Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Anne Rice and Author Visits in General

I endured an hour of traffic, lines and carrying a beautiful but extremely heavy book to get signed and all on a stomach that was running on a small amount of hastily eaten food.  My mother, on top of all of this, had to deal with the paying of money to do this and worrying about her coworker and getting his book for his wife signed. While I was doing this, I had to fight off the growing feelings of excitement from consuming me whole.

I was going to see the mother of the modern-day vampire! I can't say that's something that one does every day.

After all that, I finally got to see her. Well, I should say I got into the auditorium where she was at least. Then I got to wait a little bit, chew on my Peanut Chews, listen and watch the library getting/ begging for money and listen to an apparent vampire introduce her. Then I got to see her.

It was well worth it. She was interesting to listen to and very passionate about what she was talking about. I must say that it really was a little strange to actually see her. She even looked nervous at the beginning although later on it was only her shaking hands that gave her away (obviously, she forgot that her fans appreciate anything coming out of her mouth as long as it's English. Maybe she was always nervous of that kind of thing, though).

Half of it was her talking and the other half was Q&A. Her answers to the questions were interesting and informative.

I was the last one to pose a question, too. It was great! The guy next to her was usually the one to pick the people out of the crowd. She specifically said, "How about the girl in the blue in the middle? She seems to be raising her hand a lot." I almost died of joy.

First of all, I would have absolutely loved to have a conversation with her but I didn't quite get that opportunity. I had so much to say. However, I did end up condensing one of my thoughts to one question. I asked her how it felt for her to deal with such personal issues when she was writing (she writes mostly fantasy books) and how she ended up dealing with it when that became too much. She responded that she had to write where the pain was and then talked about a few books that were particularly difficult for her to write.

I'd like to think that something about me or her question will stick in her mind but she'll probably forget me in a few days if she hasn't already.

My one complaint is that I didn't get the chance to get my book autographed. Despite the fact that my mom paid premium seating for the both of us, somehow the people from Simulcast (for all the people who didn't buy the tickets in time- it sold out, of course, so they paid to watch it in the other room) and other random people had priority. She called to complain at the unfairness of it and hopefully I won't have to go through a similar experience with Jodi Picoult. I ended up e-mailing her but I doubt that she'll respond (especially not when she's probably dealing with the Carpal Tunnel she got from writing all of those signatures!).

Anne Rice was the fourth author that I got to see so far. I have also seen Jay Asher, Shannon Hale and Suzanne Collins (well, maybe more if you count the school visits though Jordan Sonneblick is the only one of those whose books I actually read). I missed an event with Melissa Marr in my local Barnes and Noble, something I'm still kicking myself over.

Author visits are especially informative to me as a writer. It's so interesting to see the different points of views of the writers on being a writer and to see them talking about their books. Often, the writers give an insider's perspective on the characters and you see things in a totally new way, in a way that you don't really see them before.

Author visits are also that one thing to look forward to. That one thing to count down and get super excited about when things seem to be especially boring. It's so much fun to go in the city because even though it's much more stressful than going to our local Barnes and Noble (especially since it usually ends up in my mom getting lost and in bad neighborhoods), it gives it a more exciting and foreign feeling to it.

Of course, none of those visits would have ever been possible without my mom. She feeds my lovely artist brain at any chance that she can and so much of my experiences wouldn't have been possible without her. When my mom was growing up, her parents were confined by a specific brand of Spanish chauvinism that dictated that women were meant to be homemakers and the ones to rear the children, making higher education ridiculous (training as a secretary was fine, though). They've been much more flexible about this and have changed many of these views once they saw what my mom was able to do but that doesn't change the fact that she did it pretty much on her own. That's why I'm even more impressed by her. My dad's supportive too but he doesn't like it as much and she's the one to organize things usually.

I absolutely cannot wait until March for Jodi Picoult now. I must say that she has a pretty high standard to live up to now, though. I'm hoping that the fact that it's realistic fiction she writes doesn't make it less interesting.

Bottom line is that author visits are awesome. Anne Rice is pretty great too and I'd suggest watching her YouTube videos and reading her books if you haven't already.

Not my event! I have pics but the quality didn't turn out good enough and they were a little small.

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