LA Times Festival of Books: Day Two

LA Festival D2Welcome back to my recap posts about the LA Festival of Books! Day two, Sunday, was definitely the jam-packed day, so get ready for a bunch of pictures! Whereas I had Veronica on Sunday, I was totally alone on Sunday, so it was a bit of a different experience. But it turned out far better than I expected, and I was so sad that it was over!

Day Two

I left earlier, since I had been late the first day, and I didn’t hit any traffic! So I ended up getting to the campus at 8:30 – almost three hours before my first panel started! So I rearranged my schedule a bit, and went to the Mrs. Nelson’s tent (which ended up being my stomping grounds for the entire day), since there was a Marissa Meyer signing at 10:15. I ended up being first in line, sitting on a rock until a few other people joined me at about 9:15. And then – miracle of miracles! – they let me know that Sarah J. Maas would be there at the same time! So after waiting and waiting, the signing started, and I saw both authors!

photo 2

I already had Scarlet signed, so I only had to carry Cinder and Cress. Marissa is really sweet, and I LOVE her hair.
photo 3Next was Sarah, and she was actually super fun to talk to! We were laughing at her sunglasses, since she had been placed right where the sun was in her eyes, and of course the glasses were all bent at the nose. I was so excited when I saw the message on The Assassin’s Blade – it’s my favorite quote on my favorite book in the series!

After the signing, I RAN all the way across campus to make it to the Conversation between Veronica Roth and Leigh Bardugo, and made it just in time for when they were letting people in. I ended up on the second level in the theater, but it wasn’t horrid seating, and I could hear perfectly. And let me just say – those two ladies together is the greatest thing in the world! They were absolutely hilarious, and between answering with serious, thoughtful replies, they were totally goofy and fun. It didn’t even seem like an hour at all. There was an opportunity for a Roth signing, but I didn’t even try since I knew it would be hours and there were so many other panels I wanted to attend.

Sorry for no pictures of their conversation – I was far too high for any quality, and they had said no photography anyway.

After that, I ran to the food truck for lunch, then ate as I walked back (seriously – everything I was going to that day was completely across campus from each other) to the YA stage. But then I remembered that Emery Lord had a signing of her debut novel, Open Road Summer, at 1 at the Mrs. Nelson tent, so I got in line – first again! I had excellent luck at timing, apparently. The lady at Nelson’s was teasing me about it 😛

photo 5

Love Letters to the Dead was a later signing that day

I just have to say – Emery was an absolute pleasure to meet! She was so easy to talk to, and I didn’t feel nervous like I usually do when meeting authors. We actually got to talking about my reading, and how I’ve just gotten back to YA last year. When I said that contemporary was my least read genre, but I was beyond excited for Open Road Summer, she smiled so wide and said she hoped it would help me dive into the genre even more! I wish I could have talked to her more, but didn’t want to be rude to everyone else in line.

After meeting Emery, I ran over to the Stephanie Perkins signing that had been going on at the same time, and that was probably the longest I waited in an “active” line, since I joined after it had already started. Even so, it was only about half an hour before I met Stephanie! And she was so easy to talk to as well: she loved my hair (eeepp!!!) and we started talking about how hard it is with pixie cuts to get that exact shape that’s perfect for your face.

The sharpies match the covers!!

The sharpies match the covers!!

While I was waiting in line, I missed the first half of the Young Adult Sci-Fi: Fantastical Tales with Marissa Meyer, Leigh Bardugo, Sarah J. Maas, and Cecil Castellucci, but since I had already met them all one way or another, I wasn’t too worried about it. I caught the last half, but since I was in the way far back I couldn’t hear very well, or get any pictures (sad day!). So it really just ended up being a time for me to sit down and rest my feet and rearrange my bag since all the signings had gotten them all mixed up and upside down.

