Kumusta! Last week was Manila International Book Fair. On September 12, the Wattpad team organized a panel discussion and a book signing / photo booth session. Then on September 14, we organized an official Wattpad User Meetup, our second in Manila in as many years. Kristel and I were on the ground with Maria and other team members supporting us from Wattpad HQ.
This year’s event was beyond our wildest imagination. 1,000 RSPV’ed to come to our session on September 12. We never expected this! Although our fans were very organized and orderly, we scrambled to hire 10 security guards to help us direct the traffic as the maximum capacity was only 250!
Here are some pictures:
The Wattpad celebrities (left to right: Denny (HaveYouSeenThisGirL), Louisse (fallenbabybubu), Ciara (Seeyara), Janelle (Green Writer), Mercy mercy_jhigz) were getting ready for the panel.
After the panel, we setup a bench for book signing. There was a long line up during the entire 2 hours. One of the security guards came over and told me that her girlfriend is a big Wattpad fan. She was so jealous that he could come :-) Some fans were telling me that they skipped work to come here (remember it was a weekday).
Some fans were extremely excited!
We also setup photo booths for fans to take pictures with their favourite writers.
The picture looks awesome, doesn’t it? All the pictures are available for download here.
Kristel and I also took some pictures with Denny and other writers.
Not too far away from our area was PSICOM’s booth. PSICOM published quite a few Wattpad stories on paper. Pretty much all the books you see here originated from Wattpad.
National Bookstore’s booth was also nearby. National Bookstore is the largest bookstore chain in Philippines. In the Book Fair, they had the biggest booth among all exhibitors. Guess which book they showcased right at their entrance? As you can see, a huge stack of Denny’s “Diary ng Panget” (with Dan Brown’s Inferno in the background)! It is almost certain that Diary ng Panget will become THE best selling book in Philippines this year. Diary ng Panget has also been adapted to comics. A movie based on this story will come out on Valentine’s day as well.
After a very successful panel and book signing session on September 12, we turned our focus to our Wattpad User Meetup on September 14. The venue was conveniently located at one of the function rooms in the SMX Convention Centre (where the Book Fair was held). The function room was fairly big with enough room for 300 people. We thought it would be enough but we were so wrong. The day before the meetup we had well over 400 people RSVP’ed. At the end 620 Wattpadders showed up, which made this the largest Wattpad User Meetup ever.
Because of the unexpected crowd, we ran out of food (really sorry) but our fans were very forgiving.
Next year, we might have to rent the arena next door :-)
Here are some pictures:
The meetup was about to start. Wattpadders were still coming in.
Our ambassadors did an amazing job in organizing the meetup.
Some users brought the paper version of their Wattpad profiles to the meetup to identify themselves.
One of the Wattpadders gave me this thank you letter. I should be the one saying THANK YOU!
More signing sessions …..
Long line up here.
This is an amazing picture I took from my camera when all the Wattpad celebrities were on stage with Kristel and me. If you are in the picture, please send me the pictures you took as I don’t have any!
And finally, this video is just epic! If you have problem watching it, here is the link.
Salamat! The Wattpad team will see you next year!