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The North Texas Teen Book Festival Was Fabulous!

Nearly 8,000 readers came by the busload to Irving, TX for the NTTBF16. Photo credit: Jennifer Mathieu

Nearly 8,000 readers came by the busload to Irving, TX for the NTTBF16. Photo credit: Jennifer Mathieu

Every time I think about my trip to the North Texas Teen Book Festival, I grin. You would not believe how amazing it was. Middle Grade and Young Adult readers came by the busload for a day of panels with their favorite writers on Saturday, April 23rd, and I tell you, the energy was off the charts. I had the best time!

Here are a few photos from the day.

The day begin with an inspiring keynote by Holly Black, who was honored with the Sam Houston State University with the Jan Paris Award of Achievement in Teen Literature

The day begin with an inspiring keynote by Holly Black, who was honored with Sam Houston State University’s Jan Paris Award of Achievement in Teen Literature.

Readers packed Grand Ballroom 1 for the Dystopia Dynesty panel featuring Victoria Aveyard, Bethany Hagen, Alex London, Jonathan Maberry, Jenny Martin, and Caragh O'Brien. Moderated by Sara Roberts.

Readers packed Grand Ballroom 1 for the Dystopia Dynasty panel featuring Victoria Aveyard, Bethany Hagen, Alex London, Jonathan Maberry, Jenny Martin, and Caragh O’Brien. Moderated by Sara Roberts.

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The day was all about the readers. Kade collected author signatures on his arms.

The Irving Convention Center was buzzing with activity.

The Irving Convention Center was buzzing with activity.

Authors were given ample helpful gifts, and free hand messages were available in the green room.

Authors were given ample helpful gifts, and free hand messages were available in the green room. 75 authors appeared on 4 panels each, so readers had many chances to hear from their favorites.

Making friends was easy, and I met several I've only known online, like Dr. Karin Perry of Sam Houston State University.

Making friends was easy, and I met several I’ve only known online, like Dr. Karin Perry of Sam Houston State University. Here we are rocking our red sneaks.

Readers lined up half an hour early for author signatures and waited patiently through long lines.

Readers lined up half an hour early for author signatures and waited patiently through long lines.

Thanks to alphabetical order, I signed next to Julie Murphy, author of the brilliant novel Dumplin'. We signed for two hours, and I met so many great readers.

Thanks to alphabetical order, I signed next to Julie Murphy, author of the brilliant novel Dumplin’. We signed for two hours, and I met so many great readers.

Sponsors of the book fair generously covered expenses so readers could attend for free--a powerful testament to the support for young readers in Irving, Texas.

Sponsors of the book fair generously covered expenses so readers could attend for free–a powerful testament to the support for young readers in Irving, Texas.

Many, many thanks to the organizers who spearheaded the event and the volunteers who kept it running smoothly, especially Rose Brock, Kristin Trevino, Sara Roberts, Teri Lesesne, Mandy Aguilar, Karin Perry, and Jose and Cindy Trevino who kindly hosted a mob of writers in their lovely home Saturday night. It’s wonderful to think what these dedicated people and the festival’s sponsors have done to support the young readers of Irving, Texas. It was an honor and incredibly inspiring to be part of the celebration.

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