I managed to completely miss all the Friday events I was hoping to attend, mostly because we didn't leave San Diego in time and ran into awesome traffic. I was disappointed not to meet Rae Carson, not to attend the infamous Little, Brown dance party, and to miss the Middle Grade meet-up too. Still, by Saturday I was ready to go.
Here's what the convention center looks like from the front:
The front sign - so thrilling.
I just loved these beautiful flowers that are everywhere in Anaheim (and San Diego too, we spent a few days there with some friends).
The palm-lined pathway to the exhibit halls.
I was a bit nervous about the line forming to enter the hall. This picture was taken fairly early on, before even more hoards arrived and didn't really form any kind of line. It is true, entering the halls was very much like Black Friday shopping. I avoid that like the plague, so this was intense for me.
I enjoyed trying to walk slowly and taking in the experience, though it was rather crowded and hectic at times. I also really enjoyed seeing Captain Underpants (and other book characters), who always managed to get a smile from me as he (or she) tried to maneuver around in that suit.
I know there's been a lot of chat about ALA and bloggers and librarians. I feel like my opinion isn't much of one. I do wish more librarians were able to get on the floor. Especially the ones who want to, but have many other obligations and interests. I do feel unhappy that publishers often are out of ARCs by the time some librarians make it to the floor. That's a real problem and I can't say that I know of a solution. I'm both librarian and blogger, though I am currently an academic librarian, not necessarily by choice. If my work had decided to pay for my trip, you can bet I'd have spent a lot more time working with academic presses and vendors. But my visit was more for myself and my blogging and a hopeful future career in children's services. Don't know if that makes me partly to blame for whatever needs blaming, but anywho...
I was very happy to be able to meet Marie Lu and get Legend and Prodigy signed. I'm not the best at taking photos (with my phone), so this nice shot was courtesy of a lovely school librarian, Jaime, who I got to chat with while in line. Meeting librarians and bloggers and authors was a highlight for me.
Speaking of which, I was thrilled beyond reason to meet Susan Cooper, though I said very little and tried not to fawn over her. She signed The Dark is Rising and King of Shadows (which I haven't read) for me. I really wish I'd been able to attend the Margaret A. Edwards award luncheon to hear her speak too.
I did manage to take a photo of the longest line I stood in. This was (part of) the line for Neal Shusterman. He had a number of signings, but this one was where we could get UnWholly signed and it was quite impressive. I met a few other fun librarians here too. Names, alas, are another thing I'm not good at.
Daughter of Smoke and Bone signed by Laini Taylor. Still love her pink hair. And This Dark Endeavor and Such Wicked Intent I got signed by Kenneth Oppel. I kinda wish I'd brought my copy of Airborn.
After a few hours, I managed to meet up with and trail after Danielle from There's a Book (and her kind husband) and Amy of My Friend Amy. They are so nice! For some reason, I feel intimidated meeting people I admire, but they made me feel right at ease. I also met Megan of Posey Sessions briefly as well - so. much. energy! They invited me to dinner with them, where we met up with author Laura Harrington, whose book, Alice Bliss, I have yet to read but am now intrigued about.
|Danielle, Amy, me|
|Danielle, Amy, me, Laura|
After that, my husband and I dropped by Downtown Disney, but ended up too tired to go to the YA Blogger Meet-Up (seriously, I'm lame) and drove back to San Diego that night.
And, because I want to share this, here are the books I got. A few I purchased, most I didn't. I thought I did well at saying no or skipping ones I wasn't interested in. I carried all of them around with me on my back and shoulders, so I thought every one of them through. I love those tote bags. :)
So, that's it! My first ALA experience and may it not be the last.
If you buy through my Amazon linkage, I will get a very small percentage