Fortunately, I was able to catch an early train, so my friend Izzy and I arrived at Books of Wonder around 4:15, a few hours before the event. We bought our books and got our numbers (luckily I was 31st instead of 89th like the last event I went to!) before briefly meeting up with Mariam and Ashley (from Flying through Fiction) and then heading out to grab a quick bite to eat before finding seats for the Q&A session.
While we were talking to Emma, Roshani Chokshi passed by, and she RECOGNIZED ME (only because I'd told her in advance what I was going to be wearing to the event, but still!) She had to go to the back before the event started, but she gave me a quick hug and then we headed back to our seats.
We waited around a little while longer before the Q&A started, and then my friends Brittany (from Brittany's Book Rambles) and Raisa (from Wonderland Novels) showed up and we exchanged hugs before all the authors came out to start the Q&A.
The authors were all such wonderful and engaging speakers. I loved learning about their writing processes and their inspiration—it was so interesting hearing how Marie came up with the idea for The Winner's Curse (a book I still have yet to read but am planning to do soon)! She said that "the winner's curse" is an economic term for when someone wins at an auction because they had to pay more than what everyone else thought the item was worth in order to win, and thus they lose the most money in doing so (or something along those lines) and how she started with that title and wanted to see what would happen if the thing won was a person instead of an item, and the thing lost wasn't necessarily money. I love that she came up with the title first because that's what I usually do when writing—it's weird for me, I either come up with the title before the story unfolds, or I struggle to find a title to fit my story—but I digress.
Fun fact: Marie was planning on making it a stand-alone (with that same ending and everything!) but she decided against it because of how her readers might feel. Although all of the authors at the event mutually enjoy paining their readers, apparently.
After the Q&A, I chatted more with my blog friends and Izzy, and then we got in line for the signing.
I met Roshani first, and it was just as amazing as I expected! I had so much fun hanging out with her, even though I already forgot what we talked about. All I remember is that she was so so so sweet, humble, and friendly, and that I was so excited when I gave her my drawing of Maya. Anyway, there were other people waiting, so I had to leave to meet the other authors, but I wish I had more time to talk with her.
So next, I met Marie and awkwardly stood there in silence as she signed my books because I've actually only read her MG series and even though I remember loving those books, it was years ago so I had no idea what to say. Yeah, that didn't go as great as planned, but an awkward silence (in my opinion) is better than me stumbling through a conversation that goes nowhere.
Finally, I met Renée and we talked about race (something she mentioned briefly during the Q&A). It was really cool finding out having something in common with an author I look up to and whose work I love. I meant to gush about her books because the last time I met her (at BookCon last year), I hadn't read any of her books, but I kind of forgot to tell her (so maybe next time)! But nonetheless I enjoyed talking to her and am glad I actually had something to say (since my first signing with her went much like my interaction with Marie did).
It was overall a wonderful event and experience!! After the signing I took a ton of photos with my blog friends and we hung out for a bit before Izzy and I had to catch a train home. I'd definitely say it was more successful than the last event, as I was less tired and thus more engaged and interactive, and I actually talked to the authors (or most of them) without making a complete fool of myself. And, of course, it was wonderful because I met two of my favorite authors (Roshani and Renée) at the same time.