Thursday, March 31, 2011

Book Signing: Carrie Ryan!

Last night I was SO priveledged to go see Carrie Ryan at my local B&N! Carrie is on tour for the third book in her zombie trilogy THE DARK AND HOLLOW PLACES.

I honestly didn't think I would ever have a chance to meet this fabulous author that I have been following on FB and twitter etc. Utah has an amazing author community, and many that are connected to Utah, but when I heard Carrie was coming it was a dream come true!

I hope more authors add Utah to their tour lists because it was SUCH an incredible night! I do have to warn you, this post is long. There was too much to talk about and I wanted you all to have all the info!



* I love the Vanna White pose in this one. ;)
First I have to say Carrie is amazing. She is INCREDIBLE! So personable, so funny and just completely amazing. She was writing down names and taking notes on the people she met as she signed and was just pure amazing. Here are my notes from what she told us all: *again note that these are my paraphrased notes, I tried getting direct quotes and sometimes they are, but not always exact.

  • THE FOREST OF HANDS AND TEETH begins about 150 years after a zombie apocalypse. THE DEAD TOSSED WAVES is a generation later.
  • THE DARK AND HOLLOW PLACES is hard to describe. Like any final book in a series it should hit that point where the reader says there is no way the author can pull this together, but in the end it does.
  • There is no kissing the zombies. Very big rule.


  • The first question I get is "why zombies?" Like all good stories it starts in the 1980's.
  • Her babysitter showed her Poltergeist and she was so terrified she didn't watch the end (to this day she has not seen it) and always hated horror stories.
  • In her 2nd year of law school her boyfriend at the time (JP- who is now her hubby! And their first anniversary is on Friday, April fools! Congrats guys!) took her to see Dawn of the Dead.
  • Like any good zombie movie someone lives, someone dies, and someone gets infected. And there is that moment when you feel empowered like "go world!" "we will survive!"
  • A lot of zombie stories it's about getting from point A to point B. Point B is better than point A, but the problem isn't gone. They haven't solved the zombie problem, they haven't cured them.
  • Carrie kind of learned a love for the genre here. She wanted more and watched more (but still shunned other types of scary stories). She loved the idea of survival.
*this picture is of me with awesome Utah authors and writer friends that came out to see Carrie! It was an incredible night! I LOVE the Utah author community! Here is Top L-R, Ally Condie, Elana Johnson, me, Brodi Ashton, Bree Despain Bottom L-R, my writer and blogger friends Chersti and Jenny!
  • It wasn't long after Carrie was practicing law that she knew she wasn't in love with it.
  • She asked herslef, If I could do anything, what would that be? And the answer was write. She wanted to be an author.
  • Made a 10 year plan and was determined to be invested for 10 years. She would write, and write and write and submit and if after 10 years nothing had happened she would move on. But no matter what rejections or hardships she got, she knew she could hold on for those 10 years.
  • Carrie started writing out some Chic Lit, and romance and when NaNoWriMo came along she had to start a new novel. After talking with JP that ended up being a zombie story that became THE FOREST OF HANDS AND TEETH. Four months later she had an agent and sold the book!

*Another amazing Utah author in attendance Jessica Day George, always willing to strike a pose!

  • And here is some notes on how Carrie came up with the idea for Forest of Hands and Teeth.
  • I read an article on the over fishing of wild Tuna and how in the future Tuna will be rare. It made me think how in one generation something common can become rare.
  • There was a story my grandmother told me about her prom. She wore purple tights that matched her dress. Back then colored tights were a brand new thing. One of the chaperones called her a harlot and asked her to leave the dance. Her mother was also a chaperone and had an awesome one liner come back.
  • This story made her 1) realize how strong the women in her family were, that this was the stock she came from and 2) she forgot the line. And that made her think that in one generation we can not only loose things outside of ourselves, but we can loose our family, our history, ourselves.
*This is James Dashner with anther attendee of the signing who brought James' book over. James was thrilled because this was the first time he had seen the line "New York Times Besteller" on the top of his book!" James was also hilarious in the Q&A portion. With so many authors present he asked Carrie "Who is your favorite Utah author?" Oh James, ever the comic. It's why we love ya!

  • I'm a survivor. I want to throw the world at my characters and I want to see if they will survive, because if they do, I can.
  • I am fascinated by people who line in the most untenable circumstances and don't just live but they thrive.
  • Then Carrie gave some advice on writing: She said if you want to write, you have to write! It is one thing to want to do it, to talk about doing it, to blog about doing it. And another entirely to sit down and actually do it. But once you experience passion for something how do you not live it?
*This is some of those same author and blogger friends, add my good friend who came with me to the signing (in her awesome zombie shirt) and one other writer/blogger friend I know I have met and I can't think of her name! I STINK at names. Sorry awesome zombie to my right! We as you can see are being zombies. I like how Jenny is about to eat by brains!

Then Carrie did some Q&A time. Here are some of my faves.
  • What is your favorite book ever read? A: Oh that's like the most impossible question ever. Um, I'd have to say at the top of the list is THE THINGS THEY CARRIED by Tim O'Brien, and THE DEVIL'S ARITHMETIC
  • What are you working on now? A: I am doing edits for my summer 2012 release that I can't tell you anything about. It is as of right now untitled. JP titles all of my books, and we're waiting...


*This is Carrie signing my books! I love this part! I feel like a kid in a candy store!
  • Is there a movie in the works for FofHandT? A: We have sold the movie rights, I have read the script and it is good. Right now they are interviewing directors. But I don't know what that all means really as far as when/if it will be made.
  • Do you have any good writing advice for someone just starting out? A: People will tell you write what you know. I think write what you know means the emotional connections you feel. Capture those moments that mean the most to you and use them.

This is me and Carrie. She is SO amazing and so cute! I will hopefully be getting some swag from her in the future for a giveaway, but until then PLEASE check out her books. They are creepy and beautiful and I have very much enjoyed them and how much they make me think.

If you are interested here is my review for THE DEAD TOSSED WAVES. I look forward to reading and reviewing THE DARK AND HOLLOW PLACES.

4 comments:

Suey said...

What an awesome post! I think I should have been there!

Eli said...

I LOVE the pictures! Wish I could have been there! :D

Jena said...

Good times!

Randi said...

so fun!