If I made a list to explain why the Rochester Teen Book Festival rocks, it would be too long. But trust me--this festival is the shizz. Like, the collision of the planets Awesome and Fantastic. Planet Awetastic. It seems my custom to give you a picture essay of the day. But know that nothing can compare to being there in person, so find out when it is next year and mark the date. If you are a YA fan, you have to get to this.
First, on Friday, Heather Brewer, Jackie Morse Kessler and I went to talk to the very cool students of Mercy High School. Our panel for the weekend focused bullying, self esteem and how to navigate abusive relationships or friendships. Mercy was having a week of creativity and throughout the school were examples of the amazing artistic talents of the school's students. One such display was one of idiom hats which were as amazingly made as they were clever. Here's me wearing the awesome Michelle's "Holy Cow."
The actual festival was on Saturday and it started with a ride to Nazareth College in a 1960 Buick flat top with my panel mates as well as Eric Luper.
No. I'm not making that up. Proof:
And Eric, who rode shotgun.
There was a vintage bus for us, also, which was completely incredible.
And a vintage Corvette and a Studebaker, which you have to imagine in your head.
As always, the crowd was amazing--the panoramic picture never does it justice. Can you find yourself? (Click first to enlarge!)
The rest of the day was a whirlwind of Heather, Jackie and me doing our thing and then a huge booksigning to follow. Then dinner, then drinks in the lobby until a very respectable hour. Next thing you know, it's Sunday and time to say goodbye. Here's Heather and Terry before their ride to the airport and my drive home.
No doubt, it was amazing to meet a lot of cool authors and teachers and librarians and parents.
But this weekend was all about the 4000 BEYOND fantastic teenagers in attendance, A huge ROCK ON to every one of them. (ROCK ON EVERY ONE OF YOU.)
Oh. And Josh Berk and I couldn't meet up without taking a weird picture of the two of us:
I call this one: Feeling Diagonal.
Next weird Berk/King picture will come November 2011 when we appear together at the Lititz Kid-Lit fest.
Next up: The Backspace conference on the 27th of May, a amazing panel in Omaha, NE on June 8th, and then ALA at the end of June. Until then, I will bask in this post-Rochester TBF you-are-a-star glow and send a HUGE thank you to all the TBF organizers, donors, teens and fund raisers. YOU ALL ROCK.