The Friday Five … on Sunday

1. Yes, I’m a horrible procrastinator. It’s just a thing to know about me. Which is why this Friday 5 is on Sunday, but hey, better late than never, right?

2. This week I got to take a return trip to Mystic Falls and hang out with some of my favorite paranormal creatures as an extra in episode 19 of Vampire Diaries. We filmed on location in Covington, GA (which stands in for Mystic Falls, VA). I spent my afternoon walking back and forth on the sidewalk in front of a clothing store. I’m almost sure you won’t be able to see me, other than a blur in a red dress. I did get to stand next to Elena and Rebecca, and I saw Ian/Damon in his trailer at base camp, and that’s about all that I can tell you without getting in trouble for leaking spoilers. I always have a good time on the Vampire Diaries set, because the crew is so nice and fun and the actors are really mellow, but this one was particularly fun since the wardrobe department kept fawning over my outfit (a professional fashion person said she loved my “look!”), and the whole thing only lasted 6 hours (instead of the usual 12-15). Looking forward to the next time I get to work!

3. I just finished reading a book called Crash and Burn, by Michael Hassan. I saw a Forever YA review of it, and Adam Silvera at Shelf Awareness/Paper Lantern Lit had also recommended it, and let me tell you … wow. It’s unlike anything I’ve ever read, and is possibly the most real voice/narrative I’ve ever encountered in YA. Fair warning … it’s a fairly graphic, realistic depiction of teenage boyhood in all its rebellious glory, but I think that’s part of what makes it great. I HIGHLY recommend it.

4. I’ve been toying with the idea of getting a second dog, so Lucy has a buddy and might possibly help with some of her storm anxiety (she FREAKS OUT when there’s thunder, and it’s bad enough so that now she even gets anxious when it rains). I’m definitely not sold on the idea, but I have been trolling local rescue Facebook pages to check out adoptable dogs in the area. Which of course means I want to bring home ALL THE DOGS. It doesn’t help that they all have just the saddest stories you’ve ever heard … right now I’m all in love with this guy. He was recently rescued from a yard where he spent all his time on a chain in the rain and the cold. Poor kid. Doesn’t he look so happy?

5. You’re now looking at the girl in charge of programming for the Crossroads Writers Conference. Yep, I’m working to book all the awesome authors, editors, and agents who will be presenting at this year’s conference, taking place October 5-7 here in Macon, GA (and I’ll be presenting as well, of course). I’m currently scheming to get a killer lineup of novelists, screenwriters, graphic novelists, freelancers, and nonfiction writers. Trust me, you won’t want to miss it. So if you’re a writer interested in honing your craft and learning from a diverse group of talented folks, definitely think about attending. Registration should go live in a couple of months, and there are scholarships available for attendance. Last year YA author Catherine Scully secured an agent for her YA thriller based on a conversation between sessions that she had with Donadio and Olson agent Carrie Howland.