Finally, the big long ALA report

Pictures sold separately, i.e., this post was too freaking long to add pictures to it, too.

My first day at ALA was a day before everyone else, meeting Jeff (

) and Eric of The Official Timewaster’s Guide with Tiffany (

) to do a podcast interview. It went really well, and the interview is live here:\s-Radio-1-Hallowmere—-In-the-Serpent\s-Coils.

Tiffany and I then went to the ALA Library Champions reception, where we were introduced around to everyone there as the newest Library Champions and the corporate sponsors of Teen Read Week. Lots of good conversations, and a great view from the presidential suite of the Renaissance Hotel there in downtown D.C.

I can’t say enough of how nice the YALSA and ALA people were to us. I even got to go on a staff-led tour of the Capitol because Molly, who is the sponsorship liaison, used to work for an Iowa representative and was able to invite some people to go. My tour was a few days later–with several librarians from the Seattle area, actually. Sadly, I had to be back to the booth and had to leave from my tour early, so I never got the names of those librarians, but I hope to be able to see them around at the library!

Jeff returned to the conference the next day and interviewed Candice Ransom, the author of Time Spies, which will go live in a couple of weeks. Tiffany and Mirrorstone senior editor Nina Hess were also interviewed for a web radio program, and I’ll link that when it goes live.
In the booth, we got a lot of amazing feedback on Hallowmere. Several times a girl would walk in because she loved our booth (everyone loves our booth—it’s a great draw, with its comfy couches and cozy medieval bookstore feel), but then she’d see the high fantasy stuff, and I’d get the feeling she was thinking, “not for me.” And then I’d hand her Hallowmere and she’d light up and say, “this is just what I’m looking for!” And it wasn’t just those
girls–it was librarians of both genders that loved all our books, our reluctant reader kits, and our cozy booth, and it felt really good to be able to hand them good books that I’m proud to have worked on–including some good high fantasy too!
During one of Tiffany’s signings in the booth, a librarian came up to Tiffany and said “Tiffany Trent? Hallowmere? This is the book that my friend said I absolutely must have for my high school library!” Now that’s a good feeling! She signed many, many ARCs, including 240 at the Random House signing alone. She must have felt like her arm was going to fall off.

dropped by the booth with

 and a few others, and it was so nice to catch up with all of them. She was also kind enough to come to Tiffany’s reading at the Live @ Your Library stage, so I got to chat with her and

 for a little while. Theo designed Tiffany’s website, among many others. Earlier in the week, Theo had been passing around a petition for Tiffany, which was both funny and touching.

read right before Tiffany did, and I have pictures of what a great entertainer she is, which will end up in my next post. Her new graphic novel, The Plain Janes, just came out from Minx, and as you can imagine, reading a graphic novel out loud can be a challenge! So she recruited several members of the audience to each be a Jane, and they each read a part. Cecil herself did Theater Jane, and I think that was the perfect part for her. 🙂 You’ll see when you see the pictures. 

Also got the chance to meet 

 (congrats on the NYT!) and her son, and Sarah Beth Durst, both also blogfriends. I have now finally picked up real copies of both their books, too–I’ve already read Wicked Lovely in ARC, but never was able to find an ARC of Into the Wild. Debby Garfinkle (

), author of the Supernatural Rubber Chicken series slated with us for next year, was at the conference for her current books, and so I was finally able to meet this LJ friend too. Debby writes amazingly funny books. 

We got the chance to sit down with a few librarians each night to get to know them better and to introduce them to our authors. I’ve seen Alvina’
description of Little, Brown’s fiction dinner, and though ours isn’t quite so large or formal, it’s the same idea–one night, we featured Candice, and the next, we featured Tiffany. 
We also went to the Teen Read Week Launch Breakfast one morning, at which both Candice and Tiffany got the chance to meet the state YALSA leadership members. At that, we also announced our Teen Read Week contest, in which librarians can get a group of teens together in their library to participate and win a Wii for their library. More details will be coming at in the coming months.
Overall impression: It was a very positive show, with a lot of energy (and a lot of people—record-breaking attendance numbers upwards of 28,000). I was so glad to see all of you who were there!
Pictures to come tomorrow or Saturday. If not tonight.