Last week I was lucky enough to attend my very first BookExpo America. Though I’ve been a book blogger for a few years now (shout out to Teen Writers Bloc, started and run by The New School Writing for Children MFA class of 2012!) and though I live in NYC, I’ve never had the opportunity, for one reason or another, to go to BEA. But this year I did, and it was in THE BEST WAY POSSIBLE, because I got to attend as an AUTHOR!
For anyone who’s attended BEA, whether as an author or publisher or blogger or fan, you know that indescribable feeling of walking into the Javits Center and instantly being enveloped into book heaven. Billboards and banners advertising the hottest new books, booths set up by every publishing company you can think of, readings and panels and interviews and signings galore, everyone walking around with badges around their necks and giant, dopey grins on their faces, and more free books than you could ever possibly carry. It’s flippin’ RAD.
My BEA 2013 experience began with a blogger/author party on the 45th floor rooftop of a luxury apartment building in TriBeCa, thrown by the amazing Liza Wiemer of WhoRuBlog. Not only did I get to meet and chat with so many awesome bloggers and fabulous young adult authors, including several that I’ve admired for a very long time (do the names Holly Black, Elizabeth Eulberg, Kami Garcia, Megan McCafferty, Lauren Oliver, and Veronica Rossi mean anything to you?!), I got to catch up with some of my amazing fellow Sourcebooks Fire authors, including Laurie Boyle Crompton, Zoraida Cordova, and New York Times bestselling author C.J. Lyons. Thank you so much for having us, Liza! It was tons of fun.
Then on Saturday I got to participate in an online video interview from the floor of BEA, which broadcasted live to viewers around the world. I was interviewed alongside Laurie Boyle Crompton and Mari Mancusi (another incredibly successful Sourcebooks author — I can’t wait for book one in her upcoming trilogy, Scorched).
Following the interview I spent some time walking around, perusing the booths, and listening to comedian/actor/author Jim Gaffigan speak, while I waited for my book signing to begin. (Jim Carrey and Neil Gaiman were also doing signings that day but I thought it best to avoid the crowd insanity, haha.)
My signing took place at the Sourcebooks booth at 1:30 on Saturday, and the line was so long that we got rid of nearly 150 copies of My Life After Now in under 25 minutes! Such an amazing experience — I hope the readers who were able to snag a copy enjoy the book!
All in all, my first BEA was a huge success. I’m already looking forward to next year — maybe I’ll see you there!