You guys — yet again, you have blown me away with your excitement for Coastal Magic. The progression and growth of this event is thanks to all of the amazing authors and readers who’s enthusiasm and support can’t be measured. I may have started this shindig, but you all have built it into something I’m so, so proud to be a part of.
Right at the beginning I have to thank my book club family. These women are in my life on an almost daily basis. They keep me sane when my little ducks just refuse to stay in their rows, and provide the priceless gift of feedback during the planning process. Then, they work their collective arses off during our Coastal Magic weekend, answering questions, getting things done, and helping me in ways I don’t even find out about until after the weekend is over. Doreen, Dolorianne, Tina, Lynn, and Sheri… saying “thank you” just doesn’t feel like enough. You ladies rock, and I ❤ you all.
My Featured Bloggers are an incredible group of women. They spend 7 months working with our Featured Authors and creating fun, engaging promotional posts. Without their dedication and wealth of ideas, Coastal Magic simply would not work. They spread the word to their own readerships… but when they work together, the Coastal Magic audience grows exponentially. They’re also our panel moderators during the weekend. They guide the discussion and help each panel run smoothly. To say Coastal Magic wouldn’t be the same without them is an understatement of epic proportions. Chelle (Literal Addiction), Laura (Little Read Riding Hood), Melanie (Fang Freakin’ Tastic Reviews), Jackie (Literary Escapism), Jay (Joyfully Jay), and Sue (GraveTells) – your support and hard work are so, so appreciated. And I would be remiss not to include Tawdra and Mandie, who stepped in when things were getting crazy to lend a helping hand, and Grace and Angela who were quick to make themselves available if I needed something during the weekend. I feel so lucky to have gotten to know each of you. Thank you for everything.
“Authors Are Our Rockstars”. We’ve seen this phrase around for a while, and while it’s true elsewhere in the literary community — I can’t think of any better description for our Coastal Magic Featured Authors. YOU. Are. Our. Rockstars. I’m so proud of the amazing group of authors we welcome to Daytona each year. I love that paranormal and romance authors of every experience level, every publishing path, and every “target audience” feel comfortable in our “con family”. It’s no small thing to take time from your family and writing schedules, pay for travel and rooming, and many of you brought your own stock to sell at the signing. I understand the sacrifices you make to come hang out with us each year. When I put on my event director hat, I sincerely hope that you got as much out of the weekend as your fans did. Switching to my fangirl hat, my happy heart thanks you for giving Coastal Magic, and each of us, a bit of your time.
To all of the readers who attended, thank you for making 2016 our biggest year yet (we almost hit our max attendance!!), and for all of your enthusiasm. Panel rooms were full of people with opinions and questions for our authors. Evening activities were hoppin’ and everyone seemed to be having a good time. And both of our charities benefited from your generosity. (Still waiting to hear a final total from Books-A-Million for the Community Partnership for Children, but our basket raffle raised over $1000 for Habitat for Humanity!! Another post will be coming to talk about those.) This event started because I wanted to bring the authors *I* loved closer to me. Thank you all for joining me, and for making this silly idea of mine something you love, as well.
That leads me to our annual feedback form. Which panels did you love? Did you have fun with the picture scavenger hunt? Which authors would you like to see at a future weekend? Our feedback form asks a series of questions to help me find out what worked, and what didn’t. This is the way I can make sure every year’s programming is the best I can give to each of you. Below is the link to the attendee form (Featured Authors, I’ll be sending you a different link), and I’d love to hear your thoughts.
I think that’s it for me, for now. I’ve spent the better part of the last four days sleeping… and now I’m trying to catch up on a few after con emails and such. If you have a blog or website, and will be doing a wrap-up post, I’d love to see it. We’ve got a thread started in our Authors & Attendees Facebook Group for post links. We’ve also got a thread started for online photo album links, if you’d like to share those with the group. There are also threads with links for our DJ (if you’d like to leave him a review) and our photographer (if you’d like to see/download/order pics from the weekend).
Again, I say THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU to everyone who had a part in Coastal Magic this year. We’re a pretty special group, and I’m so happy to be a part of this with all of you. See you next year!!