*OSCOLA says that where there are three or more co-authors, the later authors should be replaced with ‘and others’. I don’t need to use OSCOLA any more, since I’m writing a book blog, but I still like to go with convention.
In case you hadn’t realised, I am a massive, massive Garth Nix fan. I’ve posted about Goldenhand multiple times already, so you’re probably sick of reading about it, but last night, as part of his Goldenhand tour, Garth Nix participated in a panel discussion at Waterstones Piccadilly with a whole bunch of other fantasy authors. I was never NOT going to go. I did, unfortunately, miss the signing at Forbidden Planet, because it started while I was still at work, but I thought this would be the better event anyway.
Although my main draw for this event was definitely Garth Nix, I saw Alwyn Hamilton speak at YALC, and she was really interesting. Laure Eve’s book The Graces had a stand at YALC as well (although the book itself wasn’t available, grrrr) so I’d been looking forward to it coming out since July. Melinda Salisbury, of course, with her Sin Eater’s Daughter trilogy, is already hugely popular, and Paul Magrs I had never heard of, but his sci-fi novels set on Mars sound really interesting. So with five great authors, and a front-row seat, I was ready for anything! Chelsea Pippin from Buzzfeed was chairing – although admittedly for a little while without an actual chair.
Perhaps it was because I was in the front row, so it felt like I was sitting with friends as they discussed world-building, how to come up with ideas, the methods of writing a book (answer… it depends) and daddy issues.
Every time I hear Garth Nix speak I’m really impressed, not least because of his amazing Australian accent, but also because he’s such a wealth of knowledge and information. Having been a publisher, an editor, an agent, and also an author, it sometimes seems like there’s no part of the publishing world that he doesn’t know about.
But I was also really impressed with how the others spoke, too. It was light-hearted yet informative, and a fun way to see into the minds and the creative processes of five very different but very talented authors. From the idyllic childhoods of some to the isolated and introverted worlds of others, they clearly came from different backgrounds, but all have that compellingly rich inner life that helps them to create fantastic worlds like The Old Kingdom, the 1001-nights-inspired Miraji and, uh, Cornwall.
Sometimes it’s hard to remember immediately afterwards what the authors even talked about, but I know that it was fascinating and also very entertaining. There were a lot of laughs as what started off as a panel discussion of fantasy writing became something of a therapy session, and then a plagiarism session, as unattributed quotes suddenly became attributed to Laure Eve.
After the discussion was finished, there was a little shuffling around before all five authors started chatting and signing copies of their books for the massive queue of eager attendees. I now own three different signed editions of Goldenhand (one of which is signed in Golden pen) and I picked up Rebel of the Sands and The Graces, too, and got them signed and personalised, to keep me going.
All in all, one very satisfied blogger left Waterstones last night, feeling like I had really had a very productive and enjoyable evening – not least because I added to my ever-growing collection of Garth Nix and Baby Broni photos!
*I should perhaps have turned off the flash before taking this photo. Mr Nix might never see again. =/