Last night was surreal. In a cool and freaky way.
Before I go into why that's my first line of this blog post, let me explain last night. Last night was the first EVER UKYA Book Awards, an award that has "been set up in recognition of the services given by authors and publishers by the book-blogging community." Which was awesome because we book bloggers love a meet up where we can drink, eat cake and stare lovingly/stroke lovingly/buy like savages books.
So, yesterday, I (with my Other Half and a book-reader Pal - both of whom are slightly traumatized now. Sorry.) went to London (Waterstones: Kensington High Street - yes to those of you who shopped there. Downstairs was closed for this event!) and we got ready for this event.
And almost at once, felt like I should have dressed up. I saw Laura from Sisterspooky, Stevie from SableCaught and Stephen from Dark Readers and went "I should have worn a suit. Try and look cool and suave! Oh well, too late now...!"
So, after saying a quick hi to a few bloggers and check my Other Half and Pal were ok, the awards began. And it was award giving time and each award was given out by someone from a publishing house sponsored by each award, and if not, an author represented the publishing house - James Dawson represented Hot Key and Jonathan Stroud represent Penguin Random House (and you should have heard the gasps when host and mastermind of the UKYABA, Andy Robb, introduced him).
So, before I go further, let me show you all the awards and all the links (The winners will be in BOLD!)
Oh... yeah... I MIGHT have won an award. I think there was a mistake, a miscount of votes, a
Oh. Well, I won't get an award. I mean, I have watched far too many episodes of How To Get Away with Murder to be given an award! I mean...
Wait! What? What?! WHAT?!
So, yes, I won an award. And I can not remember what happened after I heard my name called. I think I went "WHAT?!", then asked Andy if he counted the votes right (he had...) and then had to do a tiny speech. A speech I can't remember. I think I said "Thank you". I think. My Other Half recorded my speech (he's going to share with my family and he thought I had planned my speech. Because yes, I plan things. Has he never seen my blog?!) and I haven't seen what I said.
But yes. I won. You are reading an Award-Winning Blog! OMAFG!!!
Ok, I need to write a tiny thank you before I go on.
Thank you to all the publishers who think my blog is cool enough to go "Do you want to read this?" or "Can we talk about this?" or "Come to an event!". Thank you to the authors who write books that make me laugh, gasp, throw books across rooms and fall into reading slumps, go in mourning/aftershock or scream "I NEED THE SEQUEL AND I NEED IT NOW!!!". Thank you to the book blogging community who welcomed me into this YA community when I was unemployed and wrote reviews just so I kept sane while looking for work all those years ago. Thank you to all my friends who went "I think you need to take a blog break. Come out. Have something, we call, fresh air!". Thank you for my family who are always there, kept me sane and who were always there, no matter what. Thank you to my Other Half, who loves me even though I have far too many books and makes me do "book culls" when I have "one or two too many". Thank you to you guys, who read the blog, comment and just are cool. Thank you.
And, what is lovely about this awards was no one felt bitter. I was thrilled to be nominated it and had no idea I would win so when someone in a caterory I was also nominated it, I was so excited and thrilled for them! Screw me and my little blog, that person deserves that award! No one did a fake "I'm so pleased that you won and not me" smile we see in nearly every awards. This is one of the many reasons why I love the YA book blogging community - we support and love each other!
Anyway, after the awards were given (and two of the winners nearly did a Gwyneth Paltrow & Halle Berry and no one did a JLaw!), we finished the night chatting, staring at books (and given permission to buy a few books. I have three beauties - I Was Here by Gayle Forman, Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard, The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley by Shaun Hutchinson [a book George from George Lester forced into my hands and went "You will love this! This will get you out of your reading slump!" (my Pal also wanted this so she can borrow this after me!) which I blame him SOLELY on as I read the Half Bad trilogy]. And we were given a book (that am going to stay quiet over as it's not going to come out in September).
And chatting to old and new blogger friends (HI EVERYONE! YOU WERE AWESOME AND I WANA HUG YOU ALL!!!) and given Stephen from Dark Readers that very awkward moment where we didn't know whether to shake hands, hug or try and act cool (we hugged. OF COURSE WE HUGGED! I HUG BOOK BLOGGER PALS! Plus, the fear in their eyes is always an added bonus - KIDDING! KIDDING!!!) was wonderful! I forgot how much I miss chatting to you all in real life and not via facebook or twitter!
Last night was great fun, surreal and just wow. Thank you Andy for setting this up. Thank you to everyone who got involved! Thank you to everyone who came and had a blast! Thank you thank you thank you.
Not sure how to end this post. I could enter with a YouTube video I listened to while getting ready to go (Forget by Marina and the Diamonds). I could enter with a photo of me and the other winners with our awards (but there are so many on Twitter, Instagram, Vine, Facebook, etc). I could just end it now (but where would the fun in that be!). But I will end with this photo and another thank you - thank you. And remember...