Monday, November 24, 2008

The weekend I lost my brain: part two

So continuing on from yesterday's post--I had a great dinner with Ted and company Friday evening, and a fun time networking at the reception (once I actually got to the right party). I returned home late that night just in time for . . .

Brain malfunction #3: I realized around midnight that I had NO IDEA what time the SCBWI conference started in the morning.

I was so wrapped up in finishing my revisions and finding a fabulous outfit to wear to the dinner/reception, I failed to record the actual details of the conferCheck Spellingence in my brain--which I guess wouldn't have mattered since my brain was still sitting in a dressing room next to the indigo boot-cut jeans I'd tried on earlier in the day. I searched the house for my conference brochure (no dice), attempted to look it up on-line (modem still broken--and since the Internet is like my second brain, I was really running on zero thinking-power,) and finally hacked my neighbor's wireless again. Phew, a quick search through my emails confirmed that the conference started at 9:30 am.

I got up early in the morning and was actually ready to go about 45 minutes early--which turned out to be a good thing because Kid A woke up screaming in his crib because his diaper had literally disintegrated during the night. I carried him at arms length to the tub and started him on a bath. Apparently he wasn't too keen on this idea because he promptly screamed and splashed me right in the face--smearing the make-up on the left side of my face, and flattening a chunk of my hair. Just the look I was going for: Two Face from that Batman movie. Thanks Kid A, I love you too. So I set to work on a patch-up job of my appearance while hubby finished bath-time and wrangled the boys, and I ended up running out the door 5 minutes later than I'd planned.

I hate being late. I'm the kind of person who plans out her route the day before she has to be somewhere. Sometimes I get to places/events so early, I end up parking down the street for a few minutes until it's an "acceptably early" time to arrive. After the wrong-party disaster, I was really feeling stressed about not being late to the conference. Which is probably what led to . . .

Brain malfunction #4: After taking two wrong turns, and having to flip a U-ey, I finally pulled into the parking garage at the Discovery Gateway with only a few minutes to spare. By some miracle, there was a parking space open right next to the entrance--actually there were several. Counting myself lucky, I grabbed my coat, notebook, tote, sack lunch, 32 oz bottle of water, and dashed up the 3 flights of stairs just in time to find that the lobby was completely empty . . .

Did I have the wrong time? Did I get trapped in some kind of Mario-brothers-like time warp? I don't remember driving through any large green sewer pipes . . . I dug in my giant bag for my cell phone--I swear it took 5 minutes--dialed my hubby's number as my phone started beeping at me that it was almost out of battery. Argh! Luckily, hubby answered, and luckily strokey (as we lovingly call our modem) had a brief moment of wellness, so he was able to check my email and figure out that in my hazy brainlessness state the night before, I'd managed to confirm the time of the conference, but not the location. My trusty phone gave out just as hubby informed me that the conference was actually at the SLC library, and not the Discovery Gateway . . .

A fact that I had discussed more than once with more than one person.

Friend: Hey, isn't it great that the conf is at the library this year?

Me: Yeah. Those chairs at that Discovery museum place are made for people with much smaller bums.

Friend: You mean children?

Me: Um, yeah . . .or supermodels.

Friend: Right, cause a lot of supermodels frequent Utah's children's museum.

Me: Hey, it could happen. Don't they all go to to Park City for drug rehab anyway?

Friend: O-kay . . .So I'll see you at the LIBRARY next week. . .

Yeah, so anyway, after a frantic drive to 4th south, a wrestling match with my widow trying to reach that parking ticket thingy, and a wild dash through several floors of the library--I arrived just in time to walk into Ted's presentation 15 minutes late. Smooth. I'm all about good impressions.

Anyway, the rest of Ted's talk was fantastic. I kept turning to the people next to me and giddily exclaiming, "That's my agent!" Luckily, I was sitting next to a couple of writing BFFs (Valynne and Emily) so they didn't get annoyed until after the 102nd time I squealed about MY AGENT's awesomeness. Jill Dembowski also gave a great presentation on how to be an editor's favorite author. I wrote down many tidbits of info that I may have enough energy someday to share with you all. Emily Wing Smith participated in a panel for debut authors--she rocked the Q&A session and was the only (I think) author to sell out of her books during the lunch break.

