That amazing time that I met Laini Taylor - Part 1

Remember a few weeks ago when I dumped you all for Laini Taylor? Well it was totally worth it!

As I said previously, I didn’t dump you just for Laini. They main reason for our breakup was the fact that I was going to Prague (a place I have dreamed of returning to for 5 years). And I was making a side trip to London so that I could attend an event that Laini was doing. But there were some other amazing things I had to look forward to in London. Not only had I planned on meeting up with Asti from Oh, The Books!, and of course meeting Laini, but I also knew that Jim Di Bartolo would be at the event that I was going to for Laini. Yes, some might assume that he might be attending (for those who live under a rock, Jim is Laini’s husband), but this was not publicly confirmed… but I did know he would be there - and the fact that I would meet him excited me even more! I am a massive fan of Jim’s, and I was super excited to meet the man behind the wonderful art that I admire so much. (For those who don’t know Jim’s work, I strongly recommend reading Lips Touch or In The Shadows). So this was going to be a big day for me, a momentous occasion in my life - I was excited, scared, nervous, anxious and then excited some more. So, did it live it up to my expectations? Well….

I have decided to tell you all about this event, and my experience meeting Laini in two separate posts. Today I will tell you about the event itself, and in the near future I will do a post about after this event: the actual “meeting” part. So if you want to know how much I fangirled when I met my all-time favourite author - whether I squeed, blubbered, cried or otherwise embarrassed myself, you will have to wait for my next post. So here is an event recap - from what I remember of it. I was super excited, and anxious and jittery throughout the event. I really wish I had thought to record it so I could go over it all again when I was calm.

I arrived at the Glamour Book Club event with Asti, who ever so sweetly had put up with my craziness all afternoon (I was super nervous about this event all day, so it was more a quiet crazy than my normal type of crazy) and she had thankfully made sure I got the event safely and still breathing. We got inside the elite venue where I instantly saw Laini and Jim inside and my nerves really kicked in. But to distract me from the “oh my god” that was running through my mind, I met the lovely Rinn from Rinn Reads - and then we were moved into the venue room where we were handed some cocktails (yes, alcohol is exactly what I needed). We were then joined by Daphne from Winged Reviews, So with cocktails in hand, Asti, Rinn, Daphne, I and our friends chatted about books and other things, and contemplated what exactly was in the goodie bags that were sitting in the corner (oh, and I am not going to mention that moment where Asti tried to flash us).

During all of this, Laini and Jim had come into the room, but I have to say they were slightly overshadowed by their little girl, Clementine. Clementine looked to be in her element, she was twirling around and the whole room fell in love with this little cherub. Sure, people were excited to see Laini, but they were entranced by the little twirling princess in the room.

After a while of chatting, avoiding the cameraman walking around and getting extremely hot in the stuffy room, we noticed that Cassandra Clare and Sarah Rees Brennan arrived. And no, before you get even more jealous, they were not there as authors, but as supporters of Laini - so no, there was no meeting them, or getting anything signed by them or anything like that. But I did think it was very nice for them to come to an event to support Laini and Lauren as friends and fellow authors.

We were then moved into another room to begin the Q&A like session with the featured authors - Laini Taylor (Daughter of Smoke and Bone, Days of Blood and Starlight, Dreams of Gods and Monsters) and Lauren Owen (The Quick).

Lauren Owen and Laini Taylor during the Q&A session. Image stolen from Asti.


Both authors talked about their writing journeys and processes, their feelings on their characters and future writing plans.

Laini told us that Daughter of Smoke and Bone came to be when she was “cheating” on another book. Karou and Brimstone came to Laini on a day of free writing, and these characters and the questions they raised turned into Daughter of Smoke and Bone. Laini admitted that she doesn’t write a book from the beginning (often starting in the middle) and that she is a perfectionist, that she has to refine a scene before being able to move on to the next. And…she also has a dark side - she enjoys writing the characters like Razgut - she enjoys being in their head :)

The Daughter of Smoke and Bone movie was also discussed - Laini told us that it hasn’t officially been given the green light as yet, and that upcoming meetings will decide that (still no word from what I can find online). But she is extremely excited by the progress that has been made so far, and that the visual. Laini would not comment on her ‘dream cast’, especially as she will not have a say in the casting if the movie goes ahead - but she did say that she could not think of anyone who could be cast as Akiva, as he is too perfect. Fingers crossed for more movie news soon!!!

Laini also told us about her future writing plans. She advised that she is not closed off to ever doing more in the Daughter of Smoke and Bone world , but if she does return to this world, it won’t be for a while. She told us it is always possible that she may return to this world for a spin-off, and she suggested she may even have characters in mind for a spin-off… but she has no plans to write any more in this world at this stage. PLEASE LAINI, WE NEED A BRIMSTONE BOOK!!! Laini has recently finished a short story for the XX anthology, and she is undecided about her next novel - but it is between another high-fantasy (very different from DOSAB) or a sci-fi with a historical setting… only time will tell which one Laini decides to go with first ;)

Lauren told us that she has avoided reading online review of her debut book - she finds that reading reviews can be confusing, as what one person doesn’t like, another person does.

