Boston Pride 2015

Until yesterday, I had never been to a Pride event. I had always wanted to go, but they were either too far away from me, or I forgot about it/didn’t know about it until it was too late. This year I had the opportunity not only to go to Boston Pride, but to help represent my publisher and sell copies of my YA titles.

WHAT A BLAST!

Boston is only about an hour and half from where I live right now, so it was really exciting to be able to make the trip for the day. I left early in the morning, had a heart attack navigating the tunnels into the city, but found a parking garage close to where I needed to be.

Just some of the books we had to offer. And me posing in the background.

Just some of the books we had to offer. And me posing in the background.

I was early. But it was still nice to see everything as it was being set up with so few people around. Because when eleven o’clock hit, it started to get busier. And when the parade reached us at around one, oh my GOD it was wall-to-wall bodies.

Since Boston is the home of my favorite drag queen, JuJubee, I had been hoping to meet her. She responded to my facebook post about being there, but sadly that wasn’t the case. However I sold out of all my YA titles, and fast! By an hour into the festival I was worried I wouldn’t have any left! With a little over three hours to go, I did sell out, but that just meant helping the other authors!

I was happy to have been able to bring Julie Blair and ‘Nathan Burgoine’s books as well. It was nice to have a good selection for festival goers!

I got to hang out with great authors from my group. I knew Cathy Frizzell from the Rainbow Book Fair in NYC, and Dena Hankins from the retreat last summer, but I also got to meet Jean Copeland and Holly Stratimore and their respective partners. Fun times!

Jennifer Lavoie, Jean Copeland, Holly Stratimore, CF Frizzell, and Dena Hankins

Jennifer Lavoie, Jean Copeland, Holly Stratimore, CF Frizzell, and Dena Hankins

But what was even better was the opportunity to connect with the readers. That was amazing. There were a lot of young adults there, and I had a blast talking with them. Some readers had no idea we existed and eagerly snatched up books. Some didn’t realize we were the authors until we asked if they wanted the books signed. Some readers were young – like one girl who bought Meeting Chance with her two dads and her little sister near – or older who had read a lost of LGBT fiction in their lives. Either way, I appreciated them all.

Dena looks on while Jean signs her novel and I...stare at something.

Dena looks on while Jean signs her novel and I…stare at something.

I can’t wait to do it again. I know all of us want to go back next year, and I hope I get to do more Pride events. I was originally going to do Providence Pride next weekend, but that had to be cancelled since no other authors were interested. And it’s a bit late for NYC Pride. But hey, maybe next year?

What do you think? Would you like to see Bold Strokes Books and NYC Pride next year? If you would, leave a message here! I’ll let my publisher know you want to see us! Any other Pride suggestions or events? Let me know! I’ll pass it along!

 

Tristant and Elijah – OFFICIALLY RELEASED!

So excited! Tristant and Elijah has officially been released everywhere and so far the reviews are great! Head on over to the reviews section of the page to see more, but here’s a few excerpts!

I truly loved the supportive role that Tristant played for Elijah in his journey. Elijah’s anguish, and Tristant’s empathy and kindness are palpable. These two are really tender boys–and I’m glad that they found each other. – Veronica from V’s Reads

 

I found the story to be relevant and one we can all relate to. Many of us have had the experience of having a crush on someone we cannot have. – Amos Lassen

 

Have you read Tristant and Elijah? Let me know what you think! I’d love to hear from you!

 

Provincetown – Women’s Week Report

This past weekend I had the most amazing opportunity to attend Women’s Week in Provincetown, MA. My publisher, Bold Strokes Books, had panels and book signings. Though I wasn’t able to attend for the entire week, I did go up late on Friday after work and stayed through Sunday. What a weekend!

This was my first time in Provincetown, and I honestly can say I cannot wait to go back. I will most definitely be attending next year if it is in my power to do so. It was great to meet the other authors and readers. One of my former students attended with her two moms, and hanging out with them was such a blast!

Day One

Driving to Ptown was a bit of a haul. I left right after school on Friday and arrived after seven. There was a little traffic, but it wasn’t bad. It was my first time driving alone for that long. It was also my first time going through a toll booth on my own! Haha, boring to many but exciting for me. Once I got to the hotel I checked in – another first for me on my own – and got my room. It was so comfortable! I had a balcony which I didn’t use, but it was nice nevertheless.

I am glad that I didn’t decide to walk on the beach that night I arrived. Harbor Hotel was literally on the ocean. I thought I could cross the rocks and end up on the beach…but that wasn’t the case as I found out the next morning! I would have been going for a swim!

