Search This Blog

Sunday, May 31, 2015

BEA Day 3 - The Choices Made

BEA – Day 3 – May 29, 2015

The theme of the day was “Making Choices”.

Friday was Meg Cabot day. I had to ensure I got in early enough to get a ticket. I just had to! I set the alarm for 5:00, rolled out of bed by 5:30. Remember I’m still dealing with muscle and tendon issues. It’s been hard getting up as I’ve been very stiff. The muscle rub has helped a great deal, though. But I digress.

I was out the door about 5:50. I thought about Dunkin Donuts, but remember haw the raspberry cheesecake square made me feel. And the iced tea I bought the day before didn’t get drunk. I only drank about a quarter of it and had to throw it out. So no DD for me. It’s amazing how much lighter the traffic is at 6:00. Still backed up a little in Secaucus, but overall I made good time. I got on the ferry a little past 6:30. It was a kind of surreal feeling, actually. I walked out onto the dock and no one was there. I found that odd. I figured Friday morning at almost 6:30 there would be a lot more people. I saw people getting on another ferry down the other enclosed walkway and thought I may have gotten it wrong. But, I stood and waited, taking in the sunshine, the wind whipping through my hair, the plaintive cries of the seagulls. It was peaceful and for that one moment, that one shiny moment, all was right in the world. And I realized it was going to be a good day that the universe was giving me a gift and all would be right. Then I saw the ferry coming.

I think I was first on. I walked up the bow and stood so I could have my face in the wind as we rode over. When I turned around, I was amazed! There were almost 100 people clamoring to get on board!! Where the heck did they all come from? They were all stealthy as ninjas because I didn’t hear any of them. How can that many people be so quiet? Still they all sat up deck or inside, so I had the whole bow to myself and that feeling that all was right with the world stayed with me the entire time.

When I arrived in NYC, I hoofed it to the Javits. After stowing my suitcase, I tried to go up the closest escalator, but it was closed off, so I had to go the long way around. They probably did it for just that reason. Anyway, it wasn’t even 7 when I got in line and I was….probably a couple hundred back from the front of the line or so. I was all agitation. So many people. I found myself looking at each and every one of them trying to determine if they were Meg Cabot fans. There’s really no way to tell. Finally the line started moving. The stress was killing me. The anticipation was painful. Finally, it was my turn. I asked and they provided. Yes, I scored my Meg Cabot ticket. I also asked for JLA signing Scorched and Maggie Stiefvater and Jackson Pearce signing a new kids book collaboration. I was happy, relieved and walking on air. I even got to line up on the floor before they broke, so I was among the elite hundred or so that would get on the floor first. Then they made half of us move.

Fret not. We were displaced only temporarily. They pulled a huge folded up banner out of a box and laid it out straight. Then they brought down The Dork Diaries banner. I thought it was to be replaced, but the backside was white, so they were hanging a banner on the backside. Then I watched as they raised the banner again. It was actually kind of cool to watch the production. Once the banner was safely in place, we could move back to our spots on line.

First choice, right out the gate: Booth signing of The Anatomy of Curiosity with Maggie Stiefvater and crew, Margaret Stohl signing Black Widow: Forever Red at Disney or the Penguin Galley drop which included Reawakened by Coleen Houck. Well, Thursday’s debacle over the signing at the Disney Booth kind of soured me, so I ixnayed that. Well, that and I thought it was only a sample, but it was the actually galley. Still wouldn’t have changed my mind. Where Maggie Stiefvater goes, legions follow and I didn’t not want to get tangled with the masses so early, so I went for the galleys.

At 10:00, I had too many choices. There were four different galley drops, a Cassandra Clare tote bag for grabs and two autographings. I managed three of the four galleys, the tote and was able to jump on the end of the line for Carrie Ryan. So that all worked out well. 10:30 was another story. Sandy Hall was signing her new book, but so was Leigh Bardugo and there was a Spencer Hill book I wanted called Never Never. Peter Pan stories seem to be very popular right now. There was also a galley drop I really wanted to pick up, so I ran for the galley and ran back to the autographing booths.

Just as an aside, the floor set-up was different this year. Last year, the tables were all to the south end by Macmillan, Penguin and Little Brown. The autograph tables were all the way down at the other end by row 300. So if I was checking on a galley, I would walk the length of the floor. Then back to the autographing area again the length of the floor. All day Thursday was me walking from end to end. Just to give you an idea, I walked over 20,000 steps on Wednesday alone which was a half day. But back to business.

I rushed back to the autograph chutes and asked about Leigh Bardugo’s Six of Crows. She was capped. It was like 10:37. Then I tried Never Never. Same thing. However, for Never Never I was told I could wait on line and perhaps get a postcard signed. Again people! It is not about the signature, although that is nice, it is about getting the book!! I was able to get on Sandy Hall’s line, though, but as I stood in line, I saw Leigh Bardugo (right)on one side and Jan Brett with her Turnip (below) book on the other.


At 12 noon, I had three signings, one of which would be dropped as a galley at 2:00, but I also realized I should be on line for JLA at that time. Her signing was 1:30 – 2:30 as was Maggie and Pearce’s and I had tickets for both. So I went for the signing that would be dropping the galley later, Kissing Ted Callahan by Amy Spalding ( above right).  I was like 7th or 8th in line! It was awesome! Closest I have ever been to the front.

For the 1:00 block I had even more choices to make. There were 3 signings and a galley. Once of those signings was the Harlequin Teen authors. I didn’t even bother with Harlequin. First time I didn’t get the YA books. At 1:30, I had two signings and a galley. Even though there were things I could do for 1:00, I decided to get in line for JLA early and just sit and rest my dogs. I was almost 1 ½ hours early, but there really wasn’t anything that was critical.

