Nicholas Sparks Speaks at UNCW
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Best selling author, Nicholas Sparks, drew a sold out crowd at UNCW Thursday night. Fans lined up to get their favorite book signed, and learn more about the writer who's inspired by our area.

The line weaved through campus for "An Evening with Nicholas Sparks." With favorite books in hand and coveted tickets too, the excitement of the fans warmed the chilly air outside the Burney Center.

"I like all his movies and all his books. I've read them all," Anna Rogers said.

"He's really romantic and he gives an example of how guys should be," Chelsea Cook said.

Nicholas Sparks himself says he can't figure out just what drives his fan phenomenon.

"That's the magic question," Nicholas Sparks said, "I write what I write and people seem to like it.

Many of the author's books, and now movies, take place in our area. The most recent to hit the silver screen, "Dear John." Over the weekend, the movie dethroned box office champ "Avatar", after seven weekends as number one.

"I was pleased," Sparks said. "I think that a lot of people are going to go out and see it this weekend too because of Valentine's Day and I thought they did a great job with the film so i couldn't be any happier."

One thousand very happy people attended the event, organized by the Association for Campus Entertainment.

Sparks says he's honored to meet the fans who turn his pages.

"I work in a very secluded world you might say in which i live in my little office and i never get to see anybody, so it's nice."

Nicholas Sparks says his book, "The Lucky One" is set to hit the big screen. He says it's supposed to be shot locally.

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What a disappointment. While I enjoyed the speech very much so, all chaos broke loose when it was time for Sparks to start signing books. The UNCW students organizing the event had no ability to control the 1,000 people in line for the book signing, nor did it appear they put any planning into this either. After standing in a crowd (not even a line) for 1 1/2 hours and not even taking one step forward, I left without getting my book signed. May I suggest the UNCW students do a better job organizing such events in the future. People that pay money to attend a book signing should be able to get their book signed!