Picture drawn by Maggie Stiefvater, 2009. Header made by S.F. Robertson, 2010.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Book Expo America 2012 Recap Part 2

WARNING: It has been way too long since BEA so I may have forgotten some things (including people I met and chatted with!). I'm mainly going on what pictures I took and my autographing schedule.

The morning started off early and we got to the Javits a bit before it opened. I took the time to look through my schedule and the autographing book and make sure everything was still correct. On the way in though, I saw this group of people promoting Carnival of Souls by Melissa Marr. I felt weird taking a picture of them but luckily, they were standing underneath a billboard for The Diviners by Libba Bray. So I pretended to take a picture of the billboard.
The line to get into the Javits is MASSIVE. But it's not too bad once 9am rolls around. My first mission of the day was to go to: Flux, Egmont and Disney/Hyperion. I figured no one else would be going to those booths (instead flocking to Harper, Penguin and other big publishers) so I would have first grabs of ARCs and stuff. At the Flux booth, I chatted with a lovely lady about some of their books, like Hollyweird, and she told me to grab whatever I wanted. She then later rescinded that offer because they had limited ARCs, but it's not like I was going to shove all their books into my tote bag and run off. At least, not after she said that (I'M KIDDING). I grabbed ARCs of Narc and Demon Eyes as well as a finished copy of Ferocity Summer, which had expired on my computer before I had a chance to read it.

I then walked over to Egmont's booth. They had a couple ARCs out, but they didn't have what I really wanted, i.e. copies of Taken by Storm and Dark Waters. Their reasoning was that the books came out in a couple weeks. I'm like, "and your point is...?" You should still have more than just the display copies of your books! But they took my business card and should be sending them to me; we'll see if that happens. I grabbed two ARCs and then attempted to stop by Disney, but I was intimated and they had nothing out so I didn't ask them about anything.

I hightailed it over to the autographing area to get a signed copy of Because It Is My Blood by Gabrielle Zevin for my roommate, who read the first book in the trilogy last year. I however have not gotten around to it, which Gabrielle jokingly yelled at me about. I've promised her that I will read both books... which reminds me that I need to put them on my schedule somewhere. I also got into the lines for Emily M. Danforth (who thanked me for the interview I did with her) and Shannon Messenger (who remembered me from all the tweeting I did at her). After those three, I stood in the LONG line for Andrea Cremer's Rift and may have made a fool of myself in front of her by acting like a crazy loon.

I then left the autographing area for an in-booth signing. Malinda Lo was signing ARCs of her upcoming book Adaptation at the SFWA booth, who were a new exhibitor that year. It was great seeing Malinda again and she remembered me! It's always nice when that happens, especially when it's been two years since we had first met. After that, I went to another in-booth signing for a non-YA title. How weird! Except not, because it was for a comic strip collection I love ever so much- Pearls Before Swine. It was a pretty long line but moved fast. Stephan Pastis was really fun to talk to and he knew the Lynchburg paper (apparently he knows like all the papers where his comic is syndicated- it's FREAKY)! He asked me which character I wanted him to draw and I said Pig because I just love him so much and find him very amusing.

I then had some lunch down in the food court because I had quite a bit of free time. There was no place to sit so I stood up and ate my pizza. I reconnected with Susan and her posse, and got to hold an exclusive ARC of Shannon Messenger's Let the Sky Fall (which I now have, thanks to Kristi- yay!!). I may have pet it and contemplated stealing it, but I am a gentleman so I gave it back to Jessica.

Going back to the autographing area, I was going to get into the line for Gretchen McNeil, but decided not to when I saw how long it was. Instead, I got into the line for Lauren Oliver about 40 minutes before it started because it was taking place in the same row as Gretchen's. I was #6 in line! I decided not to do Gretchen's cuz I already had a copy of Ten and knew I'd see her later. Lauren Oliver was really nice though I feel really bad because I have yet to read ANY of her books, yet I have all of them. I need to get on that.

I caught up with Susan again and she introduced me and others to her contact at Disney and we got some ARCs. We also handed her our business cards. I got an ARC of The Darkest Minds because I wasn't sure I could make Alexandra's signing on Thursday. We then separated and I went back to the autographing area for signed copies of The Blessed by Tonya Hurley and the second Stella Batts book by Courtney Sheinmel. Courtney was such a sweetheart and recognized me and then gushed about me to her publicist. I've been reviewing her books since her debut came out (though I have yet to read All the Things You Are) and we've been in touch over the years. She's such a wonderful author. The publicist then exchanged business cards with me and agreed to meet at the booth when the signing was over so she could give me the first Stella Batts book and talk about possibly doing a giveaway, which is going on now! I also got an adorable Stella Batts tote bag!

