November 17, 2014

INSPIRE! Toronto International Book Fair Saturday Event Recap


Thank you to Inspire!, Knot PR, and Tourism Toronto for making this possible!





After a very tiring Friday, we were able to sleep in and catch up on some zzz’s.  Our first panel didn’t start until 11:00 so we enjoyed a nice leisurely breakfast.  Unfortunately, we were late for the 11:00 am panel, The State of the Publishing Industry Around the World, and didn’t figure out where it was until the session was well underway.  I was really hoping to catch this one!

So a-wandering we did go and paid a visit to some of the booths.  I was thrilled to have finally met Kaitlin from Hachette, in person.  Putting a face to a name whom you exchange emails with on the reg. is always a good thing.  We also chatted up the girls at the Harlequin booth in anticipation for the Amanda Sun signing!  I loved Ink, and Gabby just started reading it in the hotel room, so we were both pretty stoked to meet her.  There was also a panel/session for writers and how to secure an agent, but that one started at 10:00 am, and we didn’t even know that was going on until the last 1/2 hour.  That was one that Gabby was really interested in sitting in on, but alas, such is life.

So what could we do to kill time but walk around some more. We did run into some fun characters along the way…


 (Fun side note, there’s a media room/ green room where media and presenters and such can go into to kick back, relax, talk, etc., etc.  We were classified as “Media” on our Inspire! badges and so had full access to this room!  Gabby and I walked in to rest our feet for 15 minutes before the Anne Rice Main Stage appearance and discussion, and who is sitting on the couch directly behind us?  Ms. Rice herself!  No, we didn’t disturb her, but it was a quiet fangirling moment for us.  Authors = Rockstars, remember?!  We also meet author, Sherry Strong, while sitting in the Green Room.  We talked a little bit about her book, Return to Food: The Life Changing Anti-Diet.  What was really fascinating was talking about her road to publication, and the interesting fact that, not only did she write this book, but she also illustrated it.  Quickly flipping through, you could see that it has the potential for young adult readers to pick up and enjoy reading.  We’ll have a spotlight on this book in the coming days.  She even gave us a personalized signed copy of her book, which was unexpected, but we were grateful.)

Finally, it was time for Anne Rice to appear on the Main Stage!


It was really interesting to hear her writing style (i.e. she used to write on the walls in her home in New Orleans), and how passionate she is about her characters, as well as upcoming projects.  The floor was opened for Q&A, and she took the time to really answer the questions being asked rather than give short quick answers.  The oddest question asked?  If she could be any cake, what would it be?  Answer: Wedding Cake.  After the discussion, spectators were able to meet her in person as she signed their book.

Next up was the book signing with Amanda Sun over at the Harlequin booth.  Excitement took over again as we stood inline to meet and chat with one of our favorite authors.  Gabby was even more thrilled to meet and talk with her as she wanted to discuss the Anime aspect of the book with her, as well as Cosplay.  When it was our turn, Gabby was out of this world thrilled.  Amanda seemed really interested in her and Gabby’s conversation about Anime and Cosplay, and Gabby was even more excited to find out that they both enjoyed the same shows (i.e. Deathnote).  Gabby wished that there was more time for her to talk to her, but we were totally holding up the line (sorry!).


We wandered a bit more, and decided to sit in on the Main Stage Kathy Reichs appearance.  I’ll be honest with ya… I had no idea who she was or what she wrote, so I sure as heck was surprised that the television show BONES was based on characters in her Temperance Brennan novels and that she produces, that she writes a Young Adult series with her son Brendan Reichs called Virals (which is in discussions for a t.v. show or movie), and that she’s a real life forensic anthropologist.  She talked about her show, her books, the characters, and her profession.  It was really interesting to hear about the male vs. female ratio in her profession.  Suffice-it to say, I was very glad that we sat down and took this one in!


Then it was off to our last panel discussion, not only for the day, but for the entire Inspire! Toronto International Book Festival.  We were leaving the next day, bright and early.  At the Spark Stage, we sat in to listen to Through the Eyes of a Child: Young Narrators in Contemporary Literature featuring authors Vikki VanSickle, Claire Cameron, and Heather A. Clark.


What was really interesting about this panel was that each author read a chapter from their book in the voice of the child in their novel.  It was fascinating to hear the difference voices of the children in their books, ranging from 5, 9, and 13.  Personally, I know I’ve found a title from each of these authors that I must read!

(Sidenote:  it was also wonderful to have been able to meet Vikki the day before as we have corresponded via email, and again, being able to put a face to name is awesome!)

Tune in for our final thoughts post, and a giveaway!

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