I flew out of my little hometown airport...
...took a short layover in Chicago...
...on my way to the first annual TeenReaderCon in Clifton Park, NY.
I've attended a few YA conferences, where a community brings in several authors to discuss their books and writing, and these events are always the peak of fun as an author. Not only does it give me a chance to hang out with and meet my peers, but the audience is made up of rabid readers!
On the way to the auditorium, the halls were lined with floor-to-ceiling paintings reproducing classics by Van Gogh, Picasso, Monet, and many others. Plus, there was a beautiful piece made out of paper where the white letters turned into colorful butterflies that flew off onto the wall.
The first presentation was by Coach Rich Johns, giving his "Act with Respect Always" talk, which I've heard about for years and is beautifully inspiring. As part of his presentation, he discusses Thirteen Reasons Why and recites my character's poem, Soul Alone.
Here I am with the awesome dude!
Then all of the authors took the stage for our introductions and to answer some Q & A.
I had never been on a panel with any of these authors before, but would do it again in a second. Such a fun, smart group of people! (I'm so thankful they let me join them.)
Here's the happy bunch with photographer Marisa Geraghty. She'd been taking pics throughout the conference, so they finally made her get into one of them!
Of course, when I called home to describe the event, my son was most impressed by the excavator I passed while talking to him.