Monday, September 28, 2009

The National Book Festival

Saturday was our long-awaited trip to The National Book Festival. My daughter and I headed straight for the children's tent where (from left to right) we heard from Jon Scieszka, Megan McDonald, Steven Kellogg, Nikki Grimes, Kate DiCamillo and Shannon Hale. They were introducing a collaborative book that is going to be published every two weeks on called The Exquisite Corpse Adventure. Jon Scieszka wrote the first chapter and read it aloud to us. Katherine Paterson will be writing the next installment. Steven Kellogg did some impromptu illustrations and Shannon Hale joked about her regrettable decision to wear white socks that day.

After quickly surveying the massive lines for author signings (we spied John Grisham and Jodi Picoult--their lines were ridiculous!), I told my daughter she could choose one. Her top priority was Kate DiCamillo so we stood in line for 90 minutes so she could sign her copy of The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane. They had a cute conversation:

C: My entire 4th grade is reading this book right now.
Kate: How's that going?
C: It's going good, but I've already read it like five times.
Kate: Wow! That's a great compliment. :)

There were grins and thanks all round.

The highlight of the day for me was meeting my friend and fellow blogging buddy, Corinne from The Book Nest, for the first time! We both had our 9 year old daughters in tow and the four of us just palled around like we'd known each other forever. I so appreciate that Corinne and her daughter came, and I only hope that next time we meet (which I'm hoping will be sometime in the next 4 months!) we'll get to hang out together longer. Seriously, every time I think about meeting up with these two awesome girls, I get a happy feeling in my heart.

As the rain started, we headed into the Pavilion of the States where each state (except loser Florida) had a booth. C had a little map book stamped and each state passed out goodies like posters, stickers, tattoos, and bookmarks. North Carolina had a little map where we could mark our house!

We stood in the dripping wet just outside the teen/children's tent to hear Kate DiCamillo read aloud some of her newest book, The Magician's Elephant. She also answered questions until her mic quit working.

And then as we managed to worm our way into the tent, Rick Riordan came out! C was so thrilled!

Rick talked about how he went from writing adult mysteries to writing his Percy Jackson and the Olympian series. He also announced that he's writing a series involving Egyptian gods and he read us the first bit of the first book. He was a very likeable guy and totally reminded me of my junior high science teacher, which I guess makes sense since he is a middle school teacher!

It was a great day (despite having to throw my wet shoes away!) and we can't wait to go again next year.


Melissa said...

You saw Rick Riordan!? Awesome. Sounds like you had a grad time. (I'm glad you got to meet Corinne after all.:-)

Paige said...

What a cool event! Wish I could have been there with my almost-9-year-old but he would have grunted at the girls. Rick Riordan would have made him grin though. He's really excited to see Percy Jackson come to life.

Charley said...

Rick Riordan's working on a new series? Cool!

bermudaonion said...

What a wonderful way to spend a weekend with your daughter. It's so much fun to meet other bloggers, too!

morninglight mama said...

Oh, I wish my 9 year old son and I had run into you guys!! :)

Corinne is the greatest, and the NBF is seriously my favorite Saturday of the year. Such a blast!

Veens said...

wowzieeeee@ What an awesome day! And how cool you could meet Corrine!!!!

That was an awesome festival :)

Serena said...

Sounds like you had a great time. Sorry I missed you all at the festival. I as with mom most of the day in the poetry and mystery tents.

Okie said...

Sounds like a great time. I'm jealous. Thanks for sharing the experience. :)

Anna said...

I wish I'd known you were both going to be there! I was there with my 9-year-old girl, too, but we spent a lot of time waiting for Jeff Kinney to sign her books. She was thrilled!

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