Monday, October 1, 2012

My First Book Festival

This weekend I made the long (4 hour) drive down to Austin to attend the Austin Teen Book Festival. It was a convention center full of teens, adult YA readers, YA authors, and tons of books. Yeah, I know, awe-some!

Me loves all the books Source 


Libba Bray gave the opening remarks. That lady is hilarious. She kept everyone laughing while making sure to teach us something (well, several things) valuable about reading and writing.

After that it was time for some great author panels. I got to hear from more amazing authors like Ally Condie, Dan Krokos, Lex Thomas (which is actually two people), Marissa Meyer and Ally Carter. We heard about their writing process, how they generate ideas, and the often wondered how do you ditch the parents in a YA novel.

I also had the chance to meet some folks in person who I've only ever talked to on Twitter. That's always a bit of a surreal experience, but fun all the same.

My favorite part of the day was hearing questions from teen writers in the audience. Kids who gave up their whole Saturday to talk about books is awesomesauce. They wanted to know everything from how do you keep secondary characters interesting to where can I learn how to write a query. Seriously! I didn't even know what a query was until a few years ago. These kids young people are on the ball, motivated, and going places.

It was a super long day but well worth the experience. Sign me up for a day filled with people who geek out about books as much as I do any day. I can't wait for next year.

Now it's your turn. Do you attend book festivals and what's your favorite part?

11 comments:

  1. I'm so jealous right now! ;) Sound like it was a blast.

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  2. Sounds like you had fun! I wanted to attend the one at UCLA this year, but had a conflicting schedule.
    (Your blog looks great, by the way!)

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    1. Thanks, Linda. I thought it needed a little updating to be more my style.

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  3. I've never been to a book festival but I'd reeaaaallly like to go! So, I'm with Kelly H. on this one- it sounds like you had a blast & I'm kinda jealous!

    If you attend any more festivals, please take notes for those of us who can't make it!

    Thanks for this post : )

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    1. Will do, although West Texas doesn't draw a lot of attention. :)

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  4. Book Festivals are fun! I had a booth at the Brooklyn Book festival a couple of years ago. Anywhere readers and writers can mingle is a cause for celebration.

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    1. I loved this one b/c the books were purchased at a separate table. None of that, I don't want to hurt your feelings, but I don't want to buy your book stuff.

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  5. There is a BIG reading festival in Fort Myers,FL each year. The lines of readers who want to buy books from authors are huge. There are panels for aspiring authors, too, which I attend as a pre-published writer. It seems that the young adult and children's writers get the most attention. Parents drag the kids in and the kids have a great time on fun things provided just for them. The main part of the event takes place March 16, 2013. Come enjoy the beach and sell some books! -- Jeanne Meeks

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  6. Sounds amazing! I'm really getting into YA fiction now, so it was exciting to hear about all the authors you met. I used to go to Festival of Books when it was on the UCLA campus. Now it's held at the rival USC college... but I'll probably visit again someday.

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