Monday, November 12, 2007

A Meet And Greet

I spent yesterday afternoon at the Massachusetts School Library Association Author Fest, which was part of the organization's conference. We were in the vendor's hall, which was like a trade show for librarians. In addition to a cash bar, which is always greatly appreciated, this group also had a live band. A good time was had by all.

I learned that The Hero of Ticonderoga has been on some reading lists in Massachusetts, which was very good news, and that A Girl, a Boy, and a Monster Cat is making its way into a number of libraries. Happy Kid! is also known by Massachusetts librarians. So I am a happy author today.

I also met a bunch of people. Many librarians, of course, but some writers, too.

First and foremost (and first, really, because she was the first person to greet me when I arrived--we both still had our coats on), was the kidlitosphere's own Mitali Perkins. Mitali and I kind of know each other in that weird way we have here on the Internet of knowing people we've never actually met in the flesh. But it turns out that knowing someone in cyberspace really is knowing someone because Mitali and I were just off and running as if we talk together all the time.

Seated in front of me at the cute little author tables was Beatrice Gormley who does a lot of nonfiction but also has a new historical novel out. I also met Marcella Pixley who has just published her first book, Freak.

At dinner I sat next to the very neat author/illustrators Mary Newell DePalma and Anna Alter. As it turns out, Anna is one of the Blue Rose Girls. She has also designed a snowflake for Robert's Snow: For Cancer's Cure that was featured at The Longstockings on November 3. Mary has also done a Robert's Snowflake, and, as luck would have it, it will be featured at Wild Rose Reader this Thursday.

These women were great to eat dinner with. Illustration is a really interesting topic for dinner conversation. I'll be repeating a lot of what they had to say to my sister-in-law during Thanksgiving dinner.

Actually, my entire MSLA experience will probably be my subject for social conversation right through the holidays. Thank God I was invited.

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