February 8, 2013

I'm Super Awkward, What Else is New?

Fact: I don't like coffee. I just like saying Coffee Clutch in my best and deepest New York accent. Considering I'm a New Yorker, I'm pretty freaking good at it. So I've got my tea and I hope you have your heated beverage of choice, because it's time to gab the day away.

So the topic for this week is Author Signings/Events/Lauches.

I'd like to make it VERY CLEAR to everyone that I went to MY VERY FIRST author signing yesterday with Faye from A Day Dreamer's Thoughts and Daphne from Winged Reviews. The event was glorious for MANY REASONS (Now's when I make a list):
  1. I GOT TO MEET FAYE AND DAPHNE. And since meeting bloggers/making blogger friends is basically my favorite blogging thing, I'd say meeting these girls made me amazingly happy.
  2. I got to meet a really cool debut author. Her name is Laura Lam and her book is called Pantomime (which sounds really cool, BTW, so CHECK IT OUT). It was her first signing and my first signing and obviously this is a bigger deal to her than it is to me, but STILL SO COOL.
  3. The event itself was held in this super nerdy store called Forbidden Planet. I would like to live there, please.
Anyway, here's what went down:

I met Faye at Forbidden Planet at 6pm. We've never met before, so when I finally found her, Faye was in the process of asking someone who was definitely NOT me if they were me. It was very entertaining and I would have it no other way. Daphne met up with us soon after and, after browsing some of the nerdy stuff in the store (Notably: Game of Thrones, Doctor Who and Pokemon), we went down stairs to the signing. When we got there, Laura Lam had JUST started reading from her book. We were all gathered in this tiny little area in the basement of the store. The whole thing was very intimate and cute and lovely. Not to mention the book sounded totally magical based on the excerpt Laura read.

Once the reading was over, there was a question (Actually. Just one.) and then we all grabbed books and got online to get them signed. Faye had her own copy and Daphne had an ARC, but in the end Daphne ended up buying a copy (to giveaway on her blog maybe? LOOK FOR THAT!) and we got all 4 books signed.

I was a little nervous, so I went last, but Laura was really sweet. We chatted a little and then she even asked me how I spell my name, which is when I knew I really liked her because how awful would it be if the first book I ever got signed had my name spelled wrong? Gaby's a REALLY easy name to get wrong and people misspelling it is actually one of my pet peeves so THANKS FOR BEING AWESOME LAURA LAM.

And then Daphne took a picture of me and Laura. CHECK IT:

Yes I'm kind of awkwardly hiding behind Laura. THAT'S FINE.
After that, we met up with Faye's friend and then all four of us had a delightfully bookish dinner. A couple of hours later, we all said our farewells, got on our respective Tubes and made our ways home (aka the worst part of the night. LET'S ALL BE BOOKISH TOGETHER FOREVER OKAY GUYS?).

So. Besides for recapping my Thursday night (it was pretty great, guys, really), I do have another thing I want to discuss and that is: Awkwardness when meeting authors.

The truth is that this awkwardness doesn't just exist when meeting authors. It's kind of a celebrity thing. I mean, I'm totally awesome when I meet PEOPLE. As in, I really LIKE talking to people and making new friends and setting up regular lunch dates. Ask Faye and Daphne. I will insert myself in your life if you let me. But when I have to stand in line to have someone who's awesome and famous sign something as we exchange a couple of words, all of the social skills I take for granted most of the time just disappear. I NEVER know what to say and it feels so awkward. It's like, "Hey, I've just met you, and this is crazy, but please sign this book you wrote so I can I fawn over it forever. And personalize it, maybe?" Then you walk away and maybe they remember you and maybe you continue to Twitter-stalk/interact with them, but it's not like you're making lunch plans (or maybe you are. In which case, TEACH ME YOUR WAYS). 

