Pre-BEA: Bloggers Conference
This year, the Bloggers Conference was actually one of my highlights of the whole convention! I was a speaker with Jeremy West at the Design 101 panel.. and it was amazing! Just the idea of speaking at the conference was a huge honour and I was INCREDIBLY impressed and surprised with how many people showed up! The room was packed. There were easily 100 people there!
I attended the conference last year and had some ideas of how it could have been improved, so when I was invited to speak, I really tried to keep those ideas in mind and implement them in the Design 101 panel. I think/hope I was successful, because a lot of people have told me that they loved the panel! That’s the best feeling in the world!! When the panel concluded, I had tens of people approach me at the table to say hi, introduce themselves, ask for a business card, and ask me to send them the PowerPoint slides. It was just amazing to see so many people enjoy the panel, approach me, and see some faces I recognized from the blogosphere.
Then I attended two other sessions: Blogging and the Law, and How Bloggers Have Changed the Game. I walked out of the latter one. 🙁
Although the rest of BEA was amazing, that panel and feeling was pretty hard to beat. 😉 Also, this was by far the day that I met the most bloggers!
I snagged a couple books at the end of the conference:
People I met:
(just a small portion that immediately come to mind!)
- Deniz from Closet Geek Books
- Heather from Heather Hearts Books
- Tabitha from Not Yet Read
- Nimue from Endlessly Bookish
- Meredith from Pandora’s Books
- Danny from Bewitched Bookworms
- Jenna from Coffee, Books, & Me
- Steph from Cuddlebuggery
Thursday: BEA Day 1
Thursday was actually a pretty laid-back day for me. I had a few things I wanted, but not a ton. I picked up a few galleys in the morning that were just sitting on the floor, including: I’ll Give You the Sun and Belzhar. After that, I headed to the YA Buzz panel for the sole purpose of picking up The Jewel. Of course, halfway through the panel I realized that HarperCollins had put The Jewel on Edelweiss like two days prior…
After the panel, I made a beeline for the HarlequinTeen signing because I HAD TO FREAKING GET TALON!!!!! I’m so insanely excited for this book! I was very lucky to be near the front of the line because that line was gigantic. I never understood why Harlequin only does like one big signing a day with about 5 authors at once. They should spread them out and do one at a time instead…
I actually didn’t even go to the autographing area at all on Thursday! It was all galley drops and in-booth signings for me. 🙂
People I met:
I swear I met a bunch more, but I feel like I’m having a brain fart right now…
Friday: BEA Day 2
Friday consisted of me entering the exhibit hall at 9am and stopping by at a few galley drops as I made my way to the autographing area. I planned on lining up for Heir of Fire immediately, even though the signing wasn’t for two hours (11am). I ended up being #19 in line, which was pretty close to the front! I imagine there were at least 200-300 people in line by 11:00.. it was insane. The line snaked all the way around the autographing area, probably multiple times.
After that, I had a pretty leisurely day. I went to the signing of Since You’ve Been Gone, then wandered around a bit. I had like two hours to kill before the next signing I wanted to go to: The Fine Art of Pretending. I mostly passed the time by having a leisurely lunch and finishing The Jewel. I read by myself in a corner on the floor #weirdo #antisocial
People I met:
- Jamie from The Perpetual Page-Turner
- Debby from Snuggly Oranges
- Octavia from Read, Sleep, Repeat
- Jenna from Jenna Does books
- Jen from Library of a Book Witch
- Jennifer from Live to Read, Love to Read — We had the BEST MOMENT EVER! I was on the escalator going up, she was across from me on the escalator going down. As we pass each other, she just shouts, “Omg Ashley from Nose Graze! I love your blog!” That was like the highlight of my day because it was such a funny moment. We couldn’t even stop and chat because we were going opposite directions!
Heir of Fire!
Just before bed…
I put on my nerd socks, cuddled up in bed, and read Heir of Fire with some M&Ms 😉
Saturday: BEA Day 3
Saturday. The day of crazy. X_X
First thing, I went to the Scholastic breakfast with Cassandra Clare, Holly Black, and Maggie Stiefvater. I’m glad they fed us because I was hungry! I only knew like two bloggers there so I was kind of awkwardly trying to weasel my way into the little groups. I met all three authors and had them sign my cool looking “Scholastic Backstage Pass”.
After that, I wanted to go to the Daisy Whitney signing for The Fire Artist. I made my way across the exhibit hall and eventually crossed into BookCon territory. And oh my god X_X It was packed wall-to-wall with people! It takes about 15 extra minutes to walk from one side to the other, just because there were RIVERS of people and you just had to go with the flow (when it wasn’t a complete standstill, that is).
As soon as I got The Fire Artist signed, I high tailed it out of there. I am sad I didn’t get to say goodbye to some bloggers, but it was so crowded and I just wanted to bail as quickly as possible! Luckily I caught a cab the second I stepped outside the Javits.
But the highlight of my day? Coming back from the hotel and seeing this:
Over the past few days I’d been lining my books up on the hotel room desk.. and today, the cleaning staff decided to respond by inserting a Trump SoHo hotel bookmark into my current read and laying 5 more hotel bookmarks on the desk. TOO CUTE!
People I met:
Final BEA Book Haul
The Jewel is missing from this picture because I ended up giving it away after I finished reading it.
If I look tired, sleep-deprived, and jet-lagged it’s because I am! Bleh. 😛 What a day to be vlogging…
This year vs last year
Last year felt like RUN RUN RUN! I had so many books I wanted and was constantly running from one place to the next. Then I went home with like 35 books.
This year I felt like there were only 3 books I REALLY wanted, and I didn’t really care if I got the others that I “sort of” wanted or not. As a result, I was so much more laid back at BEA. I wasn’t running from one place to another; I was just casually strolling down the aisles. That also meant I probably left earlier every single day of BEA. And in the end, I came home with fewer books (about 20), but I’m very okay with that. 🙂
I also felt like there were fewer new releases at BEA this year. There were a lot of authors signing old books. Like, Libba Bray was signing The Diviners, which she also signed last year; Alexandra Bracken was signing Never Fade, which she also signed last year; they gave away paperbacks of The Bone Season, but they gave away ARCs of the same book last year; and there were a few others that followed the same pattern.
A note on getting taxis
I’ve read a lot of posts that say “good luck getting a taxi at the Javits center”. And honestly, it’s not that bad. You just have to walk about 30 seconds outside Javis. Do not try lining up at the Javits taxi rack. Taxis DO NOT PULL INTO JAVITS in the afternoon. They just don’t. However, if you walk 30 seconds up to the street, you can get a taxi there in less than a minute. The longest I ever had to wait for one was about 2 minutes. Just walk up a ways until you find a spot where a taxi can see you and easily pull over, then wait. Tons of taxis drive by and you’ll catch one pretty quickly.