Once that panel ended, I was able to sneak a seat on the grass underneath the trees for some shade, since the seating was right in the sun and I didn’t feel like burning. After a 30 minute break, wherein I read Cress (holy cow why did I wait so long itssogood!!!) and relaxed some more – there was a lovely breeze that finally came around. And then *drumroll please* the Young Adult Fiction: Told From the Heart panel started!

photo 5-3

Joanna Philbin, Emery Lord, and Stephanie Perkins

Again, sorry the pictures are poor quality, but it was as close as I could get! I loved this panel – it was a perfect mix of talking about swoony boys and all the authors encouraging the audience that A) the romance between friends is important too, and B) boys in reality CAN be as good as boys in books. All the ladies were relaxed and chatty, and it felt like a heart-to-heart between friends more than a panel. Surprisingly one of my favorites of the day!

After that, I went back to Mrs. Nelson’s booth for my last signing: Ava Dellaira, author of Love Letters to the Dead (picture is up above next to Open Road Summer). She had a million sharpie colors to choose from, and of course I picked the dead one! We spent about five minutes trying to find sharpies that worked: I told her that I was just the test run and I was weeding out the weak!

Alas, once I was done at the booth, my day was finished. My cousin picked me up and took me to Santa Monica Boulevard to meet my mom, and we walked around the streets and had dinner together. Well, I should say snack, since we drove home and stopped in Corona for actual dinner at this FANTASTIC Mexican restaurant. Let’s just say we were wishing it was socially acceptable to leave our pants unbuttoned to let room for our food babies…

So that was my weekend! It was way different than I was expecting, but in the best way possible. Veronica and I have dreams of going to BEA next year – hopefully LA prepared me enough for that trip!


21 thoughts on “LA Times Festival of Books: Day Two

  1. AAAAH! Your weekend sounded like A LOT of fun! I only own one book signed by the author and that’s a book my prof wrote. Haha. Oh well. Thank you for writing about your experiences and letting the rest of us live vicariously through you 😉

    • In the long run, signed books don’t really mean so much, it’s really the experience that makes it so special!

      And of course 😉 I loved writing it down so I wouldn’t forget!

  2. Awwh that sounds absolutely fantastic, Kayla! Even though I haven’t actually read anything by those authors, I’m still immensely jealous! What an awesome opportunity! So glad you had a good time. I think all those lectures and talks would have been great; to actually hear the authors talk about those subjects we always question – just woah.

  3. Whoop! It’s so cool that you got to chat with all of these authors! I wish we had events like these in our country! ❤ I mean, Stephanie Perkins, Marissa Meyer.. I wish I was there! Glad you had some awesome books signed, Kayla!

  4. Darn, I wish I knew about the early signing at Mrs. Nelson’s! That would have saved me some time – I only managed to catch Sarah there around noon. I decided not to go to the Veronica Roth panel and kinda regret missing all the banter and fun! (though the time travel one I went to was fantastic!) I’m glad Sunday was such a great and productive day! I wonder if BEA is better organized than this festival though because if it’s not I’ll be so stressed when (if ever) I go to BEA!

    • I don’t think many people did know about them! I just got lucky since I had been looking at the authors’ websites the night before and found out about it. The fact that Maas was there was just a bonus 🙂

      I really want to go to BEA now – I think it’s better when you have a bunch of people so you can share the stress!

  5. Leigh freaking Bardugo. That is all. EEP! This seriously sounded like the funnest time ever, you met so many awesome authors and the panels!! However… my favorite part of this post is the fact that you said FOOD BABY! hahaa… I didn’t think anyone else said that, you made my night lol ❤

    • I KNOW! She’s a hilarious lady – I’d totally be her best friend if possible.

      WHO DOESN’T SAY FOOD BABY?? That’s a frequent term used in my vocabulary! Mostly because my body is too sensitive to sodium (which I ignore) and end up bloated – always. (was that TMI? I hope not!)

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  7. That sounds like such a fun day! And it ended up working out really well that you got to both go to the signings and panels you wanted to. I’m totally jealous 🙂

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