ALA, Day 1

So, ALA is amazing.

It is a giant room filled with books and people who love them.

So, heaven, pretty much.

My best friend Jenn and I got there around 8:30 to pick up our badges. When the exhibits opened at 9, we hightailed it to the Penguin booth, where I learned that if you asked nicely, they would totally give you ARCs. I still can’t believe that I didn’t have to swear eternal devotion or anything. They just gave them to me! It was amazing! Everyone was so nice! (Warning: many exclamation points still ahead.)

My first order of business: I had promised Kiersten White and Stephanie Perkins that I would introduce their book babies and then snap a pic of their first play-date. I can’t wait to read these two!

While Jenn (a high school English teacher intent on building her classroom library) snapped up free books indiscriminately (bookslut!) I referred to my list of coveted ARCs. Like MATCHED and THE REPLACEMENT and ZOMBIES V. UNICORNS. But there were books I hadn’t anticipated. Like REAL LIVE BOYFRIENDS, the fourth Ruby Oliver book. I love E. Lockhart’s voice, and Roo is one of my all-time favorite characters. I was beyond excited to see that. And then Jenn found out that they had BEHEMOTH and she almost died! Unfortunately, that picture didn’t turn out.

At one point, our totes bags heavy, our feet weary, and in need of cash, we left the exhibit hall to find an ATM. Then we plopped down on the floor to examine our haul. We were like dragons guarding our treasures. Note: this picture is less than half my stash.

I also hit a bunch of signings. Malinda Lo, Kami Garcia and Margie Stohl, Karen Kincy, Kate Messner, Diana Peterfreund. Laurie Halse Anderson is so nice. If I could have tea with any living author, she’d be the one. I admire her work so much, and I love that she shares her passions about everything from history to gardening to running on her blog. Oh, and I bought RADIANT SHADOWS finally and had Melissa Marr sign it! WICKED LOVELY is one of the books that made me start writing again, so I was crazy-excited to meet her. Not that I articulated that. I didn’t get any pictures, either. But she and Kami Garcia both said they liked my pink hair! Kate Messner recognized me from LJ! Mitali from
Alley of Books recognized me from Twitter! *flails, falls over dead*

I am shy. Like, really shy. But I introduced myself to a few authors I "know" from LJ! I hope I didn’t sound like a creeper!

I also ran into one of the editors who, I think, has my on-submission book. She seemed amazingly nice and recognized my name and mentioned that she’s read my blog. I have no recollection of what I said to her, because I was struck with terror! Her notes on the last revision were immensely helpful. I did not articulate that. I was busy trying not to flail. 

As the exhibits were winding down, I located the lovely Diana Peterfreund and we went off to Busboys and Poets for dessert. I have not seen her in months and it was fantastic to catch up. We talked about lots of things, including her new retelling of PERSUASION (which sounds amazing and which I am very excited about even though I accidentally called it P&P because my brain was book-fried), my submissions, summer plans, basil, and books we are excited to read.

Then I came home and passed out. Now I am awake again and off to read REAL LIVE BOYFRIENDS.

Day 1: Success.

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