I knew this would be my last year attending BEA so I decided to make the most of it (it's moving to Chicago next year). First up, they had a promotion code for $25.00 off your first Uber ride, so I gave that a shot and it worked out really well - not only did I get the the Javits Center early for once, but it turned out to be a free ride. Naturally, I took that to be a good omen for the rest of BEA - and I think it was.
First off, I met my friend Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews. Our blogs couldn't be more different, but it goes to show you what a great community bloggers are. We were both attending the BEA Bloggers Conference, so we started off with some of the provided breakfast, followed by the keynote speakers. While that was happening, we invited Daniel Saugar who blogs YA fiction at The Couch Potatoes Digest (twitter @dsaugar9 and who will also be posting his BEA recap) to join us.
Most of the sessions were about monetizing and branding your blog, both things I don't want to do, but they were interesting. At lunch, I ran into Charlotte of Charlotte's Library, who I have known for about 5 years now. For those who may not know, Charlotte blogs about middle grade science fiction and fantasy book, and does a great roundup of reviews and other news on Sundays. Charlotte was handing out cards informing bloggers about the 2015 KidLitCon (kidlotosphere conference), which will be held on October 9th and 10th this year at the Hyatt Place Harbor East in Baltimore, MD. More information can be found HERE.
After lunch, however, the exhibit floor opened up for the afternoon, which they never did before. Needless to day, Elizabeth, Daniel and I headed up there. So, for 2 1/2 days, we lugged books around the Javits Center, stood on long lines and walked away with clutching our treasures and grinning to beat the band.
On Friday, I went to the Children's Book and Author Breakfast with Nathan Lane, Oliver Jeffers, Rainbow Rowell, and James Patterson. Each spoke about their work, their passion for what they do and did you know the it was James Patterson who coined the term "Toy-R-Us Kid" - authors are always full of fun surprises. I did get a chance to tell Rainbow Rowell about my Kiddo writing fan fiction at fanfic.net when she was younger and how much she loved reading Fangirl because of it.
After breakfast, it was on to the exhibit floor for the rest of the day. I had decided to be more discriminating in the books I thought I might like and since the amount of swag available goes down more and more every year, swag for me was at an all time low, which was fine.
So what books did I bring home with me? Most of them are for my other blog, Randomly Reading, but I thought I would share them here anyway.
The Harry Potter book you see is only a preview of the new illustrated edition coming out in the fall. The blue book is Juneteenth for Mazie by Floyd Cooper, who I was very excited to meet. And of course I have to get Mike Curato's new book, Little Elliot Big Family.
These are the middle grade and YA books I was excited about, especially Lois Lane: Fallout by Gwenda Bond. I read an awful lot of Lois Lane comics as a kid, so couldn't resist this one. And even though I have already readGone Crazy in Alabama by Rita Williams-Garcia, I loved meeting her and getting a signed copy (and yes, I did gush). But I had already run into Rita the day before when I got a copy of the new Guys Read: Terrifying Tales, edited by Jon Scieszka, and signed by Jon, Michael Buckley, R.L. Stine, and Rita Williams-Garcia, among others.
There are the books I picked up for this blog. Not quite as many as for my other blog, but enough. I was very excited to meet M.T. Anderson, whom I have always enjoyed reading, and get a signed copy of Symphony for the City of the Dead, a YA nonfiction work about the Siege of Leningrad. And who could resist the new Tim Wynn-Jones book, The Emperor of Any Place. I'm looking forward to reading and reviewing all these new books.
This is my swag (like I said, not much. I'm not a big Disney fan, but I have Diane Muldrow's other Everything I Need to Know, so I decided to see about this one, too. And they are a nice walk down the Little Golden Books memory lane (I stll have my original Pokey Little Puppy book). The gold box on top of that pile is 15 Thank You cards in 5 languages. The book at the bottom is the new Geraldine Brooks novel, The Secret Chord. I've always enjoyed her historical fiction so much. I also have a copy of Suzan-Lori Parks play Father Comes Home from the Wars. I saw an excellent production of it performed at the Public Theater this past winter and thought I might like to read it, as well. I was happy to find that Suzan-Lori Parks also thought the play was excellently produced.
So that was my Be a 2015 experience and I have lots of reading material for the coming months. It was fun, but tiring and now I will be happy to get back to my regular blogging routine. If you went to BEA, I would love to hear what you did, and if you participated in Armchair BEA, I would like to know how that went, expecially since that's the BEA for me next year.
(This was originally posted on my other blog, Randomly Reading, so if you follow both blogs, I apoligize for the duplicate posts in advance.)