I should say again. I first met Tamora Pierce in May 2009. She was one of my first author events and I was too in awe/shock to say anything to her. After all, this was the woman who introduced me to strong heroines, fantasy, and YA. Her characters have been among my all time favorites and will always have a special piece of my heart. When I heard she was coming back, I was ecstatic! Here was chance to finally say what I wanted to. (And to get a better photo!)
I met up with my lovely co-blogger, Kristen and Katie, and another friend Renee right before it started. Tammy is always fun to listen to. The entire talk was mainly Q & A, which was fun. Most Q&A’s I hate, because people ask more about the publishing process than the books, but that wasn’t this case this time. Here are some of the highlights from the session:
- We’ll be seeing Kel again! Tammy plans on doing books on her squire! And she said there might be a love interest for Kel by then!
- Tammy fashions a lot of her characters off real people. Like Alanna was her sister, Tris is Tammy, and Beka is a young Jodie Foster. Some of the boys were fashioned after Spike, Noah Riley from ER, and many more.
- In the original version of Alanna, Alanna married Jon. It was Alanna who forced the change, showing Tammy that she was not Queen material and needed someone who could love who for who she was/wouldn’t have to change
Perhaps the most touching moment of the night was when someone asked why she had chosen to tackle sexuality with Daja (circle books). She talked about how there were two lines in Kel books where Kel mentions an island where people don’t care who you take to bed. Tammy said those two lines had fans in the LGBQT community coming to her in tears and thanking her. She said she realized at that point her fans deserved more than two lines. She had always known Daja was gay, but it was time for her to write more openly about it. That in their world it was no big deal, (just as it shouldn’t be in ours), but that it was time she represented all of her fans in her books. To hear an author talk about it that blatantly and openly, who is not gay, was moving. I’m pretty sure the questioner and I both shed a few tears over her response. (The boy who asked the question told her how much it changed his life.) It is authors like Tammy who make it okay for questioning teens to feel better about who they are.
The end of the night ended with autographs and the opportunity to do a photo. I finally got to tell her all I couldn’t last time, mainly that I’m a YA Librarian because of her and that her books have always meant the world to me. I also got this super cute picture with her. I wish I could have gotten more during the talk, but I was in the center of the aisle with tall people in front of me. Oh well, maybe next time!
All in all it was an amazing event and I can’t wait until she comes again.