Sarah J Maas Event Recap (2018)

sarah j maas event

Hi all! I know, an event recap two months after the last one, what is this madness?? Back in August when Sarah J Maas announced her two UK dates for her Kingdom of Ash tour, Nicola and I immediately leaped at the opportunity to get the chance to see her again, this time in Edinburgh (when we saw her two years ago, it was in Glasgow).

We got the train from Stirling at around 5 to get in for the event at 7 (it was earlier than we needed to, but we wanted to make sure we got there in plenty of time), after having stopped at Subway on our way into town for dinner. I also got a Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate from the station, it was AMAZING, I wish Christmas drinks were available all year round! I had brought a book to read on the train, but Nicola and I spent the journey excitedly chatting about the event: she had already read Kingdom of Ash (I’ve only just started! I promise Nicola, I will finish it as soon as I can!) and we were both ridiculously looking forward to seeing Sarah again as the event we went to for Empire of Storms was so much fun.

We arrived in Edinburgh just after 6, and made our way from the station to McEwan Hall where the event was being held (I’m really sorry guys, the only picture I got was the one at the top of this post, I only realised after I left that I hadn’t taken any pictures of the gorgeous room!). We realised after we arrived that leaving super early was a good thing, because the queue was GIGANTIC. I mean I don’t remember the queue for Empire of Storms being small, but this was a whole new level, it was literally snaking around!

Thankfully, the stewards at the event got everyone in pretty quickly so we weren’t stuck waiting for all that long. Once we got inside, we were given some free merchandise (a wristband and a temporary tattoo) before picking up our copies of Kingdom of Ash that we’d got with our tickets. We had a slight moment of confusion whilst we were trying to work out where to go, but thankfully one of the stewards pointed us in the right direction.

THE HALL GUYS. THE FREAKING HALL. Like I said, I wish I’d remembered to take pictures because it was so gorgeous. You could not have picked a better event for a Sarah J Maas event if you tried, basically McEwan Hall is where Edinburgh Uni have their graduations, and it’s totally gorgeous, with all these huge columns and this amazing decorated ceiling and….well you just have to see it, but it’s really, really nice. I was at the McEwan for the Guilty Feminist recording at the Fringe in August, but they’d put in all different seating for that, and I’m pretty sure you couldn’t see the ceiling or anything, so yeah it was like seeing the room for the first time.

The event started a little late, since we had to wait for the stewards to get everyone from outside in, but everyone was so excited when they finally brought Sarah and Katherine Webber (the moderator) out, that it didn’t really matter.

Listening to Sarah talk about both Throne of Glass and ACOTAR was so much fun, she’s a very entertaining speaker, and there was a lot of laughter throughout the evening, especially when she told us the story about the last minute panic to get Kingdom of Ash under 1000 pages, because the glue wasn’t physically strong enough to hold a book of that size! Sarah just gets so excited about her stories and her characters that it’s lovely to hear her talk, she’s basically a fangirl about her own books which is brilliant to see. It was so cute, when she came out and saw the size of the crowd, she mouthed Oh my God, she just couldn’t believe so many of us had come out to celebrate her success. Thankfully there were no spoilers for Kingdom of Ash in her discussion, since I obviously haven’t read it yet. We did get some great insights into her writing process for the book though, which was lovely to hear, including that the ending line, which she had hinted at two years ago when I saw her for Empire of Storms, had indeed remained the same. It also turns out that her favourite book in the Throne of Glass series is Heir of Fire, same as mine and that she has as little chill about Manon as I do, both of which made me very happy!

She also told a great story about what inspired the scene in ACOMAF where Feyre and Rhys have to stay in that inn where the room is way too small-turns out, Sarah had a similar experience when she was in Edinburgh for the Edinburgh Book Fest, she got in late and the only room available was the attic room, and it was so small that she could barely move in there. That particular story got a lot of laughs!

She’s also so amazingly passionate about the women in her stories, she talked about how important it was to her to give her female characters the same heroic stories that she saw given to men growing up and that made me so happy, because I love seeing powerful women with agency in the stories I read. She also talked about how much fun it was to write female villains (they get better clothes) and that she would have liked to write more about Maeve because she found her really fascinating-I seriously hope this is a hint that there may one day be Throne of Glass spinoffs, because I would totally read that. I also liked that she talked about how important it was for her to include verbal consent in her books, because that is absolutely something that needs to be more of a thing.

