I still don’t have a plan for tomorrow’s read-a-thon. I have a feeling it’s going to be a super casual affair. I am getting a haircut at 11 (gotta have it before we go on our little anniversary trip next Thursday!), and then I’ll probably get groceries, and there’s a football game to watch. And truthfully, I’m not sure I’m really feeling the urge for an all-day read-fest, so we’ll just see how it goes.
I have already received a message from a cheerleader. Thank you MisterBIP!
Have I shared my National Book Festival experience? I don’t think so. I only stuck around for a few hours, but I enjoyed it while I was there.
I went in to DC with my husband and his parents, and we arrived at the Mall about an hour before the first speakers began. We snatched up our free tote bags, and then made our way through the Pavilion of the States, where every state (and a few other territories and organizations) had a table. I picked up a number of bookmarks and information about other book festivals.
Then, I headed to the Contemporary Life tent to find a seat before Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman) and listened to the latter half of Spike Mendelsohn’s presentation, which was entertaining. He was happy to take questions not only about his cookbook but about Top Chef. In between presentations, my husband and his dad wandered off to be otherwise entertained (they ended up touring the Capitol building), so it was just my mother-in-law and I for the rest of the morning.
After PW, I bee lined to the fiction tent to try to find a spot to see Diana Gabaldon. The tent was packed, but we found a spot where I could mostly hear. Afterwards, I ran into Deborah and Jenn! I would have loved to run in to some other people (I know Swapna and others were in that tent somewhere), but it turned out to be much more crowded than I could have ever anticipated. Next year, we need to all wear hats.
And have I mentioned how hot it was? That’s part of the reason why we left around two. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
I brought a few books with me with the thought of maybe getting them signed, but I didn’t really have the desire to wait in line in all that heat. So instead I ended up in the book sales tent, where I was able to buy an already autographed copy of Diana Gabaldon’s An Echo in the Bone, so I didn’t feel too bad about it.
After our escape from the sweltering book sales tent, we headed back to fiction and caught the latter half of Julia Glass’s presentation, which I have to confess to not being very interested in. She read a portion of her book, and it wasn’t enough to keep my interest. But really, most of us were there because the next speaker was Ken Follett. Who was simply fabulous. I think I could listen to him talk and tell stories all day.
There were a few other people I wouldn’t have minded seeing (Karin Slaughter, for one), but sticking around in the heat until 4 in the afternoon didn’t feel like a good idea. We were hot enough and starving enough to call it a day in DC, so we hopped back on the subway and rode it back to New Carrollton, then topped off the day with a late lunch, a movie, and milkshakes.
Can’t wait to go back next year.