I could feel the excitement building up as I walked through the various doors to finally reach the busy hall. The room was full of fans, unable to keep from talking about the person they had been waiting to meet for so long. And when we found out she was running late, it was obvious that the anticipation was killing everyone. But the wait was not in vain. Two lucky girls rock-paper-scissor battled for a Jem poster. We also found out people came from as far as Northern California to the book signing, so the person that traveled the farthest won a poster of one of Clare’s popular characters, Will Herondale. (We were all pretty jealous!)
When the one and only Cassandra Clare finally arrived with her allies, Maureen Johnson and Sarah Rees Brennan, everyone exploded with happiness. And they were right to do so, because the three authors were extremely funny and charismatic, eager to answer the endless questions.
The waving of hands in the air never seemed to finish, so we all learned so much. Just to mention a few:
How do you feel to know that you are influencing people everywhere?
Cassie’s first reaction was to say it’s “terrifying” because she is influencing people with her “strangeness,” but she loves how she comes together with readers with her books.
Where did you get your inspiration for your series?
Cassie’s tattoo artist friend told her about how in the old days, people thought that tattoos gave them protection. So Cassie thought that it would be really cool if there were a whole race of people that had that.
Is there a possibility of Simon having his own series?
Simon might survive for The Dark Artifices, Cassie’s next series, which is the next generation of shadow hunters!
What advice do you have for aspiring authors?
It is a series of steps that all take you closer to the goal. When Cassie has writer’s block, she calls her friends and explains where she is stuck so that they help her with ideas and help her figure out where she needs to go back.
After the Q&A, there was a lightning round where Cassie, Maureen, and Sarah answered questions as quickly as possible, with the first things that popped into their heads, so it didn’t always make sense but it was really cool to hear. For example, someone asked Cassie if she ever got scared by all of her fans on Tumblr. She talked about how she was afraid of the weird things they did in her absence. (Anyone guilty of that?)
Another person asked if Alec and Magnus will get back together. Cassie explained that she thought that the relationship was too perfect, and all relationships have struggles, so she wanted to make theirs more relatable. But she made it sound like they’ll be back together soon, so don’t you guys worry!
Another person asked Cassie what had been the hardest character to write. And I thought her response to this question was the most surprising overall because she said…wait for it… Jem! Cassie had to do endless research, months of it, to really capture the Victorian era in Shanghai, things like that.
To finish off the night, we were called up to get in line to get our book signed. It was so cool getting to talk to Cassandra Clare! The whole evening was fun, awesome and definitely worth waiting for.
-Liliana M., 12th grade