Event Recap: YANovCon 2020
Now in its 5th year, YANovCon (hosted by the San Mateo County Library system) continues to be a premiere youth-focused reading festival located in the Bay Area. This year, 18 YA and middle grade authors, ranging from local and new-to-us plus debut and seasoned authors alike, gathered for a full day of activities.
The event opens annually with the winners from the student short story contest and is followed by an issues panel, focused on a current topic the youth community chooses. This year’s topic included discussion of mental health and the pressures of being a teen today.
The bulk of the day is divided into two sets of panels in topics such as mental health, beyond our world (SFF), LGBTQ+ communities, writing, and many other topics. Participants also get to speed date, which is a small group setting where you have a chance to chat with the authors, and finish with a signing!
I moderated my first panel, a mix of authors who write a little of everything: fantasy, scifi, dystopian and murder mystery. Shannon Price, Kalyn Josephson, and Parker Peevyhouse, local authors, joined Scott Reintgen and Gretchen McNeil to speak about their stories.
Christy, who is the sole attendee to have attended all 5 years, moderated the Mental Health panel with Kalyn Josephson, Gloria Chao, Katie Henry and Doogie Horner. You would think a mental health panel would be all seriousness, but there are heartfelt and humorous moments in their stories.
Additional panels were moderated by authors and local blogger, Enna (@ennareads).
Books Inc supplies the books for the day, in case you did not bring your own or you later decide to pick a few extras up (we did!).
If you are a Bay Area local, be sure you add YANovCon to your schedule – it’ll be back January 30th, 2021!!