I Heart Austin

Am in Austin! Woohoo! It’s noicccceeee here. Very cool, Southern hipster Tayhas flava. I’m digging it. It’s so interesting to go to a big city that’s not New York, or L.A., or even Chicago. It’s a nice vibe. The corporate overlords have put me in the Hotel San Jose, which is a really nice retro-cool modern hotel, with beautiful concrete floors (my architect-wife’s heart melts) and fountains everywhere and just a really nice garden environment. It’s very Palm Springs in a way. I’ve been shopping up and down “SoCo” and bought a cute little mod mini-dress from By George, and then gifts for Mattie from the Kids Genius toy store. (More Cinderella junk, but oh well. She really loves it.)

The writers I’ve met have all been so GREAT: really warm, friendly, funny, smart people. Did a panel today with Paula Yoo, Lauren Myracle (the scare-a-thon taskmaster) and Jennifer Ziegler, and we rocked the house. A really fun and fiesty group. Paula brought the house down with her violin performance (Stairway to Heaven). I’ve never enjoyed a tour so much since this one. And the other day met up with other fab YA authors Varian Johnson, Margo Rabb (who was wearing a Libertine dress from Target that I also own!! We bonded.) and Tanya Lee Stone, with whom we got into a friendly argument about Melvin Burgess’s “Doing It” (I loved it, Tanya loathed it, but thankfully, I think we liked each other—I can’t speak for Tanya. LOL.)

Anyway, I am contemplating changing into costume number three, I wore a running-around dress this morning for book signings, then a blue Marni dress for the panel, and now there’s a cocktail party and some kind of Family Feud event with other writers and lots of teens. I was going to wear this Nanette Lepore black sheath dress with my new killer patent Loubs but am wondering if it is “too much.” But then part of the pleasure of going out is dressing up, isn’t it?

Okay. Gotta go. There’s an ice cream parlor across the street from my hotel that I need to hit.