Saturday, January 30, 2016

My Experience with Paper Towns

Hello! This is a continuation of a series that I started earlier this month with My Experience with Percy Jackson. I want to continue it with Paper Towns. Because my experience with this book was AWESOME.

I read Looking for Alaska and The Fault in Our Stars in early 2014, and I loved them! I also loved the TFIOS movie. So, of course, when the Paper Towns movie was announced, I was pretty excited to pick up another John Green book.

I read Paper Towns in March of last year over. Originally I read it on my Kindle, you know, back when I read books on my Kindle. (E-books are no longer my format of choice.) I finished it all in one day because I loved it. (My review, but be aware that this was back when I sucked at reviewing. Or maybe I still suck now? Hm.) At the time, it was my favorite book by John Green, though it's now Looking for Alaska. Because I reread it in an interesting mood... But at the time, I couldn't stop thinking about it. I was unbelievably excited for the movie to come out.

HAHA. If only I knew what I knew now... XD

I spent the months leading up to the movie watching John Green's videos on-set and obsessing over trailers. My excitement only grew.

I even bought tickets to an event called Night on the Towns. Where I would get to see the movie a day early, and get a poster and a necklace, and also get to see a live streaming of the cast. I mean, I spent $25 for it, but that would be worth it wouldn't it? Wouldn't it?!?!?!? (It was.)

At some point the Get Lost Get Found Tour was announced, and people could vote for whatever state they lived in, and the tour would only go to three states. So sure, I voted for Ohio. All I hoped for was that one stop would be close enough for me to drive to. But what states ended up winning?

Ohio, Indiana, and Texas.

So...not what I expected. In the slightest. How does this make any sense? Shouldn't California be on there? No? Texas, sure. By population that makes total sense (second most populated state). But Ohio is 7th, and Indiana is SIXTEENTH. What weird obsessive person voted for these states so many times it was enough to make them win? HOW EVEN??????

On the day that the stops were announced, I wrote this post expressing my excitement and utter disbelief. Why Ohio? Why Columbus? What's wrong with you people?

Of course, I went for it because I WAS GOING TO SEE JOHN GREEN IN PERSON. WHAT IS MY LIFE. I mean, also Nat Woff, Cara Delevingne, and Halston Sage, but who cares about them? JOHN GREENNNNNNNNNNN

It's funny because I totally would have gone to the Indianapolis one as well, considering it's not that much further than Columbus (two hours vs. one and a half). But hey, I'm not gonna complain.

So I ended up tweeting a bunch of stuff because the possibility of John Green not on a screen was BAFFLING.

And then...the day came. It was the morning of July 15th, and I was a sleep-deprived mess that didn't have the energy to put contacts in. Hahaha beautiful.

Anyway, I woke my dad up at, hm, 5:30amish (thanks Dad), and had him drive me up to Columbus even though they wouldn't actually be letting anyone in until 3. I wanted to get there early! I wanted a good seat! I didn't want there to be any chance of it getting full and not being able to get in!

We arrived around 7. There were too many people there. Maybe 75 or 80. (Turned out to be 84 and 85 exactly...) It was mostly, ahem, teenage girls, and the occasional parent that had been convinced to drive them there.

Long story short, I spent a good 6 or more hours total siting on pavement uncomfortably while trying to read a pretty terrible book (Secrets by Tim Mettey, sorry dude). At one point I did find a bathroom a couple blocks away (thank the gods, that could have been a bigger issue than it was...).

I sent my dad to get donuts from Tim Hortons, Because...apparently they have those in Columbus. Honestly, I thought they were a Canadian thing! But what do I know...?

I realized after all of this waiting that I am very good at waiting. To me, it didn't feel like much time at all! Maybe it was the excitement...or the donuts...or the excitement about donuts.

Around one in the afternoon, they started shuffling us all into, um, fence..barrier...metal..thingies (What is this English you speak of?) where we stood for awhile surrounded by police and really really confused pedestrians.

So many excited teenage girls. Ahhhhhhhhhhh

Then I tried to take a picture of the building and the Paper Towns sign and failed SPECTACULARLY. What is this light? Why does it look like that? What the hell?

Anyway, they lined us up, and had us wait there for awhile (which wasn't that big of a deal because we'd already been waiting for awhile.)

Then, people started making there way down the line giving people blue wristbands (as in, those little paper bracelet things that go around your wrist with built-in tape) that would, you know, grant them access into the theater (theatre? who knows?)

BUT they were also giving out yellow wristbands. My thoughts were basically, what? Two? Whyyyyy?

When they came to us they gave us ALL OF THE THINGS. ALL OF THE FREE THINGS.

First, a poster with a bunch of quotes from the book/movie. AWESOMENESS. Plus I got two because my dad was also there and occasionally he gets mistaken for an obsessive teenage girl that wants a Paper Towns poster.

