Happy (belated) Memorial Day, everyone! Now that I'm safely ensconced on the other side of the crazy, crazy week that is Book Expo every year, I thought I'd give a little run down of the highlights.
On Monday, I got to crash a blogger preview to celebrate the launch of one of my VERY BEST FRIEND'S DEBUT NOVELS, coming out this fall. (Check out her blog about the S & S preview--and the soundtrack she made for her book, Fury, here.) It was pretty awesome, actually, because I knew, like, half the people in the room. Yay, blogosphere! And it was equally awesome to see my girl celebrated and treated like the star that she is. Check out the pic below of me and Elizabeth in Portland, Maine in December...fyi, I stayed at Lizbeth's house when I was researching Delirium!
Later in the evening, HarperCollins threw a beautiful party to introduce various booksellers to my new middle-grade, Liesl & Po. It made me feel like a movie star at the beginning of a press junket--the venue, Beauty and Essex, was absolutely gorgeous, and I think I ate about eighteen delicious miniature sliders. (18 sliders = 1 burger, right?) I chatted with a ton of wonderful book industry people, and it was wonderful to be in a room with so many supportive and enthusiastic readers and booksellers. It really was a magical celebration, and it reminded me of how lucky I am to be able to do what I love for a living.
On Tuesday I attended the ABA Awards luncheon, where Before I Fall was an honor book in the YA category. I was so grateful to have been honored by the independents, who consistently provide me so much warmth and comfort when I'm on tour, and have supported my books from the beginning. The one bumpy spot? I was completely taken by surprise when I had to actually speak in front of the crowd, and somehow, in my bumbling speech, forgot to thank my publisher. Of course Susan Katz, the head of HarperCollins Children, was sitting right next to me. Worst. Author. Ever. I'm sorry HarperCollins...please don't drop me!!
Wednesday I had an early a.m. signing and was SHOCKED by the number of amazing people who turned up at 9:30 a.m. (and even earlier) to stand on line. I've posted some pics below, although they're very blurry, and it doesn't give the best sense of how crazy the line got. We even ran out of books! But everyone was so nice and gracious about it, and I got to chat (briefly) with a ton of my lovely fans.
In the afternoon I sat on a panel with Colin Meloy (the lead singer of The Decemberists) and Carson Ellis (his wife, and an illustrator extraordinaire whose work I have geeked out about for years) to discuss Magic and Myth in middle grade. The panel was short and sweet, and I went home with a signed ARC of Wildwood, Colin and Carson's book, which I of course began immediately devouring. (Find more info about it here.)
After my whirlwind week, I got slammed with a sudden fever and basically laid out for two days--literally. I slept for forty hours in two days! I obviously needed it, because on Saturday I woke up totally refreshed...although sad that I'd missed a YA sleepover hosted by my friend Leila Sales. (If you haven't ever read her blog The Leila Texts, you've been missing out.)
Next up: rest, recuperation, and writing time!
I hope everyone else had a great BEA. Check back the blog later in the week for the lucky winners of both my Crush and monthly Liesl & Po giveaways! And next week a writing challenge will be coming your way, so get ready....