I went back to my first love at this year's San Diego Comic Con and focused only on books. For the first time in years, I did not attend a film or television panel. This year was all about author panels and signings and boy oh boy, I do not know what took me so long to get back on track!
On Thursday, I had the pleasure of sitting in on four panels: Books & Hollywood - Literary Franchises in Television and Film, Hungry for Dystopia, The 7th Annual Comics Podcasting All-Stars, and Simon & Schuster.
In the first panel, authors discussed their work transitioning from books to TV and film. Every author's experience is different (since there are so many ways that Hollywood can surprise you, for better or worse), so I was very intrigued with what the panelists had to say. On the panel were Rebecca Serle (When You Were Mine), Margaret Stohl (co-author of the Beautiful Creatures series), Scott Speer (Immortal City), Tony DiTerlizzi (The Search for WondLa series), Ashley Edward Miller and Zack Stentz (Colin Fischer), Mike Richardson (president of Dark Horse), and Mark Frost (The Paladin Prophecy).
I do listen to Comic News Insider from time to time but still haven't found the right comics podcast for me, so I was thrilled to be introduced to the best of the best next to that podcast at the All Stars panel. As for Simon & Schuster, the entire panel was a lottery giveaway. I expected giveaways but I also expected there to be an actual panel or at least a more in depth look at what's coming up in their catalogue. So that was disappointing but that was the only disappointment of day one so I cannot complain.
The best part of the day is obvious. Seeing Neal Shusterman (Unwind trilogy), Lissa Price (Starters), Paolo Bacigalupi (The Drowned Cities), Michael Grant (BZRK), Daniel H. Wilson (Amped), Gennifer Albin (Crewel), and Marie Lu (Legend trilogy) on the Hungry for Dystopia made me all giddy inside. I must say, Lissa Price rocked this panel. I don't think many people in attendance went in knowing who all of the panelists were, but they sure walked out with a note in their mind to pick up Price's book. She knows how engage, intrigue (and sell her book) that is for sure. Later on, at the autograph signing, after I gushed about the cover of Starters, she informed me that it might be changed. That gutted me because I personally think that Starters has one of the most beautiful covers of 2012 and most beautiful covers period. If you agree, be sure to head over to Price's Facebook page and share your thoughts. As for giveaways and signings... well, I guess you could say that I got a little carried away with the books. I left NJ with 7 books to get signed and came home with 40. Check out my Book Haul, in two parts below (all of my author photos are in the video):
On Friday, I attended three panels: Remixed Fairy Tales and Superhero Lore, Are Digital Comics Expanding the Market?, and What's Up with Penguin. The first panel was easily one of my favorite panels of the entire con. Not only because in an alternate universe, Joss Whedon kicked himself for missing Marissa Meyer on this panel (that was my favorite comment of the hour) but I went into this panel simply to support a few authors and ended up discovering why I ought to give fairy tale re-tellings more of a chance. Sure, Marissa Meyer opened me up to this with Cinder but not everyone is going to be as good as her. But I still need to take that chance. Joining Meyer on the panel were Sarah Maas (Throne of Glass), Marissa Meyer (Cinder), Rae Carson (The Girl of Fire and Thorns), Paul Tobin (Prepare to Die), Tom King (A Once Crowded Sky), Michael Scott (The Enchantress), Tracy Hickman (Wayne of Gotham), and Cecil Castellucci (The Year of the Beasts). The "What's Up with Penguin" panel was essentially the same as the Simon & Schuster "panel" although they actually filled out their entire hour (S&S was barely 40 minutes).
On Saturday, History invited me to a breakfast at their Cookout Grill spot which you will hear more about tomorrow, so stay tuned for my coverage surrounding the breakfast and all that went on shortly! I didn't attend any panels since my allergies were killing me. I did manage to grab a few books before resting up at my hotel... and then heading to the NBC Blogger Party before calling it a night. I also ran into Poetry to Prose on the exhibit floor in between signings and giveaways and it was so refreshing, fun, and easy getting to hang out with a fellow book lover at the con since I'm usually hanging out with fellow TV and film addicts.
Sunday was the most exciting day since it was the day for the What's Hot in Young Adult Fiction panel. Aside from this, I also attended the Stunted Fools, Scary-Ass Clowns, Enlightened Orangutans, and Other Devilish Charmers: Humor in Science Fiction and Fantasy and Spotlight on Peter F. Hamilton panels. The latter featured Richard Kadrey (Devil Said Bang), Doyce Testerman (Hidden Things), Rob Reid (Year Zero), Ned Vizzini (The Other Normals), Gini Koch (Alien Diplomacy), Nathan Long (Jane Carver of Waar), and Nick Hurwitch (co-author of So You Created a Wormhole). I was only familiar with Ned Vizzini but am now looking forward to reading the works of every single one of them.
What's Hot in Young Adult Fiction was moderated by Nathan Bransford (Jacob Wonderbar for President of the Universe) and featured Leigh Bardugo (Shadow and Bone), James Dashner (The Maze Runner series), Kami Garcia (co-author of the Beautiful Creatures novels), Tahereh Mafi (Unravel Me), Melina Marchetta (Froi of the Exiles), Lish McBride (Hold Me Closer, Necromancer), Myra McEntire (Hourglass trilogy), and Scott Westerfeld (Uglies). Talk about the best lineup ever. What a fantastic group of authors. I still cannot believe I was in the presence of all of them at the same time. So much talent. I was lucky enough to be able to chat with one of the above, Tahereh Mafi after the panel and signing. Catch the interview in the video above!
I ended the day and my Comic Con 2012 experience by sitting in on the How to Create Your Own Novel: From the First Idea to Publishing which was led by America's youngest multiple award-winning authors, the Winner Twins. It was entertaining to say the least! More entertaining than insightful, but still a great way (inspiring) to end the con. Has anybody read their work? I am intrigued and hope to start reading their first novel before the year is over. Having gained 33 more books at Comic Con, it might be awhile before I get to their work. What an unbelievably satisfying Con! I say this every year and it's always true. I cannot wait until next year! It is so going to top this year!