They gave us the two wristbands, and guess what came with the other yellow wristband?


Of course, I was on Twitter immediately, having mental breakdown because my life right now.

It was a week and a half before the release of the movie, but I was going to see it in a couple hours.

Oh my god Oh my god Oh my god Oh my god

I later learned after some brief discussions on Twitter that the advance screening was just for the first 250 people in line. Never ever will I questioning getting up at 5 in the morning to drive to Columbus. NEVER.

Eventually they let us into the theater where we sat for another hour listening to the Paper Towns soundtrack. I quickly learned that My Type gets annoying really fast.

I feel like a learned a lot of things during this experience...

So a little after 3, the official start time of the show, John Green (and others...) came out on stage and there was a lot of screaming and hyperventilating. I did not do this because...well, my dad was there and I didn't want to look weird.

A couple weeks after this the idea of John Green filming me (along with the rest of the crowd) and then posting that video on the internet set in when he posted this video. It took me a good 10 minutes to find myself and that's when I knew what I was wearing and where I was sitting, so I don't feel all that uncomfortable telling you that...

Anyway, the show was hilarious because it involved hilarious people. We got to see 20 minutes of the movie (the last night with Margo part), which would have been more exciting if I didn't know I was going to see the entire thing a couple hours later.

It was only about an hour long, and that includes seeing 20 minutes of the movie, but I regret nothing. John Green in real life? WORTH IT.

Oh...also that thing with spelling out "Ohio" XD

After the show was over, we went straight to the movie theater since we weren't sure if there would be a line, and I was hoping my luck of that morning was still with me. (IT WAS.)

There were only, like, 5 other people there, but we decided to stay because what if everyone comes the moment we turn our back?

So for another hour and a half I drank milkshakes and talked to some girls (it was weird because that's a rare thing for me) that had arrive at 9, and still gotten to see the movie early! I started to regret my decision of getting up at 5 to arrive by 7...

I also decided to go to a local (like, within walking distance) Barnes & Noble where I bought an actual paperback version of Paper Towns because I had heard some rumors about John Green and the other people coming to take a quick stop at the movie theater. I WANTED TO BE PREPARED IN CASE SIGNING TOOK PLACE, OKAY?!?!?

That didn't happen. Well, okay, they did show up and talk to us some more, but no signing took place.

Oh, also. I was sitting in the front row. My luckkkkk. I was 6 feet away from John Green.


Of course, the girl directly next to me who was fangirling her little heart out got all the attention. Cara loved her, Nat high-fived her, I glared at her, etc. Why must I be the fangirling-on-the-inside type?

Sucks to be her. I found her Twitter. (I'm such a stalker oh my god.)

But really, of course she would like One Direction. How typical.

We also made up our own hashtag. #secretsiblings I felt a little weird using it, but it also felt like an awesome inside joke. An inside joke full of spoilers for the movie...nice.

The movie was AMAZING. I adored it. That was probably a good thing because I was also seeing it again during Night on the Towns the next week.

I didn't get home until about 11 when I kind of...collapsed.

I also reviewed the movie early. What? Reviewing my most anticipated movie of the year in advance? Life goals right there. (My review.)

I also cut up one of the posters and stuck the quotes all over my bookshelf...

Then I saw the movie again on the 23rd of July, and it was just as amazing the second time. Plus I got another poster (well, three copies of that poster, I have so many Paper Towns posters now..) and a necklace that I wore non-stop for several months.

I thought my experience was over...but then....

Well, okay, that was most of it. But I did eventually get a signed copy of the book at Barnes & Noble's signed books event thing on Black Friday. So at least I have that.

Then I got the movie on Blu-Ray and DVD for Christmas and rewatched it a couple times. It's the kind of book/movie that never gets the memories.

So yeah, one of the best experiences I've ever had with a book. Meeting the author, who happens to be one of my favorite authors, seeing the movie early, eating donuts, glaring at fangirling teenage girls... *sigh*

Oh, also, around September I lent out my paperback copy of Paper Towns that I had bought in Columbus. I've still yet to get that that's nice. If it didn't have all the memories and sentimental value, I might have just let her keep it since I have a hardcover, but since it does, no. GIVE IT BACK.

Thanks for reading! What's the best experience you've ever had with a book?

PS: Really bad lighting, I know, but this is the poster, wristband, and advanced screening invitation from the Get Lost Get Found Tour:


  1. OH MY GOD YOU WERE 6 FEET AWAY FROM JOHN GREEN??? Word cannot describe how lucky you are!!! I'm so jealous!!!

    1. I KNOW!!! IT WAS SO EXCITING! I just wish I could go back and relive it all over again.... :)