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Recap: Festival of Books

Posted by on April 24, 2013

I love Events that happen in LA, but often times, I am the most alert the first time I ever go to an event.  Mostly because everything is new to me so everything draws my attention.


One thing I really noticed about the LA Times Festival of Books is how big the event really is and each person’s experience that goes there is different from one another.

My focus, while at the event, was to sit in on conversations that were taking place at various stages throughout the event.

The first conversation I sat in on was with Photo Journalist “Robert Gauthier” from the LA Times in showcasing “How He Got That Shot,” as he traveled around with the LA Kings during their 24 hours with the Stanley Cup.

robertHe showcased his photos with the LA Kings and then share two blog posts he had written while on that journey.  First talking about the trip to Slovenia, the first time the Stanley Cup has ever visited there, and the second experience was going to Allen, Texas with Alec Rodriguez.  During this experience he even teared up as he was reading the blog post as he remembered that experience and could really relate to the mother’s words he was describing as he looked towards his son present in the room.

After this I then headed over to the LA Times Stage in hopes of catching “Molly Ringwald.”  How could I not considering I grew up with her movies.  Molly released a book last year entitled, “When it Happens to You.”  While there she read a part from the book then took Q&A’s from the audience.

mollyringwaldShe also spoke in a conversation series later in the day where tickets were required to attend.  I did not attend that session.

Then it was back to the LA Times Booth where 3 columnists from the LA Times discussed “Life in SoCal” as Editor: Mr. Padilla asked questions for them to answer.  Being a writer myself, I loved this conversation so much, from sitting back and listening to their experiences to also hear their answers.  One question asked, “Where do you draw your inspiration for where you write?”  And the answer by Sandy Banks was this: “From the things that interest me.”  I think, as bloggers, we can all relate to that.


I am so grateful for Robin Abcarian, Sandy Banks and Nita Lelyveld for taking the time to sit in on this conversation and share their experiences, and thoughts with us.  A few also shared stories in how they’ve touched readers.  One such story was about a homeless man, in which a story was done on, who’s family found out, and had been looking for him for 12 years.  Because of that story they were reunited, and the homeless man life got changed around.

Another such story was about a girl at a temporary employment fair, in which a story was written on her, and readers donated money and goods to help the girl for the next several months after.  It makes me realize how much power and influence a writer can truly have in sharing their stories and experiences with the world.  And how people also react when a story truly touches them.

statueI also had to take in a bit of USC.  In college I had a conference here over the summer and grabbed a snap shot of this statue, so this statue brought back a ton of memories for me.  It also felt good just walking around in a college environment again. I grabbed lunch over at “Lemonade” but there were also a variety of food trucks on hand too.

And then walked over to the Cooking Stage to check out what was happening there:

alexguarnaschelliAnd this is where “Alex Guarnaschelli” was present.  She was on stage answering Q&A’s from the audience while also making a cake, which we later found out, was her favorite dessert.  Think cake with chocolate frosting covered in melted caramel on top.


Throughout the Festival of Books there were also various booths to walk through from publishing companies to authors signing books.  And there was a separate Children’s section with activities, characters and more happening.  There was a bit of something for everyone.


Did you attend the LA Times Festival of Books? What did you end up doing while there?



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