Wednesday, 22 July 2015

YALC Awesomeness!

I spent last weekend at the UK's Young Adult Literature Convention (part of London Film & Comic Con). I went last year for the Saturday only, but this time, the lovely Cole and I booked tickets for a whole weekend of books-and-writing-related awesomeness. This year, the event was held at the Olympia rather than Earl's Court, and YALC had its own floor, so there was room to breathe and actual air conditioning! I managed to buy three books within the first hour of arriving, so all thoughts of budgeting went clean out the window. ;) I also acquired a ton of freebies and two tote bags.

After exploring all the book stalls, we headed to the horror/ghost story panel, which included a discussion of the boundaries between adult and YA horror, and the reasons it remains popular. There was also the observation that people who write really dark stuff tend to be really nice people. Er... :P

After more exploring, we went to a really interesting agent/author panel with Gemma Cooper and Harriet Reuter. It was fun to talk to writers at all stages of the publishing journey!

On Saturday, we didn't have to queue to get in because we already had wristbands. Yay!

I went to the Shadowhunters panel, where Cassandra Clare and Sarah Rees Brennan talked about the series and the upcoming TV show. I got to meet Sarah afterwards. Luckily, she didn't mind my babbling and was really nice and signed my copy of Unspoken. She asked if I preferred good or evil, and I said "Team Morally Questionable". :P

Then we wandered into the Comic Con for a bit. It was a little intense. o.O

But very fun, obviously. Cosplays and merchandise EVERYWHERE. (Highlight: two Disney princesses having a lightsaber duel in the middle of the gaming section. :P)

Death and the Luggage from Discworld. :D

I also met Patrick Ness, who signed my copy of Monsters of Men. And I bought more books. (Note to self: invest in a multidimensional bookcase.)

On Sunday, I went to two panels - "Mental Health in YA" and "Fantasy and Reality", which were both really interesting. (Highlight: an audience member asked the authors, "How did you get an agent?" Melinda Salisbury responded with, "I SUMMONED SATAN". Seems legit. ;))

We briefly went into the Comic Con again, then it was time to catch the tube back to Euston (with a suitcase overflowing with books). I arrived home tired, but buzzing from the excitement!

I now have a ton of free book samples and a Groot to add to my pop vinyl collection. I'm really glad I went to all three days of the event, and took a mostly-empty suitcase for all the books. ;)

I'd have loved to have time to meet more authors, and it felt like half my Twitter feed was live-tweeting it (I probably walked past them without realising, because I'm hopeless at recognising people in the real world. :P). But overall, it was a great weekend, and I refuse to feel guilty for not getting any writing done!

Until next year! ^_^


  1. Looks like you had fun! Groot is cute. :)

  2. Looks awesome! Very envious!

  3. YALC looks like it was so much fun! I love the Groot <3 And yay for all the books! You should have seen my RT haul lol. Pretty sure the airline thought I was nuts.