Exactly one week from today, yr beloved FYAers Posh D. and Jenny will descend upon the clustercuss known as the Book Expo of America (BEA). AND WE ARE TOTALLY SPAZZING WITH EXCITEMENT! Like 20 pixie stix level OMG!
BEA is like the book version of SXSW, except with less hipsters (which hopefully means less B.O. and sadly means less free PBR). It's a three day literary love-fest for publishers, authors and book bloggers, and I hear that this year's conference is gonna be the best one yet. Why? Um, cos FYA WILL BE IN THE HOUSE! HOLLA!
Given that this is our first time, Jenny and I basically have no idea what we're doing, beyond hobnobbing with other book geeks and trying to grab as many free cocktails as possible. In other words, besides the things we do every day, we're not sure where to start!
Fortunately, there's lots of experienced bloggers out there willing to share some advice. Unfortunately, this is not the kind of advice we need. I mean, obviously it's important to "wear comfortable shoes" and "bring a bag for all of the free books!" Y'all, that's child's play. I'm looking for someone willing to answer the tough questions, like:
1. Which parties will feature an open bar and how can we get in?
2. What's the ideal method of approaching a widely-admired YA author without seeming like a creepy stalker?
3. How can you then ask said widely-admired YA author to come have a drink without yr inner swimfan scaring the crap out of them?
4. Is it rude to tell a publisher, "Look, I only want yr GOOD free books. None of this Twilight knock-off shizz!"?
5. How can FYA score a multi-million dollar blog deal?
6. WHERE THE EFF CAN WE GET A COPY OF MOCKINGJAY FOR THE LOVE OF KATNISS?!!!!
So, if you're reading this and you're a BEA vet, please share yr wisdom with us! And rest assured that once FYA has this BEA under our (fashionable and sassy) belt, we'll be shelling out the REAL advice for newbies next year.
For now, I've put together a loose plan that will hopefully be filled in with lots of happy hours, Peeta vs Gale debates and new bff-making:
10-11: You're Reading That!?! Crossover YA/Adult Readers Come of Age
2-3:30: AAP Annual Librarians Book Buzz
2-3:15: YA Editor Buzz Panel
4:30: Autographing Table: Steve Brezenoff
6-8 PM Books of Wonder Suspense, Magic & Romance for Teens and Tweens
7-9 PM Algonquin Hotel Celebration of Book Bloggers
7-10 PM Powerhouse Books Tweet Up
9:30-10:30: Big Name Authors with Graphic Novels
2-3: YA Authors of YA Editor's Buzz - Ally Condie, Rebecca Maizel, Kody Keplinger, Sophie Jordan, Erin Bow
2:30 Kirsten Miller at the Penguin Young Readers booth
4-6 PM: Book Blogger Convention Reception
7 PM Goodreads Pub Crawl
Yeah, you read that right. GOODREADS PUB CRAWL! Rest assured I will use all of my powers to make sure we end up at a karaoke joint by the end of the night.
I actually think i'm most excited about the "You're Reading That!?!" panel, since it's all about what we do here on le blog. In fact-- wait, why are WE not talking on this panel? Um PARTY FOUL. Ok, well, besides the suspicious absence of a FYA representative, it still sounds amazing:
How can booksellers and librarians supply the interests of their teenage customers yet stay connected with that crucial 18-35 year olds demographic---the ones who still read and buy YA titles in great numbers? The recent success of Little Brown's Twilight Series highlights the need for industry professionals to be proactive in supplying fresh and fascinating titles for this burgeoning market.
Opening speaker: Lizzie Skurnick, the Fine Lines columnist for Jezebel.com, has written on books and culture for the New York Times Book Review, NYT Sunday Styles, the LA Times, NPR.org,The Washington Post and more. Her blog, Old Hag, was a Forbes Best of the Web pick. The author of Shelf Discovery: The Teen Classics We Never Stopped Reading (Harper), Skurnick has also written titles in the Sweet Valley, Love Stories and Alias series. Response Panelists: Libba Bray, the 2010 Printz Award winning author of Going Bovine and the crossover favorite Gemma Doyle Trilogy (Random House); Ellen Loughran, Visiting Associate Professor at Pratt SILS (YA Literature and Services), has served on the ALA/YALSA Printz and Alex Award Committees as well as ALA's Notable Books Council; Jennifer Bailey Hunt,Editorial Director,Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, has guided the publication of numerous YA crossover mega successes. Hosted by Barbara A. Genco, Editor, Collection Management, Library Journal.
I KNOW, RIGHT?! Jezebel's Fine Lines?!!! Libba Bray?!!
I should also mention that there's a lot of non-YA stuff going on at BEA, a fact I am reminded of daily by emails from publishers. Here's a brilliant example:
Inked from head to toe, Guinness World Record-holder Julia Gnuse is the Most Tattooed Woman in the world. Since 1991, Gnuse has covered 95% of her body with tattoos using the same artist for every design. At the show, Gnuse will showcase her record setting-body for attendees.
BOOK NERDS GONE WILD, Y'ALL!
Make sure you follow us on Twitter for
drunken exciting updates, and rest assured we'll be documenting the highlights (and shameful acts of swimfannery) here on FYA once BEA is over.
Wish us luck*!
P.S. If you're going, let's geek out together! Email us and we'll set up a V. Important Business Meeting, location TBA (The Bar Area).