I don't know. I just like meeting people and making friends and it makes me sad when I have like 3 minutes max to say anything to a person, whether it's something meaningful or just "WHOA YOUR BOOK SOUNDS/IS AWESOME" (AKA the pinnacle of fangirling). Ultimately, I just don't love being awkward if I can help it. Sure, it's entertaining when it happens every now and again, but I definitely don't want it to be a defining part of my bookish future. I want to go to signings and feel awesome and giggly, not stalker-ish and giggly. But I guess my example from above isn't such a great one. Pantomime was only kind of been on my radar before Faye told me about the signing, so I wasn't nerding out TOO hard, but what if it had been Tamora Pierce or Gayle Forman or John Green or Sarah Dessen? The flailing would have been so out of control I'm not even sure I would be coherent enough to spell my name if asked and that would be a MAJOR BOOKISH DISASTER.

And now, fellow bloggers, I turn to you. HOW do you keep your cool when you meet your favorite authors? What do you say? What do they say? HOW DO YOU PREPARE YOURSELF? PLEASE share your stories in the comments below so I might be a better author event attendee in the future!

**Please note: I'm aware that these authors, no matter how many book signings they do, are likely similarly awkward and flaily. As such, I send them all of my love and support through the Interwebz, because to go on tour and continuously feel like this must be EXHAUSTING.**


  1. Sadly, I do a lot more awkward staring and fervent listening in hopes of soaking up their genius than actual conversing most of the time. On Tuesday, I was sitting next to Veronica Rossi and across from Tahereh Mafi at dinner, with Cynthia Hand and Brodi Ashton also nearby, and I said very little. O_O

    So, yes, I'm awkward too.

    1. First of all: Jeals.

      Second of all: As long as you can soak in the genius, I think it's okay.

      Third of all: I would say long live the awkward, but I feel like that's not what we want. So, well, I hope this post let you know you're not alone!

      Thanks for stopping by Christina :)

  2. When I met Walter Dean Myers, I kept telling him how awesome and amazing he is and that I love his books. My daughter said I was embarrassing her. So, that's how cool I am.

    1. Ha! What did your daughter have to say? Maybe she could teach us all a thing or two.

  3. Can I just say, this post? LOVED IT :D

    As for authors.. errr... I have no advice, did you see how awkward I was? Haha. "I'm halfway through it, and it's good and yes.. Faye is the name and oh, look, DAPHNE - TALK!"


    I hope it's gets easier but when there's only two-three minutes of talking involved it's just like hi-yeah-love-bye! *runs away screaming* lol.

    Maybe one day I will be able to not be so awkward... maybe... but um... doubt it?

    1. This is why we go to book signings together - so we can all be awkward and shuffle it between us in hopes that the author won't notice TOO much.

      Glad you liked the post and I can't WAIT for next Sunday! ;)

  4. I have still never met an author at a signing or otherwise. Hopefully that will change soon though. However i am so shy when i first meet people that i would probably stare blankly at them whilst muttering incomprihensibly. Hopefully if i ever get to go to a signing someone else we be with me and they can do all the talking so i dont seem like a wierdo :P

    1. I'm telling you, the buddy system is THE WAY to go! But hopefully it'll go better than you think :)

  5. I've been going to author events for a couple of years now. I STILL get awkward when meeting authors, and it's even worse when they're authors I really admire. I usually end up babbling about their book or what it's done for me or what I loved about it, and most of the time they thank me. Other times, (like with Siobhan Vivian & Jodi Meadows), they actually know me from Twitter - which is freaking awesome!

    In general, I mostly just go with the flow and try to say what comes naturally to my mouth. 9 out of 10 times, it's an awkward, babbling mess... but sometimes, it's pretty darn golden :)

    1. If ever an author told me they knew me from Twitter I think I would spontaneously burst into joyous tears. And then be embarrassed. And THEN pray they thought me endearing instead of cray-town.

      Anyway, I can't wait to go to a signing with. I'd love to have a partner in awkward :)


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