|Into Hearts of Darkness panel members! Me, Holly Black, Robin Wasserman, Victoria Scott, and Jon Skovron!|
I had an AMAZING time at the Austin Teen Book Festival this weekend. It was especially nice to be on the home team for this one and not have to travel/stay in a hotel. I got to enjoy all the fun and then go home and sleep in my own bed. Win!
Anyway, it went by in a whirlwind, but basically started with the cool-as-anything Maggie Stievfvater doing an opening keynote speech about fear and living your dreams. Then we went into panel sessions - I was with the lovely ladies and gentleman above for a panel on Hearts of Darkness. (Along with April Genevieve Tucholke, author of The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea, not pictured.) It was a really fun panel that even included a round of Truth or Dare. The room was huge and yet it was standing room only. So very cool. I had a blast.
Another highlight? Getting to meet Rob Thomas of Veronica Mars fame. As one of his Kickstarter backers and also a huge VM fan it was exciting to say the least. I had him autograph books for my friends and fellow authors Diana Peterfreund and Ally Carter, who couldn't make the festival.
I attended the talk Rob Thomas and Sarah Dessen did for lunch and then headed over to watch one of the other panels when I had a break. This one included Melissa de la Cruz and her husband Michael who wrote the amazing Frozen, a new series that was just released last week. It also has dragons! Melissa and I seem to travel the same literary path - going from vampires to dragons!
When all was over and Holly Black did her closing speech, it was time to sign books. They sold a LOT of books! Which is awesome, because now the teens who attended will have lots to read!
And how cute is this? Someone made a Scorched t-shirt that they asked me to sign!! So adorable!!
All in all it was a wonderful experience and I feel very grateful to have been invited to participate. Hopefully I will get to do it again someday soon! Thank you to everyone who did such a great job putting it on, especially Jenn Bigheart, librarian extraordinaire, and all the folks from Book People. I cannot even stress enough how awesome it is to have such an awesome indie bookstore in Austin who really cares about young adult fiction and teens!