Armchair BEA headquarters.
I don't have much desire to write outside of my blog & I don't currently monetize, so today's post is going to focus on a fun aspect of my blog.
While I could talk about Nostalgic Fridays (which is something I'm trying to bring back) or how my blog got its name (I love tattoos [I have 3] & books, so kind of not much to talk about there) I'm going to discuss the shenanigans of author events/signings.
I thoroughly enjoy collecting books that have been personalized at an author signing. Over the last 2.5 years I have attending at least a dozen events (some larger than others) & collected several autographed books. Although I am proud of these books & love them to death (they have their very own shelf on one of my bookcases), the most fun are the authors themselves. These people are what make it all worthwhile. Without their hard work & dedication to their craft & their fans' experiences, the book community just wouldn't be as wonderful as it is. On top of responding to comments on their Facebook, Twitter & blogs, these authors hit the road (sometimes in style & sometimes with very little fanfare) to visit with their fans.
For me, it's all about the stories they tell & the relationships that build. Yes it's nice to hear them read from their book or discuss their writing process, but for me the stories behind all that are the most important. Ally Condie remarked that she had a writing epiphany while trying to match up her sons' tiny socks. Any excuse not to do laundry is a good one, right? I have seen Maggie Stiefvater twice (once in Charlottesville, VA & once at Quail Ridge Books in Raleigh). As stated in those articles, Maggie is hands down the best live author event ever. Her quirky sense of humor & hilarious tales (TSA woes & real-life wolves licking her face) leave you in awe of her writing talents. Even better was that on Maggie's last trip to Raleigh she was kind enough to take a picture with me and Loki (her gorgeous car) while telling me about all the things that had happened on the tour prior to that stop.
I find that I tend to forget that authors are just people. Incredibly talented & unbelievably kind people, but people none the less. They have this kind of celebrity aura surrounding them & a lot of people feel like they might be unreachable. I go to the author events to meet the real people, not just the feeling you get from blog posts, books, & interviews. In person is where the magic happens & I am drawn to the magic. The authors I have met are some of the most amusing & humble people I've had the pleasure to encounter. If you've never been to an event I highly recommend them!