Being organised for YALC is fairly important to making sure you see every panel you want to attend, meeting your favourite authors and getting all your books signed. Last year was the first year I was properly organised and for me, it worked incredibly well. It is fairly simple but quite effective and this year I’ve been trying to think of ways to improve it but genuinely, it’s a good system that I’m absolutely doing again this year and I’ve already began the organisation process.
So to help myself become more organised, I created three separate notes on the Notes app on my phone, each note representing the days of the con (Friday, Saturday and Sunday). I then pulled up the YALC site which has the programme for the weekend on it (you can find the 2019 programme here). The programme is split into Friday, Saturday and Sunday so using these, I then wrote on each note which author’s I wanted to see, including the times.
As you can see from the note to the left, I wrote in the books I wanted to take by each author. This is really helpful for in the evenings as it means I can organise myself really quickly for the next day rather than stressing or potentially forgetting which books I need to take with me.
I then wrote down the Panels that I wanted to attend. This year, I’m not sure I’ll be attending that many panels, if any at all, as I personally prefer browsing the stands and speaking with friends, but who knows!
Now onto the next section, ARCs. This isn’t a section that you can do every year at YALC. Last year I was able to do this thanks to this blog post put together by some fantastic bloggers (Check out Jenniely’s blog for it this year). I can’t even explain how helpful it was to have this available to us prior to the weekend. Having this list meant that I was able to get even more organised as I could make sure I was where I needed to be for when ARCs went out, or for when raffles and competitions were going on.
Thanks to the blog post, I was able to research many of the books that were being given out prior to the event so I could make sure I was only really going to the books I wanted. In 2017, I came back with so much stuff that I genuinely struggled to get it all home so I wanted to be more selective in 2018. I’m definitely going to be even more selective this year and make sure I only pick up books that I really want or I know I will definitely be interested in and pick up.
When organising myself for the ARC drops, I made sure to include the times, the booths and the book so that I was fully prepared. I actually copied all the information about the books I wanted from the blog post onto one big note and then separated that one out onto my individual day posts.
As well as ARCs on the blog list, there was also mentions of samplers that were going out. I’m not sure if I’ll be adding this section in for 2019 as I don’t really read samplers that often. They are nice to have and can be really useful if you’re unsure whether to buy a book and want a taster for it, but I do find that I end up picking them up and then not reading them and they do take up space in my case which I could be using for more books. But, just because I don’t really want to pick up samplers this year, that doesn’t mean that you can’t see how I organised for them last year.
As you can see for last year, I had a separate section for samplers and I did end up picking up quite a few. I mean, this sampler list is just from Friday. I do believe I picked up all the samplers on this list and (contrary to what I said earlier), I did actually read quite a few of them.
Throughout the weekend, you’ll probably pick up all of the samplers that you want, but it can be nice to spread them out which is what I did over the weekend so that I wasn’t carrying a tonne of samplers round on just one day.
As you can see at the bottom of this picture, there is a heading for Finished Copies and that’s because My Kinda Book were doing a giveaway for Three Dark Crowns which I was able to get a copy of. It’s useful to note down the times of when finished copies are being giveaway.
As well as the ‘Finished Copies’ heading, last year I also had a heading for ‘Other’. This is because My Kinda Book had a small event where you could have your lips done in a funky design and they were giving away cupcakes. If you know me, you’ll know I’m a sucker for just food in general, especially book themed food so I just had to note that down as something that was happening.
So that’s how I organised myself last year. This year, I am organising myself fairly similarly. I am aware that another YALC 2019 Ultimate Guide shall be going up within the week of YALC, so once that is up, my notes for each day will absolutely be updated to include any ARCs, samplers or other things going on.
To the left is what my Notes for each day currently look like. As you can see, I’ve separated out which books I need to take from the authors just because I do have multiples for some authors so it’s easier to look at it in a list like this. Other than that, my organisation system has stayed the same as last years.
I really hope that you’ll find this useful is you’re struggling to get organised for YALC. There’s still plenty of time to get organised and please feel free to use this system. It’s so handy as everything is on your phone which you’ll need anyway for any tweets that the publishers put out about any giveaways!
Don’t forget to check out my post from last week where I share my YALC top tips!