After lunch, I was tired, my arms hurt and I wanted to stop. But of course I couldn't do that because there were loads more of amazing authors to be met. So I grab my next stack of books and carried on.
Next up was the Putting the Yall in Yallfest panel which I had been looking forward to all day long. This panel consisted of Katie Crouch (The Magnolia League), Saundra Mitchell (The Vespertine),Carrie Ryan (The Forest of Hands and Teeth), Michelle Hodkin (The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer) and was moderated Beth Revis (Across the Universe).
I'd been looking forward to hearing Michelle Hodkin speak all day and wasn't disappointed. Beth Revis was a very funny narrator, picking on Saundra Mitchell who took all the "damn Yankee" comments like a true sport. Beth Revis had the authors describe their novels in as few words as possible and asking them specific things about them. I loved hearing Michelle Hodkin tell her story about the origin of Mara Dyer (even though I already knew it). I was really impressed with Carrie Ryan speak. She was so funny and seemed really passionate about her novels which made me excited. Plus, the fact that she's worked out every possible zombie apocalypse situation (she says the best weapon in the event of a zombie invasion is someone that runs slower than you) was awesome!
Ashley and I ran over after the panel and I got in line to meet Carrie Ryan and Katie Crouch. I got to speak with Carrie Ryan a bit since she had to sign three of my books and told her we'd traveled from Florida and that I blogged. It was really cool because she recognized it!
Afterwards, I hopped over to meet Katie Couch and got my copies signed. We also talked a bit about my drive and I told her how much I was enjoying visiting historical Charleston. She was very nice.
Unfortunately, I couldn't get to Saundra Mitchell on my own and make it to the next panel in time to see any of it, so my friend got my copies signed for me.It's a shame because she seemed awesome in the panel. I hope to get the chance to one day!
I scurried back to catch the last half of Don't Dis-Topian panel which consisted of Beth Revis (Across the Universe), Kim Derting (The Pledge), Eliot Schrefer (School for Dangerous Girls), Diana Peterfreund (Rampant) and was moderated by Sarah Rees Brennan (The Demon’s Lexicon). I was glad I got to catch some of this panel.
Then they all fought about who would be the best Princess Leila. Eliot won though Diana Peterfreund had a really convincing argument.
After the panel, we ran over for book signings again. I hopped in Kimberly Derting's line (my friend said I had a lady crush on her which might be true but, hey, she wrote Jay!) and waited to get my books signed. I had a few of them for her to sign and we started talking because I'd told her we'd met before. She remembered me from Miami and while signing a book for a friend, she accidentally put "to Amber". She told me to run and get her another copy (which I did but felt terrible about) and she corrected it. She said that one of her biggest fears about signing was doing that and she'd never done it before. I ruined her record. Which is why mu The Pledge looks like this:
In case you can't see that it say "To Amber (who screwed up my book)"! Now she says we had a moment and I'm inclined to agree with her!
After chatting with Kimberly Derting, I ran into Blue Bicycle Books where Beth Revis and Diana Peterfreund were signing. I got a blurry picture with Beth Revis and she signed a few copies for friends for me:
Then I spoke with Diana Peterfreund who was really surprised I had a hardcover of Rampant. I told her I'd purchased it when it first came out and she seemed really thrilled!
And guess who happened to be hanging out in there with them while they signed? If you guess Michelle Hodkin, then you'd be right! I decide I wanted to meet her so I marched up to her and told who who I was. We'd talked back and forth a bit on Twitter and I just had to meet the woman responsible for Noah Shaw and Mara Dyer and Jamie! We even took a Facebook photo together:
I made it back for the last little bit of the Zombie Attacks panel but didn't get to see too much. After that, we were all cleared up and let back in for the YA Smackdown. This was all the authors up on one stage, divided into categories. They were forced to play silly games and tell stories. It was a lot of fun.
The authors all gathered up for a group photo so I snapped a few shoots.
After the event, we were starving. I'd met Angela of The Reading Angel there and we all decided to grab a bite to eat. Her husband and my husband got along great and we all talked books for a bit. The food was awesome but I got a little ill during dinner and I'm afraid I wasn't able to talk shop as much as usual. Still, I had a wonderful time meeting them and I can't express how sweet they both are in person!
Here's the final tally of how many things I came back with (keep in mind, I own may of these books. I ended up buying 9 novels there plus a small stack of 4):
YALLfest was chalked full of amazing authors, amazing events and amazing people. It's hard to believe this is only the first year for the event because it was so well thought out and put together. I can't thank the people of YALLfest enough for volunteering and putting together such an amazing festival. If they decide to do it again next year, you can bet we'll be attending again. To all the authors I met, thanks for being awesome and sharing your stories. I look forward to reading many more!
So I wouldn't have teasered you all with epic photos unless I brought a little something back for you! What is it you ask?:
A signed copy of...
Yay! I'll also be throwing in some bookmarks and a neat shirt I got there as well. So check out the rules and enter to win!
- Must fill out the form
- May only enter once (with the exception of the daily tweet)
- Must be 13 years or older
- This is a US only contest (Sorry international followers.)