I volunteered with the National Book Festival last weekend! Imagine rows and rows of fans waiting in line–sometimes for hours–to see their favorite authors. I was smack in the middle of it all manning the book lines of children’s author Katherine Paterson and then illustrator Suzy Lee (who designed the festival poster below). My job required a lot of, “only one book person, ma’am” or “do you need a rubber band for your poster?” but it was still nice to be involved.
A few rows to the right of my assigned post I saw a line 90% composed of black women—I followed it with my eyes until I saw, you guessed it, Terry McMillan! Her fans seemed to be having a ball down there and I was jealous! She definitely engaged with people.
Khaled Hosseini’s line was to my left–I heard he started signing early, finished late and still didn’t get to everyone. He was probably the most popular author at the Festival on Sunday, with the exception of maybe Tamora Pierce. Don’t worry, I didn’t know who she was either—apparently she writes fantasy fiction for teenagers, many—many—of whom showed up to see her. Anyway, after my shift, I caught the tail end of Hosseini’s talk, when he was discussing how his medical background influenced his writing. Apparently he never intended it to–medical themes or professionals just always seem to turn up in his books. To be honest, I didn’t even know he was a doctor (however, I do know he’s not the only doctor turned novelist out there). Khaled was pretty funny and engaging for someone who writes such depressing (but good) books.
Finally, I made progress with my editing!! I finished going through my manuscript on the computer—making the tense and points of views consistent, and other major changes. I printed it out and next weekend I will begin reading/editing in hard copy. Exciting!!
Have a good weekend peeps!