Last weekend was the annual ALA (American Library Association) conference in Washington, DC. It was my first time, and partially since I don't have a library to call my own just yet, I took the opportunity to mostly get excited over all the famous author readings/meetings/book-signings and free books.

My favorite part was the YA Author Coffee Klatch on Sunday morning, which was basically like speed-dating with authors. There were six to eight librarians at a table, and every five minutes a new author would sit down to chat with us. I was a little nervous at the beginning, not knowing what to expect ... when all of a sudden who comes over to sit at my table but John Green and David Levithan! Like, two of the biggest superstars there. They were really funny and friendly, and I got this great photo of John Green smiling right at me. (David Levithan was talking, so I cropped him out.) Simone Elkeles, Holly Black, and Rick Yancey also stopped by, along with new-to-me-yet-seemingly-awesome authors Carrie Jones, Jessica Day George, and James Kennedy.

At the end of the event, all the authors got together for a big picture and were very nice about posing for photos with the librarians/fans. I got a shot with Libba Bray (this year's Printz winner, who was super sweet and even waved to me in the ladies room later on) and another with the Green/Levithan team, and I went total fangirl on poor Stephanie Kuehnert, although I was too shy to say anything intelligent or introduce myself as the writer of this blog who interviewed her via email a couple years back. (Seriously, I don't think I've ever spoken the words "my blog" out in public.)

Later in the day I stood in line to get Holly Black's autograph—and snagged an advance copy of her new anthology Zombies Vs. Unicorns—and listened to Laurie Halse Anderson read from her upcoming historical fiction Forge (before waiting in line to get a signed copy of that). I don't think I'm leaving anything out, except the fact that my suitcase weighed an extra ton on the way home due to all the extra books. At least I was smart enough to only bring my Kindle for the trip down.


Sadako said...

Ooh very nice! Love a good autograph story.