#TopTenTuesday: Ten Authors I Would Like To Meet in Person

Now here's the thing... I have lived a long life already and met some of my most favorite authors who definitely make my top ten list, but they're going on the list again for reasons. You know... I just need them on here again because the first or even second meeting was not what it should've been or enough to satisfy being able to bask in their awesomeness. Also, I stuck with authors that fall mostly in YA/Fantasy or that I associate with the YA/Fantasy grouping because those are the books I most remember them by.

1) Terry Pratchett

          Sadly, the first person who made my list and who I have actually waved to from up above but never actually met face-to-face other than being a nameless face in a multitude of others gawping at him is no longer here for me to meet. A little bit of my heart, my happiness and hope died a bit when he did. He was one of the most influential authors for me and affected me in a profound way during a time when I really needed his words the most.

Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman illustration by John Cuneo
2) Neil Gaiman

           So guess what? The same day I met Terry Pratchett was the same day I met Neil Gaiman for the first time. They were eating at a restaurant in Minnesota that my husband and I had heard so much about. We were about to move to the area and we wanted to see the downtown area of the Twin Cities. We walked into that restaurant with no expectations but I saw a crowd and was curious. Asking someone, they kindly told me that Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett were eating, having come from a signing and that I could wave to them. I did... of course I did. Who wouldn't?!

          Thing is though, that would not be the last time I met Neil Gaiman. Yeah... so the next time it's Printer's Row Book Expo in Chicago. I am standing in line for the elevator with about three other people including my sister and her baby waiting to get into the auditorium for the NPR taping of Neil Gaiman speaking when who should walk by?! It's Neil Gaiman! Omigod it's Neil Gaiman. I said this little bit over and over -- telling Neil Gaiman -- to his face repeatedly for about five minutes who he was. How embarrassing! He was still quite lovely and did try to prompt my brain into coming back online by asking if I would like to take a photo with him or get an autograph. Didn't happen. I only repeated to his face who he was until he had to go, which again, he was very sweet by politely telling me had to leave and go give a speech now. Later he would even tweet me names of gluten free restaurants even though he remembered me as the blathering fan who could only seem to tell him who he was.

So yeah, I need another chance at meeting Neil because these two times do not cut it! Plus neither time did I get to talk to him or tell him how much his work has meant to me.

           If it were not for this lady and her books, my developing years would have been miserable. She had characters who started at the bottom of the self-esteem pool maturing into girls who understood body image, self-love and just being yourself. She didn't shy away from periods, pimples or peer pressure and since my parents were strict fundamentalist, I needed her real talk and her real characters. She deserves all my adoration and I really, really have always wanted to meet her just so I could say, "Thank you."

           Not only does she write contemporary fiction that my middle-school and high school students loved, but she is such a fangirl in real life. When she won the chance to attend the Veronica Mar premiere and walk the red carpet with Kristen Bell, it was so exciting. She shared on her twitter and was so sweet to her fans who were fans by showing them what a great time and person Kristen Bell was. I have always thought she'd be a great person to just hang out with and discuss lady heroes with.

5) Rainbow Rowell

             She is utterly perfect in her activism through her social media, her words on a page and her willingness to open up about herself. Charming, sarcastic and oh so personal... she comes across as so real, lively that I definitely think meeting Rainbow Rowell would be fun and lead to a lot of laughs and sharing about our childhoods. Her mother sounds a lot like mine.

6) Heather Petty

          We need to meet because I absolutely loved Lock & Mori and how Heather Petty was inspired to come up with a female Moriaty. She is the reason I have Sherlock pillows on my couch and recliner in the living room. Not only does she have a love of all things Sherlock but she too is an activist who constantly blogs, reblogs, and comments through her social media with a fierce, feminist perspective and is not afraid of how people will react when she stands up for what she believes in. Also, we'd probably bond over food too. Sometimes after reading her posts, I crave noodles, sushi and cupcakes. I am the weakest link!

7) Ransom Riggs

         The man has met Tim Burton. The man optioned his book so that Tim Burton could turn it into a film. Besides that, my daughter LOVES his series and so I would be helping her realize one of those lifelong dreams of meeting one of the authors who she absolutely adores. We almost drove over to stalk the set of Peculiar Children when he tweeted that he was there. Ransom Riggs and Tim Burton together in the same place. Mind blown.

8) Sabaa Tahir

         Sabaa and I would have tons to discuss. I would do my best not to pester her about innermost secrets of her An Ember in the Ashes world and distract myself by engaging her in conversations about the latest Hot Chip single or what she thought of Nate Ruess and Florence Welch. Because music is the next best thing to books and it would be soothing for both of us I think not to have to contemplate never being able to revisit the Ember world ever again in published format.

9) Hillary Monahan 

           This meeting must happen! Seriously, she will probably eat me alive and send me home scared to ever come out in public because I will make a fool of myself by not being able to stop laughing, cringing or imagining the horrifying scenes she will put in my head; and despite this inevitable embarrassing situation for me, I still want to meet her. She is AWESOME. And there will be rants and ravings and speeches that will stick with everyone around, because Hillary too speaks only the truth. Sometimes the truth hurts but she refuses to back down or from a fight when she knows empowering females is the ultimate outcome.

10) Tamora Pierce

                 I have met Tammy only one time, but it was just she and I and a little Kosher nook of a NY restaurant around the bend from her favorite Sephora. We had a couple of hours together, chatting about books, gossiping about publishing houses and editors and the changes happening in the industry. It was one of the most memorable times of my life because if anyone influenced my "I can do anything despite being a girl" attitude... it was her. She signed all my books with amazing little quips and personalizations that I shall cherish until the day I die. Also, in all the years that have passed between that breakfast date and now, we have not had one chance to speak in person again. So yeah... so what if I have met her before. One awesome visit doesn't negate my wish to meet up with her again. There's so much catching up to do.

As always, thanks to the Broke and the Bookish for hosting Top Ten Tuesday.


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