It’s not long until the first ever Young Adult Literature Convention and we’ll both be in attendance. Will you? Sadly, tickets to the London Film and Comic Con are now all sold out, and you need those to attend YALC, so if you’ve not already bought yours, you’re out of luck. If you have, read on and let us give you a preview of what to look forward to. If not, read and you can see what will feature on our podcast that we’ll record from the convention floor, to give you a flavour of the event even if you couldn’t be there in person.
YALC was the brainchild of Malorie Blackman, the current Children’s Laureate, to promote awareness of the fantastic Young Adult literature out there at the moment, in a popular event that young people – the real YA target audience – will feel comfortable going to, instead of a school or somewhere aimed primarily at adults. The line up of authors talks and workshops, not to mention signings is brilliant, and of course there’s also the main Film and Comic Con too, so plenty to keep everyone occupied over the weekend.
You can download an at-a-glance timetable here: http://www.childrenslaureate.org.uk/usr/library/documents/main/yalc_schedule.pdf
If you arrive early enough, you should be able to pick up tickets for the panel talks you’d like to attend. Workshop tickets will be allocated by a ballot system.
Kate’s Pick of the Panels
11.30-12.15 It’s the end of the world as we know it: the ongoing appeal of dystopia
With Malorie Blackman, Sarah Crossan and Patrick Ness, chaired by James Smythe
To say I’m a huge fan of Noughts and Crosses, and Chaos Walking would be putting it mildly and I enjoyed James Smythes’ science fiction which certainly has a dystopian flavour – how could I miss this? Kicking off of the Con in style with the Children’s Laureate herself.
14.30-15.15 Regenerating the Doctor: reimagining famous characters
With Charlie Higson, Andrew Lane, Patrick Ness and Marcus Sedgwick, chaired by Steve Cole
A little more Patrick Ness here, Charlie Higson, Steve Cole and Marcus Sedgwick discussing Who and reimaging famous characters, so I’m guessing there’ll be some Young Bond chat here too.
15.30-16.15 Bring me my dragons: writing fantasy today
With Frances Hardinge, Amy McCulloch, Jonathan Stroud and Ruth Warburton, chaired by Marc Aplin
I was a big fan of Cuckoo Song by Frances Hardinge when I read it earlier in the year, and have had Lockwood & Co highly recommended; I love a bit of fantasy and these guys know their stuff.
16.30-17.15 Heroes of horror
With Charlie Higson, Will Hill, Derek Landy and Darren Shan, chaired by Rosie Fletcher
I’m really looking forward to hearing Charlie Higson talking about The Enemy series – I’ve found these books really spine-chilling.
12.30-13.15 I’m too sexy for this book!
With Cat Clarke, Non Pratt and Beth Reekles, chaired by James Dawson
These writers have shown me that books with a love story don’t need to be twee, cliched or patronising, and I love them for it – I can’t wait for this, I’m sure there’s going to be a lot of laughter and it’ll be lovely to meet them in person at signings afterwards as they are all so great on Twitter. Don’t let me down, guys – no pressure…
13.30-14.15 Crossover: not just for kids
With Matt Haig, Anthony McGowan, Nick Lake and Meg Rosoff, chaired by David Maybury
There’s been a lot of discussion recently about adults reading YA and, as *one of those*, this is right up my street. Bring it on.
14.30-15.15 Sisters doing it for themselves
With Tanya Byrne, Isobel Harrop, Julie Mayhew and Holly Smale, chaired by Sarra Manning
I’m really interested to hear from these inspirations female writers about what inspired them to write their female leads.
16.30-17.15 Holly Black & Sally Gardner in conversation
I’m not sure who I’m more intrigued to hear from – Holly Black, who’s achieved real superstar status recently in the US, or Sally Gardner, whose writing I’ve been following since I, Coriander and who’s just published the extraordinary Tinder. What a way to close the Con.
We’re really looking forward to YALC – we’ll be tweeting and Instagramming while we’re there – @wordadventures, as well as @robchilver and @magic_kitten over the weekend and we’ll keep you up to date. If you’re there too, let us know; we’d love to see you there.