Like Laini, Lauren doesn’t necessarily write from start to finish - for example, Lauren started writing The Quick with ‘the twist’ and Lauren’s next book is acutally a prequel to The Quick, and it was actually the original storyline idea she had when she started The Quick.

“Sometimes the needs of the book outweigh the needs of the characters”. I greatly admire this statement from Lauren when discussing killing characters. I love this type of understanding for the need of the greater storyline, and I think that more authors should take this approach, but heart broke when Laini agreed. Not that I should be surprised, Laini has proved that she will do what the story needs her to do, no matter who is on the chopping block. But I really hate it when Laini does this - I love her characters too much. I personally think that she should just put her fingers in her ears and say “lah lah lah” when this thought pops into her mind. Laini just shouldn’t be allowed to kill any of her characters; it’s just too heartbreaking (okay… maybe the really “bad” characters, but no others Laini - none!).

All in all, I really enjoyed the Q&A with both Laini and Lauren. I also found it interesting that a debut author such as Lauren, and an established one such as Laini, had such similar opinions on characters and writing processes in general.

We then we got the chance to meet the authors and get books signed. Sadly, I didn’t get to buy The Quick and get it signed - only because it is a big, hardcover book, and I just did not have the room in my luggage to bring it back to Australia - but I definitely be ordering this book, this Victorian gothic novel sounds very interesting!


What a fantastic author event! A wonderful night of amazing authors, great venue, cocktails and fantastic goodie bags!


Oh, and after all our speculation of what the goodie bags contained, we were pretty impressed by their contents, which included: three books (Angelfall by Susan Ee, Dear Daughter by Elizabeth Little) and Dracula by Bram Stoker), some awesome headphones, some chocolates, a drink, a candle, and some beauty products.

The awesome goodie bags we received! This image was also stolen from Asti.

Thank you Glamour Book Club, Laini Taylor and Lauren Owen for a fantastic event!


The actual “meet and sign” part of my story is an entirely different post. Why? Because I just cannot make it short enough to fit in this post without this post becoming be a novel! You all know I dribble a lot, and I just cannot contain my rambling about what happened! From my experiences with other authors, what generally happens is you meet the author, get your books signed, have a quick chat, and maybe even a photo taken with the author… but what followed this Q&A was so much more than that! It was where my dreams not only came true, but they were exceeded!!! So, if you are interested in knowing why I am so ridiculously happy with what happened next, or if you want to see if I embarrassed myself… stay tuned :)


Rinn, Asti & myself. This image was stolen from Rinn :)

What do you think?

  • Carolyn says:

    Firstly I can’t believe you remembered so much of what Laini and Lauren talked about and secondly can’t wait to read your second post about the post Q&A

  • Wow, Kristy, it sounds like it was amazing! How cool that Cassandra Clare and Sarah Rees Brennan showed up, my jaw would have hit the floor. I am so so jealous. I’m so glad you got to meet Laini and I can’t wait to read your next post :)

    • Kristy says:

      Oh Rochelle, you have no idea! It was SOOOO amazing! (and what happened next was so ridiculously amazing for me, that I still can’t believe it).
      And yes, it was very nice for them to come to the event. I guess that some fans of theirs may have been disappointed that they didn’t get to “meet” them as well, but for me, I thought this showed a massive amount of respect to Laini and Lauren.
      My next post is coming soon - sorry for the delay, life threw me a curveball which put me behind the game - but I am back on track now :) It will be up very soon!
      Kristy recently posted…Stacking the Shelves #81My Profile

  • Asti says:

    Yayyy :) Love the recap! I’m with Carolyn, I’m always surprised by how much people remember from these events. I just remember that I was there.

    Oh, and of course I remembered that time where I might of almost maybe tried to flash everyone lol. But you know, how kind of you not to mention that in this post :P

    I can’t wait to read the next bit! There’s nothing better than listening to the fangirl squeals of a book nerd ;) I wonder if it’ll come out more in your post than it did in person, because I thought you were quite well behaved!

    • Kristy says:

      Oh, I remember you being there. Especially that time where you might have almost, maybe, tried to flash everyone - but you know, I wouldn’t bring that up ;)

      I was quite well behaved, on the outside… inside was a completely different story! Trust me, there were fangirl squeals - you just couldn’t hear them.

      Thanks for letting me steal your pics - and for all your support (and for being a wonderful tour guide).
      Kristy recently posted…Stacking the Shelves #81My Profile

  • Rinn says:

    Aghh I thought I’d commented on this! :(

    Lovely recap, it was a great day though SO exhausting. I didn’t realise you’d been to Prague that week too! Looking forward to part two :)

    • Kristy says:

      Yes, we had been in Prague for about 2 weeks by the time we got to London. The next post is now up (which I am sure you already know lol)

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