My name is Ardis and I am an avid reader and budding writer. I want to share my love of books with others. I work with kids and am interested in finding and creating books that will ignite the reader in everyone. Contact me at: ardis.atkins@gmail.com

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Sunday, October 4, 2015

Meeting Leigh Bardugo

What a wonderful Sunday it was!  I had cooked and cleaned all of Saturday; my chores were complete.  After a brisk morning, the sun came out and I was ready to do something I never do:  go on adventure, all alone, to San Francisco to attend a book event!  Held at Books Inc. in Opera Plaza, tucked away at the far end of the store, the empty chairs sat waiting for the arrival of Leigh Bardugo!  And I was happily among them!

I arrived in San Francisco from the East Bay with plenty of time so I was able to leisurely walk to the bookstore and take in some of the stunning architecture in the city:


City Hall, San Francisco, California            San Francisco Opera House

After walking several blocks from the BART station, I found Books, Inc. and quickly bought two more copies of Six of Crows (I think a few people will be getting special Christmas gifts this year...).  Then I located the seats and found a spot near the front.

Then I sat down and read a few more chapters of Six of Crows.  Such an exciting book!  I stopped several times and listen to the organizers talk about books, and a few other events that were upcoming at the store.  I then remembered that a few weeks ago on Twitter, I was talking to @NextPagePlease_ and we both said we would be going to this event.  Could she be here?  I didn't really know what she looked like in person, so I sent out a tweet to her, asking if she was going.  She quickly answered, "Yes, I am already here.".  I began to look around the store, and finally got up the courage to ask this teen, "Are you Kaitlin?"  She looked at me strangely (which was understandable) until I explained we knew each other through Twitter.  Then we were all smiles and hugs.  What a cool thing to meet up with people you know through social media!

Finally, the big moment arrived and Leigh Bardugo was in the house!

She began by reading from a story she had written at 12 years old.  While it was full of cliches, one could see there was talent even at that young age!  She was witty and self depreciating, talking about how difficult her teen years were trying to fit in at an all-girls school.  She mentioned that a reoccurring theme in her books is about creating your tribe of friends and how that really came to be at college.  Leigh answered many questions from the audience about her writing process and character creation.  She was full of pearls of wisdom!  At one point, she said, "You have to be bad at writing before you become good at writing".  That gave me a lot to think about.  No one instantly is good at an art.  Whether it's singing, playing an instrument, or writing, it takes work to gain proficiency.  This is so encouraging.  I think I tend to look at my writing and become exasperated that it isn't any good.  I need to keep working on it, and I will improve. Maybe not to the level of published author, but I will get better!

Finally, she began to sign books!  I was very fortunate to be in the second row, so I only had to wait a short time before I was standing and chatting with Leigh Bardugo!!!  She couldn't have been nicer, signing all my books and asking me questions too.


Afterwards, we got to take some swag:  I got two cool pins (one says Grisha for life and the other says Proper Thief), and a large temporary tattoo of a crow (I think I will keep it as a bookmark!).  On my book, she wrote:  The heart is an arrow.  She has certainly made reading entertaining for me.  Now, she has inspired me as well.  Thank you Leigh!

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  1. Yay that's awesome, Ardis!!! It sounds like it was a great event!


    1. Thanks A.J., This was my first book signing so I didn't know what to expect. Leigh Bardugo was so nice!

  2. Oh my@ I'm so jealous @.@ I hope I live in the US too! My Random Book thoughts

  3. Thanks Donita. Hopefully there are some authors that do international tours!

  4. Great recap! It was so great meeting you and I definitely hope we can see each other again in the future. I really enjoyed this event and Leigh was definitely a joy to hear from. Thanks for sharing! :D

    ~Kaitlin @ Next Page Please!

  5. Hi Kaitlin! It was so great to meet you! It looked like you and your friend were having fun!

  6. Leigh always looks flawless, it's ridiculous! I love that she still has the stories she wrote from when she was 12! I wish I had kept my half-assed writing journals!

    You also look super happy in these photos! Thanks for the recap! I'm seeing her this Sunday! My birthday present to myself :)

  7. Happy Birthday, Amber! I found Leigh to be funny and very personable. You will have a great time!

  8. Aaagh, if only I had known about this event beforehand, I'd have tried to go! (I live in the city) But alas, this was right before I started paying any attention to books on social media :P


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