That night I met Barbara Ann Wright, whom I have been stalking on the internet since we both received our contracts from BSB. It was great! She joined me for dinner and we chatted about what I had missed. It was great fun! I finally turned in for bed rather early – after cranking the heat in my frigid room – and crashed for the evening.

Day Two

Not going to lie, I slept in. My bed was so comfortable! I didn’t want to get up, but I did. I met up with Barbara and we walked into the center of Ptown to meet up with my former student and her moms who came up for the event. The walk in was a bit long, but the day was perfect and I enjoyed seeing everything. I got a mocha at Wired Puppy which is a great cafe! While there I met Toni Whitaker, who also works for BSB. After running into the kiddo and her parents we wandered around and shopped.

There’s this great, small used bookstore in Ptown. You have to enter this gate and go down a long walkway, but I loved it! There are quite a few nice books in there, and the LGBT fiction section is quite large, especially compared to the used bookstore I go to. I picked up three books that I loved as ebooks and was thrilled to find in paperback, such as Erastes’s Frost Fair, J.L. Langley’s The Broken H and an anthology I don’t have with Ally Blue in it. I’ve read them all and have them as ebooks, but I enjoyed them so much I’ve wanted them for my bookshelf for years.

The panel I participated in at Gabriel’s was excellent. Carsen Taite moderated, and with me was MJ Williamz, Barbara Ann Wright, Shelley Thrasher, Ali Vali, and Lee Lynch. It was such an honor to be with not only new writers, but accomplished authors like Lee Lynch. Carsen Taite was our moderator, and she asked great questions and was funny, which helped my anxiety!

It had very humorous moments, too. MJ read a rather racy scene from the novel, and my former student is not quite reading those scenes yet, and she turned bright red. All the authors teased her, but it was all in good fun! She has a great sense of humor.

Afterwards we had a signing at Recovering Hearts, which is a wonderful shop. I got to meet more of the authors that I hadn’t met yet, and bought books from everyone that had read on the panel before mine. My student meeting those authors was quite the experience for her, too, as she wants to be a published author as well.

I’ve only signed twice before on my own, and it was fun to work with other authors. For me it was a great experience, too, because it allowed me to see how they interact with readers.

From left to right: MJ Williamz, Ali Vali, Shelley Thrasher, Barbara Ann Wright, and me! Missing from the photo: Lee Lynch

After the signing was wandering, shopping, exploring Ptown, and then dinner.

The following day was just shopping around some more before heading home. I checked out of the hotel and wandered. Got more coffee at Wired Puppy, too!

Overall the trip was fantastic. I cannot wait to go again!

Who wouldn't want to go back to this?

National Coming OUT Day Book Talk

If you couldn’t join me on September 22nd for my book release, don’t worry! You can still see me talk about Andy Squared. I’ll be at Central Connecticut State University on October 9th from 4:30 to 6:00 PM talking about my book and doing a signing. Stop by!

Happy Birthday to you~

It’s official! Today is the release date of Andy Squared, or as I like to call it, the book birthday! I’m really excited for it to be officially out, but it still seems so surreal to me. I mean, it was just another normal day at work. And yet, my book is now available in bookstores everywhere for readers to enjoy.

And I truely do hope everyone enjoys it or takes something out of the story. Andy and Ryder are such dear characters to me. I lived with them in my head for six years before their tale was finally told. I hope everyone else loves them just as much as I do.

If you’ve read the book and enjoyed it, I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave a comment or send me an email! I love getting mail.

Official Andy Squared Release Party!

Join me on September 22, 2012 from 2-4 PM at the Bristol Public Library in Bristol, Connecticut. I will be reading from the book and giving a book talk. There will be copies of the book available for purchase, or you can bring a copy you already have.

I’d love to see you there!

Andy Squared: Now Available! From Bold Strokes Books

Do you want to get your hands on Andy Squared before anyone else? You’re in luck! You can now order the ebook of Andy Squared from Bold Strokes Books in multiple formats and get it IMMEDIATELY!

But that’s not all! You can also order it in paperback and it will be shipped right away! That’s right, you’ll get it before everyone who orders it from Amazon or waits for the bookstore release. Just follow the links for the correct format!

If you have any other questions, please leave a comment here or email me at writerjenlavoie [at] gmail [dot] com

It’s Official!

I have an official release date for Andy Squared! It’s so exciting, because it’s like finding out when my child is going to be born. In fact, it’s exactly eight months from today!

September 18, 2012 will be when Andy Squared is available in bookstores and on the Bold Strokes Books website.