Books have always been close to my heart. Books have so much power—they can be an escape, evoke feeling, change your point of view, or expand your understanding of the world. I grew up checking out large stacks of books at the local library, laying on the bed on long summer days while my Mom read to me, and dreaming of being the heroine in some of my favorite stories. I always had in internal romantic story playing out in my head.
Kicking off Living in Books started with stroll around the Printers Row Literary Fest this past weekend—the best way to spend a Saturday. It also didn't hurt that the sun was finally shining! Printers Row is not a very large neighborhood, but it packs a punch with gorgeous, distinct architecture. This neighborhood was once the hub for Chicago's printing and publishing industry at the turn of the century. The buildings were designed specifically to house heavy printing equipment, as well keep the work space well lite with rows and rows of windows.
The Literary Fest was filled with tents bursting with books, new and old, literary magazines, authors, writers and avid readers. We enjoyed listening to The Annual Mystery Writers Flash Fiction Contest as well as an interview with Tavi Gevinson of Rookie Magazine and Rookie Yearbook book series.
Tavi is a very fascinating girl! Only 17, she has been blogging since she was 11 years old. What the heck was I doing at age 11?? Her personal musings on life, fashion, music and film created a strong following with other young ladies also trying to navigate their own crazy teen years. Her blog was reworked into an online website, Rookie Magazine, with other contributors and recently launched a printed book, aptly titled Yearbook One. I would have loved a book like this when I was a teenager. I think that time was probably the worst time in my life. I was so painfully shy and timid! Tavi's self awareness and confidence to be true to herself, explore and grow is admirable. I can see why so many other young ladies would gravitate to her and learn from her. The Rookie Yearbook series (to be a total of four) has brought a beautiful outlet for young artists and writers giving them a platform to share their thoughts and ideas. But even with all the success and opportunity, Tavi dreams of one day living in the woods with just a stack of journals and markers to write and create for herself. Maybe one day we will get a peek at all that creativity! I can't wait to see where she goes as she ventures off to college and then the world.