What happens when you gather four popular YA authors on a stage in front of an audience full of scores of fans and wannabes? Lots of laughs. A few obscenities. A fair bit of adoration. And collegiality in spades.
The Los Angeles Times Festival of Books panel titled Young Adult Fiction: The Wide Lens featured some of the hottest names of the genre: Jacqueline Woodson, Maggie Stiefvater, Lauren Myracle and Maureen Johnson.
Who knows what they're like in real life, but Sunday, onstage at USC's Ronald Tutor Campus Center, they seemed to be longtime friends -- or at the very least, members of a very tight-knit club -- discussing process, inspiration and the beginnings of their writing careers.
Woodson, whose most recent book is "Beneath a Meth Moon," told the crowd that the work was inspired by the methamphetamine epidemic in parts of the country and by Hurricane Katrina, which upends the life of "Moon's" young protagonist.