Tucson Festival of Books
March 11th & 12th 2017
This year was my third time attending the Tucson Festival of Books and man was wonderful. This was actually my first event of any kind and of any size where I went all by myself. *Pats self on the back* The event just ended two weeks ago and I already cannot wait for next year.
Day One didn't go exactly as I planned. The very first panel I planned to go to was full even though I had arrived 30 minutes early. I guess I should've known "20 Ways Not to Write Your First Novel" would be a popular one. So the waiting began. I ventured back out to the main parts of the festival to check out booths and spin some pokestops. Which was very successful. I went home with over 300 combined pokeballs. The first signing I went to was for Alice Hoffman. While I still haven't finished reading Practical Magic, I had to take the opportunity to get my copy signed since I love the movie so much. This was followed by more wandering until it was finally time for my ticketed event to hear James Dashner speak about the Maze Runner series. If you didn't already know, James is very funny and tends to go off on tangents. He ended up only answering 4 out of 20 of the planned questions during the allotted hour, but it was still wonderful. His signing line though, WOW. I waited almost a full hour to meet him. Luckily someone in line was willing to hold my spot so I wouldn't end up missing Jeff Garvin and Shaun David Hutchinson and I didn't. After waiting an hour for Dashner, I finally got my book signed, but he was running late so I was told no picture. So I replied, "I'll be back tomorrow! See you then!" I took a nice little snack break inside the education building rather than going to the last 20 minutes of a panel and went out to my next signings. While in line waiting for Maggie Stiefvater, James passed me and offered me the picture I wasn't able to get 30 minutes prior. I'm not going to lie, it took us a couple of tries. You'll see. So my day ended with me meeting Maggie, Brittany Cavallaro, and seeing Aprilynne Pike for the third time. I finally had a book for her to sign! All in all, it was a great day! And I got so many compliments on my Beauty and the Beast shirt that read "My weekend is all booked."
On to day two! Once again, I braved the festival all by my lonesome. First stop was to hangout with Ginger Scott at the Arizona Indies tent. Those ladies were a blast. You have no idea. 10 AM brought the Dystopian Worlds panel featuring James Dashner, Alexandra Bracken, and Sharon Cameron. Once again, it was a lovely panel and the authors were great, but I learned from yesterdays mistake and dipped out 30 minutes early to line back up for Dashner. This time I was back with the book he said I should read because a character had my name in book two. Alas, it was my turn. "You're back!" he said. I was. He began to sign my new book and then... "Oh man, Gabriella with two L's. Mine only has one." What a shame, but it's okay. We didn't take a second picture. Next I lined up for Alexandra Bracken and while signing my book she had a little brainfart and started to write the B before anything else. Technically my book is signed twice and it's unique and I love it, brainfart and all. Sharon Cameron was also very sweet. I'm so excited to read The Forgetting, you have no idea. During the panel when she was describing it James said, "That is the single greatest premise for a book I have ever heard. I'm now mad at you for stealing it from me." and we all laughed. What an awesome group of humans. I should also mention that day two I met some new friends in line and chatted about books. These kind people being Erica, Jen, and Karen. Book festivals are such a great way to make friends. Even if you make them by inserting yourself into people's conversations like I do on occasion. After all of that fun I wandered back to the Arizona Indies tent and asked Ginger if she wanted to go grab a coffee before my V.E. Schwab signing. Turned out she had no idea she was there and so we went there instead to buy a book and surprise her husband. So sweet. I also practically force fed her some Hi-Chews and we agreed that it's the best way to make friends. I rounded out my adventures by stopping by to see a friend, Kathleen Glasgow and have a chat. Upon walking up, I noticed Shaun and I had the same shirt on which called for a second picture if you ask me. The conversation was fun and short, but totally worth it. Before I left, I grabbed one of Ginger's books and had her sign it. Oh and Erica spotted me again and snagged a picture.
2018 Tucson Festival of Books, please come faster. It's my favorite place to meet wonderful people and talk about even more wonderful books! Seriously, if you plan to go next year let me know! Maybe we can snag a picture together!
What's your favorite bookish event or memory? Tell me in the comments, leave your Twitter handle, and one lucky commenter from the US will win a copy of Blue by Lisa Glass! Subscribing gets you an extra entry. Happy reading y'all!