Thursday, November 12th 2015
You can't go to Charleston without actually visiting something in the area. The place is filled with history. And I love history. This year we visited Magnolia Plantation and Gardens. We didn't do the house tour, just the gardens and a train tour. And it was so much fun. It was me, two of my sisters, and one of our nephews. If you ever go to Charleston, I highly recommend you stop by this beautiful plantation. There is a lot of history to be learned and I'm looking forward to reading more about the history of the family and the plantation and gardens in the future.
Friday, November 13th 2015
Friday morning we spent some time visiting another historic site in Charleston: Fort Moultrie. There was a video that shared some of the history of the fort and its roles throughout various wars over the years. It was first used during the American Revolution and was closed short after WWII in 1947. It's another great place to explore and learn. You can wander through the fort and take pictures of the cannons they have on display. My nephew loved it.
By around 12pm we were lined up for the YallCrawl. This is a part of Yallfest that was just introduced last year. Some of the featured authors participate in signings on Friday afternoon before the main events of Yallfest start on Saturday. Brandon Sanderson was among the authors schedule to sign. So we were there three hours in advance of his signing to make sure we were near the front of the line. And it was well worth the wait. Brandon Sanderson was amazing. He chatted with everyone, made jokes, and was just overall the best.
After meeting Brandon Sanderson and having our large collection of books signed, we ventured down to have a few more books signed by Brandon Mull, Soman Chainani, and Elizabeth Wein. That was also a successful adventure. And they were all really nice and interesting. My sister actually met Elizabeth Wein while I was in line for Soman Chainani, but I saw her because they were sitting two feet from each other.
Saturday, November 14th 2015
On Saturday we were up super early to get more books signed. Sanderson was starting his signing at 11, so we got there at 8. And we were the first in line! Leigh Bardugo was signing at 12 at the same location, so I had my sister get in her line. Once I was finished meeting Brandon Sanderson (for the second time!), I took my sister's place and for Leigh Bardugo. And she was just as nice this year as she was last year.
After that one of my sisters and I stood in line for the First In Line Giveaway to try and get some free books (and meet Brandon Sanderson again). We were among the first 50, so we each got a free book by one of the participating authors. She chose Steelheart, since I already owned that I decided to go with Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon. We were also given tote bags which we got signed by all four authors (Brandon Sanderson, Nicola Yoon, E Lockhart, and David Levithan).
After the giveaway we attended a couple of panels that Brandon Sanderson was participating in. They were actually very insightful and gave me some good pointers for my own writing and creativity, which was a great bonus. I had never attended a panel at Yallfest before (aside from a keynote) and was glad I was able to get to a couple this year.
The last event we participated in was the closing Keynote with Brandon Sanderson and Brandon Mull. The two chatted about writing, being friends, what inspires their stories, and general awesomeness. It was definitely one of the highlights of the trip and we all really enjoyed it.
So there is another successful Yallfest behind us. My nephew loved the trip and is looking forward to going again next year. He's even started reading more, so I'm excited to see what happens on our next book festival adventure.