Yesterday I spent all day in Mission Viejo, CA at a wonderful book event called Books Are Better Shared. A lot of avid book club readers and writers got together for a day of intimate talks, lunch and signings. Here’s some pictures to capture the day…
When I drove up this WONDER sculpture was the first thing I saw and it stands right in front of the building. For a split moment I felt like a kid going to book Disneyland.
Here’s one of the morning sessions. I’m actually standing in the book room surrounded by a ton of book tables that are just out of frame. I snapped this one quickly…
This picture isn’t that good (taken at the last minute of wrap up) but the panel was fantastic! “Discover A New Country” lead by author Gina Nahai (The Luminous Heart of Johah S. & other novels), the panel included Aline Ohanesian (Orhan’s Interitance), Alexis Landau (Empire of the Senses) , and Michelle Gable (A Paris Apartment). All three are debut authors and Gina asked some fantastic questions about their journey to publication, the countries they chose to write about, and juggling a writing life while raising kids. They had us all laughing quite a bit.
(Meanwhile – there was another panel going on in another room that I wish I could had attended as well. The difficulties of having only one body.)
Here’s a picture of Alexis Landau and Michelle Gable (love her hot pink sunglasses) at their signing table. I’m already knee-deep in reading Alexis’ exquisite novel, so I bought Michelle’s The Paris Apartment. It sounds incredible – inspired by the true story of a woman who secretly owned an apartment in Paris and locked it up in 1940 and never opened it again. After she died, the estate discovered this apartment and inside was a wealth of treasures. Talk about a fascinating story.
After lunch, my panel was “Discover a New Way to Discuss Books” with Sophie Littlefield (A Bad Day For Sorry, Aftertime, and many other books) and Jessica Knoll (Luckiest Girl Alive). Hildy Stern moderated and we discussed the inspiration behind our stories, underlying themes, the characters’ journeys, and the challenges of genre. It was a great discussion and I just have to say Sophie was so generous and supportive to us debuts.
Special thanks to Terry Gilman, Hildy Stern, Emilio and the whole crew for putting on such a fantastic event. And thank you for sending us home with a bag of books and delectable bundt cakes. This picture is actually Margaret Dilloway’s (Author of Sisters of Heart and Snow). My son dug into the cakes before I could take a picture.