Tuesday, June 3, 2014
Friday, BEA Day 2
Friday, BEA Day 2
I got a slightly earlier start on Friday. The first thing I had on my schedule was right at 9:00. One thing that does work out well for BEA is the time of the year the conference is scheduled for. Since it is right after Memorial Day, the traffic is not as bad as it would normally be. I wanted to make sure I got in on time.
I got on the ferry and across the river without incident, but after drinking a large ice tea on the way over, had to go to the restroom before heading to Javits. So, I stopped in. I had my suitcase and all and was hoping to use the handicapped stall so I wouldn’t leave my stuff unattended. It was occupied, though. I went into one of the other stalls first and all the sudden I heard someone talking. The voice got a bit louder and I realized it was a man. Then he started talking about how he went to the bathroom to “take a dump.” The problem? He was in the ladies room. In the handicapped stall. At least, I thought it was the ladies room. I came out of my stall, hurriedly washed my hands, but refused to dry, took my suitcase outside and looked real good and hard at the wall. Nope, I was in the ladies room. Some guy came into the ladies room to go number 2! I was confused as the men’s room is right next door, but there you have it.
So it was going to be that kind of day.
And he seemed not embarrassed at all. He never came out while I was in there and had I realized there was a man using the bathroom I would have waited, but I didn’t on all counts.
I realized Thursday at some point that I did not go up the right escalator. If I wanted to be closer to Little Brow, I had to go to the escalator farther down. I got there early and actually had to get in line and wait. The doors opened and as soon as I was up the escalator, I hightailed it to Little Brown looking for the elusive James Patterson book, hoping to please my boss. No dice. So, I ran the galley gamut.
My friend Terri asked for a copy of Amy Zhang’s book, so I got on line for the 9:30 galley drop. I was going to get in line for Unhinged to be signed, but I already own it and the line was ridiculous. Actually, pretty much anything happening at Abram’s was ridiculous with the constant line. But I digress. I had wanted to go to the Romance Write’s booth for their 9:00 signing, but I decided to get Terri her book.
It wasn’t a horrific wait. The show had just opened. I got in line and I was told that it was not an “official” line for the galley drop. I’m so tired of hearing that. Allowing people to form a line prevents the bedlam that occurs when the books are just flung out and everyone has the grab hands. I got her book and three others, one I wanted, one I didn’t and one I didn’t but after reading the summary kind of do. They were all thrust at me. I had no choice but to take them.
I was going to get in line for Becca Fitzpatrick Black Ice, but I got the galley and knew the line would be crazy, so I got in line for my little friend, Tara who is an 8 year old Star Wars freak. She built the Star Wars trench scene out of legos for a school competition and won first place. Anyway, the author was singing a sample of The Adventures of Luke Skywalker and I got it autographed for her.
I had nothing else immediately, so I decided to go find a line for the 11:00 galley drop at HarperCollins for Rooms by Lauren Oliver. It was another book for my friend Terri. I went back to the booth and loitered for a bit until I realized people had set up camp next to the booth. I got in line where I was maybe 15 people back. Of course, I didn’t realize what time it was and how much time I had on my hands, but a HarperCollins employee came by and told us we had to disperse and come back closer to 11:00.
I needed to drop off books anyway, so I went to the baggage check. Since they condensed all the baggage check into the one corner, they were just cramming the suitcases in. I had the unhappy coincidence of my suitcase being all the way against the window. The rows in between were so narrow, I couldn’t get through with my red McGraw bag. Space was so tight, only one person could be in a row at a time and forget about pulling it out, laying the suitcase down flat and lining the books up neatly.
I didn’t want to keep pulling out my ticket and putting it away, so I stuck it inside the plastic cover of my binder and set that with the bags I was carrying on other people’s luggage. I barely got my suitcase opened and kind of just dropped the books inside, closed up the suitcase, picked up my now empty bags and my binder and made to head out of the baggage check. It was then that I looked down and realized my baggage check ticket was not in my binder any longer. I freaked! I looked all over the floor. I mean I was just standing right there when I stuffed in the cover. I turned around and it was gone! I was trying to pick up luggage to see if it fell underneath, but could not find it anywhere.
I finally had to call over an attendant and ask her for a new number. She told me if they gave me a new number they would have to charge me another $3.00. What she did do, though, was take a ticket already turned in, write my ticket number on the plain back and give me the half of the ticket still on my suitcase. It all worked out in the end, but by the time I got it all resolved it was 10:50 and I was a couple aisles back in line now. Then another HarperCollins person came by and said that there are three books available, but due to the number of people in line, we could each only have one. And I knew a lot of people wanted Lauren Oliver’s book. By the time I got to the corner of the booth, I could see they still had copies, but not on the display. There was a guy holding the copies behind the counter while the other two books were on display. There were many copies of the other two and not so many of Lauren Oliver’s book. I did manage to get one, though, so yay!
Everywhere I went, though, I would ask, “What are you in line for?” and the reply would always be this is the “unofficial” line for Blah. Another thing I noticed which I forgot to remark upon when writing about Thursday is that I did not see a lot of paper event schedules for probably about half the day. I saw big displays of the booth and table signings, but not so much about scheduled galley drops. Like we have to keep it on the down low. It also seemed like last year the booths had books out all the time. Now this may just be my perception, but it seemed to me that the booths put out their big guns first thing, but once those books were gone, there would not be any more titles out until the next schedule galley drop. It could be how it always is, but last year I spent more time on autograph lines. This year, I was looking for the galleys in order to free up my time and not have to stand in the long signing lines. Can’t say for sure really.
