SO. The day didn't exactly get of to an auspicious start- I meant to go running but spent the morning tidying my room in preparation for Frances's stay (for she came with me to the glorious event) and then I DID go running, and ended up cutting up my knee so badly that I still have a little patch of new pink skin there now. It was not my finest hour.
Anyway. I pulled myself together enough to get up to London, and since I arrived before Frances, who had to work like a poor poor sucker (I had the whole week off... It was amazing. I should try that again sometime) I went to Waterstones Piccadilly to scope out the joint. And ohmygod. It's pretty spectacular. According to the Waterstones website, it's the biggest bookshop in Europe (!) and I literally didn't even know it was there until I got tickets for this event. To which I say, SHAME ON ME.
Anyway... I didn't really have ample time to explore it properly so that will be happening in the future (obviously) but I DID buy Fangirl, because I only had the kindle version, and Landline, because, you know, I didn't have it yet. I read Landline that same week, in, like, a day, but of course I haven't reviewed it yet because I'm me. Better luck next life, me. After that, I had to walk all the way to Leicester Square* to pee, also because I'm me (honestly notorious for having to pee at inconvenient times) and Frances and I managed to miss each other before we were finally, gloriously reunited in a glorious way (um... we hugged? It was nice?)
AND THEN there was the event itself. It was awesome (of course) but it was especially good because it was set up in a Q&A format so that Rainbow didn't read exerts and it wasn't just queuing to meet her, there was actually some onstage banter between Rainbow and Bim Adewunmi (who is excellent on twitter, and in real life, by the way) and then, obviously, audience questions. I had nothing, not because I'm not interested in Rainbow Rowell (I'm SO interested in her!) but because I can't think of things on the spot and also, I was a tiny bit awed. Rainbow did talk about the Eleanor and Park movie (she was like 'Shailene Woodley can't play Eleanor!' and oh how I loled) and about how the book she's writing now is going to be set in England (yesssssssssss!) and just generally, it was all very informative and fun.
AND THEN (I know, I'm nearly there) we got to go up row by row to queue and meet Rainbow and it was the besssssst! I was very excitedly twitching the whole time, and then when I got to the table she was like 'hi' and I was like 'Hi! I'm Laura from the internet' because I'm a massive nerd and ALSO because when I was being excited on twitter earlier she told me to introduce myself and that was the best way I knew how. And SHE KNEW WHO I WAS (I know, I told you- nerd) and she ALSO knew the members of (one of) my online gangs, and so there we were, having a conversation about Alice and Tika and Megs and Alley and it was so awesome. At this point, it shouldn't have really surprised me that meeting someone I've had not inconsiderable amount of communication with online felt like meeting an old friend, but it still did, probably because said person is a totally awesome and famous author, no less.
Basically, everything you probably think Rainbow Rowell is going to be, she is that and more, and I love her and could totally have stayed and talked to her all evening. Yet, I moved on, with my four signed books, my free fangirl bag (!!!) and a bazillion loves and joys in my heart.
Essentially, meeting authors? I recommend it. Meeting Rainbow Rowell? Best idea in the world. If ever you have the opportunity, I say take it, you fools!
Signings! My favourite is the Attachments one (the book that brought us together indeed!)
My not at all creased Fangirl bag that I definitely didn't break the first time I used it. I WILL FIX YOU, BAG! (And then use you responsibly. And lovingly.)
*Note: Not actually that far.