About Forty Million Exciting Things

Hello all!

As usual, I have bazillions of things to blog about and zero time (eeeeeek we leave for California in LESS THAN A WEEK!  And I have a manuscript due IMMEDIATELY!), so, just a bunch of quick highlights:

First, HOORAY for Spirit Animals making the New York Times and USA Today bestseller lists!  I found out while I was on tour and had to do the happy dance in my hotel room by myself.  So exciting!  Hooray for you all for buying it!  🙂

Secondly, I answered a few questions for the Scholastic On Our Minds blog about Wings of Fire and Spirit Animals…what do they have in common, hints about book 6, which dragonet am I, etc.

Thirdly, and very importantly, I have updated my Events page with ALL my California library and bookstore events, so please please check it out and then come hang out with me!  I promise to read from book 6 and answer lots of questions (maybe cryptically, but I’ll do my best!) and be very very pleased to see you.  🙂

All of those events are also listed on the Spirit Animals forum, along with a few photos from the first half of the tour!  Oh my goodness, you guys, it was amazing.  I LOVED meeting everyone who was able to come out — you made me feel like such a fancy author!  Lovely librarians, brilliant bookstore people, and absolutely super schools — everything was so much fun!

The Provo Library event in particular was seriously one of my favorite events of all time — and oooo, look, they posted thrilling photos of it!  (Yes, I’m wearing my new favorite scarf; expect to see it again everywhere!)  All the librarians were wearing green cloaks…

there were LITERALLY velvet ropes in the signing room…

and exciting giant posters about their events…

plus it was just one of the most beautiful libraries ever.  Utah in general was really beautiful, and The King’s English is an AMAZING bookstore, and the two schools I visited were so great — the first librarian had decorated her library in a superhero theme!

How awesome is that?

I will try to post some Colorado pictures at some point, too (I haven’t uploaded them yet, because did I mention the due-immediately manuscript?) 🙂 but here’s one photo from Nashville, where I was at the Southern Festival of Books and got to meet some very funny and marvelous authors, including…

Claudia Gray, Varian Johnson, and Vicky Shecter

and the other author doing the middle-grade fantasy panel with me, Andrew Peterson, who was so great and so much fun to talk to — I wish we could have had another hour to chat about our books!

(The other thing I loved about the Southern Festival was getting to see Nicholas Kristof speak about his new book, A Path Appears — he’s so inspiring and smart and it totally made me cry.  Expect to get this book for Christmas, all my grown-up friends!)  😉

AND I got to meet some of my favorite online FanWings who made it to the Festival — hi Megan!  hi Michael!  (Michael brought a present for Sunshine!  How awesome is that?  She was SO pleased, especially since all the other presents I brought home were for the kids.)

Anyway, it was all fabulous and exhausting and I can’t believe I’m going to head out and do it again next week!

Except this time the husband and kids are coming too, so on the one hand, that is awesome, because I won’t be wracked with guilt and missing them awfully the whole time . . . but on the other hand, OH MY HEAVENS, this two-year-old on a plane is going to be MADNESS.  Apologies in advance, everyone!  He woke us up this morning singing “Let It Go” at the top of his lungs; his favorite thing to do is put on everything in the dress-up box and play all his instruments at once; and anytime his big brother tries to tell us something, he immediately starts shouting, “I have a QUESTION!  I have to AX-YOU a QUESTION!  I’m TALKING!”  (with no actual question in mind, let’s all be clear)  🙂  He’s really one of my top three favorite people who’s ever lived, but oh, I do not know how he’s going to make it through seven hours of plane travel!  Eeeeeeek!

But the good news is, the older bear can now read, so I’m going to get him Shannon Hale’s new book The Princess in Black (and then promptly steal it from him so I can read it) plus every sticker book they have at Newtonville Books and then cross my fingers.

Oh my gosh, and I haven’t even talked about the visit to Williams, which was beyond wonderful.  I wish I could take Dayna, Kristin, and Caragh with me everywhere!  (To book events but also to brunch and the movies and wherever they’d like to go, really.)  I could have talked to them about writing for young people pretty much infinitely and been perfectly happy.

I’ll try to post more about that sometime, too (manuscript is calling! also it is 4am and I should probably sleep at least an hour tonight!), but here are Caragh’s recap and Dayna’s recap to tide you over (with exciting pictures!).

Love love love them.  🙂

And you!  Thank you again for making my tour so much fun!  I really hope to see lots of you in California!  Eeeeee, wish me luck!  🙂

Quote of the Day:  “Ms. PacMan is a feminist hero!  She didn’t subscribe to your patriarchal ideal of what a women’s body should look like!  She ate whatever she wanted — pineapples, pretzels…GHOSTS…” — Kristen Schaal on The Daily Show