In the last two weeks, I flew to Chicago, then home, then Denver, then home, then back to Chicago. And what do I have to show for it? Some great memories, but hardly any photos! I don't know why I've fallen out of the habit of taking pictures of almost everything. Yes, it lets me be a little more in-the-moment during my visits, but I also love looking back at where I've been.
So here's a quick photo-light recap of two fast-paced and inspiring weeks.
Over two days, just outside of Chicago, I spoke at Libertyville High School and Grayslake Central High School. Both schools were hosting their own version of Writers Week, bringing in many types of writers to speak to the students about their passions, as well as giving students the opportunity to read their works in front of their classmates.
Here's one student reading in front of a packed auditorium at Libertyville shortly before my presentation.
Here's the stage at Grayslake as the students began arriving to hear me speak.
Grayslake had artwork made to highlight each of the speakers, which we all eventually signed.
In Denver, I joined Lauren Oliver as a keynote speaker at the Colorado Teen Literature Conference. Hundreds of teens and adults came out to hear us speak, as well as partake in discussions about many aspects of teen literature. Separately, Lauren and I recorded podcasts with readers who asked some of the best questions. Having done hundreds of Q&As since my books came out, it's always refreshing and surprising to get asked something new!
Lauren and I each led writing workshops in a fun basement-level room that reminded me of pics I've seen of The Cavern Club where The Beatles honed their skills. I did my workshop on suspense (No Bookmarks Allowed!), and if you've attended that workshop, you know I include a photo in my Powerpoint of another author freaking out over something random. Here's Lauren freaking out over a mini-Milky Way (and yes, this makes sense in the context of my presentation).
Back outside of Chicago, in the town of Skokie, I spoke at Lincoln Junior High and Fairview South School during the day. At Lincoln, I spoke in the gym, beneath a beautiful ceiling I totally should've taken a picture of! At Fairview South, a group of girls came in before my presentation to hang a beautiful poster.
That evening, I spoke at the public library, and was happy to see a poster with my in-person visit listed above Dan Brown's video visit. (Sure, that simply had to do with my visit being first, but it's still cool! And yes, I'm definitely buying Dan Brown's Inferno when it comes out next month.)