I had nothing to do. I had planned on getting on Amanda Palmer’s line, but I read a summary of her book. And while I would love to support her in her work, I wasn’t really interested in a book about her kickstarter marketing strategy. I have never been very much interested in gathering autographs. If I get a book signed, it is because I am interested in reading the book, not because I met someone famous.
But anyway. With nothing better to do, I jumped on the Jennifer L Armentrout line at the Romance Writer’s booth. My friend Terri also asked for a copy of Wait For You, so I figured why not. Cora Carmack was signing at the same time and the line didn’t look too bad. The line was wrapped around, a U shape, in the aisle so I was right next to the booth, but about 20-30 people away. I can be very nosy. I’ll admit it. People were asking for copies of the books on the shelves and they were being given to them. They were not necessarily recent books and I’m not sure what the purpose of the books was in the first place. They weren’t there to be signed. It’s a mystery. Sorry wrong booth. Anyway, they had several copies of Jennifer Echols’s the Biggest Flirts in hard copy. The book just came out in paperback and is on my list. I just kept wishing and hoping as I stood on line that I would be able to get a copy.
By the time I got up to the booth again there was only one copy left. The woman who had been giving out the books just left the booth. The other attendant just got into a conversation with another exhibitor that entered the booth. Cora Carmack had just run out of books. She had a handler, but the handler was busy helping her with organizing some stuff. Anyway, I screwed up my courage, interrupted the handler and asked if the display copies were being given away. The handler had to go over and ask the other woman in conversation, but she came back with the last copy of the book for me and the sun was shining in my world. Then I turned around and ran smack dab into the middle of a rain cloud.
JLA had just run out of copies of Wait For You, which apparently to be my theme for the week. JLA will have books to give away and I will not be getting any. She was also signing left over copies of her Lux series, vols 1 and 2 combined, so I got that one signed anyway. It was all worth it though when she asked me if she saw me yesterday on line and I told her yes just after she ran out of that book as well.
The afternoon was going to be a mess. There were too many things conflicting with one another, too many places to be all at once but the first thing wasn’t until 1:45, so I scoped out galleys again. I stopped by Little Brown again looking for the James Patterson book, but this time I asked. To no avail. The book was gone and my boss was not going to be a happy camper. I did, however, get a galley drop schedule and found that they were giving away galleys of The Darkest Part of the Forest at 3:00 with two or three other books. As there was a table signing at 2:00, I decided to skip the table signing and just get the ARCs.
I picked up a signed copy of Compulsion by Martina Boone and headed to Little Brown where I encountered yet another un-line. I had a bit to wait, so this time I sat down. Ever the nosy neighbor, though, one of the girls behind me was saying she just picked up Sway by Kat Spears at the MacMillan booth and they had lots of copies. This one is a Cyreno de Bergerac retelling. Of course I had to have it. I asked the girl in front of me to watch my stuff so I could pick up a copy thinking the booth was only a couple aisles away, but no. It was like 8 or 9. So, I kind of hopped ran to the booth and back. When I got back, the line had moved and I was so happy to see that the people around me had moved my bags up for me. Bloggers really are some of the best kind of people.
After many people in front of me getting irritated with the people they perceived to be trying to cut in line and the books finally being set out, I got my copies and headed back to the autograph tables. I wanted to get Rachel Harris’s book, The Fine Art of Pretending. The line wasn’t too bad, but while I was waiting on line, one of the editors from Spencer Hill came by with tickets to hand out to ensure everyone on line was able to get a book. The girl in front of me asked her about the tickets for the next day, if they were going to be given out in advance. The editor said at 9:01, but to keep it quiet as they did not want a mob scene. After the editor left, I asked what book they were discussing and she told me The Return. A light from heaven shone down on my head!! I was where I need to be! So with that information tucked away in my head, I began to formulate plans for the next day.
Michelle Madow got in line behind me for Rachel’s book. This was another thing as I kept being where she was throughout the conference. I was really happy to find out that she is a fan girl. Plus she was handing out these really cute diamond shaped bling stickers to promote her book.
But enough with the chit chat. I got Rachel’s book and had her personalize it. She seemed really nice. I am kind of embarrassed because I didn’t realize she was the author of My Super Sweet 16th Century or the fact that she is one of the writers for YA Bound. I participate, or at least was, in Swoon Thursday every week. I actually could have introduced myself and tell her that I jump on the meme. I could have handed out a business card for crying out loud! I can be so oblivious at times.
I jumped from there to SourceBooks for Breathe Annie, Breathe by Miranda Kenneally and back to the tables for Starry Night by Isabel Gillies. The end of the day seemed to be timed perfectly. I did a lot of walking though and quite a bit of standing. At 4pm, I had to go back across the conference floor to Bloomsbury for their galley drop of The Fire Artist by Daisy Whitney. After that I was spent.
I went to the Workman booth as there was a scotch tasting and we got to keep the glass. I had a shot and a half and thought that would be a good time to head home. As I walked the floor on my way to the escalator, I saw that some of the vendors were already packing up. I guess they weren’t planning on sticking around for BookCon.
The walk from Javits to the ferry terminal while technically not a long walk seems like it has increased exponentially to the number of books you’re lugging. I got on the ferry, made it across the river and realized I had never locked my car that morning. Upon arriving home, I was greeted with more joy.
On Thursday, I picked up a promotional post card about a book about cats and there was a little bag of catnip attached. I had the postcard up and hidden, but Egg had managed to find it, rip the pouch off the postcard and basically demolish the little sachet. I immediately took a bath and tried to go to bed where my legs throbbed and I finally had to get to sleep by putting myself out with Lord of the Rings.