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  • ARC Review: Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia
  • ARC Review: The Secrets We Keep by Trisha Leaver
  • Review: A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
  • Review: Karmic Hearts by Jhing Bautista
  • Review: The Conspiration of the Universe by Kenneth Olanday

Monday, July 7, 2014

Signing recap: Stephanie Perkins in Manila!

One of my most anticipated signings this year, Stephanie Perkins, author of one of my favorite books (Anna and the French Kiss) arrived in Manila as the next hot author in a string of fabulous, amazing author line-up for this year. And of course, who am I to pass this once in a lifetime chance to see her?

Photo courtesy of Kate of The Bookaholic Blurbs!
My morning was an adventure of sorts. I live close by, but I still got to the venue a little late because I had to fetch a few blogger friends! I love the night and the morning before signings... there's always this low level buzz that turns into something that keeps us up all night because of the anticipation and excitement at the prospect of meeting an author we idolize and adore, and in this case? That's Stephanie Perkins.

Stephanie answering questions!
I wasn't there the moment she arrived, but there's still this shock factor when I saw her face to face, up close. It took a while to sink in: Stephanie Perkins is in front of me, speaking, smiling, talking, answering questions. I was star struck!

As always, I was lucky enough to ask Stephanie a question, and it was:

To Steph: where did all the love, romance and swoony moments from your books came from? Where do you get your inspiration for writing such swoon worthy, romantic, heart warming stories and characters?

The biggest part was certainly her husband, Jarrod.

Steph met him when she was 17. She draws a lot of inspiration from her own life. She also draw inspiration from television, movies, books that make her swoon and get her excited. For Steph, it's all about trying recapture those moments. When Steph writes swoon worthy romantic scenes, she gets to relive them, relive in that moment, and so she tries to get those moments on to the page the best that she can. It's her wanting to feel those warm, fuzzy feelings again and again, to get that in fresh ways. Steph is a people watcher/observer, and so when she sees a couple's sweet moments, even the tiniest things, she tries to blow that tiny little moment and make it into a huge thing.

A quick rundown of the Q&A:

- Stephanie wasn't expecting Anna and the French Kiss to be such a hit. There wasn't a lot of marketing done for her book and that time, what's big are paranormal books. But Gayle Forman and John Green's books came out, and with it the publicity for contemporary YA, so she's eternally grateful to both authors. *
- Stephanie gave some quick tips to a blogger who is going to Paris about places she can visit while she was there. She talked about this arena in the middle of the city that isn't very popular with the tourists, but worth a visit!
- When asked if Etienne was patterned after anyone, personality or appearance wise, she said yes. Stephanie patterned him after two actors, height and confidence based. The gist: short actors who had overflowing confidence, those who are short but act tall! (Confidently short!) A lot of Etienne is also based on Steph's husband, Jarrod.
- A lot of the male characters in Steph's books had a part modeled after her husband, Jarrod, not just Etienne!
- What's crucial in Steph's books is that the characters are friends first before they had a deeper relationship, and she pulled all of that from her friendship with her husband.
- Anna and the French Kiss a NanoWrimo book. It took Steph 7 years to finish writing it. *
- Steph likes horror! Yep. If you check her website, she has an upcoming book that comes out in 2015. It's a contemporary horror, based on real life horror story and not supernatural influenced. Her biggest inspiration in writing horror stories is Stephen King. *
- When asked if one of Steph's characters were to walk into the Q&A, who would it be and what will they say, she said it will probably be Isla and Josh, as they're both very good readers. They'd probably keep to themselves since they're both very private and they'll probably be hanging out in the graphic novel section. *

* Thanks to Kayla of the Bookish Owl, Precious of Fragments of Life and Chyna of Lite Rate Ture for some of the points in the run down!

I still got to hang out with some of my blogger friends, and it's not a book signing day without us snapping photos of each other! Check it out! To our surprise, we were told that we'll be getting advanced reading copies of Isla and the Happily Ever After. If you were there, you would've seen our reaction. Yep, lots of gasping and screaming!

(Photo courtesy of Kate at The Bookaholic Blurbs!)

Also, Stephanie Perkins' husband, Jarrod, was so adorable! We approached him and asked him to sign Steph's books and he was okay with it! And yes, that's him holding a sign with the Filipino translation of "Anna and the French Kiss".

At the public signing, Stephanie signed more than a thousand books! Her husband, Jarrod, also had his own table set up and he was also signing books!

Steph greeting her fans! (Photo grabbed from Sab the Book Eater)

I had to leave early, but I can wholeheartedly say that I had fun! What can I say? Another awesome event, National Bookstore, well done!

As a special bonus, watch Stephanie giving a message to her Filipino readers and fans below. Yep, she was amazing, funny, bubbly, talkative and she's just... wow. Awesome? I've ran out of words to describe her!


  1. OH EM, you met Stephanie Perkins and got a copy of Isla! Lucky you!

    1. Yep. I hope you get to read Lola soon! :)

  2. Wooooooow! Stephanie Perkins is one of my favourite authors and of course I absolutely adore Anna and Lola. You were so lucky that you got a copy of Isla, too. OMG I should have flewn over only to meet her. Your National Bookstore sounds like heaven and they always have the best events. Love this post!!

    1. I was so excited when I got that copy of Isla in my hands! Stephanie is so wonderful in person! I got to talk to her husband too and he's really nice as well. You should totally drop by here some time. We have awesome YA book events lined up until next year! :)


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