BOOK SIGNING RECAP: Amy Zhang and Andrea Portes in PH

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Hi bookish peeps! This is my 10th time attending a book signing here in our country. I started last 2011, though I wasn’t able to attend everything, it’s fine. And I have noticed the vast improvement by the way these events are handled.

It’s only been half of the year and 5 NYT best selling authors have visited the Philippines. Book signing is really the most favorite thing in the world of bookworms ( next to reading books of course), because we get to meet and greet the amazing authors behind our favorite novels! PLUS WE GET OUR BOOKS SIGNED!

July, 3, 2016, #AmyandAndreainPH started! The best selling author of Falling into Place and This is Where the World Ends, Amy Zhang, and Andrea Portes, author of two YA novels, Anatomy of a Misfit and Fall of Butterflies, and other NA novels, finally had their book signing in Manila. This is again made possible by our dearest National Bookstore in partnership with Raffles Makati and Shangri-la Plaza. THANK YOU!  

Now let’s start the event recap! This recap will also include the interview portion and fan Q.A. with Amy and Andrea! Stay tuned. 😀

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THE BOOK SIGNING EXPERIENCE :

  • Waiting for the Registration Proper

As opposed to the previous book signing, this book signing is held at Shangri-La Plaza Grand Atrium. One of the things I liked on this book signing (ever since Sarah J. Maas’s), is that it’s very organized. Before, there were no event securities to make sure that no one breaks in the line. But now, there were securities who made sure that everything is organized.

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Once you arrive, the event securities will give you a placard that says “I am the last person in line.” But once the next person arrives, you will give it to him.

I came with my cousin and we arrived at the venue at exactly 8:00 am and there were already lots of people in line.

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We estimated that maybe we were numbers 100 + judging by the number of people around. To be honest, there are less people compared to the previous book signings I’ve attended to. Arriving at 8:00 before would mean you’re already on numbers 300+ but it’s not the case this time.

We waited for like 1 and half hour. Around 9:33 am, the event securities directed us to go inside the mall to fall in line for the registration. The mall opens at 10:00 am and we were ushered to go inside before the opening hours so we won’t be a nuisance later.

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Book signing Mechanics

I don’t know if you guys can see it , but here’s the book signing mechanics. And shout out this event security who is so nice and friendly and always crack a joke. 

The mechanics is the same, Only copies bought from National Bookstore, Powerbooks and NBS express will be accommodated. The people from the registration area will check the price tag of the book, or if you have removed the price tag but kept the receipt, it would be fine to present it. Only one copy of each book title will be allowed to sign.

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Registration Proper

Around 9:52 am, I am already registered! The people from the registration area gave me my signing pass, stamp mark on my hand to indicate registration and also a tote bag!

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Me and my cousin got numbers 147 and 149. I do not know why there’s no 148! lol. Me and my cousin got the last tote bags and we just got lucky! As you could see, I only have 1 book and so as my cousin. I will have my book Anatomy of a Misfit signed while my cousin will have her Falling into Place copy signed. To be honest, I wanted to purchase all their books because I love Andrea and Amy but I couldn’t afford it now because I’m broke af! I just graduated college and still looking for work. I have only afforded to purchase one, which is Anatomy of a Misfit, a book I’ve read 2 years ago and has been one of my favorite ya novels out there that’s why despite of being broke,  I didn’t allow to miss the opportunity. (shoutout to my mom for lending me money :p)

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  • Inside the Venue

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(c) National Bookstore

The signing proper is around 2:00 pm and while the registration is still on going, we just sat there and later on, took pictures. Here’s the look of the seats inside the venue

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We are seated all the way back. You know, the venue is spacious and really comfortable because we are seated on a chair which rarely happens because every time we attend a signing, we’re always seated on the floor because of loads of people and small venue. I don’t know if it’s because less people attended this time or conducting events at the mall’s event center is really favorable than conducting it inside the bookstore in Glorietta.

 

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Books for sale

When you enter inside, you will see the books of Amy and Andrea and you could purchase it from there if you wanted to add one more book in the books you wanted to be signed.

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Of course we also took the an obligatory selfie in front of the stage an hour before the actual signing.

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  • The Arrival of the Two Authors

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(c) National Bookstore

Everyone is pumped up as the MC introduced the two lovely authors. When the two authors came on stage, everyone shouted for excitement.

INTERVIEW PORTION:

Few minutes passed and the interview portion started. The MC asked them about their favorite authors and who influenced them.

Writers are readers and we’re always influenced by different authors. ~ Amy Zhang

The MC also asked them about how do they feel about the YA stories being so popular and fleshed out in novels.

