Very early Saturday morning my best friend Donna and I drove up to Austin from San Antonio for the Teen Book Festival. It was our first bookish event so we were beyond excited. In fact, I was so excited, I forgot to take some pictures of her and I together while we were there.
We got there about 30 minutes before book sales opened so we decided to walk around outside for a little bit since it was such a beautiful morning.
Then we went and got in line to buy some books.
I bought: Lola and the Boy Next Door, Wolfsbane, and It's Not Summer Without You. I really wanted to buy We'll Always Have Summer also, but it was in hardback and I now have the first two in paperback.
Then, while I was checking out, Michael Jackson's "Thriller" started playing. It seemed really random at first, then we went into the main hall and found this:
A group of middle school students did a zombie flash mob and were dancing to "Thriller". And I have to say, they were really good.
Scott Westerfeld was the main speaker and he spoke about illustrations in books, which was pretty interesting.
Then it was time to go to the individual panels. First we went to Alternaworlds because we both wanted to hear more from Scott Westerfeld and Maureen Johnson was on that panel and you would have to be crazy to not want to listen to her.
Rosemary Clement-Moore was the moderator.
At first, it was a bit hard to hear them talk because, behind that curtain, another panel was going on. And then to the left there was another curtain, behind which another panel was going on. So for the first half we could hear all three panels at once. It finally got a little better towards the end.
After the first round of panels were over it was lunch time, so we walked down to Whataburger, then stopped and had snowcones on the way back.
The next panel we went to was Pen Fatale:
It was moderated by Margo Rabb who asked Alyson Noel, Mary Pearson, Jessica Brody, and Gabrielle Zevin questions about their books and writing processes.
The last panel we were going to go to was the I Heart Love Stories panel, which I was pretty much dying to get to because Stephanie Perkins was on that one...and I love her, a lot. But they canceled it because of the sound problems...so I didn't get to hear her :/ That was pretty much heartbreaking.
So we decided to go outside and enjoy the afternoon since we had an hour to kill before book signings began. We went and sat in the park which ended up being a lot of fun because we made up stories about random people that we saw.
Since I didn't get to hear Stephanie Perkins in her panel I decided she was going to be the first signing line I was getting in to so I wouldn't miss my chance to talk to her there. It was a good thing we got in that line first, too. It took us 50 minutes to get up to her table and the signings were only open for an hour. But I got her to sign my copy of Anna and the French Kiss and the copy of Lola that I bought that day. I reallllllly wanted to get a picture with her, but by the time we got up there they were trying to hurry people along so that as many people as they could could get their book signed. But she was so super sweet and kept talking to us while signing my books and I could barely speak cause I was pretty much starstruck haha.
AND! I loved her blue hair so much I think I am going to do a couple streaks in mine for Halloween...totally doesn't go with my costume...but I'll make it work :D
There was only about 5 minutes left of signing when we left Stephanie's table so I had to hurry and get in Jenny Han's so that she could sign my two Summer books. And then I practically sprinted over to Andrea Cremer's table and got to her just in the nick of time. Right after she signed my books they announced signing was over. *Phew*...it got pretty intense there at the end.
And by the way, Andrea Cremer is super sweet and has such a pretty smile. I was a bit nervous to meet these authors but they were all just so nice and really make you wanna hang out and talk with them.
Overall, it was a great day. Tons of fun. And I really hope I am in town to go next year. You should plan on going to. It was definitely worth it!