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Armchair BEA day 3: Networking in Real Life

As an educator, one of my favorite things to do is attend conferences. I love that face-to-face interaction and the thrill of navigating large crowds of people to get the best seat in a session. I'm like a super ninja  salmon navigating upstream with supersonic speed. Short people can do that...

Last year I was able to attend IRA (International Reading Association) and a few other conferences. While the sessions are always great and informative, the exhibit halls entice me to spend long hours walking around in utter amazement. For a reader, an enormous room full of books and book related items is a dream come true. While I spend a great deal of time stalking the book vendors' shelves and making wish-lists, I also enjoy meeting the authors. The best authors always show up to teacher conferences! (I just wish I had clones so I could see them all!)

Last year I met:

Meg Cabot!

My oldest son's favorite author, Jeff Kinney!

My childhood favorite, R.L. Stine!

My favorite picture book character,
Llama Llama (in red pajamas)!

I enjoyed meeting these authors so much! They were all amazing. Jeff Kinney is the most humble and down to earth person I have ever met. R.L. Stine was super friendly and patient with the masses (even as we ambushed him at the Scholastic booth). Meg Cabot is adorable. And Llama Llama is just great! How could you not get excited about seeing him in person? He even gave me a shirt! I also met Jessica Day George and Heather Brewer, but my camera was being lame at that moment.

I think it's so important to get to meet the authors that we admire so much as readers because it gives us the opportunity to remember that they are real people. I think we often forget that there is a face and emotions attached to the name on a book cover. These authors (not just the ones mentioned here) are amazing, talented people.


  1. OMG! RL Stein <3 I used to love his Goosebumps series :)

  2. So cool! Seeing everyone's posts is making me jealous. lol!

    I imagine RL Stine would be great to meet! I know from his twitter he's hilarious. I'd love to hear him talk.

  3. That is awesome that you got to meet RL Stein! He is amazing :)

  4. I know! I geeked out for real because I was such a HUGE fan of the Fearstreet series as a kid. I saw him while browsing books and was like "OMG! Can I get a picture with you PLEASE?" He was very nice and patient with me.

  5. How fun! I've only met a few authors, but I agree, they're definitely real people and SO much fun. And how great you got to meet Llama Llama! My kids would go nuts.

    Thanks for stopping by my Armchair BEA Networking Post!!

  6. I helped fix Llama Llama's broken ear. LOL My son LOVES him. I had to get my picture taken with him or be forced to hang my head in shame.

  7. It's always such great fun meeting authors!

  8. Looks like you had a blast meeting the authors :) My author list is small but they really are some neat people :)

    Thanks for sharing!
    Leila | The Fiction Pixie

  9. It's wonderful you've been able to meet so many authors and attend such fun events!

  10. Looks like you had some wonderful experiences meeting people! I'm not so lucky considering I'm broke like no joke and live in the middle of nowhere. But I hope to one day meet some of my faves before they disappear!

  11. <Man I really need to start looking for events and local indies. I've been seeing so much hype about these things !! LOL.

  12. Sounds like an awesome conference! I read sooo many R.L. Stine books when I was young... I also remember buying my little sister books from the Goosebump series and reading them before I gifted them to her, LOL!!

    And yes, there are lots of Central Florida bloggers!! Definitely plan on attending an event here. The next UCF Book Festival is in either March or April next year and is always really fun.

  13. I completely agree with our comment about meeting authors and being able to see the as real people. I think it's important for kids, too! Tools like Skype are so wonderful for their ability to connect students with authors and allowing them to see that their just not names on the front of a book, but living, breathing individuals. So neat.


  14. Oh your author signings/meetings sound amazing. Though I don't think I'll ever be able to think of them as real people. With those amazingly creative minds and the ability to put those thoughts into words on a page that can keep me riveted time and time again, I can't possibly imagine ever thinking they're "real."

    But that being said, I totally agree that going to signings, listening to authors read from their books, interacting and engaging with them is the best!

    And sorry your phone was being lame. I bet Heather Brewer was amazing IRL!

    Happy ABEA!


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