We went to Festival of Books last year and it was pretty amazing. So I knew I would be going again, I just had to wait until the list of authors was released to decide how long I’d be there for.
I made my plans the day before. And while there were going to be several authors that I love seeing, I was really focused on seeing people that normally weren’t in the LA area. There were only two for Saturday: Gennifer Albin and A.S. King.
I already had my copies of Crewel and Dear Bully, so I started the hunt for Ask the Passengers. Again, B&N disappointed me with the BS sob story about how they didn’t have it. Surprise, surprise. Thankfully, the awesome people at Mrs. Nelson’s had one copy in stock. They were willing to let me pay for it over the phone and agreed to bring it with them for my pick up at FoB.
We ended up getting up to the USC campus early and found excellent parking.
Picture taken from LA Times Festival of Books Twitter
We hunted down the Mysterious Galaxy booth [where I FINALLY met the amazing MaryElizabeth] and the Mrs. Nelson’s booth. And then we found LiteraTea, a little campus cafe and killed some time waiting for the official start time.
As we were waiting to sync up with Colleen, we helped ourselves to chairs and sat across from the signing area at MG and people watched. Marie Lu was signing and even though I haven’t gotten a finished copy of Prodigy, it looked she was at the end of her signing time as she was only signing stock before heading over to another booth.
We headed back to Mrs. Nelson’s to find Colleen. There were hugs and gifts exchanged. We hung out for a bit, catching up before she had to go back to work. So we headed back to MG after getting pictures with the minions from Despicable Me 2.
Robin Benway was at the MG signing table so I grabbed one of her other books and had it signed. I loved Also Known As so much that I’ll pretty much read anything and everything she publishes.
We sat back and waited in our stolen chairs and just people watched. Gennifer Albin was scheduled to be at the MG booth at 12. Around 12:15, one of the employees told us that they didn’t know where Gennifer was, that they were trying to find out if she went to a seller’s booth on accident. We were told to stay in line, that they would make sure Gennifer signed all of our stuff.
Around 12:45, one if the MG booth employees came up to us and told us that Gennifer was lost. She had checked into the green room, but no one knew where she had gone.
In the meantime, Hubs had gone back to Mrs. Nelson’s booth to pick up my copy of Ask the Passengers by AS King. In their rush to pack for the event, it was left on a desk at the store. They nicely sent someone back for it, so it took some time before it was actually at the booth.
I asked Hubs to stay in line in case Gennifer appeared and I ran over to an adjacent booth to get A.S. King.
She immediately commented on my chest tattoo [which is amazing] and then asked to see my Doctor Who tattoo. We then started talking about tattoos and how her dad told her she wouldn’t be able to get a job if she were covered in tattoos.
She’s signed my books and came out from behind the table to take a picture.
About 30 minutes later, I interrupted A.S. King [who was waiting to start her signing panel at MG] to deliver a message of love from Heather Brewer. I ended up chatting with her for a few minutes about different things and her winning the YA award the night before.
Before we went to our last event, I spotted Debra Driza in front of the signing table, so I stopped to say hi. I ended up chatting with 4 or 5 of the most hilarious girls [I wish I would have gotten names] along with Debra. We talked about tattoos [because they loved my River] and the clothing choices people made. After a few minutes, I excused myself from the group.
The last signing we had was Michelle Gagnon. She was on a panel with Tahereh Mafi and Kiersten White. I talked to Tahereh briefly about getting Jaime a defaced copy. I may have also gushed about her eyelashes.
I then went over to Michelle. I had talked to her on twitter about where she was going to be signing. When she saw me, she commented on how I really came. And I said that I was an experienced stalker. See below for the best inscription.
We talked about Strangelets. I told her that I loved the book and she told me how she had to cut 20k words from it. And how there’s an entirely different ending out there somewhere.
We also talked about Don’t Look Back and how I was dying for it. She told me there were arcs out and that it was up on Edelweiss. GAH.
After that, we got to steal Colleen away for a few minutes. We went to a courtyard area to hang out and catch up on all of the things.
And when Colleen had to go back to the booth, we called it a day. And right after we drove out of our awesome parking spot, Gennifer Albin tweeted me about the signing and said she was told the signing was at 3pm. She also offered to meet me anywhere to sign my things. I was so bummed that I didn’t get to see her, but I love that she offered.
Festival of Books is always worth the drive up. The USC campus is gorgeous and everyone there is always so accommodating. If you’re in the area, I can’t suggest a better way to spend a day outside. With books.