Books: The Cheapest Vacation You Can Buy

{December 13, 2015}   {UtopiaCon 2016} Severus Snape and the Mauraders Screening, the Idea Exchange, and a Romance Author Documentary

Utopia 2016 Fight For Your Right

“Severus Snape and the Marauders” Official Screening

In case you haven’t heard, a screening of “Severus Snape and the Marauders,” a Harry Potter fan film, will be at UTOPiA in June 2016.  The official screening of the fan-made short film will be followed by a Q&A with the writer-director, Justin Zagri of Broad Strokes, as well as some of the cast!!

Set in 1978, Severus Snape, James Potter, Sirius Black, Remus Lupin, Peter Pettigrew and Lily Evans have just graduated from Hogwarts School. As James and his friends known only to each other as The Marauders drink at a bar, Snape enters as well, hoping to find Lily. Knowing their dark future, and the part Snape might play, James decides to do something about his longtime rival once and for all.

Check out the teaser trailer:

Like what you see?  Then make sure you watch the first full length Harry Potter film below!

If you’re not familiar with the Broad Strokes team, their first short film that takes place in the Potterverse, “The Greater Good,” is set almost a hundred years before “The Sorcerers Stone.” It explores the end of a friendship, the beginnings of the dark wizard Grindelwald, and the tragedy that left the Dumbledore family in ruins.

It has been watched over three million times on YouTube. It clocks in at a little over 17 gripping minutes. It’s awesome. Watch it NOW:

Questions?  Use this Q&A form for Justin Zagri. Questions will be answered live on the air first week of January–stay tuned for a link to that! And be sure to connect with Justin on his HP FanFic FB page:



The screening is currently on the schedule for Thursday, June 24, 2016. Time is still to be determined, and schedule is subject to change.

Ideas with Heart™

In the vein of TED talks, UTOPiA is excited to announce the return of the popular UTOPiA Idea Xchange talks, Ideas with Heart™. This is a time for leaders in the community to share powerful ideas that have the potential to shape the present and future of the publishing industry.

These talks will no doubt be inspirational, educational, and motivational. What they will not be is a rant or negativity toward authors, vendors, or particular paths of publishing. The purpose of the UTOPiAIdea Xchange is to share ideas that can help everyone move forward in this crazy beautiful world.

Today I’m highlighting the first three speakers and the titles of their upcoming talks:

Angeline KaceAngeline Kace: Exercising Your Demons

I went from writing about vampires and demons to wrestling with my own. But I was able to go from feeling lost and defeated to living my best life in less than a year — raising a son who is the light of my life, and helping others conquer years of struggle to feel more confident and healthy.

In my talk, I’ll share how you can banish demons in your own life, and how to attract and harness positive people and epic results within days not years.

Angeline Kace is a lifestyle coach and a fitness rep for Beachbody. Author of the paranormal YA Vampire Born Trilogy and the NA romance Wicked Thing.

Angeline Kace Books 2

Heather HildenbrandHeather Hildenbrand: The Audacity of Self-Love

We are bombarded by media almost every waking hour in the modern world. And the messages tramsmitted in the name of advertising and pop culture often say we’re too fat, too skinny, too loud, too quiet….too wrong in one way or another. That dysfunction affects our self-esteem and, subsequently, our choices. We choose hobbies and friends and even jobs and futures based on what we are “supposed” to be. And then wonder what went wrong when we discover we aren’t happy.

By breaking free of that cycle, by learning to love ourselves as we are, we change everything. Our choices are different, our attitude, our future–everything shifts. But it starts with loving ourselves. Pampering and especially protecting ourselves from those nasty messages society wants us to believe. This talk will address these issues and how to transform them.

Heather Hildenbrand was born and raised in a small town in northern Virginia where she was homeschooled through high school. (She’s only slightly socially awkward as a result.) She writes Young Adult & New Adult romance including the bestselling Dirty Blood & Imitation series’, the latter of which was optioned by NBC. She splits her time between coastal Virginia and the island of Guam and loves having a mobile career and outrageous lifestyle of living in two places. Her most frequent hobbies are riding motorcycles and avoiding killer slugs. Heather is also a publishing and success coach dedicated to teaching fellow writers how to create their own Laptop Lifestyle. For more information visit You can find out more about Heather and her books at

Heather Hildenbrand Books

ChelseaChelsea Fine: How to (Legitimately) Root For the Competition

Although competition can be a healthy thing, it can quickly become an obsessive thing, leading to bitterness and frustration.

