On Saturday 5th of May, I went to the Sydney Writers’ Festival’s All Day YA event.

In the early hours of the morning I made the trip up to Sydney from Canberra with two other book lovers and bloggers. While it was impossible to attend all ten events, I was rivetted and enriched by what I did see and hear. 

From the Sidelines

From the Sidelines was all about diversity and tokenism within YA novels. On this panel was Patrick Ness who is well known for his books the Chaos Walking trilogy, A Monster Calls and ReleaseSarah Ayoub, author of The Yearbook Committee and Hate is Such a Strong Word; and Tamar Chnorhokian, author of The Diet Starts on Monday.

Burn the Burn Book: Real Girls in YA

This panel asked the question: what does it mean to be a ‘real’ girl? Authors Alicia Tuckerman, Rebecca Lim, Jenna Guillaume and Tara Eglington talked about realistic female characters and breaking stereotypes.

Alicia Tuckerman is the debut author of If I Tell You.

Rebecca Lim is an illustrator and the author of eighteen books. Her latest novel, Harley Spark and the Relic of the Blue Dragon, will be published in August 2018.

Jenna Guillaume is an editor for BuzzFeed Australia and her debut Young Adult novel Maisie is set to be released next year.

Tara Eglington is the author of three Young Adult novels: How to Keep a Boy from Kissing You, How to Convince a Boy to Kiss You and My Best Friend is a Goddess.

Architects of New Worlds

The discussion in this panel was about how fantasy and science fiction allows authors to create worlds that inspire the imagination. The authors in this discussion included Jay Kristoff, Jesse Andres, Claire G Coleman and Cally Black. They talked about the process of creating new worlds and how they relate to today’s society.

Jay Kristoff is bestselling author of The Nevernight Chronicles, The Lotus War, co-author of the Illuminae Files and his new novel has just been released, Lifel1k3.

Jesse Andrews is the author of Me and Earl and the Dying Girl and his new novel Munmun.

Claire G Coleman is the debut author of Terra Nullius.

Cally Black is the author of science fiction thriller, In The Dark Spaces.

The last event of the day was TeenCon 2018, which was hosted by Will Kostakis. This event involved various publishers highlighting what books they are most excited about at the moment and a sneak peek into what new releases they are to be releasing this year.

Exciting books already released:


Titles coming soon:

Out of all these books, I am most excited for Imposters by Scott Westerfeld as I loved his other series, Uglies, which is set in the same world. Although honorable mention must go to both The Rift and Shadow of the Fox as they sound very interesting as well!

I had a wonderful time at All Day YA and would definitely go back again next year! The panels were wonderful and offered a great insight into the writing process as well as introducing me to authors I haven’t read before. TeenCon 2018 was definitely the most fun and I loved learning about all the exciting books to come!