I have been all up in everyone’s face about my excitement over attending Book Expo America in epic New York City for weeks now. Especially on Twitter. I was fangirling to an extreme over there.
Book Expo America brought about 20,000 people from the book world together. I’m still kind of in shock that I was one of them. Being able to attend was honestly one of the best experiences of my life.
After meeting my roommates (Lindsey, Katie, and Steph) for the first time in real life on Sunday and seeing the little apartment we were renting for the week, we were up bright and early for a walk to the Javits Center on Monday for BEA Blogger Con. We nabbed a table that would have be sure to have a YA author at it and chatted with other bloggers at our table including Jen (A Book and a Latte), Emilie (A Beautiful Madness), and Katherine (The Lady Critic’s Library).
Jenny Han, Sonia Manzano, and Tricia Rayburn each rotated to our table for a few minutes (think speed dating for authors) and talked about their books. In between I met Beth from my internship at Paper Lantern Lit, Grace from Words Like Silver, and CHRISTA! (Hooked on Books).
Jennifer Weiner (one of my FAAAAVORITE non-YA authors) delivered a killer keynote address full of swearing and hilarity where she talked about how amazing it was that there’s so much communication now about books. She took a few questions and was even kind enough to sign the books from our swag bags.
Blogger Con was a whole different ballgame from the show floor, which I discovered on Tuesday, day 1 of the expo itself. When the doors opened at 9 AM, we’d been waiting in line for about an hour. BEA is like an amusement park for booklovers and boasts the lines to prove it. We made a beeline for The Raven Boys and each of us managed to get a copy. I felt especially lucky days later when I read in the PW Show Daily that the hundreds of copies they had disappeared in 9 minutes. Yes– they timed it.
The show floor was absolutely INSANE. Thankfully there wasn’t biting or shoving or anything, and everyone was polite, but it was absolutely MOBBED with people. Still, in all the chaos, I did manage to (briefly) meet Sash and Em, Tara (Hobbitsies), and April (Good Books and Good Wine).
We milled about the show floor, got in many more lines, got some amazing books, popped into the YA Editor’s Buzz Panel, and by the time we left it felt like my feet were going to fall off. Like they’d just give up on life. I was so grateful that our apartment was only 3 blocks from a shuttle stop (which we took full advantage of the next few days).
We rested at the apartment for a VERY little while, where we found our movie blogging roommate Linda napping, before heading off to the Teen Author Carnival at the Jefferson Market Library. While there, I also met Kristi from The Story Siren!
There were 6 panels to choose from at the TAC, split between two time slots. It was filled with incredible authors, including Jennifer E. Smith, whose The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight I ADORED. We chit-chatted while she signed my book about the spelling of the shortening of our name and people who did it differently. Oh, you silly silly “Jenns” of the world.
The icing on the cake of the event for me was winning an ARC of Fathomless and meeting Jackson Pearce. I’ve fangirled about her enough on here, but I am a huge, huge fan of hers, from her books to her videos, and she was so nice in person, even taking an “enthusiastic” picture with me.
After such a jam-packed day, we came back to the apartment and collapsed. But BEA was off to an amazing start!