Posted in 1980s, Authors, Blog post, Empire Witch Series, Indie Authors, Literature, Music, Publishing, Song of the day, Witches And Wizards, YA Fantasy, ya novel, YA Series, Young Adult Books

Vegas + 80's Song of The Day!


Or 80’s song of the month, since I haven’t been updating these! I apologize for my lack of bloggyness I was recovering from ALA Annual in Las Vegas (which went awesome!). On the way there, my flight was delayed but I did have a lovely conversation with JetBlue which almost made it worth it.




I had a book signing at the conference and met loads of awesome librarians, teachers and publishing folk. I met librarians at the airport, in the airplane, at parties, just everywhere!


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I always get jealous I’m not able to attend panels at these shows since I’m also working (Stan Lee was there!) but it’s still a great opportunity for me as an author. I signed and gave away all my books in under 15 minutes , got interviewed by Hollywood Life TV and made some great connections. I also, made some pretty cute fashion choices…


Vegas was as over the top as I expected it to be, just big, and loud and HOT. Geez was it hot (112 F) but on a positive note, there was zero humidity so my hair stayed intact!

10502105_249407771934486_481279540513413362_nSpeaking of beauty, the airport in Las Vegas had a Benefit Cosmetics vending machine…it was seriously the coolest thing I’ve ever seen (and it took almost $100 of my money b/c I just couldn’t help it!)


I mean, look at this thing!
I mean, look at this thing!

I also got to meet the lovely, lovely Lindsey Elizabeth! She was awesome and got a signed copy of The Skinwalker’s Apprentice/went to a really cool party where everything is made of ice and they give you a coat before you walk in! Look out for her in the Gone Girl movie (which I really can not wait for), she has a small role in that but bigger things coming soon!


I had a blast with all the social media activity surrounding the conference, especially #ALAmyface in which you posted a picture of your mug so other ALA attendees could find you. I don’t know but something tells me my entry didn’t help in that capacity.


It was a great time and again, an amazing opportunity for any author. Book fairs are really great and I encourage authors or reader who can make one to go! (Because you also get free books)


On the way home, the US was defeated in the World Cup (nooOOoO) but I did meet a lovely couple from NJ and their friend “Mooch”. Made me glad I was going home, because only in NYC or NJ can you meet someone named Mooch.

I left Las Vegas with a renewed sense of purpose for my writing, not that it ever left, but after I decided against staying in my small publishing contract, I will admit I was somewhat disheartened. I had so many people approach me about The Skinwalker’s Apprentice; to tell me they enjoyed it, or that they’ve seen it all over the internet, or that they just wanted to say hi and talk about the book. It was so encouraging and made me remember that I’m only just getting started. Setbacks are a part of the process, and as long as I am learning from every experience, it’s a gain and not a loss.


I am now walking around with a folder filled with (highlighted) info on my top 5 dream agents, hoping to begin querying them with Emerald Kipp & The Riddle of The Timekeeper in the next few weeks. I am nervous, and excited since I’ve never really been through this process aside from #pitmad, but I am hoping to learn from them, get some feedback and hopefully make my work as good as it can be. I promise I will keep you all updated if I get any exciting news 🙂

*Bonus content for taking so long to post*

A video of my dog Pancho forcing me to pet him, which has zero to do with Vegas, but everything to do with adorableness

Watching #harrypotter and Pancho's forcing me to pet him 😂🐶 #potterheadweekend

A post shared by Claribel Ortega (@claribel_ortega) on

AND NOW I leave you with the 80’s song of the day, and a song that most definitely makes an appearance in Riddle of The Timekeeper, a nod to all my librarian friends out there (because of the music video and because I love you all), Tears for Fears, Head Over Heels!



Young adult fantasy author.

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