Meg Cabot, from 'Princess Diaries' to the 'sci-fi-rom-com-mys' genre
Meg Cabot is girl power personified. Upbeat and bubbly, the "Princess Diaries" author walked an audience full of females, young aspiring novelists and chick-lit lovers through a PowerPoint presentation about her life as a writer and homebody.
Between sipping on her soda and sharing anecdotes about her struggles as an aspiring author during her panel at the L.A. Times Festival of Books on Saturday morning, Cabot cracked jokes like a red-headed Tina Fey and let the audience in on a big secret: that their favorite author is just like them. She likes happy endings and empowering female characters. She’s a geek -- she used to write "Star Trek" and "Jane Eyre" fan fiction. She abbreviates phrases and combines words together (smiling with our eyes is “smile-zing”), and stresses “so” and “oh my god” the same way her loyal teenage fans would.
Cabot is so in touch with her fan base that Cecil Castellucci, who moderated the panel, dubs her the "mistress of the cyber world." She digs YouTube, blogs, and tweets. She has a guilty pleasure for anything pop-culture-related besides "American Idol" (with the exceptions of Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underwood) because she says she just loves when people love stuff.
Her newest book, "Runaway," is the latest addition to the beloved Airhead series, which Cabot claims is the start of a new genre: sci-fi-rom-com-mys. It seems like this bestselling author has got a lot on her plate, with many series and projects set for the future. "Insatiable," Cabot’s take on the vampire lit trend, comes out in June, and "Abandon," a young adult series based on the myth of Persephone, is due out in 2011.
Cabot says there are no discussions of adding more books to her successful "Princess Diaries" series. However, she did divulge that another one of her series, "Avalon High," is going to be made into a Disney Channel movie for the fall.
-- Casey Chan
Photo credit: HarperCollins