Book Expo America Book Con 2014

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On Thursday May 30 – Saturday May 31st, Book Expo and Book Con took place at the Jacob Javits Center. Book Expo America (BEA) is the trade show part of the show, while Book Con is more open for consumers. From Thursday to Friday it was strictly trade show, but Saturday was open to public. While it was open on Saturday to the public it was still separated on the show floor. Basically parts of the con were kept as BEA, while the rest of the it was Book Con. So if you weren't press, an author, publisher, etc then you were not going into the BEA section. I was lucky enough to get press, so it was weird and kind of cool at the same time because of the fact that in the BEA section it wasn't as crowded, you could actually stroll through that section without being shoulder to shoulder with everyone.

Thursday of BEA was the best day to go meet and talk to a lot of the authors and of course get books. It was surprising to see what books were published by which companies, just because of the great variety each company had. It was incredible to see which companies were into publishing certain types of books as well. If you were an author looking to get your work published with a company, there was definitely a company there that would fit exactly what you are shopping around. And if you were more into self publishing, then they had plenty of resources for you as well. Bibliophiles and authors would have found this expo heavenly. That’s the beauty of Expos such as the BEA, it allows you make those connections direct connections with authors and publishers and talk to them about the industry. As well as ask any questions you may have about publishing or the industry, seeing which publishers would be into publishing your story/idea, and which kind of stories are gaining popularity and which ones are starting to gain popularity. The enormity of the booths a lot of the publishers had were just impressive. It gave you an idea great idea of variety of books that are published by these different publishers. Publishers that you thought only published children’s books, were also big into publishing young adult fantasy and crime thrillers as well.

I didn't keep a tight schedule in terms of interviews. I just set up a few interviews and just enjoyed the con itself. I do regret not going Friday to meet Stan Lee, because once Saturday hit it was insanity. For some odd reason they started the lines for the E hall panels out by the escalator. It wasn't just the line for Stan Lee, it was the line for any panel you wanted to go see in that particular hall. So you had no idea how long the line for the panel you wanted to go see was. And that line stretched out from the escalator almost to the other side of the convention. The line for the Amy Poehler & Martin Short panel, had no real organization. It started out as a cluster of people, and then at the last minute of the panel actually starting, everyone was told to line up. So even if you got there early you may not have been able to get to the front of that line. So it was like going to a panel at NY Comic Con.

Some of the Authors and editors I was able to talk to were: author/writer/blogger/geek Eric Smith who was signing his latest book “The Geek‘s Guide to Dating“, author Stephanie Bond who I talked to about her latest book “Two Guys Detective Agency”, author Nathan Whitaker who was promoting his latest book “Snap Decision”, and editor JR Han who was promoting his companies latest release of classic Chinese legends in graphic novel form. All were great to talk to; getting to hear how they started writing, what research or background they used when writing their perspective books, and hearing how much passion and joy they have in their projects. It was a honor to meet these great individuals read of course read their work.

Stephanie Bond (Author)

Myself and JR Han (Publisher)

Myself  & Nathan Whitaker(Author/Biographer) 

Eric Smith at his signing

After leaving BEA/Book Con I left with a lot of reading material that will keep me engrossed for a long while along with my huge stack of graphic novels I need to catch up with as well. As I said if you are someone who loves books, wants to publish or get published this was the convention for you. Everyone there was kind, courteous and if you didn’t have to wait on a long line you had a good time. Big thank you to Becki Ortiz for doing the filming for my interviews and taking some of the photos of the authors and editors I met with that day. Don't know what I would have done without her.

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