I went yesterday to the Glendale Branch Indianapolis-Marion Public Library to see Kate DiCamillo and...it was great! I got there at five minutes 'til two, and the place was packed out. I bought Kate's newest book from the booksellers there(more on that later) and managed to squeeze into the back of the room.
The other half was just as full, and the sides and back of the room were standing room only.
Kate started out by saying how nice it was to see so many people and then asked, "Now...what are we going to do?", which caused a wave of laughter. She then jumped straight into letting people ask questions. The kids there were not shy about sticking their hands in the air! =) After a young boy asked about Rob Horton(the mc in The Tiger Rising) Kate explained that she wasn't sure what it was that Rob wanted for awhile- until one day talking on the phone, Kate's mother informed her there was a tiger loose in Florida. And she realized then that Rob Horton needed a tiger- and she hung up on her mother. "Never hang up on your mother," Kate told the kids. I hope they follow her advice, as I've been guilty of doing just that- but boy oh boy, did I only ever do it once!
Kate has such pretty white/blond hair- though it's sort of blending in w/the white board here.
When asked to talk about when she started writing, Kate asked the room if we wanted the long or short version. 'Long' was the unanimous vote to which she replied, "What a strange and wonderful group of people you are." She also told us that when she started out writing she borrowed her mother's JCPenney card and bought three black turtle necks and sat around looking serious...while not getting a whole lot of writing done.
So as time passed she told herself she would sit down an hour a day at the typewriter. Which was exactly what happened...but still no words. Then she made a promise to herself to write two pages a day. And since her first book, Because of Winn Dixie to her most current, Flora & Ulysses, she's written seventeen books, with three more due out soon- though I'm sure that two pages a day has been increased!
Another of her quips that caused a laugh was when a teenager not too far from me asked if Kate would ever write anything focused towards YA. Kate's reply? "Probably not. I've found that as teens you leave me, but then you come back to me in your twenties." So true! =)
The line for the signing was huge. While I waited I amused myself by taking some more pictures. For you football fans out there I give you Andrew Luck. Tah-dah! Oh...you're not fooled. Fine. You're right. He's a cut-out.
Here's some pretty lights in the ceiling:
And finally, it was my turn! Since we were both wearing black, we look a bit conjoined, but I swear that's Kate's arm behind me. I'd never be so presumptuous as to just fling an arm around her! See, both hands above table! =)
All in all it took me around forty minutes to get to the table, and it looked like there'd probably be another thirty mintues until everyone else was through. And while I was there I also spotted another author, Mike Mullin, author of the Ashfall Trilogy. I've seen him speak once before(informative and engergetic), and meant to go over and get a picture of him as well, but after meeting Kate I was a bit starstruck and just wandered off looking at our pic together and completely forgot until I was out at the car. *sad face*
But back to the booksellers that were there, Kids Ink. They're a great Indianapolis independent bookstore that I've been dying to check out. I don't get up to Indy a whole lot, but one of these days I'm going to make a point to visit what looks like a great kid's bookstore. Also, the last I knew, Mike Mullin's mother is the owner. How cool is that?
All in all it was a fun day, and the one last thing that made it even better? A diet, extra vanilla coke from Steak 'n Shake. Life's good.
Footnote: I'm reading Flora and Ulysses right now, and it's SO GOOD! I totally recommend it! Also, I've already besmirched my copy with ketchup... =(