Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Stephanie Perkins in the Philippines!

Stephanie Perkins in the Philippines!

Event: Stephanie Perkins Book Signing
Event Date: July 6, 2014 Sunday
Location: National Bookstore, Glorietta 1

I fell in love with Etienne St. Clair in the pages of Anna and the French Kiss, and I was gushing over him and Anna’s story well until the end of the book. While I don’t feel as strongly engaged in Lola and the Boy Next Door, it was a pleasant read all the same. So I didn’t pass up the chance to meet Stephanie Perkins in person.

I was yet again overwhelmed with the crowd that gathered for her book signing. I arrived at the venue exactly the same time I did during Gayle Forman’s signing last January 18th, 2014, around 7 AM. My bookish friends Maria @ Reading is the Ultimate Aphrodisiac, Eunice @ Book Overdoes, and Karla @ Reads and Thoughts waited in line together. Also present at the event were fellow bookworms Bea @ Confessions of a Pinay Bookaholic, and Celina @ The Bookkeeper.

While waiting for the event to start, we went about eating brunch, talking amongst ourselves, watching the first episode of Delirium [which we were pissed off about in the end], and of course reading from our respective gadgets.

When Stephanie finally arrived, we were all very excited to meet her. But being (ahem) no longer in our teen years, this even turned out a bit exhausting for us. The air-conditioning wasn’t working well enough for such a big crowd, and while we were within eyesight of the stage, sweating and feeling a little claustrophobic, we opted to roam the bookstore after a few minutes in the Q&A.

And so the signing then began after…

While I’m pleased to have had my books signed. I’m a little disappointed over the event. Stephanie was so nice, and she really took time to talk to each and every one of her fans, even gave out ARCs of Isla and the Happily Ever After, and she and Jarrod were so sweet, I’m bothered by the way National Bookstore is handling these book signing events.

I’m thankful for the opportunity to meet authors I love, but it bothers me that I don’t get to have ALL my books signed. I’m not going to go further on details of what happened during the signing on this matter but National Bookstore has this rule that ONLY BOOKS BOUGHT FROM THEIR STORE WILL BE ALLOWED TO BE SIGNED BY THE AUTHORS. While I understand that the purpose of these events is to make sale, I ask you, PLEASE DON’T BE GREEDY. I have been purchasing books from your store for most of my life. Although you seem to be more of a school supplies store to me, I manage to snag cheaper deals on books from your inventory compared to other bookstores. But I don’t appreciate being restricted with which books should be signed. First of all, we fans are the reason you profit from books with or without book signings, and to be honest, we are the reason you know about the hype in the book world. Second, you don’t offer a wider range of book choices that we know of, so we broaden our resources. We email publishers for ARCs, we pre-order online from international stores, and we purchase from other bookstores. I don’t think it’s our fault to have had the books before you thought of selling them in your stores. And yet we purchase copies from your store just to be fair for the book signings.

The books I read and the book community has been my sanctuary. It is a place in my heart I know so well that makes me feel a sense freedom, and serenity; a world that knows no boundaries… PLEASE STOP TAINTING IT FOR YOUR OWN SELFISH DEMEANOR.

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