The Los Angeles Festival of Books, aka, how Allison had an amazing Saturday

despite living here my whole life, I’ve only attended the Los Angeles Festival of Books for the first time last year (I know, ridiculous, right?).  In 2009, it was crowded, and I didn’t know what to expect, and I went with a couple of friends who also had no experience with it, and we ended up having to leave earlier than I would have liked since one of them had to get to work.  IT was fun going with them, but I knew I wanted to go solo this year, since I wanted to take the bus ($10 for parking?  no way in hell) and also wanted to explore  at my own pace.  Also, I had a ticket to a fiction panel discussion featuring Pamela Ribon.

I’ve been a fan of Pamie’s for about 5-6 years, starting from when she wrote for Television Without Pity.  It led me to her blog (which she started long before blogging was even a word, much less popular), which she started in 98.  Her writing style is affable, warm, genuine, and very, very funny.  I credit her a great deal for my own style of humor, which has gotten me many friends, and defined a great deal of who I am these last few years.  It’s pretty ballsy to embrace your own clutziness, irony and day to day ludicrousness.

Since the start of, she has written 3 novels (the 3rd of which came out last Tuesday), and while I love her writing, I also genuinely look up to and admire her as a person.  And despite living in the same city as her, frequenting the same places, even knowing some of the same people, I have never gotten a chance to meet her face to face. (A funny side note: the night before the Festival, I actually saw her at a restaurant I was at.  When I told her I didn’t want to come over and bother her because she was with a group of people, she said “Are you kidding?  Those were friends from out of town, you would have made me look AWESOME.”)

The panel itself was very interesting ( i definitely plan on attending a great deal more next year), and meeting her was a wonderful experience.  Suffice it to say, I couldn’t have asked for a better, more memorable experience for meeting someone whom I admire.  She recognized me  (from our connections on Twitter and Flickr), and even remembered my car accident from last year (leading her to sign my book “To Allison, BE CAREFUL!!! – Pamie”).  And we had a great chat, and hell, there really isn’t anything better than making one of your favorite funny people laugh.

(and of course, in true nerd girl fashion, the one good picture I got with her was where I’m making a stupid face.  Oh well.  In the land of Pamie, that’s actually pretty apt.)

After that, it was a lot of walking, writing down titles of books to read, chatting with some of the vendors, specifically some of the independent publishers, who you can tell really love what they do.  Situations like that appeal to the ADD kid in me, because I love the act of finding new books to add to my ever-growing “to read” list almsot as much as I love reading itself.

I didn’t take very many pictures, because I think “artist” Alli and “bookworm” Alli don’t work at the same time.  They both appeal to me for very different reasons, and when I’m in my information seeking (wanting to absorb EVERYTHING), my eyes are busy being too big for my literary stomach, so to speak, and less likely to catch onto a great potential shot, or an interesting composition or design idea.  That being said, it occurred to me that my dream job would be to work as the in house graphic designer for a publishing company (preferably a smaller one) putting together their marketing materials, maybe designing a book cover/jacket or two.  What a wonderful way to combine two of my biggest passions in life.  Why hadn’t I thought of that before??

So all in all, I left the day with 2 sore feet, a bag full of swag (mostly book catalogues, bookmarks, and calendars for events around Los Angeles) an empty stomach, and a list of about 30 books or so to read.  I highly suggest anyone who reads for fun make a point to attend this great event next year.  Next year I’m going to make a point to attend more panels (though the Festival coordinators could try to expand on what each panel is about, as opposed to just assigning it a title like “Fiction – Moving Forward” and expecting people to know whats going to be discussed.)

p.s.  Remember rolling down a hill on your side? Why don’t I do that anymore?

~ by Alli on Wednesday, April 28, 2010.

2 Responses to “The Los Angeles Festival of Books, aka, how Allison had an amazing Saturday”

  1. Good for you! ‘Saw this linked from Pamie’s Twitter feed.


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