance by Margaret Stohl.
It all started in early spring when the Smart Chicks Kick It Tour was announced and three girls made a pact. Those three girls were Kristi from The Story Siren, Chelsea from The Page Flipper, and myself. The deal was that we would go to the Dayton, Ohio ands Cincinnati, Ohio stops of the tour. Long story short, the pact broke down a matter of weeks before the event but that did little to deter me. Kristi and I were still on for Dayton so we planned on staying together, and I found out last minute that Chelsea would be in Cinci. The problem was I had nowhere to stay, so I thought Dayton would be it for me. One stop is better than none, right?
|The Story Siren, Kristina McBride, and me.|
I got on the road at the crack of "Oh my god, why am I awake" that Thursday and headed west to Ohio. West Virginia was ueventful as usual until my GPS lied to me. Big surprise. You'll recall it tried to drive me off a bridge into a river in Kentucky not long ago. This time, however, it told me that I needed to go went then northeast, back-tracking into Ohio. I ignored it and took a road that I vaguely recalled seeing on Google when I looked up directions, Route 35. Before I turned off the GPS said 4 hours 50-some minutes. After I turned off the highway it dropped to less than 4 hours. What's the lesson? GPS ladies lie!
Route 35 is potentially the weirdest road I've ever been on. In WV it's a freeway. As you cross into Ohio it becomes a two-lane farm road lined with silos and cattle. A hundred miles from Dayton it becomes a freeway again, but then becomes a regular road complete with stoplights on the outskirts of the city.
While enjoying my scenic country ride I saw the cutest little farmhouse. A white two-story farmhouse with red shutters and a red tin roof on what looked to be a quaint little farm. It wasn't until I got closer that I realized the house had no windows. The windows were sealed up with boards. No, not boarded up. They had a perfectly fitted board in the hole instead of a window. If that wasn't enough, there were horizontal slits in the windows, each about 1-inch tall and 8-inches long. Super-creepy! (If anyone knows what this is about, please comment or email me.)
I arrived later in the afternoon, and Kristi humored me by getting lunch with me. From there we hung out at the hotel until the signing at Books & Company. We arrived well before the signing was scheduled to start and there was already a line! Minutes before the event started Kami Garcia, co-author of Beautiful Creatures and Beautiful Darkness, drafted me as the official photographer.
|Margaret Stohl riles up the crowd in Dayton. (Yes, Jackson Pearce is standing on a table.)|
|The Smart Chicks talked about their books and answered questions before signing.|
|Kami talks while Margie does her best Vana impression.|
|The Smart Chicks sign a whole lot of books. |
(Kristi and I didn't help. We each had about three dozen.)
|Everyone except Koriann and Mara. |
Somehow they escaped the camera.
|Smart Chicks at the signing table.|
|Jeri and the Smart Chicks throwing swag.|
|Kami signs an awesome T-shirt.|
No funny stuff this giveaway. Winner takes all.
Contest is for U.S./Canada only and will end at 11:59p.m. EST on December 11.
- As You Wish by Jackson Pearce (signed)
- Sisters Red by Jackson Pearce (signed)
- ARC of Radiance by Alyson Noel (signed)
- Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl (signed)
- ARC of Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl (signed)
- The Forest of Hands & Teeth by Carrie Ryan
- The Dead-Tossed Waves by Carrie Ryan
- Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr (signed)
- Ink Exchange by Melissa Marr (signed)
- And some swag.
Just fill out the FORM to throw your name in!