Sunday, April 21, 2013

Left Coast Literary

I love this photo of Pamela Tartaglio. I took it yesterday at the Los Angeles Times Festival of books. I don't usually think of myself as much of a portrait photographer. It helps when you have a good model.

Pam is the 2013 Past President of Women Writing the West, and the current Chair of Women Writing the West’s WILLA Literary Awards. She's writing a novel set in 1894 in Cripple Creek, Colorado, sometimes called the world’s greatest gold camp. She also blogs at Past and Present With Pamela, and she's a docent at the Pasadena Museum of History where, ahem, Camelot & Vine is stocked in the gift store.

To get to the Festival, Margaret Finnegan (you should click that link) and I took the Metro Gold Line to Union station, where we actually found the free bus that took us to the USC Campus. Our goal was to have fun, find new and different books, meet authors, and (thrills!) sign more copies of Literary Pasadena: The Fiction Edition, at the Prospect Park Books booth.

The big six publishers: Simon & Schuster, Random House, Hachette, HarperCollins, Macmillan, and Penguin Group were not at the Festival, unless you want to count the fact that Penguin owns Author Solutions and Author Solutions had about 20 booths. I kid you not. Google them to find out why this could be, maybe, not great. I don't know why the big six didn't come. Maybe the west coast is not their thing.

You can get your signed copies of Literary Pasadena today at the Festival any time, and/or meet some of the authors between 12pm and 1pm. There are a lot of authors in this book! Probably someone you know. The Prospect Park booth (#63) isn't big enough for all of us, so I got my shot Saturday and I won't be there today because I am pooped!

17 comments:

Adele said...

Well, I think you'd better start thinking of yourself as a portrait genius. When I first saw this, I thought you had started using professional publicity photos on your blog!

Bellis said...

That's a fabulous photo. All the Women in the West wore lovely clothes, didn't they?

The Author Solutions booths didn't seem to have many customers, and I wasn't drawn to the books. With the big publishers missing, the Prospect Park Books booth was the best one there, abuzz with excellent authors and books - and free salt caramels. Well worth the scenic trip to USC on the Gold Line and shuttle.

Petrea Burchard said...

Thank you, Adele!

Bellis, I agree, Prospect Park's was the most interesting booth we saw, except Vroman's, of course! (I admit to a possibility for bias.) We were disappointed with the variety and interest. I think some booksellers don't know how to dress it up and draw people in. A lesson for me to learn.

Susan Campisi said...

It's a great portrait, P. I googled Author Solutions and found this damning blog post:
http://davidgaughran.wordpress.com/2012/11/28/simon-schuster-joins-forces-with-author-solutions-to-rip-off-writers/

Seems like if you're going to self-publish you have to go the real indie route and not join forces with these huge companies. I'm guessing you could write a book on taking that path.

Petrea Burchard said...

Whoa! Susan, I knew it was bad, but I didn't know it was that bad.

I could write a book on this, but mostly I'd say, do it yourself. It's not easy but you can, and you'll have a lot more to show for it. And it doesn't cost nearly as much as these shysters charge you.

altadenahiker said...

Ditto on the photo. Did you have fun?

Petrea Burchard said...

It was an adventure, Karin. It was fun to take the train, and Union Station is gorgeous. It was fun to hang out with Margaret and to meet the other authors at the Prospect Park Booth. Plus my brother was there.
I'm worn out today, so yeah, it was fun.

Margaret said...

It was a good time. And we were at the best booth for sure.

Ms M said...

Good photo!
And glad you and Margaret had a good time.
Very interesting link about Author Solutions!

sonia a. mascaro said...

So beautiful photo, Petrea!
Sounds very good a Festival of Books.

pastandpresentwithpamela.com said...

I'm the one in the photo. Although Petrea knows I write the 1890s and am active in Women Writing the West, it did not prepare her for when she bumped into me at the festival! I was back there Sunday, and my photo is in the L.A. Times today. It was fun.

Susan, thanks for the link to the post about Author Solutions. I'll read that now.

Petrea Burchard said...

Can you share the link with us, Pam?

Petrea Burchard said...

Also check out the SFWA (Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of Amerca) website. They took Penguin to task about Author Solutions, and achieved some results.

Desiree said...

Yay! And Pam's in today's LA Times
(Monday)

Petrea Burchard said...

I can't find her anywhere in the Times coverage of the Festival. Can anyone provide the link please?

pastandpresentwithpamela.com said...

The photo of me in the Los Angeles Times is in the print edition only. The article and photo gallery online is different, so you can read both to get more of the story.

The photographer highlighted the design on the lace parasol, bright in the sun. Women Writing the West was mentioned in the caption, and thousands of people read that.

Petrea Burchard said...

That is just so cool.