September 23, 2015

Event Recap ~ #CTCinPH

I must be the lamest blogger to ever set foot in booklandia. This event happened more than a week ago, but I'm just now posting it. Apologies. It's been a very crazy week in my reality. I promise I'll do better next time.

Anyway, August 30, 2014, Colleen Hoover posted a Facebook video of herself with Tarryn Fisher and Christine Brae announcing their 2015 book signing event in the Philippines. I wasn't the only one who was over the moon by this announcement.

Their signing in Manila was crazy. A lot of readers flew in from Visayas and Mindanao (the central and southernmost part of the country) just to see them. The first event happened in Cebu (September 12). I have no idea how many readers attended that event, but I do know that the event in Megamall (Manila) was full of screaming readers. For a moment there, I thought my eardrums were going to explode from all the noise the readers (I think fangirls is a better word) were making. If you're following Colleen Hoover's page, you've probably seen the video she posted when they first arrived at the event hall. All the screaming gave me goosebumps. You can watch it here.

A lot of readers were already in line for registration (which would open at 10am) the night before the actual signing, so when my friend and I got there around 8:30am on the day of the event, I was 500th in line and she was 501st. Crazy, right? 

CoHo books
499 butterflying people stood between me and CoHo, but I didn't mind. I waited a year to finally meet her, and 499 readers wouldn't butterflying stop me.

Two of those (Slammed and Never, Never) were not mine. Some of my friends couldn't make it to the signing so I volunteered to have their books signed. It was unfortunate for them because they didn't meet these amazing authors, but I was very glad that I had that chance to meet Tarryn Fisher since I only have CoHo's books.

While waiting for the signing event to start, we took pictures in the stage holding our books and having the event poster in the background.

That's me! I hope, someday, that poster will have my name and books and that signing event will be mine. Heh. :j Anyway.

My friend (her name's J) and I decided to take post in the second floor while waiting because we knew we wouldn't get a clear sight of the authors when they arrived if we stayed in the main hall. Here's my actual view when we were still waiting for the event to start:

The first two hundred in line got to get the seats. Lucky bugs--or rather, patient bugs (since they were in line the night before the event).

When 2pm finally rolled around and the authors arrived in the event hall, here's what it looked like:

Photo from National Book Store's Facebook page
The event area was packed with enthusiastic readers chanting and screaming the authors's names. I can't even imagine how CoHo's hand felt after the event because all the readers who attended the signing had her books (five per person allowed). She was the only author who wasn't running out of things to sign.

It's unfortunate that I didn't get to record their Q&A on my camera, but I'm not so sad about that. I think I wouldn't hear anything, anyway, what with all the screaming the readers were making. It must have been a good ten minutes before the Q&A finally began because the host and the authors couldn't get a word in since the readers couldn't contain their excitement.

When the actual signing finally started, I walked around the event area, squeezing myself between the tight crowd to snap a picture of the authors. I couldn't get near so there was a lot of camera zooming and tiptoeing just to get a good angle (or maybe not a good angle, but a passable one). I only have my phone for a camera so the resolution is small.

Christine Brae, CTCinPH
Christine Brae. The most soft-spoken among the three. She's part Filipina.

Tarryn Fisher, CTCinPH
Tarryn Fisher. She was so cool, not to mention drop-dead gorgeous. J and I couldn't get over her gorgeousness.
I didn't get to take a picture of CoHo before my turn because there was a line in her area. Let's just look at Tarryn again:

Tarryn Fisher, CTCinPH
She's officially my girl crush. <3

Alright, before this blog post gets flooded with Tarryn's pictures, let's move on.

As I mentioned above, I only have CoHo's books, and my friend's Never, Never. I didn't have any Christine Brae books, but I still got to take a picture with her because she was so kind and amazing. When there wasn't someone in line to have her books signed, Ms. Brae went down the stage and approached a group of girls near the back of the stage asking to take a picture with her. On her way back to her seat, she passed by us and J stopped her, asking to have a picture of them together. Even though we didn't have her books, she still stopped and took a moment to take a picture with us.

Christine Brae and I. <3 This is our actually our second take; she asked to take a picture again because she didn't like her hair in the first one. It was a real struggle keeping my composure.

When it was my turn for Tarryn Fisher, it was a wonder how I didn't skip on my way to her table. I was so excited to meet her even though I haven't read any of her books and I only have my friend's Never, Never with me. J made a fansign for me as a shoutout to our friends who couldn't make it. Tarryn didn't mind holding it with me while we take our picture.

Tarryn Fisher and I. <3 She's just so beautiful!

Finally--finally!--it's my turn with CoHo. I waited a year for this signing event to happen because of Colleen Hoover. She was the only author whom I was anxiously waiting to meet. I fell in love with her books two years ago when I found Slammed in Goodreads. When I finally got to read Hopeless, I knew she was going to be my favorite author and I wouldn't be missing any book she's yet to write. When it was finally my turn to meet her, I WAS SO EXCITED I LOST MY COMPOSURE. I almost never lose my poise in front of other people, but I did in that moment, and in front of Colleen fricking Hoover. I might have weirded her out with my babbling, but OMG THAT'S COLLEEN HOOVER!

She wasn't smiling while signing my books, but I'd like to think that's because I'm the 500th reader she's met and my books were probably the 5000th she signed, not because I lost my composure and weirded her out.

I looked like an excited kid in there, didn't I? I was so excited to meet her that my hands shook. Badly. It was a good thing that I wasn't holding the camera (the NBS staff snapped the pictures because only one or two picture per reader was allowed), else I'd have taken blurred pictures.

Colleen Hoover and I. <3 If I had a treasure chest, this picture will be in there. It's one of my most precious moments in life.

It's sad that my meet-and-greet with her only lasted more or less two minutes because there was still a lot of readers waiting in line to have their books signed and meet her, but I'm so happy I got this chance. Better to have a two-minute moment with one of my favorite authors than none at all. Hopefully, I get to see her again someday and it wouldn't last only two minutes.

This is my friend with CoHo. She was very starstrucked (erm, excuse me if that's not a word) that she forgot about the picture she'd get to have with CoHo. The staff had to remind her about it. :j

This book signing event has been the most enjoyable one (so far). I have only attended three, but whatever. I've met five authors in total, and Colleen Hoover (and Marie Lu) is the most precious one in my memory. I hope more authors get to fly to the other side of the world to visit my country and more readers get the opportunity to meet them.

Our post-signing smiles. It was J's (right) first time to attend a signing, and I'm so happy for her because it was a blast.
There's the only friend who got to attend the signing with me. We were sad that it was only the two of us, but hopefully next time we'd have the others with us. I can already imagine how hard we will fangirl when we're all together. I'm looking forward to the next author signing!

Tarryn Fisher and Christine Brae were so amazing. They signed the back case of my phone because I didn't have an actual book (only in my kindle app). <3

Aaannndd . . . that's a wrap. This event has been a very enjoyable one. Half the fun was the anticipation of meeting the authors and fangirling while waiting in line for our turn. It's a really memorable one.

Meeting these authors, especially CoHo, was a dream-come-true for me. <3

~ Zee


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