You know that great saying, “it never rains but pours”? Well, I’ve felt like that this week with all of the fantastic opportunities to meet great authors.
First up was the Indigo/Penguin “Book of Awesome” event on Wednesday evening, where author Neil Pasricha welcomed readers to the Chapter’s at John & Richmond in order to announce his #1 ‘awesome’ thing. For those of you who aren’t familiar with Neil and his work, he’s the creator of the blog 1000awesomethings.com and of the related books – three so far, including a holiday version. Neil started his blog four years ago as a way of reminding himself that there are always awesome things in life – we only need to look for them.
999 items later, he’s bringing his blog to a close (but not shutting it down), and hopefully gaining a day or two off from blogging (can you believe he’s done a daily post for four years??? I feel victorious if I manage three times a week!). The event was pretty special; he offered on-demand chocolate milk to all attendees, as well as party hats, Mardi Gras beads and, for those brave enough to step up and share their own awesome things, free signed books. It was a really positive event, and there was a tonne of audience interaction with him.
The best part for me was the opportunity to attend a meet-&-great at Milestone’s beforehand with some people from Penguin and Indigo (hey, Cammy!), as well as some other special invited guests, including Neil himself! He’s very charming in person, with a great down-to-earth sense of humour (despite a nail in his car tire – not awesome, by the way). He graciously signed our books (with multicoloured Sharpies! A man after my own heart…) and spent time having photos taken with the guests. It was very cool to have the chance to actually talk to him without the stress of the line-up behind us, because he’s a very interesting guy. I have to mention his parents as well, as they were also at the meet & greet. Mr. & Mrs. Pasricha, you did a great job with your boy, and you are obviously very proud of all he’s accomplished. All and all, he’s truly a great person who is so grateful for everything he’s been able to accomplish, and it was a pleasure to meet him. Thanks to Milestone’s for the yummy treats and to Penguin and Indigo for hosting the party.
Oh, are you are wondering about the #1 awesome thing that he announced that evening? I think it was an inspired choice, and I really think it was the best option for him after 999 individual blog entries. Go to his blog here to see it yourself. Remember … awesome is ‘anything you want it to be’.
The next night was another author extravaganza – this time courtesy of Indigo Yorkdale and the newly minted Razorbill imprint, a member of the Penguin family. On deck this time were authors Jay Asher, Lesley Livingston and Charles de Lint (talk about awesome!)
This was a great event, and you can tell that these authors have been traveling together for a few days and are very comfortable around each other. They joked around and kept us entertained, but still found time to talk to the audience about their books – both familiar and upcoming – and what they were hoping to accomplish with in their writing. They took questions from the audience, providing some fabulous advice for novice writers, and revealing some pretty crazy details about themselves in the process (Sajak’s Monkeys, Ms Livingston? Yeah, it was that kind of night….).
Jay Asher talked about the personal connection he has to ’13 Reasons Why’, and gave us a taste of new info about the upcoming movie adaptation. He confessed to feeling a little intimidated after his first published book, but then explained how he ended up collaborating with the admirable Carolyn Mackler on ‘The Future of Us’ and how that has restored his confidence. I love both these books (see my review of his first novel here), and highly recommend them.
Lesley Livingston was her usual zany self – don’t ever change, Lesley! We love you!. She talked about not only her most recent release, but also shared a sneak peak of the ARC of Starling and the upcoming titles of the two sequels to ‘Once Every Never’. There may have been some mention of having Pat Sajak’s baby 🙂 You can listen to the whole spiel here: Lesley Livingston
Finally, the incredibly talented (and patient!) Charles de Lint spoke, explaining what made him decide to create his first actual series in his writing career instead of another set of stand-alone books. The Wildlings series is one that I’ve been anticipating for a while, so it was great to hear him talk about what he envisioned for the book. Again, listen to his speech here: Charles de Lint
After all the talking was said and done, the authors very kindly stayed until everyone had had the chance to have their books signed, and the audience was able to take endless photos with their favourite authors. Thanks to Penguin/Razorbill and to Indigo for the opportunity to meet and greet these fantastic authors (Pssst! Three of the four were Canadian as well!).