But when people root–honestly root–for the competition and invest in others’ triumphs, their own success and achievements become that much more enjoyable.

In this talk I’ll share how to root out the weeds in your habits and thinking in order to root for others for increased happiness and success.

TEDxYouth Speaker Chelsea Fine is a women’s activist, and the author of the bestselling NA romance Finding Fate series, as well as the author of the YA Archers of Avalon series. 

Chelsea Fine Books

For more information about the Idea Exchange, and to see the full list of speakers, visit UTOPiAcon.

“Love Between the Covers” Authors Documentary Official Screening

Romance is the behemoth of the publishing industry. It outsells mystery, sci-fi, and fantasy combined. Yet no film has ever taken an honest look at the amazing global community that romance writers and readers have built. Until now.

About the Filmmaker, Laurie Kahn:

Director/Producer Laurie Kahn’s first film, A Midwife’s Tale, was based on the 18th century diary of midwife Martha Ballard and Laurel Ulrich’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book. It won film festival awards and a national Emmy for Outstanding Non-Fiction. Her film TUPPERWARE! was broadcast in more than 20 countries, won the George Foster Peabody Award and was nominated for a national Best Nonfiction Director Emmy. Before starting her own production company, Kahn worked on Eyes on the Prize: America’s Civil Rights Years, The American Experience, FRONTLINE’S Crisis in Central America, All Things Considered, and Time Out. When she was in her 20s, she taught philosophy, she now teaches film and history when she’s not in the middle of making a film, and she’s a resident scholar at the Brandeis Women’s Studies Research Center.


With all the epicness above–have you made plans to attend UTOPIAcon in June?


Event Pricing thru December 31, 2015:

Here’s the current** price range you’re looking at to attend–prices go up as we get closer to the con:

==> $110 Silver Package

  • 5-day pass to the UTOPiA convention (UTOPiAcon), including welcome bag, keynote speeches, panels, exhibitor hall, karaoke, pre-awards happy hour
  • Admission to the Public Signing Event
  • Admission to the Fifth Annual UTOPiA Awards and After-Party
  • NOT INCLUDED: lunches, apparel, preferred seating at awards, workshops

==> $190 Titanium Package

  •  5-day pass to the UTOPiA convention (UTOPiAcon) with VIP Registration/Badge pick-up, as well as a welcome bag, keynote speeches, panels, exhibitor hall, karaoke, pre-awards happy hour
  • Admission to the Public Signing Event
  • Early seating to the Fifth Annual UTOPiA Awards
  • Lunch Thursday and Friday
  • Souvenir T-shirt
  • NOT INCLUDED: Workshops

==> $55 One-Day Fan Wristband

  • Admission for one day–you choose the day and purchase the ticket specifically for that day
  • Access to all official events — speakers, panels, exhibitor hall, signing area, other official events
  • NOT INCLUDED: Workshops, private events, or any other event listed at an additional charge on the ticket page or web site. You must wear your wristband at all times or you will not be allowed into any official area.

==> Want to be an Exhibitor at UTOPiAcon??? Click the link above for prices and info

But act fast, because prices will continue to rise as we get closer to the con date.  REFUNDS ARE AVAILABLE until March 31, 2016 (minus processing fee), so act now—I know it’s a few months out, and your circumstances may change, but I highly, highly suggest that you book now.

**prices subject to change—I will post updated prices as they rise.  Have questions about UTOPiA 2016: Five-Year Anniversary Convention & Celebration for Writers & Fans? Contact UtopYA, LLC

Still nervous you might not be able to attend in June? Purchase now to lock in the lowest prices, and rest easy knowing refunds, minus the processing fee, are available until March 31, 2016 (or a full refund within 60 days of purchase, whichever comes first).

Tata for now!  Be sure to visit all of the bloggers this month!

 Week 1: Jo Michaels and Maria Pease
Week 2: Me and Delphina Miyares
Week 3: Toni Lesatz and Ren Reidy
Week 4: Ashley Bodette and Kathryn Grimes


et cetera
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