I chose this picture because he somewhat resembles Alan Rickman in it... haha, I never saw that at all before now! Gaiman was a no-brainer for me. I've been in awe of his storytelling (he's one of those rare authors who can be called a storyteller, a crafter of words and of characters and settings, not simply an author whose books sell well) since I was eleven or so and first read Coraline. If you've never read one of his books, I HIGHLY recommend you do-- and start with Stardust, because I think it's a book almost anyone would love. I love to listen to Neil's voice, like when he reads for The Blueberry Girl, or pretty much every time he speaks-- he has a good storyteller's voice.
Another no-brainer-- let's go ahead and get these out of the way. This one is a true no-brainer, though, because Rowling just happens to be perhaps the most well-known contemporary author of fiction in the wide world. I would love to ask her why Ron/Hermione (wouldn't every Harry/Hermione fan, though?), and just more about the magical world she created.
Jumping from the very well-known to the relatively obscure (at least in the English-speaking world), I would love to meet one of my favorite manga-kas, Kaori Yuki. I'd ask her questions about her gothic historical series Godchild and Angel Sanctuary. It would especially cool to meet her since Yuki is very rarely seen in public and lives a private life despite her manga's popularity.
I might take the time to learn German if it meant getting to converse with Cornelia Funke, the author who wrote so many of my favorite books from childhood and tween-hood: Inkheart and the Ink World trilogy, Dragon Rider, and the Thief Lord, among others.
George RR Martin
At this point, I really do hope that my hypothetical meeting with George RR Martin, one of today's best epic and otherwise fantasy writers, would be peaceful. Maybe some of you Game of Thrones/ A Song of Ice and Fire fans know what I'm talking about? I'm afraid I would attempt to learn hypnosis prior to meeting him, and then try to hypnotize the fantasy great into telling me if and how Daenerys Targaryen wins back the Iron Throne in the next two books. That disturbing revelation aside, I think he seems like a very interesting person-- he has written tons of fantasy and was into the genre ever since he was a kid. A fun fact about GRRM I learned from watching Comic Con was that he started writing epic fantasy focused around medieval-esque courts like in A Game of Thrones when he constructed a castle for his pet turtles as a kid. Some of the turtles would die, so Martin made up stories about how they'd been assassinated or poisoned or executed, etc. Early sparks of ingenuity. :)
My sister Pinky and I really love his Gone book series. Michael would be another one to interrogate-- though I'd also like to hear more about his life (in the author bios it always says he traveled around the States and the world when he was a kid, being an army brat) and that truly incredible (one might say occasionally frightening) imagination.
I bet Holly Black could tell some scary fairy tales-- those are my favorite kind. :) Love all her books as well.
I really enjoyed The Fault in Our Stars, though typically his books aren't my absolute favorites. I'm more familiar with John Green through his vlogbrothers videos and the whole Nerdfighters... movement, thingey, whatever you want to call it. In his and Hank's vlogs, John is really hilarious and sincere and makes very good points about so many things. I love him for his honesty and enthusiasm and for, you know, just being his nerdy self.
I chose this picture because I thought it suited her reputation as a Gothic/horror novelist-- isn't it kind of creepy? The doll puts me in mind of Claudia from Interview with the Vampire. I'm not really into some of Anne Rice's writing in other genres (like her religious books), but I'm still in love with her early characters and themes from the Vampire Chronicles, with Lestat de Lionheart and his "Savage Garden" of a world. Anne Rice is the writer who made me a true fan of the vampire genre-- though I'm usually disappointed in vampire books, nowadays.
Libba Bray makes School Library Journal look more like Spin. I haven't loved her recent YA books so much as the Gemma Doyle trilogy, but Libba seems like the very living embodiment of the phrase "quite a character". She's witty and clever, and a really great writer to boot.
Which bookish people would you love to meet? I'd love to know, so leave your links in the comments so I can check out everyone's Top Ten!