My plan was to go through JLA’s line and then jump on Maggie and Pearce’s line for their mythical creatures book. I was 28 in line I believe. Still very close to the front. I thought it would be possible. One of the things that happened to me this year was that I was often around people who were talking about events that had inside information, like when galleys are going to drop, etc. And I would listen. As I sat on JLA’s line someone was talking about Leigh Bardugo’s book and how there would be limited galleys available at the booth at 2:30. I knew this and had factored that in figuring I would be done with Maggie and Pearce as they also ended at 2:30. It would work perfectly, like a well-oiled machine. However, what the person was saying was that at 2pm, the publisher was giving out tickets for the galley drop at 1:30. Well, now you’re playing with a whole new set of rules. Do I go with the original plan or develop a new one?

I decided to forego Maggie and Pearce for the now, figuring I would get me a ticket and then I could run back to M&P’s line. I got to Macmillan before 2:00, but there was already a line forming for the galley, so I got in line and parked my behind. They counted us once, they counted us twice. They may have counted more than that. They only had 77 galleys and I was in the safe zone. They did not hand out tickets, though, well, not until like 2:10. AT that point, I figured why bother going back. I was not going to jeopardize my chance at owning one of the most sought after galleys of the show. So I stayed put and waited.
JLA, BTW, was as gracious as ever and I was happy I had the opportunity to thank her face to face for putting up The Dead List for free on Watpad for her fans. I was glad I could do that. Usually I can’t think of anything to say, but she is always so nice.

While I waited on line for Six of Crows, though, I had three more signings and two galley drops. The one galley was the same one I got autographed at noon. The other galley was at Macmillan and my friend Terri requested it if I could pick it up. I was able to jump line for a moment to get it for her.

At 2:30, I had a signing, one at 3:00 as well as a galley drop at 3:30, but my feet hurt so bad, I decided to go wait on line for Meg Cabot which wasn’t until 3:30. So I got to sit for an hour. I wasn’t too far for Meg, maybe around 40 something, but when she started signing, there were a mess of people who used their special jump the line trump card on Meg, so we had to wait. And they just kept coming. Had to have been at least 20 people jumping the line. Meg was wonderful to meet. I had my fangirl squee moment and just gushed how much I have loved her books. I follow her on social media and have kept up on her posts and she just seems like the kind of person I could be friends with. She was naturally wearing her tiara and she signed ARCs for Royal Wedding coming out next week. It was probably the highlight of BEA for me.

I missed a galley at 4:00 because of all the line jumpers, but I didn’t care as it was not intended for me. There was a book I wanted to get called The Accident Season. The signing was at 4:00 at table 1, which made no sense as Meg was still signing. I realized I only wrote down half the information. I figured it was Penguin because they had 4 tables around the booth for signings and galley drops. But I went over there and didn’t see the book on any of the signs for the tables. I went to the info booth, but they couldn’t help as I couldn’t remember the author’s name. Had I just thought about it, I could have gone on my app and pulled up my agenda, but I didn’t. Instead, I found a discarded PW show daily because I thought I saw it listed in there. I didn’t. Imagining things again. I walked around a bit more, but decided to throw in the towel. When I did pull up the app at home, I found that I had been correct, it had been Penguin. I could have asked somebody, but didn’t. So with that being said, I couldn’t really be mad about it.

The final day of BEA was done, at least for me. My suitcase was not quite as heavy as Wednesday and Thursday. I did not have to switch hands quite so frequently although I noticed this suitcase is starting to tear near the zipper at the bottom. Perhaps one too many BEAs. AT least this year I did not leave feeling like I could have done more. There was no feeling of regret really. Friday was an awesome day to end the show, Meg Cabot being the highlight! I didn’t get everything on my list, but I got a lot. I was finally organized on Friday with my events in order of scheduled time so it was easier to keep track.

Bea might have come and gone, but I still had Book Con to look forward to so stay tuned for that.


  1. Awesome recap! I don't know that there's anyone I would get up at 5am for...well, maybe Neil Gaiman, but that's it. Surprised that the ferry wasn't more crowded, even at that hour of the morning. Aside from all the ninja passengers, sounds like a peaceful ride!

    So even with getting there at the crack of dawn, there was still a huge line for tickets? Wow! Glad you were able to get the tickets you wanted this time! And I would have been studying the others in line too!

    What's with the pubs thinking people would wait in line for a signed postcard or bookmark? We want the books! I got an autographed Jan Brett book one year. Just happened to walk by her booth and the line was really short. Such a nice lady!

    Thank you for jumping a line to grab me a book! You're the best!

    Glad that Friday worked out so well for you! And yay for meeting Meg Cabot! I really need to buy myself another tiara.

    Looking forward to your Book Con posts!

    1. It gets a little easier every year and except for Thursday, which is the day nothing went right, the whole expo/book con worked out surprisingly well. I got a lot of books that were on my wish list, so that pretty much offsets the price of admission, parking and ferry.
      I'll miss it next year.

  2. Having read this and caught up with the previous posts I have to admit to feeling slightly envious. Sounds exhausting and yet amazing, I wish I was there.

    1. On the one hand, I will be sad that the expo is moving to Chicago next year. Being able to ferry over has been a luxury. The cost has not been too terribly high, but it will be a lot more expensive to go to Chicago as I'd have to fly, get a hotel and pay to ship books home. So, I'll be missing it next year.
      On the other hand, I don't have to worry about taking the week off and I won't miss the physical stress it puts on my body. It is an awesome experience, though and I feel very fortunate I have been able to partake as long as I have.