As an author, I feel it's important to keep that connection with the fans (and fellow authors). Not only to you find out what others are reading or what they want to see, but you also get to find out suggestions for books to add to your "to be read" list. I now have about twenty new books listed in my Kindle wish list and a suitcase full of paperbacks to dig through. I mean, who needs clothes in the bag when you can have books instead? Am I right? The clothes are stuffed in a bag.... somewhere. The books are prized possessions. They deserve the best packing.
The other thing I noticed this weekend was the group of authors attending were fun and personable and so were the fans. Together, we made up a whole group, not individuals. Fun was had by all.... Or at least if you didn't have fun it was your own darn fault.
I look forward to many more events like the one I just attended.