Sadly, we did not get too many hints about future books. This is definitely the end of Throne of Glass for now, barring the World of Throne of Glass book coming out next year, but she did say that she would consider coming back to the world if the right story came along, so there’s definitely hope for the future. The World of Throne of Glass sounds really cool though, it’s a guide to the Throne of Glass world, set ten years after the end of Kingdom of Ash, told as the librarian of the royal library gathers information about the world for a history book. I was initially sceptical about The World of Throne of Glass, but now I’m really excited for it. We did also get some hints about the spinoff ACOTAR books, each book is going to follow a different character, but there will be an overarching story going through all of them. Sarah also told a really funny story about how she pitched them, basically she pitched them to her agent whilst out drinking (in a totally non serious way) but it turned out that she really liked them and then sold them to her editor! She did briefly mention Crescent City, her adult novel that’s due out next year, but we didn’t find out anything more than we already knew.

Once the discussion was over, it was time for the Q&A. Josh brought out baby Taran to sit with Sarah whilst she was answering questions, and I have to admit, I’m not a baby person but he was darn cute! The questions had to be cut short because of the late start to the event, but she still had some really great answers-the questions had been submitted by readers in advance. It’s always fun to hear author answers to readers questions, and Sarah was so candid and funny with her answers: my personal favourite was that her dream dinner party would be with JK Rowling, Legolas and Cleopatra-that would be quite the eclectic party!

Nicola and I sadly didn’t get the chance to meet Sarah, neither of us were one of the 50 who got the golden tickets, but the girl next to us did, and she was so excited which was really lovely to see. We both agreed that it was better that neither of us got one than one did and one didn’t-though there was one couple who that happened to, and a lovely woman offered her ticket to the girl so both she and her boyfriend could meet Sarah together, which we both thought was super cute.

Before we left, we wanted to get a picture with the screens in the foyer, so we waited and asked a girl who was heading out if she minded taking our picture. It took a couple of attempts, but we landed on the picture at the top of this post, which we both thought looked pretty good!

So there we go, my second ever Sarah J Maas event. I didn’t get to meet her this time, but that was okay, Nicola and I still had an amazing night, fourth year has been so stressful that it was great to get a night out to celebrate the end of what has been an incredible series, and a massive part of my life as a blogger, since Throne of Glass was one of the first books I ever reviewed, only a month or so into blogging. It’s kind of sad to think that it’s all over-but hey, I still have the book to read, so I can deny it for a little longer!

Have you ever been to a Sarah J Maas event? Did you have fun? Are you excited, nervous or sad for Kingdom of Ash? Anyone read it already? Did you enjoy it? (no spoilers, I’ve literally only read the first chapter!) Let me know in the comments!

 

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The Guilty Feminist Event Recap

me and deborah frances-white

Hi all! Yup, I know I haven’t done one of these since YALC, but I haven’t actually been to a book event since YALC, much as I love going to them, book events are expensive and not easily accessible to me when I’m at Uni, since not many authors come to Scotland, even when they’re on a supposedly “UK” tour (UK usually seems to mean England only).

But last week, I had the chance to go to a pretty cool book event: Deborah Frances-White, host of my favourite podcast The Guilty Feminist was doing a UK tour in support of her new book, also called The Guilty Feminist and had a stop in Glasgow so of course I just had to go!

I’ll admit, the night didn’t get off to a great start. ScotRail had naturally decided that this was the weekend to start doing all their engineering works, so I had to get a replacement bus service from Stirling to Falkirk and then I had to get the train on from there to Glasgow. I don’t know if the rail service just doesn’t like me, first all the engineering works on the weekend of YALC, now this, I don’t have much luck when it comes to getting the train to book events! The replacement bus service I was meant to get on was full, so I had to wait for the next one. Usually this wouldn’t be a problem but as it turned out, the ten minutes I had to wait for the next bus was the difference between me getting the train I needed to get in order to arrive in time and not.

So yeah, when I arrived at the station in Falkirk I had missed my train-yay! I couldn’t wait for the one that was leaving at 6.30 because that was when the event was supposed to start, so instead, I had to get another replacement bus to a different station in Falkirk and get the train from there. It was quite funny, I came across the couple who had also meant to get the same original bus as I had (and had also had to wait for the next one) at the station.

