edited: Now, with a picture from Penguin Teen! Documenting the drinking of water! And the shortness of me!
But no pictures. If wild and crazy photos of me signing books and standing around smiling at BEA surface on the internet, you will know that someone has sold my camera for ill-gotten gains. There may also be a picture of me sitting up on a stage for a panel discussion and looking concerned. The scandal!
So here is the one sentence summary of BEA: It was just about perfect.
I am not perfect, my books are not perfect, my kids are not perfect (which may be part of why I love them so dearly). I don’t usually expect anything to be perfect, which isn’t to say that I don’t expect it to be great. I just don’t usually think things will go as smoothly as this did.
Which means that people were working very hard behind the scenes. I’m incredibly grateful to my publisher for putting everything together and for all the work they did to make things work so well at the signing, for the panels, etc.
I loved being on the YA Buzz Panel, listening to fellow authors Kody Keplinger, Sophie Jordan, Erin Bow, and Rebecca Maizel talk. I adored sitting in the audience during the YA Editors Buzz Panel listening to my editor, Julie Strauss-Gabel, talk about MATCHED. She was out of this world awesome. I felt like all of the titles sounded so interesting and I felt very lucky that MATCHED was included in their company.
It was also lovely talking with people. My agent. My editor. My publicist, who was unfailingly unflappable. The other authors I got to meet and attend the ABC dinner with (Andrea Cremer and Heather Brewer, who are both kind and fun to be around, have excellent hair, and are the authors of fantastic books). The previously mentioned very wonderful Gayle Forman. I loved the bloggers who came up and introduced themselves, and the people who came through my line for the galley signing. I have had book signings before where I’ve signed two books. To have a line of people was so exciting for me (and yes, I know the books were free, but please don’t rain on this very shiny parade I’m having).
Cocktail hours/dinners always have that moment where: the waiter asks for my drink order and I say that I’ll have water, or Sprite, and inevitably someone who I’m talking with hears my order and remembers I’m from Utah and then it clicks and I get asked the Mormon question. (The answer is: yes.) Gayle pointed out in the comments on my last post that I can order fun drinks, like ginger ale (which I ALWAYS get on airplanes). Genius!
I think next time I might say, “Chocolate milk.” Maybe then they will also bring me a toy with my dinner.
So. BEA was great. And part of why it was great was that, even though I had fun every minute (especially the part where I was sleeping through the night UNINTERRUPTED FOR THREE NIGHTS), it made me so happy to come home and hug the kids. So huggable, those kids. So cute. So funny and winsome. They deserve a toy with their dinners. Good thing I picked up that tiny stress-relief judge’s mallet that one of the booths was giving away. It’s so awesome and squishy. I wish I could take a picture of it for you, but, you know. No camera.
Also, here is a link to the Writing and Illustrating for Young Readers Workshop, which takes place NEXT WEEK! I’m presenting this year and I’m SO excited. Come this year. Make plans to come next year. It’s always, always good.
And another link to a contest that Sandy Shin is running for a pre-ordered copy of MATCHED. I’m so flattered! Sandy’s blog is great–about her writing journey, her life, etc. Check it out.