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A Chair, A Fireplace & a Tea Cozy
Inside A Chair, A Fireplace & a Tea Cozy

YALSA Coffee Klatch

For a few years now, I’ve attended the YALSA YA Author Coffee Klatch at ALA Annual. It’s basically author speed dating: the room is full of numbered tables, you sit, and the authors rotate from table to table for about three minutes. I strongly recommend it! Though here is a tip learned the hard way: eat before you go. In the past they have had food (little stuff, pastries and the like) which typically is perfect for me; but this time, they had nothing. So, alas, the rule for any of these events is eat first.

Here are the authors who visited the table I was at:

Daniel Handler, for Why We Broke Up, Printz Honor Book (my review). Yes, he was very funny! He said we were the best table! I’m sure he was totally serious and did not say that to every table.

Wendelin Van Drannen, The Running Dream (Schneider Family Book Award), spoke about the book and people research process behind writing about a girl who loses her leg and gets a running prostheses.

Jenny Hubbard, author of the Morris Honor Book Paper Covers Rock (my review), offered these words on writing: “you’ve got to practice for a while before it really takes off.” (first photo).

Craig Silvey, author of Jasper Jones, Printz Honor Book (review coming next month), said about his writing: “I write the kind of book I’d like to read.”

Daniel Kraus, author of Rotters, Odyssey Award (my review of the print book), shared the cover of his new book,  Scowler, and said “it makes Rotters look like kindergarten.” He also brought along a copy of the audiobook of Rotters, complete with amazing new cover (the old cover was also amazing). (second photo).

Corey Whaley, author of Where Things Come Back, Printz Winner, (my review) spoke about his next book. He was vague on the details but very excited about it. We should be seeing it in the Fall 2013.

Melissa Marr talked about her new book, The Carnival of Souls, based on folklore. Also, witches and daimons! It wasn’t supposed to be a series, but — as Marr put it — it outgrew one book so there will be more than one.

Ellen Hopkins was the final visitor to our table. The words she left us with? “I love what I do. I love my audience.”

About Elizabeth Burns

Looking for a place to talk about young adult books? Pull up a chair, have a cup of tea, and let's chat. I am a New Jersey librarian. My opinions do not reflect those of my employer, SLJ, YALSA, or anyone else. On Twitter I'm @LizB; my email is