The signing last night was fantastic. I went with my little brother, the guy in the dark blue shirt behind me. It was cool to get to spend time with my brother. He is 14 years younger than me, and sometimes we don't have a lot in common. He turned 18 in May, and it's getting easier.
One of the things we DO have in common is that we're both big fans of George R. R. Martin. I discovered his books in the paperback racks of the Los Angeles Public Library's Central Branch. I took it home with me and encouraged my roommates at the time to read it, too. After we had all three read the books, we played "Cast that Character" and chose our dream actors and actresses to play Sansa, Arya, Tyrion, and the rest. I've continued to recommend the series to everyone I know who reads fantasy. I badgered both of my brothers into reading A Song of Ice and Fire. My little brother even gave up his W.o.W. account this spring so that those funds could go to paying for HBO.
Martin's Q & A session was short because there were so many attendees, but he answered some of the FAQs. His favorite character is Tyrion, and he's the easiest to write. He loves the HBO show and writes one show per season. My friend Heather asked a question about women in his books, and received a very nice response. Basically, he said that his books are based on history and the women in his books have a lot to overcome(!).
Martin had great things to say about our local independent bookseller, which was awesome. The store guy says that he requests to come to our bookstore. We were his last stop on the tour. He said that a non-reader lives only one life, and a reader lives thousands. Such true words!
Unfortunately, there were so many people who were there that there was no personalization or photos. Well, other than the guy at the end of the line snapping people. I very much wish that I had still been in town during one of his earlier signings at the book store! I am amazed at his stamina. He signed books for over 600 people, and with a limit of 3 books each. I am sure that not everyone had more than one book--my brother and I each had one. If he did, he would have signed over 1800 books! The really amazing thing is that he did it in only two hours! Even with those downsides, I am very, very glad that I went to the signing. It was by no means a waste of my time, and I'd do it again in a heartbeat!