Thankfully it didn’t take too long for the train to arrive, and it was a direct train, so with that and the fact that the Waterstones is not very far from the station in Glasgow, I managed to make it and only be ten minutes late. I picked up my book from the man at the front and I found a seat-the event was so large that there were people over two floors and I had a seat looking down from the balcony. It wasn’t the best seat for taking pictures (hence my lack of them) but I did have a good view, despite my lateness so that was good!

One of the Waterstones staff came out to introduce Deborah and the moderator and then the event began. I’d been to a live recording of The Guilty Feminist at the Fringe last month, which was awesome and really enjoyable and this event was no different. We got to hear Deborah read out little excerpts from the book, which definitely got me excited about reading more of it and she also did a little bit of stand up comedy which was great-I knew hardly any female comedians before I started listening to the podcast and now I know so many, it’s awesome!

The moderator also asked Deborah lots of questions, it was quite different from any other book event I’d been to, since obviously when you go to most book events, the questions the moderator asks are usually all about the book and there were plenty of those at this event as well of course, but the moderator (and I wish I could remember her name, but alas it was last week and I have a very short memory!) also asked about the podcast and naturally there were lots of questions about feminism. I loved hearing Deborah talk, of course because she’s very funny, but also because she had some very insightful answers and it was very interesting to hear what she had to say about being a 21st century feminist, and the podcast and all the different projects she’s doing, as well as her work with women in business.

We also got to hear her read out a few bits from her book, which was great, and definitely has me very excited to read it-the excerpt she read about weddings in particular had me in stitches and she also did a particularly great sketch about the gender pay gap that she had already done on the podcast before, which was just as funny live. This was the first time that I’ve been to a book event where the author was also a performer and it definitely showed, she was incredibly engaging and made the event a lot of fun. She and the moderator also did some “I’m a Feminist Buts……” which was great.

Once the discussion part of the evening was over, it was time for some audience questions. This part was so great, it overran because everyone had so many questions but Deborah really wanted to make sure that as many people as possible had a chance to have their questions answered which was great. As well as the obvious questions about feminism and the podcast, Deborah also answered some questions about her upcoming projects, which were great to hear about.

When we’d finally got through all of the questions we queued up to get our books signed. I was quite far back in the queue, but it moved quite quickly and soon I was at the front. Despite me going over what I would say in my head, I had all sorts of things I wanted to say, telling Deborah how much she had inspired me, how much I loved the podcast, thanking her for introducing me to so many awesome female comedians, me being me and super awkward, I managed to say…..my name. Yup that was it. She asked what Jo was short for and whether I had been named after Jo March and I said no, I was a Joanne, not a Josephine. I then got a quick picture with Deborah (the one at the top of this post) before leaving.

I wanted to go to the loo before I left, but I hadn’t realised that the loo was back down where the signing area was, so I then had to embarrass myself slightly, by heading straight back down before leaving!

After that, I headed back out into Glasgow, stopping briefly at a Sainsburys’ to get dinner (as I hadn’t had the chance to eat before the event) and then to the train station to get the train back to Stirling (well to Falkirk and then the bus back to Stirling).

I didn’t get back into Stirling until after 11, but it was well worth it, I had a super fun night, got a new book that I can’t wait to read and got to meet a woman who I really admire-the replacement bus service was a small price to pay for all that!

So there we go, a slightly different book event than the ones I usually go to, but just as fun! Was anyone else at Deborah’s event in Glasgow? Or has listened to The Guilty Feminist (if you haven’t, you 100% should!)? Let me know in the comments!

I just finished Vicious today, so I will have my review of that up for you guys very soon, but since it is now Tuesday, look out for a new Top Ten Tuesday post later on!

A Fantastical Evening With VE Schwab, Neal Shusterman and Samantha Shannon Event Recap

Hi everyone! I know it’s been a while since I last did one of these, but I haven’t been to a book event since the New Voices event in January, authors don’t really come to Scotland very often and as I’m a student, I can’t even really afford to get to the few events that happen in the North of England, let alone further South. However, I made an exception for this event, going all the way down to London and back in two days because these three authors are three of my favourites, and I couldn’t miss the opportunity to see all three of them together, plus it had been forever since I last saw my friend Hannah (who you guys probably know as my YALC partner-in-crime, we go together every year), so I decided to make my bank account scream in despair and pay for trains to and from London and an overnight hotel room so that Hannah and I could go to the event together.

