SE-YA [at the] Book Festival 2017

SE-YA Book Festival Trailer

Abby McDaniel, guest reporter

Two years ago, the SE-YA (Southeastern Young Adult) book festival was just a dream shared by four Rutherford County Librarians. This year, it’s an event that will host thousands of book lovers from across the Southeast.

Taking inspiration from a Charleston- based book festival, YallFest, Barbara Collie, Liz Hicks, Marcie Leeman, and Erin Alvarado set out to encourage and develop literacy in young adults by connecting them with their authors.

“When we bring one author to our school, it creates a ripple effect. Students become more interested in reading and the writing process,” said Barbara Collie, librarian at Stewarts Creek High School. “If one author could do that in one school, what would happen if we could get multiple authors and lots and lots of students together in a place?”

The SE-YA book festival is an event takes place March 10th and 11th on the MTSU campus. Especially planned to bring students closer to reading through author panels, writing panels, and book signings, the SE-YA attendees have the opportunity to meet and ask questions with young adult authors of all genres.

Katelyn Watson, a senior at Blackman, attended last year’s festival with other book club students.

“My favorite thing about SE-YA was meeting the authors and talking with them about their books, getting them to sign my novels, and going on a little shopping spree in the bookstore. Overall, it was a fun and memorable experience that I am looking forward to this year as well,” stated Watson.

The festival has expanded the number of authors this year as well, with some returning authors and many new ones.

Some of the authors who will be attending are C.J. Redwine, Tracy Barrett, and Laurel Snyder, who have all earned Kirkus awards for their work.

“This is the second year of the festival, so we’re expecting bigger and better things,” said Misti Jenkins, BHS librarian.

Last year’s attendance for the entire festival was around 2,000. This year, they have just that many students signed up for the first day alone.

Saturday’s events are open to the public. Just follow the signs on campus!

Follow this link for the schedule: SE-YA Book Festival 2017 Schedule.