YALLWest 2015 Highlights!

As many of you know from our twitter gushing, we just got back from YALLWest 2015! This was the first year for the YA book festival here on the west coast, and it was PHENOMENAL!

Here are the top ten highlights:

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1.) Margaret “Margie” Stohl was declared Mayor of Santa Monica, an official post complete with mayoral sash and hat. The mayor of Santa Monica himself made the declaration.

2.) Elizabeth got to meet Veronica Roth and get her book signed. It only took a two hour wait in line.   yallwest4



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3.) Two super honest panels on struggles with depression, anxiety, ADHD, and OCD.

QOTD 1: “I am a #1 New York Times bestselling train wreck – Margaret Stohl

QOTD 2: “I really, fully believe that no one is truly broken.” – Lauren Oliver

QOTD 3: “There is a huge correlation between ADHD, OCD, anxiety, and depression and being highly creative.” – Kami Garcia

QOTD 4: “How do I get through the day? You mean besides coffee and lots of social media?” – Richelle Mead

QOTD 5: “Why don’t you talk to yourself the way you would lovingly talk to your friend?” – Lauren Oliver

Lauren Oliver also suggested drawing a picture of the “inner voice” that tears you down and ripping it up! Two of the authors (Jennifer Nibett and Neil Shusterman) wrote books inspired by those they know with mental illness.


4.) Elizabeth winning non-beer-pong, and receiving an ARC of Illuminae by Annie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff as her prize! This book is a series of “hacked” government documents. I can’t wait to read it!

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5.) Shannon Hale being Shannon Hale.

QOTD 6: “I’ve never been asked about a strong male character.” – Shannon Hale (On “Strong Female Characters, Ugh!!”)

QOTD 7: “We were bullied. We were awkward and awful. And that’s how we as writers get our revenge- in the characters we write.” – Shannon Hale

QOTD 8: “There needs to be a lot of different stories, because there are a lot of different readers.” – Shannon Hale

Shannon Hale in her “Vanna White” dress.


6.) Cupcake hour hosted by Random House! Free cupcakes for the win!

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7.) Lindsey swallowing her fear and asking Lauren Oliver, Stephanie Perkins, Libba Bray, and Kami Garcia for a selfie.

8.) Meeting other book nerds, like our Canadian friends, Risabella Roque and Olivia Gutjahr.(Sadly we did not get a pic! Next time!)


9.) The awesome FREE photo booth on Sunday… with props!
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10.) Lots of laughter and shenanigans!

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