YALLFest is a huge young adult- and middle-grade book festival in Charleston, SC, and it kicked off yesterday with YALLCRAWL. Seventeen authors were stationed at various places around Charleston for signings. Fans could gather up their books, grab a map and walk around the city meeting their favorite authors.
With map in hand, we joined the crowd of giddy fans – so what did we learn during YALLCRAWL?
Charleston has freakishly amazing weather.
It’s the middle of November, but Charleston had crisp blue skies and temperatures in the mid-seventies – not too cold, not too hot, just right, as Goldilocks would say. And not a raindrop to be seen, which was perfect for fans with their arms loaded with books.
YALLFest authors are like rock stars.
The sidewalks were packed with wall-to-wall fans on the hunt for their favorite authors. There might not have been any squealing when a big name was spotted, but there was definitely a lot of giggling and jumping up and down.
Fans are serious about their books.
Fans will sit on the floor for HOURS to get a book signed by their fav.
Fans showed up super early for the signing with Richelle Mead and Leigh Bardugo, and the line soon wound around the edges of the library and through the lobby.
YALLFest authors are amazingly nice.
Many of the fans are as excited to meet the authors as they would be to meet members of a certain boy band, and the authors seem just as excited to interact with the fans. They were warm, welcoming and had real conversations rather than just dashing off signatures.
They’re also really funny.
Laughter echoed from every signing table, and the authors were more than happy to act a little silly, like Danielle Paige, author of the "Dorothy Must Die" series.
Proper footwear is a must.
There was a lot of walking involved. And those of us who made less-than-wise shoe choices are now regretting it.