After lunch, Valynne, Emily, and I decided to go on a little adventure . . .so we went across the street to check out the rally/protest/march that had been gathering outside the library during the conference. And no, they were not protesting writing for children . . . Emily collects pictures of unique signs for her blog, so we went on a quest to find the best sign in the bunch.


This guy won hands-down, in my opinion

When none of the shouting turned into fist fights, we decided to head back up to the conference to listen to a panel of book-sellers. Interesting, gloomy, bit depressing. Did you know that a lot of book-buyers for indie stores are kind of jaded? But don't worry, fabulous agent Ted came back to liven things up with his quips and charm. After the conference ended, Brodi, Sydney, and I snapped some picks with Ted since we are his only 3 clients from Utah.

We call this: Ted and his Utah client harem . . .or as Brodi dubbed it: Ted and the sister-authors. Brodi Ashton is on the far left, then Sydney Salter Husseman, Ted Malawer (of course), and me.

After the picture session, we went to dinner at the Red Rock Cafe. I sat at a table with Ted, Brodi, Sydney, and Jill. We had a great time discussing TV shows, books, and awkward Thanksgiving moments. It was a lot of fun, but of course my tired, tired, brain had to fit in one last meltdown . . .

Brain malfunction #5: Did I seriously just tell the story about the time I became infamous in the 9th grade because I "accidentally" beat up the neighborhood hot-shot--to MY AGENT? Yeah, I did. In full-color-blood-spurting-everywhere-from-the-guy's-nose-detail. Way to look normal, Bree, way to look normal. At least I didn't mention the fact that I punched the guy in the face AT CHURCH.

So that's all she wrote. . .for now. Do you have any brain malfunction moments to share? I'd sure love to hear them.

14 comments:

Kathy Dalton said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kathy Dalton said...

Are you kidding me? I punched a guy in the face on 9th grade, too...totally normal thing to do.

I do think you're living my parallel life, in the same city.

brickhouse79 said...

I wanted to punch a guy in the 9th grade-- several actually. But me being the passivist/total chicken that I am, chose to refrain.

As a side note, I'm sure I've sen a super model or two doing crafts in that room at the children's museum with the tiny chair . . .

Amy H. (bird geek) said...

I once attempted to forward an e-mail sent to me from a member of our company's HR department. In the "forward", I called the HR member "snarky." Sigh, I think we all know where this is going: I hit reply, not forward. What a freshman mistake! Next came the pathetic apologies. "Uh, did I say snarky? I meant...sparky?" I don't think I ever looked her in the eye again.

Mrs. Organic said...

Maybe you meant 'sparkly'? I'm sure that was it.

My brain malfs are legend, thankfully my brain blocks them out. Mostly.

Also, you are looking ten kinds of awesome in that photo - good choice of jeans.

Brodi Ashton said...

I can't empathize. My brain never malfunctions.

Sarah said...

I'm sure Ted just thought you were way too cool after you todl him about your fights. Guys LOVE tough, fun girls. All I have to say is, "You Go Girl!"

Elena said...

Church, wow, Bree. I thought that was a school story. Even more impressive. :)I hope you're getting sleep now, Bree, because I really want your comments on my book.

Kim said...

Nice picture of you Bree. Good save after the bath splash, definitely.

mistieleigh said...

Hi Bree- just checking in to say hello! Sounds like things are going well. I saw an interview of STephanie Myer (Twilight) and she talked of how she sent her book to 15 agents and 9 said no , 5 didnt answer and 1 accepted her. It made me think of you!! YAYYYY!! i am still so happy for you. Tell Bricky hello! Take care!

Alyosha said...

How can you "accidentally" punch someone in the nose?

Valynne Maetani Nagamatsu said...

As you are aware, my whole life is one huge brain malfunction.

Bree Biesinger Despain said...

Alyosha-

Don't worry, I wrote a whole novel about it. . .perhaps I'll let you read that one someday.

The Mom said...

Aren't those "punching someone in the nose in 9th grade at Church" just the kind of experiences that are supposed to make you a good YA? Afterall, if those are the years you're stuck in, those are the experiences you need to write about. Right? I decided while reading your blog just now that whenever I need a good laugh, I'm going to read your blog. :)
~Donalee