YALLWEST 2018 Recap

It’s the day after YALLWEST (which my computer just tried to correct to SALLOWEST. Nope. Not what I meant.). It was so good, but I am exhausted. This was my second year attending, but my first year attending while 6 months pregnant, and let’s just say it was a little different this time around! By the end of the day my muscles were ready to let go of my belly. (Thanks for hanging on, muscles!)

But before the end of the day came the rest of the day, and it was amazing! The whole ride there I felt so lucky to live within driving distance of such an awesome event. (Seriously. Forget the beaches and mountains. My favorite things about living in SoCal are Mysterious Galaxy and YALLWEST.)

Like last year, I prioritized panels and talks over standing in line to get ARC’s. Which was a strategy with both pros and cons. I missed out on some ARC’s I really wanted (SADIE by Courtney Summers and CITY OF GHOSTS by Victoria Schwab!!!), and I could never seem to find a good time to buy food or the boba I was craving all day, but I survived on the food I brought with me, filled my notebook with notes from smart authors on great panels, and felt re-inspired about the WIP I’ve been alternately loving and struggling with.

Here’s a rundown of the talks I went to. (Apologies for blurry photos–sometimes I was sitting pretty far back!)

First up, at 10am, was the Morning Keynote on the Job of Fantasy, with Tamora Pierce and Tomi Adeyemi, moderated by Kami Garcia.

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At 11am was a Tricks of the Trade panel on Facing the Fear of Failure, with Rachel Hawkins (mod), Alexandra Bracken, Julie Buxbaum, E. Lockhart, Megan Miranda, and Randy Ribay.

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At 12pm was another Tricks of the Trade Panel, on Practical Tips to Getting Published, with Seth Fishman (mod), Sarah Burnes, Dhonielle Clayton, Hilary Pecheone, Erin Stein, and Joanna Volpe.

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At 1pm was Sorry Not Sorry–Unapologetically Ambitious Girls, with Maurene Goo (mod), Laurie Devore, Marie Lu, Richelle Mead, Lauren Oliver, and Tamora Pierce.

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At 2pm was Future Fictions, with Brendan Reichs (mod), Rhoda Belleza, Marie Lu, Neal Shusterman, Christine Thomson, and Claudia Gray.

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At 3pm was (Super) Power Players, with Margaret Stohl (mod), Tomi Adeyemi, Melissa de la Cruz, Tahereh Mafi, Marissa Meyer, and Ransom Riggs.

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And, finally, at 4pm I caught (most of) the Afternoon Keynote on Power Fantasies, with Veronica Roth and Sabaa Tahir.

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I had to leave early due to another committment, and missed a 5pm on Thrillers, which I was super bummed about (I was hoping it would be helpful for my current WIP), but ah well. Had to happen.

I was completely wiped out after such a full day, and yet I only managed to participate in a fraction of the day’s activities. YALLWEST is huge, people. Here is the full schedule: https://www.yallwest.com/2018-schedule/.

I was going to share some highlights from the talks, but I have to wrap this up for now. The top points standing out for me without looking back at my notes were about knowing why you want to write a book and what you have to say, and also about ambitious women and female rage.

Okay, all for now. Good night!

 

 

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Laini Taylor’s Not for Robots

I’m reading Laini Taylor’s site on writing, Not for Robots, for the first time and it is exactly what I needed right now. Today. This moment.

Here you go, in case you need it, too: http://notforrobots.blogspot.com

 

 

Writing Links

A few writing-related links I’ve enjoyed recently (and you might, too!):

Sarah Waters’ Ten Rules for Writing Fiction at Aerogramme

I prefer to think of articles like these as containing advice rather than rules, but either way I really liked this one. And I love Sarah Waters’ books. I especially like her point that “novels are for readers.” But my favorite point is “don’t panic” — I’m in the middle of a novel draft right now and can definitely use that reminder.

Anna Pitoniak’s What Being an Editor Taught Me About Writing at Lit Hub

This whole post was great. I enjoyed Anna Pitoniak’s discussion of what she calls “writerly throat-clearing.” I do a lot of this in my rough drafts and can always use a good reminder to cut all of that out in revisions.

Writing Excuses Podcast Episode 10.13: Where is My Story Going?

I love this podcast. I listened to this episode the other night while hanging up wet laundry and I’m just tired enough that I can hardly remember what it was about now, but it was infinitely more interesting than hanging up laundry to dry. I think they talked about “the long middle” and genre, among other things.