I had to get the train pretty early on Monday morning, as it takes over five hours to get from Stirling to London Kings Cross, but thankfully it was a direct train, so once I was on there, that was it. Frustratingly, the train was delayed by half an hour and then we were held up further on the journey, so I got in forty minutes later than I was originally expecting. Still, I had great reading material on the train, in the form of Jennifer Mathieu’s Moxie, so it wasn’t so bad!

When I arrived at Kings Cross, I headed straight for the Travelodge where I was staying the night, and pretty much just had the opportunity to change shirts (when you’ve been on a train for five hours, you get a little sweaty!), activate the WiFi on my laptop and watch a little TV before I had to head out again to meet Hannah.

Hannah, of course, was late. I don’t know if I’ve told you guys this before, but Hannah is notorious in our friend group as being the “late one”, so of course, I was there, stressing, checking that we could still get the train out to Crouch End and make it to the event on time and naturally just as I am considering jumping on the next train and letting her make her own way to the event, she shows up!

We then got on the tube to Blackhorse Road, before changing to get the train to Crouch Hill, where the event was. Hannah and I hadn’t seen each other since Christmas, so naturally we had A LOT to talk about, as we always do. We were cutting it a little close in terms of making it to the event, but we got to Crouch Hill just in the nick of time.

Only once we arrived, we got sent the most roundabout way to get to the shop possible, involving an awful hill and several very windy roads! I was so glad I went with Hannah rather than going on my own like I originally thought I might have to, because Crouch End at night is not the nicest place!

We did manage to make it to the bookshop, and luckily, even though we were ten minutes late, the authors hadn’t been brought out yet. We were provided with drinks, and then took our seats, proceeding to be the annoying people who arrived late and then made everyone stand up to reach our seats (not that there were assigned seats or anything, but the ones further at the end were better than the closer ones). It was a bit of a tight squeeze as it’s quite a small bookshop, but we made it work.

The three authors were then brought out (to much cheering from us in the audience) and the event began. The moderator did have a tendency to ramble a bit, which was a little annoying, but she did ask some really interesting questions (we never did get the answer to what Neal, Victoria and Samantha would name their episodes of Black Mirror were they to write one!) and the three authors bounced off each other really well, so it was a really fun and engaging event. Oftentimes, these panels can be kind of dry, but that wasn’t the case with this event, Neal, Victoria and Samantha all had great answers to the moderators questions and it was really fun to hear about their books and their writing processes and reading habits (authors have just as massive TBRs as us guys!).

Once they were done with the discussion, we had a chance to ask questions and I actually asked Victoria for some writing advice as I’ve been struggling with how to get people to root for my main character (she’s not necessarily the most likeable) and her advice was really helpful, she said that she doesn’t believe in likeable main characters and that it’s more important to make your characters relatable by making their motivations clear, so hopefully this will improve Tiffany’s story!

When we had finished asking questions, the bookshop staff got us to form a line so the authors could sign our books. It was quite a small shop, so getting everyone lined up was a bit of a challenge, but it wasn’t a particularly large event so even though the signing line curved around, it moved relatively quickly.

I was having a ridiculously clumsy night, so I knocked several things over in front of Neal, Samantha and Victoria which was slightly embarrassing. I also had a lot of books with me, so logistically speaking, it was a bit of a nightmare. Thankfully they were all really lovely! It was my first time meeting Neal, and I definitely had a bit of a fangirl moment. He actually asked to get a picture of me, as he’d never seen all four UK editions of the Unwind dystology together, which was a little weird, but kind of cool, usually, I’m the one asking for pictures! I told him what a big fan I was of the series, which he appreciated and he signed all five of my books for me, which was lovely.

I had met Samantha before at YALC, but I didn’t get too much of a chance to speak to her then, so it was nice to get to see her again. I told her about Underground Magicians and how her picture of the Paris Catacombs partly inspired me to set it in Paris and how I loved that she talked about wanting to go somewhere different with each Bone Season book because that was something I was trying to do with Underground Magicians as well. She was so lovely and wished me luck with my story-I admitted I was having a bit of writer’s block with it, but Neal, Samantha and V all said there was no such thing and you just have to find your way through, which was really encouraging.

