Last Thursday was the Smart Chicks Kick It Tour stop in Edmonton, at Chapters Westside. It was also my first ever author signing. And - if I may take a moment to boast - it was AWESOME. There were seven authors there: Smart Chicks Kelley Armstrong, Melissa Marr, Ally Condie, Beth Revis, Veronica Roth, and Margaret Stohl, and Smart Chuck Charles de Lint. And they were welcomed by 750 people! Wow. I had no idea it was going to be as busy as it was and I'm glad I got there as early as I did because only the first 100 people got seats. Hopefully now that publishers and authors know that they can get a big crowd in Edmonton, this will be just the first author event here of many to come!
The event started off with a 30 minute Q&A session followed by the signing. Audience members asked the usual "What was your inspiration?" and "What is your writing process?" type questions and then there was a fun lightning round of questions in which much hilarity ensued.
As a naturally and innately shy person, I was pretty nervous about meeting these people I worship. My game plan was thus: Plan out ahead of time something to say to each author. Rehearse multiple times. Smile. Don't make a fool of myself.
The reality: I was a shaking, stuttering mess! When it was my turn to meet each author, I found that I was pretty much incapable of saying anything, never mind the things I had planned!
|Me looking awkward with Ally Condie|
|Me looking awkward with Margaret Stohl|
|Kelley Armstrong and me|
Prior to the event, I ran into Veronica Roth in the bathroom and I went into an immediate deer-in-headlights mode and just stood there, awkwardly frozen to the spot in shock, mouth agape. Ugh, so much for not making a fool of myself! I should've known right then that I was going to have trouble saying anything to these people!
Fun fact: My real name is Eilidh. It's the traditional Scottish Gaelic spelling. When it came to creating my blog though, I decided to spell my name out phonetically - Aylee - so that people wouldn't think my name was pronounced "eyelid" or something. Almost all the authors made a point to compliment my name, which was nice. Beth Revis was almost even able to pronounce it correctly!
I also had the pleasure of meeting some Edmonton Book Bloggers! I met Kristilyn of Reading in Winter, Jenni of Alluring Reads, Rola of XO Reads, and Brie of Eat Books. I had had no idea there were so many book bloggers in my area, so I was quite shocked to learn that there is an Edmonton Book Blogger Directory. It's so cool to know that there are all these like-minded people in my area!
Huge thanks goes out to Melissa Marr, Kelley Armstrong, and Indigo Green Room who helped organize the Smart Chicks Edmonton Event! Also thank you to the bf/book-carrier/ photographer/moral-supporter for being super helpful! I had such a great time and it was an experience I hope to repeat someday (hopefully with less flustered nervousness)!