Sunday, July 20, 2014

Charlotte's experience at YALC

On the 12th July I went to the Young Adult Literature Convention, which was a part of London Film and Comic Con. YALC is the first convention I've been to, and here is where I shall relay my experience to you all!

CROWDS

I bought my tickets for the event in advance- and let's just say that that was most definitely the best thing to do for this event as I only(!) had to queue for one and a half hours as opposed to however long it must have taken for people buying tickets on the door, where the queue seemed to stretch on for miles!

Personally, I think that the place where the convention was held (Earl's Court, London) was far too small for
the sheer numbers of people that they were letting in- until I had managed to push through the main crowd as part of LFCC, I couldn't see for people and it was extremely cramped- there was no way you could do anything except push to find air. To be honest, the venue really wasn't an appropriate size- they either needed to limit the number of people going in or just find a bigger venue.

LFCC

Though I spent the majority of my day in the Book Zone, I did spend some time wandering through LFCC. There were seemingly hundreds of stalls selling everything from film script reprints to £1 comics to bobble head Game Of Thrones characters.

I think that if I was to return to the convention another year, I would definitely go for at least the full weekend if not the Friday as well. Too much went on in too little time for me to cram it all in on the one day!

                  my £1 comics

FREE STUFF

What I really loved about YALC was the sheer amount of free stuff available- LFCC had famous film and TV stars which costed at least £15 a signature, but in YALC you could get a signature and a photo for no cost at all. In addition to signatures, a whole section of YALC was dedicated to tables that were completely covered in freebies including wristbands, badges, bookmarks, book samples, and I even received a free book! I picked up one-or more- of everything, and I really appreciate all of the free things that they had on offer as it has opened me up to so many new YA books that I would like to try as a result. Plus, I get show off my love for such novels through wearing my new wristbands and badges!!

free wristbands
             
SIGNING

I was lucky enough to go to Rainbow Rowell's book signing and have the chance to meet her. As she was one of the most popular authors at YALC, I started queueing an hour and a half beforehand; I was near the front of the queue, and by the time I got to her the queue was extremely long, so it was definitely a good idea to get there early. I really loved meeting Rainbow, she was super lovely and signed my new collector's edition of Fangirl while we chatted about her nails (painted like the new Landline cover!).

my signed collector's edition of Fangirl


me with Rainbow!

SCHEDULE

Before going to YALC, I studied their schedule released earlier and composed a schedule of my own. Unfortunately, there ended up being no point whatsoever in doing that as I hardly got to do any of the things I had planned on doing! This was mainly due to the fact that though I arrived at YALC fairly early and long before any of the workshops and talks I wanted to do started, the tickets and places for either were gone already. I would have loved to have been able to go to the Dystopia and Superfans events, but there were no places left for me to go. Hopefully if I return next year I'll be in with a chance of attending them!

However, I was not overly disappointed at being unable to attend those events as YALC had enough going on (such as badge-making and a few other small activities) that I still had plenty to do.


COSPLAY

As this was the first convention that I've ever been to, it was also the first chance I've had at cosplaying. For those of you that may not know what cosplaying is, cosplay in simple terms is when you dress up in costume as a character of your choice, whether they're from your favourite book, film, anime, or something else entirely.
the back of a Thor cosplay
For YALC I decided to do a simple first cosplay and dress up as Izzy Lightwood, the Shadowhunter from Cassandra Clare's The Mortal Instruments series. I wore black skinny jeans, a tight black top, black platform shoes, and I covered my arms in hand-drawn Sharpie runes. I loved my outfit as it was super comfortable- even the shoes, considering I was on my feet and walking around all day. What I thought was super cool was seeing other people there that were dressed as Shadowhunters like I was, and we all talked to each other and exchanged compliments over what each other was wearing!

my cosplay

The cosplays I saw during the day ranged from simple like mine to insane and extraordinary. I saw people that must have put hours into preparing their costumes, such as full Iron Man suits and amazing Thor cosplayers who were nearly as pretty as Chris Hemsworth himself. I also saw a Castiel with fantastic wings!

the back of an Iron Man cosplay
I love how there were no restrictions over what you could wear at the convention, and I feel that it brought everyone together through a mutual love of film, TV, and literature.

In conclusion, I really really loved my day at the convention- and though it was crowded, not well organised, and tiring, the excitement and everything else made up for it and I really hope to return next year.

-CHARLOTTE


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7 comments:

  1. I completely agree with everything you've put, especially about the crowds. Personally, I think it should have been tickets bought in advance only, as there were far too many people (in my opinion). A bigger venue, and perhaps even holding the event for longer than 3 days could have sorted this problem out, too. I ended up not going back on the Sunday because just the thought of the heat and the crowds made me feel like crying, and I am annoyed that these things put me off (although I will say, the difference in the queues outside at 10:30 on Sunday was astounding; hardly anyone was there).

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  2. I love hearing about others' conference experiences! I didn't get to go, but I love your cosplay!

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  3. Me too! That's a shame, maybe next year? and thank you! :)

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  4. I agree- that would definitely have solved the majority of crowding problems. Sorry to hear you didn't go back on the Sunday, your reasons are are definitely truthful as it was so hot and so crowded. I hope you can go for more than that next year if they sort out all the problems!

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  5. If you want some reviews of the panels on Saturday and Sunday, I did two blogs myself. Nice round up. It's interesting to hear what other people got out of the weekend.

    Saturday's Blog: http://rantsofabitternortherner.blogspot.co.uk/2014/07/the-first-ever-young-adult-literature.html

    Sunday's Blog: http://rantsofabitternortherner.blogspot.co.uk/2014/07/day-2-of-yalc-sex-crossover-and-heroines.html

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  6. Whoa, YALC sounds like so much fun! I hope I'll have the chance to go sometime in the future. Glad to hear you had a great time!

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  7. I love your cosplay! I also hope to go next year if there is one because it was so much fun and I really did love it. The bookish atmosphere was the best thing for me!

    Loved reading this post, Charlotte! x

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