I then got my last couple of books signed by V, one for me and one for Nicola, and had a minorly embarrassing moment where I was trying to juggle all of my books but she was really sweet about it.

Once Hannah and I had got all of our books signed, and I had rearranged myself, we got a picture with all three authors and then went to pay for our books (we’d both bought some from the shop, as well as me bringing my own down from home) before leaving.

We then made our way back to Kings Cross and started a desperate hunt for food (as neither of us had had time to eat) before eventually ending up at a Pret. It was after 10 o’clock by this point, so finding food was a little difficult!

Once we’d finished eating, I walked with Hannah back down to the Underground and then we said our goodbyes, as she was heading back to Windsor and I was heading back to the Travelodge to stay overnight. It was a short reunion but definitely worth it as we had an awesome time at the event, and I’m glad I came all the way down from Scotland for it. I’m definitely ridiculously excited for YALC now, and I hope they start announcing authors soon.

Here’s the picture of Hannah and I with the authors at the event, and pictures of my signed books:

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Us with Victoria, Samantha and Neal-in terms of author photos, this is definitely one of our better ones! There is a horrific photo of us with Maggie Stiefvater that will never see the light of day because it is so embarrassing, but this one is actually quite nice!

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These are all my signed Neal Shusterman books (all the Unwind books + Scythe). I have to say, his inscriptions are probably my fave author inscriptions I’ve ever had, I didn’t even have to ask him to write “Nice Socks” in one of mine (as it only occurred to me after that I should have and then I found out he’d done it anyway!).

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And my signed Schwab, I have to say, I love her signature, she has a very pretty and distinctive one! This is actually the last Schwab book I have to get signed until she brings her new ones out this year.

So that’s it, my whirlwind trip to London! Was anyone else at the event on Monday night? Has anyone been to any of Samantha, Neal or V’s events before? Let me know in the comments!

I will have my review of Moxie up for you guys very soon, not sure if it will be tonight, but definitely tomorrow at the latest!

New Voices 2018 Event Recap

Hi all! I haven’t done one of these in a while because I haven’t been to any book events since the Victoria Aveyard signing I went to back in August, but this week , I got to go to a pretty cool event in Glasgow and so I thought I would share my experience with you guys, because let’s face it, that’s what I do!

The event I was going to was called New Voices 2018, it was run by Headline Books to introduce bloggers and booksellers to their debut authors for 2018. I didn’t really have any idea what the event was going to be like, I simply answered a call on Twitter for bloggers in the Glasgow area and was invited to come to the New Voices event by Georgina Moore, Communications Director at Headline Publishing.

The evening didn’t get off to the greatest start, unfortunately, the day of the event just happened to be the first snow of the year in Scotland, and it had snowed overnight and more during the day, so I was slightly worried I wouldn’t even be able to get out to Glasgow in the first place (I live at the University of Stirling campus in Bridge of Allan and have to get a bus into Stirling and then a train to Glasgow) and my friend Nicola, who was meant to be coming to the event with me, couldn’t make it because of the snow. So all in all, not the greatest start, but luckily the buses were running and I made it to the train station in time to get the train I needed to into Glasgow.

When I got there, I was a little early, so I waited at the station for a bit, before heading over to The Raven, where the event was being held. I had worried that I wouldn’t be able to find it, but it wasn’t far from the station and I made my way there quite easily. I wasn’t sure where everyone was when I arrived, but I headed upstairs and was then directed to the back room  where the event was taking place.

I was greeted by the Headline Books team, and introduced to everyone and then directed to the free bar (I didn’t get ID’ed or anything, so exciting! I always get ID’ed, being small means that no one ever believes you’re legal to drink!), where I got a glass of wine. I was then introduced by Georgina to the other bloggers who had come to the event, and it turned out one of them had also come over from Stirling.

The event was nice and low key, low pressure which I liked, as often times there are a lot of people at these kinds of events and you never really get the chance to talk to anyone, and get super stressed because there’s so many people. so this was a nice change for me. We also got free food, which is guaranteed to make me love any event, I think food should be provided at every event ever! I spent most of the night talking to the other two bloggers, Nicole Sweeney and Mary Picken, which was nice as I don’t get the opportunity to meet other bloggers very often. I especially enjoyed spending time with Nicole as it turns out we’ve both been to YALC before and have just never crossed paths! We chatted a lot about our blogs and our favourite authors and everything, it was great.

