Today I had another panel at Book Expo in New York City, this time on paranormal YA fiction--a topic I feel pretty knowledgeable about. I was with authors Holly Black, Ivy Devlin, and Andrea Cremer. They were an awesome group to hang out with. Later, I did a signing at BEA, which was a lot different from one of my bookstore ones. It was a fast and furious line of people, with no posed pictures, and pretty much only involved signing Spirit Bound. Even that 30 seconds per person gave me time to chat and learn where people were from, so I had fun. Afterward, I had more author awesomeness when I ran into Holly Black again, this time hanging out with Scott Westerfeld and Justine Larbalestier.
After BEA duties, I went to a dinner with some other Penguin authors and execs, editors, etc. at the company. It was great timing because a lot of the people there were ones who've helped get Spirit Bound where it is--so again, many thanks to them. Erin Dempsey is one such person, flanked here by author pals Heather Brewer and Andrea Cremer. For those who haven't heard of Andrea, just wait until October.
In retrospect, I realize I dropped the ball on taking a lot of pictures today. I should have gotten some shots of the BEA floor, to give you an idea of what a massive convention this is and how crazy crowded it is. I should have gotten shots of the signing line and panel too--especially since I was sitting right next to John Flanagan, author of the Rangers series, at my signing. Cue fangirl. Getting a picture of Diana Peterfreund, author of Rampant, while we waited in line for the bathroom would have also been good. It probably wouldn't have hurt to get a few more pics at the Penguin dinner, like of my editors or when the Young Readers group president gave a really nice speech about how we're all in the business of sharing stories.
But, no. I didn't get any of those. I did, however, get this evidence of FLEET WEEK in New York City:
Yes, Fleet Week. It's an annual event when lots of Navy and other armed forces ships dock in the city for ship tours and exhibitions, while sailors get out and about. I'd never heard of this until about 10 hours ago, so imagine my surprise when right away, lo! Sailors (in a generic sense, that is. I know there are different military designations).
And of course, where there are sailors, there are...pirates!
Okay, actually the pirates were nowhere near the armed forces sailors. This pirate was at BEA. Why? I'm not really sure. But when my agent Jim and I walked by, we knew that if I didn't go back and ask for a picture, I would later regret it. Interestingly, in the upper left-hand corner, there appears to be a very good imitation of Heather Brewer (check picture further back). I thought for sure it was, but I don't think it's possible to get a shot of Heather without the Vladimir Todd logo. Since I don't see it, I'm going to assume this is just a good approximation. Really, it's a tough call.
What isn't a tough call is that I've had an amazing nine days promoting Spirit Bound and meeting people all over the country. I'm homesick for my husband and cats but have had such an amazing time visiting all these cities and experiencing such groundbreaking moments in my career. I fly out in the afternoon and will be back home in Seattle tomorrow night, which I'm really looking forward to. It's time to see my loved ones and get back to work! Thanks again, everyone, for such a fantastic time. Talk to you soon from Seattle.