Tucson Festival of Books – March 10-11, 2012

It was another great year for the TFOB, highlighted for me by visits from Alyce from At Home With Books, and Fizzy Jill from Fizzy Thoughts.

Jessica from The Quirky Bookworm didn’t participate in our blogger pajama party but she did join us for dinner on Saturday night. We were also thrilled to have author Liza Bakewell (MADRE: Perilous Journeys with a Spanish Noun) and her very charming daughter join us as well.

Author Liza Bakewell

I’ll just tell a bit about my two favorite presentations. One was a workshop on picture book illustration called “Bats, Balls, and Gloves: Great Sports Heroes” with Matt Tavares, Phil Bildner and Kadir Nelson. (The picture shown below is from Matt’s blog.) These three guys were terrific but Matt Tavares in particular blew me away: passionate, dedicated, and as excited as a little kid about what he does. He had a great slide show about the process of collecting information for a book, how his drawings get made, and some glimpses at the editorial comments he gets on his illustrations.

Kadir Nelson, Matt Tavares, and Phil Bildner

The information in this workshop contrasted with the one I went to that featured David Diaz, Adam Rex, and Chris Gall. Those three are very much into using computer programs for much of the process, and they too showed slides that demonstrated how this was done. Still, they all start with drawings, and David Diaz did some demonstration art for us before the session started. (The picture below is not from Tucson but from a different presentation.)

David Diaz

My second favorite session was with Captain Charles Moore, who has done so much research on the abundance of plastic and other trash now circulating in the ocean. His talk on the biological impact of all this plastic on marine life and the human food chain had the audience scared to death! If you want to read more about the “Great Pacific Garbage Patch” and get generally frightened about all the chemicals we are ingesting, you can start on his website or watch one of the videos of him in which he summarizes his findings, here.

Captain Moore with a small sampling of plastics from the ocean

Polluted waters

My greatest accomplishment at the Book Fest was not buying any books, although I did make a list of all the ones I wanted, and came home and entered them on my wishlist. In particular, I wanted every book talked about in the panel featuring Joshilyn Jackson, Tiffany Baker, and Amy Stolls. (The picture below of Joshily and Tiffany is from Joshilyn’s website.) It’s only a matter of time before I succumb….

Joshilyn Jackson and Tiffany Baker

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18 Responses

  1. It sounds like y’all had a fabulous weekend! All that plastic is scary – I’m going to check out his web site to see if Moore has any suggestions about what to do to get rid of it.

  2. I have Joshilyn Jackson’s newest one waiting for me at the library and I’m only one away from Tiffany Baker’s.

  3. So glad all of you (I’m a Yankee, unlike Kathy!) had such a great time at this festival. A pajama party for bloggers sounds fun too.

  4. Oh Joshilyn, how I love thee! I have adored every one of her books, but that last one is up there with Gods in Alabama. I can’t wait to meet her in person. She is just everywhere these days. I bet she is tired. And Kadir is soooo handsome, is he not?

  5. That’s polluted waters picture pulls at my heart…. wow.

    I am so glad you had a blast! What fun!

  6. Liza Blakewell joined you for the sleepover or just the dinner? Captain Moore has me a little scared now too.

  7. Wow, good job on not buying any books! I envy all the fun you had though!

  8. So did you ever find your camera? As you know, I had a blast hanging out with you guys down there, and seeing the authors too. :)

  9. I love the diversity of the panels you attended. And I’m very impressed that you didn’t buy a single book!

  10. What an amazing group of authors and people!! I swear one of these days I will make it out there!! That marine book with the garbage is absolutely scary…I’d been shaking in my shoes after listening to that!

  11. Okay, first comment deleted because I wasn’t logged in properly to WP. I really hate this new commenting system. Sigh.

    Well from what I can remember, what I said basically boiled down to “it sounds like you had a good time” and “that Pacific trash area is terrifying.” Sorry to be less coherent or wordy the second time around. Grr.

  12. You have me scared to death about the Great Pacific Garbage Patch!! I’ll have to visit his website.
    What a great time to have a slumber party with other book bloggers. Lucky ladies!

  13. That first session you mentioned about the picture books is something I would have enjoyed too. I always wondered how a picture book comes together, especially if the person writing it is not artistically inclined.

  14. Oh, wow! It sounds like this was a really incredible event, and you have me so pumped up now about getting the chance to hear Joshilyn Jackson speak! I love that you got the chance to have a blogger pajama party, and that you got the chance to meet some incredible authors. What a great post! Thanks for sharing it!

  15. I’m so glad you told us about the book fair again this year. Hearing about the fair is almost as good as being there.

    P.S. I’m having trouble logging in to comments. I’ve lost track of how many times this is. I’m not sure it’s going to go but just in case, I thought you should kno

  16. I’m ready for a bookfest! I need to look for something coming up soon.

  17. Trying to comment again… this time through twitter. Reading this post is the next best thing to being there!

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