On Wednesday evening, I went to see Maggie Stiefvater at Mrs. Dalloway’s.
Maggie Stiefvater is an incredible storyteller, not just in her books but real life too. When the event started, you couldn’t help but hang onto her every word. It’s almost like she hypnotizes her audience with her awesomeness.
When the event officially started, the first thing Maggie did was unravel the mic cords from the stand and proceeded to tell us, the audience, that she bought a few baked treats from the bakery and ate them all in the bookstore’s back room so she’s extra energetic. She talked about how her books are getting difficult to describe and that it’s failing the elevator test (which you have to describe your book in the time it takes to get up two floors. Elevator conversation, you may call it). She went on to talk about how The Dream Thieves is about Ronan, whose good attributes are that he’s brave and loyal.
Maggie talked about new characters – Joseph Kavinsky and Mr. Gray. She told us that Kavinsky is basically Ronan, but 100 times more horrible, and that Kavinsky tries to lure Ronan further into the dark side (haven’t we heard of this before? ;D).
While she talked about Kavinsky, she somehow segued into a story about her launch party for The Dream Thieves in Kansas City. Let me tell you that it was fucking hilarious; I was shaking so hard with laughter. I don’t remember all the specifics, but it involves: a knife spray-painted on the side of Maggie’s car; readers spray paint her car (which was on purpose); drunk guys approaching Maggie while she’s signing books and telling her there is somebody more famous in town; “got milk,” “we love cows,” and a gang sign on her car; removing said gang sign from the side of the car whilst the landscaping guys shaped the bushes; her goats got loose, got high on the spray paint remover thingy, and ran into the car door when they saw their reflection. A day in Maggie-Stiefvater’s life.
Then, when she talked about Mr. Gray, she got a couple of volunteers to read the different roles when Mr. Gray is first introduced. It was pretty cute and funny, seeing Maggie and the volunteers speak the lines.
After the Mr. Gray reading, Maggie answered questions. I don’t remember the questions at all. So, I’ll go with fun facts I remembered Maggie Stiefvater saying during the event:
- Maggie was part of a bagpiping competition for three years.
- When she was in Paris years ago for a book tour, it snowed for the first time there in 18 years, but she didn’t stay in the city; instead, she took her husband to the cliffs of Normandy.
- She is super into Maxfield Parrish, who you should Wikipedia because she said so.
- She did research on a Mitsubishi by going to a dealership and “accidentally” buying one.
- She raced cars. (She may or may not have said she raced that Mitsubishi she bought.)
- She has a mean right hook.
- She was “terrible” like Ronan when she was younger.
- She had the idea of The Raven Boys and knew she wanted the whole Noah thing to happen since she was 19.
- When she dined with her UK publisher and they asked her whom she’d want to play Sam (from The Wolves of Mercy Falls series) if there was a movie. Her answer was Alex Turner of the Arctic Monkeys and she proceeded to describe that he’s perfect because he has a big nose and a gangly body. She was later told that Alex Turner’s (then-)girlfriend was sitting behind them, so Maggie inadvertently insulted Alex Turner.
- She chose the voices for The Scorpio Races’ audiobook – Fiona Hardingham and Steve West. Librarians were pretty much in love with Steve West.
- She gets angry when she thinks about Blue’s name because Jay Z and Beyoncé named their kid Blue Ivy. ;D
FACT: I did not know what to say to Maggie Stiefvater.
I wanted to say something along the lines of “hey, I love the history and mythology in The Raven Boys,” but I felt like I would have to elaborate on it. Yes, I did study history in college, but nothing about Welsh kings.
You know what I did say? “I’m a ball of nervousness.” Yup. That’s what I said. Maggie jokily asked me if she was an intimidating person, and yes, she is because of this overflow of energy she has. She asked me if I had a dog (nope), a cat (nope but I do like them), allergies (nope), if I was an only child (to which I responded with “I think like two” and she teased me for not knowing how many siblings I have. In my defense, I was very flustered by all these rapid-fire questions!).
Majestic horse! I wish I gotten Maggie to draw a raven since there was plenty of time. Alas, I didn’t. I will settle for the pretty horse!