It has been way too long since I attended the Teen Book Fest and there is so much I still want to tell you. I am hoping over the holidays I will get a chance to catch up on my intended posts. Today I am going to talk about the author I am probably still the most excited to have met.
Part of the excitement of meeting this author was not knowing she would be there and just the sheer coincidence of it. This author has written a dystopian novel, lives in Utah, and even went to the same college as me. She attended the Teen Book Fest as an audience member, like me, and happened to sit three rows directly in front of me.
The author I am talking about is none other than Elana Johnson, author of the forthcoming Possession. Her book has the MOST AMAZING cover and I seriously cannot wait to read it. Possession releases June 7th, 2011, so mark your calendars!
Here is the cover.
I love the white space, the butterfly, the tagline “control or be controlled.”
You may not know this about me, though I have talked about it previously, I don’t like to know anything about a book before I read it, besides genre and a one sentence summary.
Not knowing what to expect is essential to the enjoyment of my book reading experience.
All I need to know about Elana’s book is one word, dystopian.
Here is the visual proof that I was in the same (crowded) room as Elana Johnson. Actually, I didn’t even know that she was there yet.
Mr. X happened to see @ElanaJ tweet “I got in!” And he asked me if I thought she was at the festival. (There was a standby line.)
Ah, once again the power of Twitter. I have never connected with someone at a live event like this and it was a weird experience. Especially when I told Elana that I was sitting right behind her and she had to look over her shoulder and check.
Via Twitter we set up a photo op after the keynote address by Scott Westerfeld, which was very entertaining and will hopefully get a future post. Poor Mr. Westerfeld playing second billing to Elana Johnson. But it was great just knowing there were two dystopian authors in the same room, in the same picture even! Though, that does reveal my obsessive side a bit.
I am on the left and Elana is on the right in a super awesome shirt. And Mr. X definitely deserves a special thanks for being my personal photag for the Teen Book Fest. Meeting up with Elana was great because it was so unexpected. I love how many dystopian authors there are based in Utah. I ever got to touch an ARC of Possession. I was so excited I just wanted to run away with the book. I took a super blurry photo of the book in my hands before giving it back. And honestly it felt like a huge honor just to get to touch this book. Butterflies are an image that have connected with me for a long time, and they have been trendy for almost as long. I can say, for the most part, I don’t really get tired of seeing them on covers, though I think this one is particularly exceptional.
Holding Possession happened very early on in the festival and I just kept thinking, if I run now I won’t get to meet Ally Condie and Scott Westerfeld. But another part of me thought it would be totally worth it.
In the end I decided to possibly do the right thing and not steal. Also not miss my opportunity to get my ARC of Matched signed and a pile of other books by lots of amazing authors. Basically still regretting that decision!! One of the advantages of talking to Elana was that I hadn’t read her book yet and I could just talk to her like a real person. Authors, I am told, are real people, but I can’t seem to act that way when I am around them. Especially if I have read and enjoyed their books.
I stood in line behind Elana to meet Ally Condie. Condie was basically the reason why I HAD to go to Teen Book Fest. Sure, she is a local author, but I didn’t know when I would get another chance to meet her. And there I was standing just a few feet away from TWO dystopian authors and listening to Elana talk to Ally like a real person and thinking maybe I could do it too.
I was so happy the line was short to meet Ally because I knew I wanted to get a few moments to talk and not have to worry about rushing. I was also shaking a little because I loved her book so much. I was on overload after meeting Elana, holding Possession (I was still grasping it while taking this pictures), and seeing Ally.
Look at this great picture of Ally and Elana together! It is pure dystopian bliss. They both look great and it was beyond neat for me to be standing there taking this photo.
Thanks to Elana for being a fan of young adult literature just like me and for writing the type of book I like to read. It was a treat beyond treats to be able to meet her and I am looking forward to meeting her again.
You can find Elana online: