YALL Fest 2018

Betsey Geier

The Young Adult (YA) fiction genre is aimed towards teens and tweens, but young professionals and event older adults are turning to YA for an escape. Technically, YA books are aimed to those between the ages of 12 and 18 and the protagonist should fall within that age group as well.

Another key component in the YA genre is the high emotional stakes. Everyone remembers how every moment of middle and high school was either the best or the worst moment ever. Hormones contribute to the emotional rollercoaster, but this is also a time when kids experience personal growth.

This focus on emotion is one of the reasons why those who read but fall outside of the 12-18 age range will pick up a YA novel. According to The Atlantic, 55% of today’s YA readers are adults.


Content is about storytelling. Whether it’s television, film, essays, non-fiction, fiction, or event advertising, it’s the story that holds your attention. YA stories follow a protagonist as he or she goes on a journey towards maturity. They also tend to fall into genre-fiction with adventure stories taking place in fantastical lands.

This weekend, I’ll be falling into the 55% of adult readers who love YA lit. I’ll be attending several of the Saturday afternoon panels at YALL Fest with some of my favorite authors like Jenny Han (To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before) and James Patterson (My favorite? Maximum Ride).

Follow along on the @charlestongrit instagram feed for a play-by-play of my day in book-nerd heaven. Below is the schedule I’m hoping to follow. If you see me, say hi, and I’ll interview you for the ‘gram.

10 a.m. Opening Keynote with Jenny Han and Morgan Maton

11 a.m. Trapped Girls

12 p.m. Twists and Turns

1 p.m. Spotlight on James Patterson

2 p.m. A Really Frank Discussion of Death and Murder

3 p.m. Friendmance

4 p.m. Myth Making

5 p.m. Closing Keynote