My #UtopYA2014 Experience Unofficial Blog Hop & Giveaway

banner blog hop 2014Happy to be participating in the #UtopYA2014 Experience Hop & (Gigantic) Giveaway hosted by the lovely Carlyle Labuschagne! You can also check out the event during its progress at Facebook Event

We’ve all been asked to post a little about our experience at the event and give new-bees some helpful insight.

Wow, where to begin . . . Going to UtopYA Con 2014 was like the biggest, most wonderful, whirlwind ever. It put my worker-bee-self into a non-stop buzz of exhibitor table prep and management, panel talks, evening fun, and interactions with the most awesomely talented people, all while in the lively city of Nashville. In its third year, UtopYA Con’s attendee numbers multiplied by over seven times (from 90 to 700)! It is a testament to the incredible need for such an event, and there is truly NOTHING ELSE LIKE IT. Next year the numbers are sure to increase even more, and since space is limited, I would encourage any who plan to attend to get your tickets early!

Who should go? ANYONE and EVERYONE having anything to do with Young Adult and New Adult Supernatural Fiction. This means authors (indies and trads alike), aspiring authors, readers, bloggers, and freelance service peeps—illustrators, cover artists, cover models, web designers, branders, formatters, editors, marketing professionals, etc.

I’ll mention these peeps again: THE READERS! What a smorgasbord of books any reader of YA/NA will find here. And not only are there super cool books to buy AND have autographed (!!), there is a TON OF FREE SWAG sure to fill a tote bag with fan-swooning souvenirs.

For authors/aspiring authors of YA/NA, I would say, if you pick one big event to attend during the year, THIS SHOULD BE IT. You will get advice and inspiration from two incredible keynote speakers (Sylvia Day & Gennifer Albin spoke for 2014); two full days of panels, covering all sorts of topics geared toward helping authors/aspiring authors; a fantastic awards ceremony and after-party; and networking opportunities up the wazoo. Each year’s offerings are a little different, though some panels are so popular they return.

I had the pleasure of being on the (Alien-themed title) SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE: LEGAL PANEL as the accounting expert. It was perhaps the most “dry” of all the panels, when you compare it to ones like Putting Together a Kick A** Street Team or Blog Your Face Off, but we had a great turnout and there were lots of questions answered. I plan to be on it again next year, as well as acting as moderator for a new panel I’m SUPER EXCITED about! And next year’s event theme: TIME TRAVEL!!

I will add one last note, though perhaps it’s the MOST IMPORTANT note, and that is how incredibly friendly and supportive everyone is at this event. The camaraderie is PRICELESS and new-bees are welcomed with open arms. Snobbery and elitist attitudes must check themselves at the door, for this event caters to those who understand the value of collaboration and friendship. So, bring your shy or outgoing self (either will be embraced), and join in on this fantastic event. You will be glad you did!

Here is the Rafflecopter Giveaway I am participating in:

prize pack one
a Rafflecopter giveaway

4 other Rafflecopter giveaways are being offered for these prizes:prize pack 5Prize pack 4

pirze pack two

prize pack 3