Monday, May 23, 2011

BEA 2011: Is The Thrill Gone?

So my trip to New York has gone well so far. Contrary to what you might have expected given my previous posts, I did not curl up in the shadow of the tall buildings and cry myself to sleep. I slapped on my game face and handled my shit thankyouverymuch. I managed to get myself to the Javits Center today with minimal assistance and to get myself back to my friend all on my own! So, patting myself on the back for this small victory.

The day was slow--all set up. I've never been to BEA on the day before. It was weird. This is my third time working at this expo (the only expo I ever have worked at, to be clear). Is the relationship getting old? I felt like I'd see all the posters, all the booths before. And I kept thinking about how there's no way expos like this are going to continue...are they? They are such a big expense for publishers and for what? To keep in touch? Industry professionals can easily do that now thanks to the internet. I don't know. It's seems like maybe a dying tradition. We'll see if the magic returns tomorrow when the authors and, perhaps more importantly, the attendees arrive.

Seriously, if anyone can bring magic to a book expo, it's the unfailingly curious and delightful and friendly librarians. I do so love librarians at BEA.

Tomorrow I get to go to a party. A real industry party. Also the Marketing Director told people today that I'm "in charge of author signings." I'm going to consider that a promotion, you guys. Perhaps I've risen above the rank of common street book pimp. What say you?

Today I also had TWO OPTIONS for what to do after we were done setting up. TWO. And I even bumped into my Sirens friend Faye. Woohoo! I bumped into someone I knew! Other good news: the Midpoint booth where I work is in sight of the Autographing Station. Carrie Jones, Melissa Marr, Laini Taylor are all going to be there. With any luck I'll be able to attend something that involves them. I thought Flux wasn't there this year and I was so bummed but they are, in fact, there. Huzzah! And Small Beer Press will be in the house too. Nice.


  1. I had no idea working at BEA was a thing you could do if you didn't work in NYC. Teach me, Jenn, teach me. I hope tomorrow is magical!

  2. Haha well I think you're well on your way to working at BEA if you wanted to! I think two things will serve you well: the ability/ willingness to network and make friends with other book people and a knowledge and interest in the publishing industry.

    This is my third BEA. It all started when a college friend of mine started working at a book sales and distribution company. There are plenty of weird jobs at the booths that Editorial Assistants and interns often fill, but sometimes that's not enough and they need someone from The Outside. I'm sure you'd be an asset to any booth at BEA!