|The Monstrous Glass Building That Is Javits|
Thursday | Book Expo, Day 2Thursday morning, I headed to a coffee shop near Javits for an audiobook narrator/blogger meet-up, hosted by the ever-lovely Karen White, which was an incredible way to meet a great group of audiobook narrators and other bloggers (plus, I finally met Candace of Beth Fish Reads!). After a hefty dose of caffeine, I scooted back over to Javits for lunch with Leah of Books Speak Volumes--we ran into Emily from Books, the Universe and Everything and spent lunch mulling over books (we love them), Book Expo (what we were planning for the rest of the show), and job hunting (it sucks).
|Left: Natalie from Coffee and a Book Chick (photo from Natalie's Instagram feed)|
Right: Leah from Books Speak Volumes
After stopping by the Penguin Random House booth to pick up a copy of Lauren Groff's new book, Fates and Furies, Leah and I wandered the show floor for a bit before ultimately ending up at a "Rapid-Fire Topics" panel, moderated by Jenn Northington of Book Riot, towards the end of the day, which might have been one of the best panels at the show. Each panelist (six in total) had just a few minutes to present their information/ideas/insights on the state of publishing, books, reading, and generally being awesome:
- Kevin Nguyen of Oyster Books on what makes a book popular
- Dhonielle Clayton from We Need Diverse Books on why we really do need diverse books
- Jackson Bird from The Harry Potter Alliance on all the cool shit the Harry Potter alliance is doing in the world of activism
- Katherine Heiny, author of Single, Carefree, Mellow, on all the things she's
- Amanda Nelson of Book Riot on the importance of community guidelines in fostering conversation
- Saeed Jones, BuzzFeed's literary editor, on best practices for Twitter
Friday | Book Expo, Day 3
I had a hell of a time getting myself to Javits on Friday morning; I forgot my badge at my sister-in-law's apartment (in Queens), went back to get it, missed the bus, etc. etc. etc., and wound up deciding I'd just take it slow and miss the morning. For my own sanity, I decided I needed a breakfast sandwich more than I needed more time in the abyss of Javits' basements.
When I finally made it to Javits, I spent a few minutes wandering, most notably to check out the Out of Print booth (where I bought some emergency socks to prevent the newly-formed blisters my shoes were giving me) and check out the Penguin book truck.
Then I got to meet my editor at Shelf Awareness, the incredible Marilyn Dahl, in person for the first time (after years of emailing across the country; the Shelf is based in Seattle), and then headed out for lunch with one of my all-time favorite publishing folks, Farin. After lunch, I headed back to Javits (one last time) for my first visit to the Book Expo Speed-Dating event, which was a whirlwind of bookish madness. Not all tables had the same books, so there were some titles I was particularly eager to hear publishers pitch that I didn't actually get to hear about--but it was still a really interesting (and efficient!) way to learn about a lot of books in a small amount of time. And, bonus, I was seated at the same table as Jenn from Jenn's Bookshelves, so I finally got to meet her in real life.
|From left to right: Emily from Books, the Universe, and Everything; Sarah from Sarah's Book Shelves; Leah from Books Speak Volumes; me; ramen & beer at Gotham West Market.|
After the speed-dating event, Leah, Emily, and Sarah of Sarah's Book Shelves and I headed out to grab a cup of coffee. Meeting other book people is my hands-down favorite part of BEA each year, and having a whole group together was even more fun.
From there, I headed to Gotham West Market for dinner with Rachel from Book Riot, where one bowl of ramen turned into one bowl of ramen and beer and ice cream and hours of conversation.
Because really? Book people are the best people.
Later this week: Cataloging all the exciting books from the show.