Then, I walked on over to get into line for the Carnival of Souls book drop, happening right after Melissa's in-booth signing. I tried to get a picture of the whole blown up cover but there were WAY too many people in that area. After that, I went to Suzanne Lazaer's line to get a signed copy of Innocent Darkness.

I went back to the hotel, grabbing Subway on the way back (it was on the same block as our hotel) and watched Charmed while I ate. My roommates came back mid-way through the meal and we got ready to go to the Teen Author Carnival. I absolutely love the Carnival and was so sad I missed it last year. This year was so much fun. I went to two awesome, funny panels (one of which was moderated by the amazing Melissa Walker) and then chatted with a TON of awesome people.

I met Victoria Schwab (who still likes me despite my meh review of Near Witch, and whose book The Arcived I cannot wait to read!), Karsten Knight (cutie!), Scott Tracey (cutie!), Gretchen McNeil (so funny), Kieran Scott (who helped me get an ARC of the 3rd He's So/She's So book and was so sweet), Sarah Tregay (who was lovely even though she probably thought I was a loon for gushing about her book and then expecting her to remember my review of it from 6 months ago), and Crissa Jean Chappell (whose debut Total Constant Order I loved- and recommended to someone that night!- and think it's so overlooked; we hugged and she thanked me for all my support of her over the years. It was extremely sweet.).

I also got to see again authors Melissa Walker and Diana Peterfreund, as well as bloggers Mitali, Kristi, Yara, Brent (who I was sad I didn't get to see more of; we were always passing each other!), and Kendra. I'm sure I probably forgot some people and I'm sorry if I did. Leave a comment berating me!

I completely lost track of time and didn't end up leaving until 9:30pm. Now, why does that matter, you ask? Because I had another event to go to. Little, Brown was holding a speakeasy party to celebrate Libba Bray's The Diviners. By the time I got there (after getting directions from a McDonald's employee and my friend Tiffany), everyone I knew was gone and the party was basically over. I did get to chat with Libba Bray, who recognized me from our chat last year, for a few minutes and then had a bit of an awkward conversation with a lovely lady who put up with me and my non-mingling skills. I then fiddled with my phone a bit, trying to look busy, and then eventually just picked up an ARC and little goodie bag and left. I spent a total of 10 minutes there. I felt HORRIBLE that it looked like I had just shown up to grab an ARC. It's just hard to fit two events into one evening!

I trudged back to the hotel, got a bit lost (texted my roommates to ask what street our hotel was on, which caused me to feel the need to tell them that I was not drunk), but eventually made it back. I then chatted with my roommates about our days while I had a soda and finished off my AMAZING chocolate cake from the night before. Then I climbed into bed and went to sleep.

To see all my pictures (this is just a selection from each day), go to my Facebook album and leave comments!

Pic 1- The line behind me to get into Javits
Pic 2- Gabrielle Zevin signing copies of All These Things I've Done and Because It Is My Blood
Pic 3- Stephan Pastis signing a Pearls Before Swine collection
Pic 4- Courtney Sheinmel signing the second book in the Stella Batts series
Pic 5- A panel at the Teen Author Carnival, moderated by Melissa Walker
Pic 6- Karsten Knight and I!!
Pic 7- Scott Tracey and I!!
Pics 8 and 9- This is how I got into the speakeasy. I came down the stairs and hallway in Pic 9, then continued through the stairs at the back of Pic 8.


  1. BEA was indeed a fun experience, and your post had me smiling remembering just how EPIC it was to me as a first-timer. Can't wait to read more recaps!

  2. Loved your write-up, James! And thanks again for seeking out Flux to tell them how much you enjoyed Hollyweird. That means so much to me! Also, you're brave to being going through those creepy passages. I would've had my K2 meter out to check for ghosts. LOL.

  3. Hey J!
    Thanks for the giveaway post, and your sweet words here. You are wonderful! So glad I got to see you. Thanks for reading and blogging and being so supportive.
    (Do you have a copy of ALL THE THINGS YOU ARE? If not, the pb just came out and I'll send you a copy. Oh, and get on with your Lauren Oliver reading! She's one of my very favorites, and just one of the sweetest people I know.)