Last night I got to meet Shannon Hale.
She is most famous for her books "The Goose Girl" and "Princess Academy" as well as the film adaptation of her adult novel, "Austenland." She is also the mother of four, and manages to be a prolific writer as well as an awesome mom. I've been a long time reader of her fantastic blog, Squeetus, and was delighted to find out that's she's just as fun and interesting in real life. (Actually, I'll be honest and say that I love her blog even more than her books. It took me awhile to learn to appreciate her writing style, but I have definitely come to enjoy her work more fully with maturity). Since she's doing what I hope to do, (full time writer and mom) and since we share a lot of similar views, I was really excited to get the chance to meet her in person.
|Nathan came, and was probably the only male there who was not the father of a|
teenage girl. He's my hero.
Her appearance at the Red Balloon Bookshop is part of her book tour promoting her latest book, "Dangerous". It's a superhero novel, and I'm looking forwards to reading it, especially now that I've got my own signed copy!
The little bookshop was absolutely packed. We got there about ten minutes before the start time and were able to get some floor space near the front. Shannon talked for about 45 minutes, mostly about how she developed "Dangerous", the science behind the superpowers, and why she loves writing for teens and creating unique characters. She also gave a really entertaining impression of Wonder Woman fromt he 70's TV show (which I now want to watch). It was a really fascinating talk, and I would highly encourage you to attend any event of hers if you get the chance.
Then she opened up the floor for questions, and I was lucky enough to get one in. Earlier she had mentioned the fact that there are very few superhero novels, and I asked her to expand on that and what some challenges and bonuses were in the novel format, given that we are so used to seeing the power spectacle in full color comics or on the big screen. Shannon explained that she really enjoyed the chance to get into how the powers worked and the characters and motivations.
We waiting in the signing line for about an hour, which I didn't mind because coming in at the end meant that there was less rush and we got a bit more time to chat. Shannon thanked me for my question, and then we chatted a bit about my own superhero novel. She was so kind and genuinely interested in me during those few minutes, it was very encouraging - especially when I saw what she'd written in my book!
It's always a bit nerve-wracking to meet your role models in person, but Shannon was even more awesome in person. I hope I have the chance to talk with her again someday!
(And, I'm not going to lie, with our last names being so alphabetically close, it's fully possible our books will end up next to each other on a shelf in a store or library someday and that makes my inner fangirl squeal.)