I didn’t get to meet all of the authors, which was a shame, but they were quite busy talking to everyone and I get nervous around people, so it wasn’t like I was just going to go up to all of them and just say hi! I did get the chance to meet Nick Windo Clark and talk about his book The Feed, which sounds pretty cool, and gives off The Circle-esque vibes and he was really nice and interested in Nicole and I’s blogs, so it was nice to get the chance to talk to him. I also spoke to Karen Hamilton for a while (though not really about her book!) and she seemed really nice. I talked to Phoebe Locke very briefly at the start, but didn’t really see her much of the rest of the night and didn’t really see or speak to either of the other two authors.

Free proofs were provided and I took full advantage of that, bringing back 4 out of the 5 proofs available and I’m really excited to read all of them, especially The Feed because it sounds amazing!

It was really nice to get to meet the team from Headline Books, as I haven’t really had the chance to meet many people in the publishing industry, aside from very briefly at the stalls at YALC and you don’t really get to talk properly to them there. I got to meet the entire team, Jenny, Becky, Millie and Georgina and they were all lovely, especially Jenny who I spoke to for a while and it was so lovely to hear how passionate she was about her job. They were all really interested about blogging and what I do, which was really nice, it’s great when publishing people take an interest in bloggers and really seem to be grateful for what we do!

Unfortunately, all good things have to come to an end, and after a great night of chatting away to bloggers and publicists, full of food and free wine and with a bag full of proofs, I had to head home to Stirling. Whilst I managed to find my way to the event easily enough, I managed to miss the turn into the alley that leads back to the station in the dark, which meant I missed the train I had intended to get and had to get a later one. I also had to get a replacement bus back from Croy to Stirling, which was not fun and I got very snowed on and struggled to find a taxi back from Stirling to Uni because of the snow, but at least I had a great time at the event!

I don’t have any pictures I’m afraid, as it didn’t really seem like the kind of event where you could ask for pictures and I’ll be honest, I was having so much fun, I just totally forgot! Sorry all!

Did anyone else go to the New Voices events in Manchester or Bristol, or is anyone planning to go to the one in London? Let me know in the comments!

I will be back on Tuesday with a new Top Ten Tuesday for you all, so stay tuned for that!

 

Victoria Aveyard Event Recap

Hi everyone! So this week Victoria Aveyard has been on her first UK tour, and I was lucky enough to be in Scotland at a time that coincided with her Scottish events, so I went to her event in Glasgow on Monday. I’ve only actually read the first of Victoria Aveyard’s books (Red Queen), though I am currently reading the sequel, but the event was free and I love meeting authors (and I did like Red Queen), so I figured I’d go along and I’m glad I did as I had a great time.

I got the train to Glasgow in the afternoon, as I wanted to do a bit of shopping before the event, and Glasgow has a really big Waterstones that you can basically spend hours in (unfortunately not the same Waterstones that the event was in!), so I went there and then did some other shopping before the event in the evening.

It took me a while to actually find the shop, I had never been to Argyle Street before and I ended up walking in the complete opposite direction to the Waterstones! I realized my mistake and was luckily only five minutes late by the time I arrived at the shop. I didn’t know where the event was, but luckily I heard Victoria speaking, so I went upstairs and slipped in the back (thank goodness there was a chair left).

The event was a Q&A with another author Elizabeth May, who basically asked Victoria questions about the Red Queen series, her writing inspirations, the usual sorts of things really. It was a talk about the latest book King’s Cage, but luckily there were no real spoilers in the questions that Elizabeth asked Victoria, it was more general questions about the series, which was good as I have only read the first book! It was very interesting to hear about her inspirations for the series, especially when she mentioned The Hunger Games as I’ve always felt Red Queen has a Hunger Games-esque vibe. Also as I started watching Game of Thrones this year, I definitely appreciated how much love she had for that show.

Once the talk was over, the floor was opened to questions from the audience. There was a variety of questions from writing related ones, to totally unrelated questions about Game of Thrones, to questions that she couldn’t answer because they were spoilers for the fourth book! I didn’t ask a question because I was right at the back and I’m not really sure they could see me, but it was interesting to hear Victoria’s answers to the questions. I particularly loved that she said she made Mare’s parents decent because her parents asked her to, I thought that was pretty cool.

