Liveblog: Award-winning authors speak at Paly

Will Queen, Author

Students had the opportunity to listen to prominent authors Daniel Handler, Corey Whaley and Maggie Stiefvater at 10:30 a.m. today in the Palo Alto High School library.

What follows is the flow of events during the presentation and should be read from the bottom up.

11:30 a.m. The authors finish!

11:26 a.m. Whaley said when he was eleven he started writing seriously. Whaley says, “You don’t make a lot of money writing unless you’re really huge” and Handler conspicuously stands on his tiptoes. The students laugh.

11:25 a.m. Stiefvater reveals that in high school she was a competition bag piper.

11:25 a.m. Whaley says his book was dedicated to his sophomore English teacher.

11:24 a.m. Handler says in high school how he would get into a lot of fights: “Not fist fights though, although I could’ve taken [my English teacher] she was like an old lady,” Handler says.

11:23 a.m. Stiefvater talks about the book she wrote when she was 16 was from the point of view from a flag, student laugh

11:21 a.m. Handler jokes about how his favorite books as a teenager contained a lot of sex.

11:19 a.m.Whaley talks about his favorite books a kid, like Catcher in the Rye.

11:18 a.m. Whaley shows the students his woodpecker tattoo on his forearm and Handler jokes, “That’s another thing that you shouldn’t do.”

11:17 a.m. Handler says, “I write about things that interest me.”

11:16 a.m. Students asks which Handler which book from The Series of Unfortunate Events is his favorite.

11;15 a.m. Whaley attempts to answer the question “My personality…I really don’t know how to answer that question,” said Whaley.

11:13 a.m. Handler talks about how his father had to escape from the Nazis in Germany when he was a kid, and how it affected Handler and his “sassy-ness” and influenced him to write about orphans (The Series of Unfortunate Events)

11:12 a.m. A student asks how the authors’ personalities affected their writing, and calls Handler “sassy”

11:12 a.m. Authors start taking questions from the audience

11:12 a.m. Students applaud Whaley when he finishes reading

11:07 a.m. Whaley starts reading from his novel, Where Things Come Back.

11:06 a.m. The authors joke with each other. When the authors interrupt Whaley, Whaley says, “You have to be territorial with these authors.”

11:05 a.m. Talks about the plot of his book

11:04 a.m. Talks about how he hated where he was growing up when he was 17. “I absolutely hated it,” said Whaley

11:02 a.m. Whaley and Handler joke among each other.

11:01 a.m. Talks about his past ideas for his novel and how they didn’t work.

11:01 a.m. He jokes with students.

11:00 a.m. Stiefvater finishes and Whaley gets up and starts talking.

10:58 a.m. Students are engrossed in Stiefvater’s reading.

10:56 a.m. Stiefvater starts reading from her book.

10:54 a.m. Talks about how horses were the inspiration for her novel and how she wanted a horse in her childhood.

10:53 a.m. Stiefvater talks about her adolescence.

10:52 a.m. Describes The Scorpio Races as the “most Maggie” book she ever wrote.

10:51 a.m. Handler finishes reading and Stiefvater gets up and starts talking about her books.

10:50 a.m. Library is quiet, listening to Handler read from his book.

10:49 a.m. Handler says “Never swear. That’s f*cked up,” and continues reading. All students laugh, and librarian Kellerman smiles awkwardly.

10:48 a.m. All students are absorbed into Handler’s reading.

10:47 a.m. Handler starts reading a piece from his book, Why We Broke Up.

10:45 a.m. Makes sarcastic joke about how when students read books, they’re influenced to do what the characters do in the book, so he tells the students to never drink alcoholic bevreages, have sexual relations and play with matches.

10:45 a.m. Handler calls Corey Whaley his talking podium.

10:44 a.m. Explains how he got his idea for his book and jokes to students about how he doesn’t care about if they’re in a relationship or not.

10:43 a.m. Handler tells students about working with artist Maira Kalman on his book

10:42 a.m. Handler jokes about good and expensive restaurants that students can’t afford to go to.

10:41 a.m. Handler explains how he and Maira Kalman worked together previously on The Series of Unfortunate Events.

10:40 a.m. Handler starts speech. “I’ll learn all your names later,” Handler says.

10:40 a.m. Round of applause for Books Inc.

10:39 a.m. Stiefvater makes jokes about her books. “You can’t fly [to the island in my book] because it’s fake.”

10:38 a.m. Kellerman introduces other authors and joke with each other.

10.38 a.m. More students arrive.

10:36 a.m. Authors Maggie Stiefvater and John Corey Whaley arrive.

10:36 a.m. Handler jokes with librarian Kellerman by interrupting her “Let me finish; I practiced this!”

10:35 a.m. Students applaud Handler for achieving awards for his novel Why We Broke Up this year for best young adult novel

10:34 a.m. Handler jokes around with students that we’re “very lucky” to have him here

10:34 a.m. Kellerman invites Handler to speak.

10;34 a.m. Daniel Handler makes a joke about Paly students being slow “Little slow at Palo Alto High School,” Handler said

10:32 a.m. Daniel Handler arrives and hands out food to a couple students.

10:32 a.m. Students are getting excited and are wondering when the authors will come.

10:30 a.m. Members of ASB are in the library

10:29 a.m. Most of the seats in the library are filled and everyone is waiting for the authors to come.

10:29 a.m. Students are previewing the authors’ books.