This weekend I attended the LA Times Festival of Books, why this is the first time I have attended is still perplexing to me. There were a slew of authors I wanted to meet and hear speak. It was impossible to catch each and every one, but I was fortunate to see a few of my favorites.
When I first arrived, I was overwhelmed and in awe of all the book-related amazingness around me. I spent a good amount of time perusing the incredibly affordable books for sale, and brought home one or two…or more.
The first author I saw was Alicia Silverstone, who was there to promote her new book, The Kind Mama. I have Alicia’s book, The Kind Diet and enjoy many of the recipes and tips she shares in the book.
Alicia gave a great interview on the book and proudly promoted a vegan lifestyle. She graciously answered audience Clueless related questions, and my own question about what book helped her in her transitioning to veganism (The Food Revolution, by John Robbins).
After getting my book signed, I rushed over to the incredible line for the John Green signing. I really wanted to hear him speak, but when I went to get in line for his interview, it was already packed and my hopes were dashed. However, I was told that he would be signing each and every book after his talk.
The line to meet him was insane. It was packed with teenagers and I knew I would be waiting for a few hours. Although it was a test in patience, I was happy to see so many kids exciting about meeting an author and reading books in line (!!!).
I waited in line for 3 hours! My husband was awesome and went to get provisions. The festival had a great selection of vegan options! This helped sustain me through the wait.
Although my chat with him was short, I was struck by what a genuinely nice guy John Green was. He looked tired (who wouldn’t, after signing books for 3 hours?!), but committed to sign each and every book there. He was apologetic about the wait time and thanked me when I told him I loaned my book out to my students all the time.
I missed Ruth Ozeki’s interview, but I made it over to her tent, just in time to get my book signed. This picture came out awfully blurry, but it was great to meet her.
I walked around the festival a little bit more, but was pretty wiped out and the events were winding down. We refueled at The Veggie Grill (so necessary), before heading home.
This was such an amazing event and I am still baffled that it was FREE! Now that I am not a newbie anymore, I will have a better plan for next year and be more strategic about meeting and seeing more authors. It was such an amazing experience and I will definitely return next year!