The Story is About + TIME

Author Signing: Julia Hoban

Saturday, September 12 I took the two hour drive to Valparaiso, Indiana to meet the one and only Julia Hoban, author of the incredibly fabulous novel, Willow!

So here's my day.

10:30: Left my house.
11:30 arrived in Valpo. Didn't even think about the time difference, they are an hour ahead of me.

Needless to say I arrived a little early. Thankfully there was a Target across from the Barnes and Noble that I visited first for some much needed provisions. I wasn't the only blogger that arrived early. Erica from The Book Cellar, happened to be hanging out at the B&N. So that's where I headed next.

Took a b-line toward the YA section, which disappointingly wasn't really that big and it was sort of in an awkward spot. I started perusing the shelves when I heard someone say "There is Kristi." But it wasn't Erica, it was Kristen from Bookworming in the 21st Century and with her was Andrea from Book Blather! (I met them both at ALA) And then poof Erica was there too. Erica... where did you come from?

The nice girls that they were, they invited me for lunch. Little did they know, I had lunch plans with Julia! So, of course I had to invite them to come too... because I was so NERVOUS! I don't think I could have done it by myself anyhow! Luckily they agreed to join us!

We met Julia at the Panera Bread, which was delicious. I had soup and a sandwich. We all four got to sit and chat with Julia for over an hour! It was a blast. I'm sure we were getting looks, because we were laughing and talking non-stop! We talked about everything.

Around 1:45 we headed back over to the B&N, the good thing about this B&N is that everything we went to was in walking distance, so we just left our cars at the bookstore and walked! Expect for Julia, she had a chauffeur! And yes, she did invite us to ride with her back to the B&N, she is that sweet, but we declined.

There were around 25-30 people at the singing! There was a YA book club there, a director of media services from a school, a literacy coach, teens & adults! It was great!

Julia sat down, introduced herself, and then did something that I know surprised me. She introduced the four bloggers that were there, mentioned our sites and even thanked us for making her book what it was. She did this multiple times. She actually really thanked us. (I told her, her book sales might have something to do with her being a talented author and she just laughed at me.) We were all sitting there with our mouths open. I'll say that much! I mean wow, that was probably one of the coolest things ever. But besides that, Julia did a reading, we had a q&a, and discussed the books a little bit. Julia is a very intelligent person, I loved getting to hear her speak about Willow. And of course she signed our books.

The awesome community relations manager at B&N, Darlene, even took our blog urls so that she could make a poster for her YA readers! I have a new found love for Barnes and Noble.

As if Julia wasn't nice enough to have lunch with us, she also had time after the signing, so we headed to the cafe and had some cheesecake! Well, delicious pumpkin cheesecake and conversation. She had to catch her flight back to NYC, but she insisted we had to meet up again if we ever made it to NYC! (BEA?!)

The whole experience was just unbelievable. It was extra special for me, because it's been a year since Julia first introduced herself to me and asked that I review Willow. And now I finally got to meet her! (she signed my book: To Kristi, My first and best friend in the blogosphere! Love, Julia) *tear*

I had dinner with Andrea, Erica and Kristen before I headed back home. I really enjoyed getting to meet Erica and seeing Andrea and Kristen again. Hopefully, I'll see them again soon!

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Author Signing: Julia Hoban + TIME