After the questions, it was time for the signing. The queue was pretty long, but I had a relatively decent place in it and chatted to the girls behind me (they probably thought I was super weird but they seemed nice enough). A man came by with post it notes, so he could take our names for Victoria to sign in the books.

It didn’t take too long for me to get to the front of the queue. They were moving us along pretty fast, so I simply gave Victoria my books to sign, thanked her for not talking about any spoilers for the most recent book in her talk (and she thanked me for reminding her so that she knew not to do it for the rest of the tour!) and then took my books. It was all over rather quickly really, but I’ve been to enough author signings that I know you don’t get all that much time to talk to the authors.

The shop was open late because of the signing, so I took advantage of that and had a little wander around after I’d had my books signed. I didn’t find anything that I wanted to buy but it was nice to be able to just have a look once the event was over.

And that was it! A short but sweet event and one that I’m very happy I went to (I’m really hoping I enjoy Glass Sword now, because it’s signed and personalised!) as it was a lot of fun. I would definitely go to another Victoria Aveyard event if she was to come back to the UK.

I unfortunately didn’t get any pictures, I wanted to, but no one else seemed to be getting pictures with Victoria, so I felt kind of awkward asking! Sorry guys!

Has anyone else been to any of Victoria Aveyard’s events (in the UK or otherwise)? Did you have a good time? Let me know in the comments!

I will have my August #RockMyTBR update for you guys up tomorrow, so stay tuned for that!

Jodi Picoult Event Recap

Hi everyone! This post is long overdue, as the event I went to was on 25th November, so about 3 weeks ago now, but right after I was bombarded with assignment work and that plus finishing NaNoWriMo, meant that I’ve ended up kind of behind on all of the blogging that I’ve wanted to do, but now that my semester is over and have no more work to do, I’m hoping to catch up on all the blog posts that I’ve been meaning to do but haven’t had the chance to for ages.

Unlike the Sarah J Maas event I went to in October, which I went to with my friend Nicola, I went to this event alone, since neither of my friends at Uni really share my enthusiasm for Jodi Picoult. It was an evening event, so I set out at around 5 ish, picked up dinner at the Co-op near where I live, and then got the bus into Stirling to get to the train to Glasgow.

Once I had got into Glasgow, I then had to get the Subway to the event. I had never been to the Kelvingrove Gallery before, where the event was being held, but luckily Nicola had a friend who had and she gave me directions, so I got the Subway to Kelvinhall and then walked along to the Gallery. It took less time than I had thought to get there, so I was a little early. Luckily there were some other people who were early too, so I felt less awkward!

There was one slightly awkward moment in that we had all come to the wrong entrance, but luckily someone realized this and I just followed the group around to the right one! Once we got inside, our tickets were checked and we were given the signed copy of the book (Small Great Things) that was included in the ticket and then shown upstairs to the room where the event was taking place.

The room was absolutely beautiful, I wish I had taken pictures for you guys, because it’s one of the nicest places that I’ve ever been to a book event at! We were shown to our seats by the people at the door and then all that was left to do was to wait for Jodi Picoult to come out.

When she did come on stage, she talked about her new book, Small Great Things (I read it back at the beginning of September, you should all read it, it’s a brilliant and very important book), her inspirations, her research, her writing process and she read a little from the book as well. This was my second time going to a Jodi Picoult event, and even if you didn’t love her books (which obviously I do), she’s a very engaging and entertaining speaker (even with a sore throat, I felt so bad for her, she was coughing all the way through her talk!) to listen to, especially when she talks about the research she does for her books. It was clear from listening to her talk that she was very passionate about her book, and whilst I know obviously all authors are passionate about their books, it’s nice to see it in person!

After her talk, there was a question and answer session, which was quite funny because a lot of the questions were based around her much older books, so it was funny to see if she actually remembered them (she did but with difficulty!). I didn’t ask any questions, it’s quite hard to think of questions about her books without spoiling the endings (which obviously you can’t do!). I think my particular favourite was when someone asked about her research and what books were fun to research and she talked about her experience with ghost hunters researching for Second Glance, that was really interesting. She has so many funny and interesting stories, I could honestly listen to her talking about her books all day!

Once the Q&A was over, one of the staff from the gallery came out and explained that Jodi wouldn’t be signing books as she had signed all of the copies of Small Great Things that we were given when we came in, but that there would be a photo opportunity. I would have liked to have stayed but it was getting pretty late and I had to get back to Uni, plus the line for the photos was looking pretty long, so I left.

