Serena Takes #PenguinTeenOnTour

8:41 AM Serena 2 Comments

Tonight I had the pleasure of meeting five Penguin authors with upcoming/recently released books on tour! Those five authors are: Morgan Rhodes, author of the Falling Kingdoms series (and SO many other books!); Rachel Hawkins, author of the Rebel Belle series; Seth Fishman, author of The Well's End series; Maggie Hall, author of The Conspiracy of Us series; and Jessica Khoury, author of Kalahari. The night went a little something like this...:

I arrives at Vroman's about a half hour before the event was set to start, and I was CONFUSED. I'd only been to Vroman's one other time, and I was like five, so I had practically no recollection of the layout or how anything worked in there. But there was a very nice woman working the register who put me in the right direction, so all was well. And then I ran into Maggie Hall, one of the authors on tour, so of course I had to say hi. I've talked to her on Twitter before, and she's always so sweet (and even sweeter in person!)

After that I went to buy a shiny new paperback of Rebel Belle, then waited in the event area for things to get started. 
The (author-less) event stage! 
Once all the authors were introduced, they jumped right into things. The first order of business was readings. These were not Your Ordinary Readings, mind you. They took a page number from a member of the audience and each read a few sentences on that page of another author's book. 

Rachel read from Maggie's The Conspiracy of Us; she read a Stellan part! If you've read page 62 of TCOU, you know how creepy Stellan sounds at that point in time. Morgan read from Seth's The Well's End. Seth read from Jessica's Kalahari, all dramatic-like, clutching his side and panting and everything. Maggie read from Morgan's Gathering Darkness, and Jessica read from Rebel Belle. 

They took questions next. 
Question one was something like: Did you always write fiction? Was there something else you wanted to write first? (Warning: This basically turned into all the authors talking the fanfics they've written. It was kind of awesome.)
Rachel started writing fanfiction, which seemed to be a recurring theme with the authors. She also wrote dramatic teenage girl poetry. Haven't we all?
Jessica started writing fanfiction too. She wrote a Hardy Boys fanfic when she was in third grade that she was very proud of. It was about a friendship fort. 
Maggie didn't write a lot before she wrote The Conspiracy of Us, but she did write dramatic diary entries. 
Seth wrote a Lord of the Rings fanfic (pre-movies) in which Gandalf went and saw the movie in theaters. 
Morgan wrote Star Trek fanfics, largely about her and Q, and poetry. 

I asked: What is your favorite thing about being on tour? 
They all had similar answers. They liked meeting each other, which they actually hadn't before the tour, and meeting readers. Morgan said her favorite thing was room service, which I felt was a very valid answer. Seth, Morgan, and Jessica also talked about the ripple effect that happens on the Interwebs. Someone will find out about one of their books at signing and be compelled to read it and later tweet their feels, which the authors think is awesome. Twitter for the win!

There was a very good question along the lines of: How do you tap into a teenager's mindset? I couldn't type answers fast enough, but Seth talked about how he asked a lot of questions and did a lot of 'research' when he wrote a female POV because he wanted it to be accurate, and that really stood out to me because of a thing I saw on Twitter yesterday. 

The next question was: What kind of fanfiction do you think your characters would write? This was a very fanfic-centric night, if you couldn't already tell.
Rachel said Harper from Rebel Belle would write Marvel fanfic. 
Seth said Mia might possibly write Michael Phelps fanfic. (I actually LOLed)
Maggie said Firefly was referenced in a scene that was cut from TCOU, so Avery might write Firely fanfiction.

I don't remember what the question was, but there was a lot of talk about querying and first drafts. Rachel talked about how she queried an agent before her draft was finished, and Seth just kind of sat there with his arms crossed and shook his head at her. It was pretty funny. 

The last question was something like Do you get to title your own books and how do you come up with titles?
Jessica said she is horrible at coming up with titles and that the title of her debut novel was originally Perfectly Pia. 
Maggie said The Conspiracy of Us was originally The Circle of Twelve.
Seth said The Wall's End was originally The Map Room. When they decided for a new title, Seth really wanted to use Well Fall, but even though that didn't end up working out, that's still what Seth calls the book in his head. 
Rachel came up with Rebel Belle herself. She took to Twitter for inspiration for the title for Miss Mayhem. 
Morgan says she's good at titles with puns. 

And then it was time for the signing! I got to briefly chat with Stacie of Wonderland of Reading (YAY for blogger/OTSP Secret Sister friends!), but I didn't want to talk to anyone for too long because I'm getting over a cold and I'm gross. 

I only had books for Rachel and Maggie to sign, but Penguin had these super cool posters and the authors were kind enough to sign them. And they signed a lot of them. 

The authors doing their signy thangs. 
I talked to Jessica and Maggie first. They both signed my poster, and Maggie took pictures with me and signed my copy of The Conspiracy of Us. I talked to Seth next, and I asked him if he could sign the poster with his favorite One Direction lyric because I've heard he's into them. He was happy to do so, and he sang it to me at Rachel's request too. It was hilarious and awesome. The opening lines to Night Changes are his favorite, by the way. I talked to Rachel about seeing 1D in concert (she has too!), and she signed aforementioned shiny new paperback of Rebel Belle. I didn't really get to chat with Morgan, as she was talking to other readers, but she was very smiley. 
Me and Maggie ft. Seth 
Tour poster! 
My signed pretties!

So yeah, that was my night. Thanks to Vroman's, Penguin, and of course the fabulous authors for a wonderful event!

Did you go to a #PenguinTeenOnTour stop? What did you think? Who are you excited to see on tour next? 


  1. So glad you enjoyed the event! I hope you enjoy Rebel Belle! Love the book to bits :)

    ~Kaitlin @ Next Page Please!

    1. It was probably one of my favorite events to date! And omg, I'm only about 50 pages in, but I'm already enjoying it. It's so fun so far! :)