The scene inside of Belmont University's Curb Event Center (in Nashville) was a little out of the ordinary on Friday, November 12.

For one thing, this bus was parked outside:

Inside, hundreds of kids and parents eagerly waited in the arena to hear the guest of honor talk about the week's hot topic. Yep, Jeff Kinney was in the building to talk about Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Ugly Truth.

While some kids scrambled for seats next to friends or ran back and forth from the popcorn stand, many of them looked just like this girl sitting in front of me:

Or these guys (please excuse my shaky camera hand):

When Jeff took the stage, he talked about the many, many rejection letters he got prior to signing a deal to publish Diary of a Wimpy Kid. He also mentioned that he originally thought Wimpy Kid would be published for adults, but he's so glad it got marketed as a kids book. He loves being embraced by "reluctant readers" (a term that was new to him when he started publishing).

Audience members also got to see a photo of the Greg Heffley float that will be appearing in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and watch a funny video of Jeff with cast members from the Wimpy Kid movie.

And then, there was a major surprise . . .

The actors who play Greg Heffley, Rowley Jefferson and Fregley in Diary of a Wimpy Kid made a surprise appearance! Jeff interviewed the boys about how their lives have changed since starring in the hit movie.

While everyone waited in line to get their books signed after the talk, I snagged a few fans to chat about why they love the Wimpy Kid series:

Moral of the story: Always go to events with your favorite author—you never know what surprises there will be!

Why do you love the Wimpy Kid?

Also in BookPage: Read an interview with Jeff Kinney about The Ugly Truth; view behind-the-scenes photos from the interview; see a hand-written (and illustrated) Q&A with Kinney.

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