So that was it, my second experience of a Jodi Picoult event and it was so much fun! I can’t wait for her next book, because Small Great Things was so good, and because hopefully she’ll come back to the UK again so I can go to another one of her events. If you ever get a chance to go to a Jodi Picoult event, I would definitely recommend it as she’s a very interesting and entertaining speaker!

Has anyone else ever been to a Jodi Picoult event? Did you have a good time? Let me know in the comments!

I will have my review of my latest read Snow Like Ashes and a new discussion post up for you guys very soon, so stay tuned for those!

 

Sarah J Maas Event Recap!

Hi everyone! I’m back home for my Uni mid semester break which means I finally get to catch up on all the posts I meant to write up last week but didn’t get the chance to because I was so busy with essays. For those of you who don’t know (ie haven’t been stalking my twitter for the past few weeks or are new to this blog), I did something incredibly cool last Tuesday, I met one of my favourite authors, Sarah J Maas, the author of the Throne of Glass and ACOTAR series. This was incredibly exciting for me because this is the first time that Sarah J Maas has done a UK tour that I’ve been able to go to and also because I got to go to it with my friend and flatmate Nicola who is just as big of a SJM fangirl as I am!

The event we went to was in Glasgow, so once we were done with our classes, we got the bus to the train station in Stirling and then got the train into Glasgow. We arrived at the event about 45 minutes or so early (we were really excited and didn’t want to be late!) so once we arrived, we  waited with all of the other people coming to the event, and Nicola picked up her copy of Empire of Storms that she had got included in her ticket for the event.

We were then called into the theatre (the event was in the Mitchell Library in Glasgow and it has a room that’s basically like a lecture theatre where the event took place) and waited for a few minutes before Sarah came out onto the stage.

There was then a discussion with Sarah and a moderator where she talked about the Throne of Glass and ACOTAR series and her writing process and future writing plans. It was so great, SJM is the biggest fangirl ever and it was lovely to see how passionate she is about her characters and her stories and her worlds and whilst you know that authors are obviously passionate about what they write, it’s still great to see it. She told a lot of funny stories about her life as well and it was so interesting to hear about her writing process particularly how big of a role music played in her writing (and I especially liked when she talked about how a piece of music inspired a scene that I really loved in Empire of Storms). It’s incredible to me that she was writing the Throne of Glass series when she was the same age that I am now and now it’s a bestselling series, as an aspiring author, I love hearing stories like hers because it makes you feel like, “yeah if I work hard, I can actually do this!”. I also loved hearing her talk about Manon because she’s one of my favourite characters and it was great hearing Sarah fangirl about her too! She was just so much fun and so hilarious to listen to, I found the talk really, really enjoyable (and I’m really excited/scared for TOG 6 now as she talked about how she knows the last line and what inspired it. I have a feeling I am going to cry).

After the talk, we went out of the theatre and lined up to wait for Sarah to sign our books. The one disadvantage of our great seats for the talk (we sat near the front of the theatre) was that we ended up near the back of the signing line, but the likelihood that we were going to end up near the front was slim anyway. The signing line was probably the biggest one I’ve ever seen, even bigger than the number of people queuing for Maggie Stiefvater at YALC and that’s saying something! We were queuing for about an hour but it was okay because Nicola and I just spent the entire time fangirling and talking about Sarah J Maas books, so overall not a bad way to spend an hour. We finally got to the front of the line and although we didn’t get a lot of time with Sarah, she was so lovely, we got one book signed each and one book stamped because of her hand injury. Nicola talked to her about how much she loves Rhys and I talked about how much I love Dorian and how Heir of Fire broke me. It was quite funny because I said this just before we left and she actually gave a little air fist pump which me and Nicola both found hilarious!

So that was it, my wonderful first experience meeting Sarah J Maas! It was such a fun event and even though we only got a few minutes with Sarah, she was so lovely and it was really great to meet her. Hopefully she will come back to the UK either for ACOTAR 3 or TOG 6 so that we can meet her again!

Here are a few pictures from the event:

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Has anyone else ever been to a Sarah J Maas event? Did you have a good time? Let me know in the comments!

I will have my reviews of my most recent reads Empire of Storms and Challenger Deep up for you guys very soon, so stay tuned for those!