We have hundreds and hundreds of years of older white males stories, so it’s fun to have stories whose voices are of the younger people especially women… and in a way it’s sort of subversive. ~ Andrea Portes

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(c) National Bookstore

Amy and Andrea also discussed about their thoughts about the diversity in children’s and young adult books.

Andrea points out that diversity in books is important because it really shows what humanity is. It is important to hear other stories so we don’t go around judging each other. Amy said that through reading YA stories, many teenagers find a way to relate to some of the characters and also know that they’re not the only one who feel this way and that we’re not alone in the world.

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Amy and Andrea also talked about their latest books; This is Where the World Ends and Fall of Butterflies. They also discussed about the characters they write and how it could influence the readers.

Andrea also told us that Anatomy of a Misfit is bought by Paramount and will soon be made into a movie. (yaaay!)

As for the closing, the MC asked Andrea and Amy what’s next for them. Andrea said that she finished writing LIBERTY: The Spy Who (Kind of) Liked Me which is already purchased by Fox Studios. The book will come out next year and she’s also releasing a middle grade book which has a spooky vibe. Amy Zhang mentioned that she has no plans yet but she will surely have her next book coming out probably late 2017 or early 2018. That’s a long wait Amy but we’ll surely wait!

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FAN QUESTION AND ANSWER PORTION:

I will cover here some of the Questions from the fans and Answers from the authors. These are not perfect verbatim. I picked out on what part to write because some of it were too long to include here.

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(c) National Bookstore

Question 1: If you were given a chance to back in time to meet someone to have lunch with, who would it be? And the second question is for Andrea, if Anatomy of a Misfit will be a movie, would would you cast?

Answer:

Andrea: I really don’t know as of now. If would have been probably Chloe but now she’s a little bit older so I don’t think it would be her.
Amy: I would love to be able to sit down with Jane Austen.

Question 2: Question for Amy, What are your views and thoughts on suicide?

Answer:

Amy: It’s a thing that happens because of what we put out as a society. I think,  it is really important that as a society, we address it as something that is one of the biggest problems that we’re facing right now.

Question 3: Question for Amy, how did you come up with this writing style?

Answer:

Amy: So for This is Where the World Ends, I write it as a linear narrative first. It would be unfair to some characters if we didn’t include some of their POV. For Falling into Place, I didn’t even think about what kind of narrative it was, it’s just the way I want the story to be told.

Question 4: Any tips for writing books especially when you’re in high school

Answer:

Amy:  I wrote Falling into Place when I was in highschool. What I did was, I got every morning at 4 and wrote until 6 when I have to go to school. That worked for me but I think the most important thing is to keep writing. Nobody is born with natural talent in writing. It’s a craft and you have to sit on and try to write a little something everyday.
Andrea: I agree, keep writing and find your voice. If you think about all of the stories, they sort of been told but what’s specific, what’s interesting and unique is a person’s voice. Who are you in this space and time, in the history of the world, what is your experience in humanity. That is something 100 years later someone would be interested in.

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(c) National Bookstore

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  • The Book Signing Proper

I was a little bit sad that I won’t be able to talk to Amy personally but glad that I got the chance to hear her during the interview portion. They asked us to fall in line by batch. After few minutes of waiting, our numbers are called.

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As we’re getting closer, I’m becoming nervous on what to say to Andrea. I have waited for her and now that she’s here, I don’t know what to say.

Several more minutes passed, then it’s my turn!

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I told her everything. How enchanted I am to meet Logan McDonough. And how elegant she looks like in her dress.

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I also asked her, if there’s one word she would describe Logan, what would it be. And she said, SPECIAL. ( I almost teared up because those who had read the book know how special Logan was and how haunted we were still after reading the book. )

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The much awaited selfie happened! Andrea promised to return in the Philippines soon because she had a great time here in our country. I was really in awe to meet here because she’s one of the authors I really adored.

As I go, I also passed on Amy, who was busy signing books. I took a snapshot of her. Dayum I wish I have her book too.

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Overall Thoughts:

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Thank you National Bookstore for making this event possible. I really had fun on this event and I’m happy how fast and organized everything was. The interview portion bring out the authors personality. Amy is a shy one and I really liked her bubbly personality. And she’s not too far from my age and maybe if we’re classmates in college, we could be friends! I really see some of my personality in her and I really like her. Andrea on the other hand is really eloquent. I think it’s because she had been an author for a long time and had spent lots of time working with professional directors, producers in the film industry. I love her! ‘Til next time NBS.

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Have you read these book? Let me know in the comments below your thoughts 😀

Thank you for reading my book signing recap! See you again next time !

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