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Cassandra Clare Is Attending NTTBF and I Am Not Happy About It

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I know from the controversial title of this post, people will judge me, maybe even want to attack me. But before you do, hear me out.

Although I’m a huge fan of Young Adult novels, I’ve never read any of Cassandra Clare’s books. I’ve never been intrigued by them, though I’ve seen a few episodes of Shadowhunters, and it was pretty decent. But that is neither here nor there.

I happen to know a lot about Cassandra Clare’s past because Nicole and I did extensive research about it for our podcast episode: Spilling the Tea About Cassandra Clare, if you want to hear a more thorough explanation.

In our research, we learned that Cassandra Clare has allegedly plagiarized in both fanfiction and her original novels, has cyberbullied people to extreme lengths, has refused to take criticism, has had an obsession with incest, and has overall done her fair share of shady stuff. Again, we talk in detail about all of this in our podcast, so I won’t take the time to explain it here.

I am writing this today because I am very upset by Cassandra Clare’s attendance this year at the North Texas Teen Book Festival. I’ve been attending since the first year it started in 2015. I’ve gotten the chance to see amazing panels, and have met many of my favorite authors throughout the years. I’ve loved each and every experience, and I plan to attend this year and continue attending in the future.

However, upon searching for information about this year’s festival, which will be held on April 21, 2018, I saw a tweet from their official twitter account.

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I immediately showed this to Nicole because I couldn’t believe my eyes. Let me preface this by saying that I realize this is a free event, and most of their gains come from book sales. I know that book sales are extremely important for these authors, because many of them aren’t very well known, and this event is great exposure.

But come on, we’re talking about Cassandra Clare, who has created a huge fandom and has a movie and a TV show inspired by her books. She is the biggest author at this festival. At first, her attendance didn’t faze me at all. I was happy for the fans that would get to meet their favorite author, like I’ve done for many years.

But this is absolutely ridiculous. No other author at this festival has ever demanded that their readers buy a specific book to have signed by them. Not one. Not even Holly Black, who is very close friends with Cassandra Clare, and who I think is just as popular.

My anger stems from the fact that the majority of readers are not rich. Most of us can’t afford one copy of a book, let alone two. Requiring for her readers to purchase one of those three very expensive books — even though chances are they already own them — in order to even get in the signing line, is ABSURD.

There is no logical explanation for why Cassandra Clare would have these demands, aside from greed. The majority of these fans are teens. They are attending a free book event in the hopes of meeting their favorite author. They’ve probably bought all of her books from all of her series, which are A LOT. And for her to demand that they buy these extra copies as a requirement for her to sign them is just awful.

I really doubt the reason behind this demand is that her book sales are dwindling, because I don’t see that happening. This is nothing but greed.

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Personal

NTTBF – 2016

Yesterday, Nicole and I attended the North Texas Teen Book Festival (NTTBF) in Irving, Texas. This was our second year going. There were over 50 authors attending, as well as many booktubers. The place was packed, mostly with schoolchildren in field trips, though not all of them looked so thrilled to be there. Anyway, the event was an all-day thing, and it was as much fun as it was exhausting.

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Since there were multiple panels happening at the same time, Nicole and I split up. Some of my favorite panels were the “Reading the Rainbow” one, where authors discussed their lgbtqia books. It was a much larger panel than the one from last year, which we also attended (I really missed David Levithan this year). I also enjoyed the “All the Feels” one, which was all about books with emotions. My favorite type of books.

I was very excited to meet Gayle Forman, but unfortunately her line was closed by the time I went in to get my signature, so I didn’t get to meet her. The same thing happened with E. Lockhart. Nicole missed out on meeting Libba Bray.

But not everything went wrong.  I got the chance to meet one of my favorite new authors, Adam Silvera. He was so sweet and interesting, and he wrote me a very lovely message in my copy of More Happy Than Not. I seriously recommend this book, since I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it since I read it last year. Adam has a new book coming out soon called History Is All You Left Me, and trust me, you’re going to want to get your hands on it. He’s one of my few auto-buy authors.

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I also met Alex Gino who is quite a gem. We talked about the lgbt panel, which was both of our favorites, and I got my copy of George signed. I also met Faith Erin Hicks who took the time to doodle something amazing on my copy of Friends With Boys. Nicole met Jonathan Maberry and he signed Rot & Ruin. And she also met Ruta Sepetys who signed Between Shades of Gray for her.

Another highlight was the booktube panel. I was really excited because Whitney from Whittynovels and Alberto from AbriendoLibros were there, and I love both of their channels. I got a chance to say hi to them, and I got a really cute bookmark from Whitney and a picture with Alberto.

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After the event, Nicole and I were completely drained. It was such a long day, but worth the lines and waiting and my horrible cold that kept getting in the way. I know I’ll definitely keep going back because, come on, books are the best thing in the world.