As I mentioned I'd be doing a few weeks ago, I drove to Kitchener today to participate in the "Teens, Fiction, YouTube and the Internet" panel at the Word on the Street book festival.

I knew before I went that no matter how small the turnout, I would have great fun with the subject and my fellow panelists [livejournal.com profile] james_bow (Dundurn Press) and James Alan Gardner (HarperCollins/Eos), since we are all enormous geeks and have been online practically forever. I also knew that I would be paid for my time, which made me feel all warm and fuzzy and professional-like.

What I did not know was that when I stopped at the booth to get my cheque, they would also give me a gorgeous totebag and a free t-shirt with the festival logo on it. Whee! I love me some swag, I do.

(Yes, I am easily pleased, so sue me. I still have my little HarperCollins purse/nametag holder from Bouchercon 2004, what of it?)

Anyway, there are no pictures of the panel because I was too stupid to bring my camera, as usual. But about twenty people came, including James Bow's lovely and talented mother Patricia, who had to hurry off about three-quarters of the way through to do a reading from her latest children's fantasy novel The Ruby Kingdom in another tent, but who asked some good questions and helped keep the discussion moving while she was there. There were also a few teens in the audience who seemed genuinely interested in the discussion, including one girl who nodded and smiled in a most encouraging way.

What we talked about )

But anyway. It was a good discussion, and even though nobody I knew personally showed up except for the ubiquitous Bow clan, the people in the audience seemed to enjoy the panel well enough, and afterward we chatted with a teen services librarian who was very nice and appreciative, and furthermore I HAS SWAG, so there.

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