Welcome to a new feature that will be running every Tuesday for the month of May….
Together, we all arrived (Heather, Pushy, and Danny) at JFK to take a cab to the hotel, After the initial squee and hugging fest (we haven’t seen each other in a year), we settled in to discover our hotel. Our first task was to get to Javits Center and get our Badges. I’m not kidding, but seeing already the big sign – was… AWESOME!We are here, we are finally here and it’s truly happening!
Getting the Badges which was highly unspectacular we went to meet a blogger I contacted before. I read her blog, saw that she’s going to be a BEA and so we decided it would be awesome to meet before the whole shenanigans start. Best.Decision.Ever. So, Heather, Pushy, and I met up with Jenny from Supernatural Snark and her Moms (MIL and her mom) and… it was instant love! Look at our big grinning faces, seriously – we all wear this big happy grin on our faces! (*Pushy* I can not overstate how absolutely wonderful it is meet your bloggy friends in person. BEA or otherwise, this is a DEFINITE must!)
Heather:We were able to look over Pushy’s super-organized spreadsheet of what signings we needed to hit. This is one thing that is very important if you want to make the most of BEA–Tip: preplanning so you aren’t running from signing to signing without a clear strategy. And this year the Book Blogger Convention is on Monday, so we will be hitting the ground running.
We are going to tell you now an infinite truth: Nothing is going to prepare you for your first day at BEA. Nothing! Not any post like this one can prepare you.. and Pushy and I read tons of posts before. Just getting in the entrance of the hall – you felt the buzz and excitement in all the people surrounding you. Funny enough, this first day we made a discovery that saved us a little sleep on the next days. See, there are a few entrances to enter the fair, among those is the big entrance where 80% are waiting to be let loose..uhm to get in! When we arrived we stopped at a smaller entrance and we were initially confused. In the main hall, people are waiting in line to get in and got there at 8am to get a good place in line.. So we were confused, because we waited together with 5 other people…Tip: Every Entrance gets you inside the holy halls.
When finally the doors opened.. a stream of people nearly ran to get finally inside. I might exaggerate a little here, but it felt like this..(*Pushy* It was insanity!) Our first stop was to get to the main entrance hall, get some bags and just move with the flow of people. That was easier than thinking where to go…
First stop was Harper and there were honest to goodness stacks of book laying on the floor waiting to get grabbed.. Okeeee.. uhm wow.. really?? That was our initial response.. like” We can just grab one? Really” and all the ladies were just nodding. Obviously confused with our ignorance. Tip: Stacks of Books on the Floor? Yes, there are there for you to take 1.. (and I mean 1, don’t go and grab 5, for all your friends, unless you want to make a bad impression of course..)
After the initial adjustment to the craziness around you, just go and make yourself comfortable and.. wander around. We first located boothes we were interested in, we looked for the autographing stage and all the other locations. Then we looked on our schedule on finally decided where to head next, or better who is going where – because although you are there with your friends, you definitely might want to split up to see your own favorite authors! (*Pushy* or characters! Remember, BEA is about FUN as much as it is about anything else. You’ll be able to get your hands on these books eventually. But enjoying the moment is priceless, so HAVE FUN!!!!)
After the first day went with a blur and I seriously cannot remember all we did during the days of the Fair.. But, Wednesday we were slightly more relaxed!
After we saw an announcement that Lauren Kate would be there signing Passion in the morning. I knew I needed to be there! So, again we skipped the big, bad entrance and went through a smaller one and suddenly I was right in front and the first in line. I was grinning stupidly and still grinned when finally the awesome Lauren Kate signed Passion for me. After a little chat about Germany and her books I moved on, happily clutching my book to my chest!
However, we were immensely glad to have Pushy with us – because she’s an organizing supertalent! We shortly discussed which authors will be there today, who wants to see whom and who is going where and where to meet up again .. You get the drill.. One thing I totally didn’t take into account – You have to arrive early (like really an hour before early…) when there is a signing of awesome at Booth.
For instance: at the Harlequin Booth there was a signing with Rachel Vincent, Julie Kagawa, Kady Cross, Cara Lynn Shultz – yes, all those fantastic ladies on one place.. I came there half an hour before the event started and… I was shocked to see the line… I had to search for the end of the line and had to move around 3 corners.. YES .. 3 corners. But good girl that I am , I just went to the end of the line.. Not like so many other girls, that just cut the line.. Just, don’t cut the line – simply don’t! It’s rude, and you’re better than that! Because sadly enough due to so many people not caring to get to the end of the line, I didn’t get any books signed anymore.
See, Publishers have a certain amount of books for each signing, when they are gone, you won’t get any signed book anymore. Begging is not helping, because there are just no books anymore..
Heather: On the second day, you know what to expect and waiting in the long lines is old hat so to speak. Advice: Surprise signings are announced at the booths, so pay attention to the signs–you never know which one of your favorites might pop up! You still end the day exhausted and mentally worn out, but it’s worth it.
Thursday was really lazy and not so crowded anymore, which was really nice! We were just enjoying the winding down atmosphere of the day, when the awesome Melissa (I Swim For Oceans) got invited from Michelle Hodgkin to join her for a coffee – she was super excited and asked if we want to join! OMG, like really?? And then Pushy and me had a coffee with Michelle, Melissa which was incredible and super awesome!!!!! Yep, magic like this really happens people!!!
Heather: Going with three people from the blog, and this year with four of us, allows us to divide and conquer. Several signings going on at the same time? No problem–we just split up and go our separate ways. But again, I really recommend having a firm plan in place before you go. I’m the kind of person who just goes with the flow and just showed up without a plan. This year, I’m mapping it all out ahead of time.
Was BBC – aka Book Blogger Convention, and about this we will talk about in a seperate post!
In the end, it was an overwhelming and incredible experince, we got tons of books signed by awesometastic authors. We made new friends and had one of the best weeks ever! We knew when we were flying home that we would come again … And we will! Soon!
Tip: preplanning so you aren’t running from signing to signing without a clear strategy. (coming in next post!)
Tip: Every Entrance gets you inside the holy halls.
Tip: Stacks of Books on the Floor? Yes, there are there for you to take 1.. (and I mean 1, don’t go and grab 5, for all your friends, unless you want to make a bad impression of course..)
Tip: (if you want to make any friends) Just, don’t cut the line – simply don’t!
Tip: Surprise signings are announced at the booths, so pay attention to the signs–you never know which one of your favorites might pop up!
Ok you still with us? Because seriously that was a crazy long post!
I’m sorry!!!! But … there was so much to tell you and we still haven’t told you anything!
- BBC and Networking at BEA
- Scheduling your visit to BEA
- Authors, Signings and Events
- Answering YOUR Questions!
And since, this all takes place in the wonderful city New York, today we are going to bring NYC 2 U (or to your eReader..) We have a beautiful Skin for your eReader! I have this skin myself in my iPad and I LOVE it deeply!
So, 1 lucky winner gets the NYC Skin for their eReader (note, any eReader GelSkin offers)