Simon, Baz, Penelope, Agatha and Shepard. Let’s see how this all ends.
So, I have finished Fangirl, the third book in my pop culture homework assignment. I enjoyed this book in both execution and in concept. I loved the overlap between real life and fan fiction. I love the acknowledgement of how invested fans get into books. So, in the Fangirl, Cath is obsessed with a book series about a wizarding world and is an avid writer of fan fiction. She’s actually not just a writer of fan fiction, she’s kind of a big deal in the fan fiction world. The evil villain in the book series is called the insidious humdrum. I thought this villain sounded…desserty. And, then Rainbow Rowell gave me this beautiful line.
“‘Insidious Humdrum,’ Baz groused. ‘If I ever become a supervillain, help me come up with a name that doesn’t sound like an ice cream sundae.'”–Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
After reading this, I spent a lot of time thinking about what would go on an insidious humdrum. Beth had some ideas, too. We decided that there should be two versions: the Simon and the Baz (the two main characters in the wizard books). First, we gathered our ingredients. (Me: Is Simon salty? Beth: Sure. Me: Levi is salty.)
Both sundaes have a base of vanilla ice cream and marshmallow cream drizzle.
The Baz has dark chocolate syrup and chocolate whipped cream.
In a perfect set of coincidences, I am visiting my parents in Cedar Rapids, IA. Rainbow Rowell is speaking in Cedar Rapids, IA. Oh and the library’s ebook of Attachments became available. So, I read the first three chapters before heading out. To start, I wasn’t sure if she would read or give a talk or answer questions. Rowell did mostly questions and answers and she started by answering a question that she gets a lot: how did you become a novelist.
I knew immediately that I was going to like her because she had on a dress with trees on it (I found out at the signing it was from eShakti) and a large cat face necklace. Normally, I am loath to be the kind of person who judges people by what they’re wearing but plus-size women who have cultivated a sense of style (especially ones that are my age or older and remember a time when all plus-size clothing was hideous) are always cool even if I don’t like them.
So, Rowell started out by telling us about her life before her books were published as a journalist who for awhile had a gig covering Western Iowa for an Omaha paper. It was great to hear her tales of the hijinx that we get up to in the middle of the nation. (We had a Pork Queen who was a vegetarian. If that’s not funny to you, you’re either not from here or you’re not from here and you guessed wrong as to what a Pork Queen is.)
Then she took questions from the audience. She gave advice to young authors. She talked about her favorite fandoms (Sherlock). She talked her X- men-Mary Sue-self-insert fan fic she wrote as a teen. I laughed so much I was so excited to continue reading Attachments.
After Rowell’s talk she signed books. There was a long line and it was great that she signed so many books. I don’t usually fangirl (especially not over an author whose books I’ve not finished) but I stood in that really long line to tell her how much I enjoyed her talk, get my book signed and to get my picture taken.
Yup, I’m that kind of nerd.