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NYC/BEA Wrap-Up Post

Last year I featured my trip with a different post covering each day. Instead of doing that this time around I'm just going to mention some of the highlights throughout my trip.

I got to the city Friday before the Expo and was joined by my husband for a few of the days I was there. I wanted to do some sightseeing with him before all the bookish things began. I have to say we did more in two days than I did my entire stay last year!

Friday May 20, 2011

  • We got into the city about 11:30 pm. Although it was late and we were exhausted from a day of traveling, we hit up Junior's for some food and CHEESECAKE! Yum
Saturday May 21, 2011

  • Stopped by the Magnolia Bakery for some delicious muffins! And walked down to Rockefeller Center to eat them.
  • Visited the Empire State Building. Wow.
  • After that we walked down the famous 5th Avenue. We didn't bother going into any of the stores, but it was just nice walking down the street.
  • Central Park. Visited Alice & Hans.
  • The Natural History Museum.
Sunday May 22, 2011
  • We did the Statue of Liberty Tour. It was a shame that the weather turned sour and was hazy and cold. But at least it wasn't raining. The Statue of Liberty was amazing. It wasn't as big as I was anticipating, I think that may have resulted in being around such HUGE buildings, but even so I was impressed with the Lady.
  • A late lunch at the famous Carnegie Deli, which ended up being an early dinner too, because we ate so much food. I had heard the sandwiches were HUGE... I didn't believe it until I witnessed it myself... WOW. I could barely eat mine. I mean I couldn't even finish it.
  • After letting our food digest, we headed over to the Harry Potter Expo! I was sorted by the sorting hat too! It was a must see for any HP fan. The costumes and props, it was awesome. I LOVED it. I wish I could have taken pictures, but it's definitely not something I'll forget! And we HAD to go because NYC is the last US stop.

Monday May 22, 2011 (The Bookish Events Begin)

  • Breakfast at HarperCollins Publisher. (They had an awesome breakfast spread for us. Had my first taste of bagels with lox... was YUM!) This was probably one of my favorite experiences for the week. It was a small group of bloggers. I think there were maybe 12 of us there. It was very informal and intimate. We sat around a meeting table and discussed the relationships between bloggers and publishers and what we can do for each other... with more emphasis on what they could do for us. It was a great conversation, and it was apparent that Harper is interested in working with bloggers and making the best out of our relationship. I mean.. the president of the Children's Division (Susan Katz), came down to thank us all individually in person, for all that we do! How awesome is that! We learned about some upcoming Harper titles and got a goodie bag including some of those titles as well. Some interesting things that I learned at this meeting:
  1. Early buzz is good. Harper doesn't mind if you post an a review early. But they do like you to repost, or just remind your readers when it gets closer to the titles release date.
  2. They don't expect you to read everything. If you review an unsolicited title, great! But it's not expected. However they do expect to see reviews periodically if you are requesting titles.
  3. They have to individually evaluate every NetGalley request. (Sometimes 3,000 requests for one title!) If you want to be sure your request is accepted, have the info and stats they want. You can find this info on the NetGalley website! And you'll be more likely to be accepted!
  4. Get to know your Klout!

  • After Harper, I joined a group of bloggers at Simon & Shuster. This was a much larger group of bloggers, I think there were over 50 of us there! After getting our name tags and submitting some info, we were moved to the official room! Waiting for us on our chairs were some goodies! And later on, we also received a signed arc of Perfect by Ellen Hopkins. First up, we were introduced to Elizabeth Miles, debut author of Fury

    . She is hilarious and has a great sense of humor! She did a reading from Fury, and now I can't wait to read it. We broke for a brief lunch and then some of the wonderful publicists at S&S, shared some of the upcoming fall titles with us! There were multiple series titles that I'm very excited for! Ellen Hopkins also did a reading from her upcoming book Perfect

    . There was a brief q&a session. Overall it was another great experience. I've always had a wonderful relationship with S&S and it has really grown as my blog has grown. It's nice to have another publishing house that is genuinely interested in working with bloggers.

  • After S&S, I met up with J again. We walked around Chelsea, and Greenwich and made our way to the Mulberry Street Library which was hosting the Teen Author Carnival for 2011. I arrived a little late and the place was already jammed pack... it was also steaming down there in the basement! Whew, I was sweating. But it was worth it! There were some great authors and bloggers in attendance. I bought a few books, and finally got to meet some of the wonderful authors I admire for the first time ever. Including the awesome Gayle Forman & Malinda Lo! And running into Melissa Walker, Andrea Cremer, Michelle Zink & Jeri Smith-Ready again, is always a welcome occurrence! Plus, I got to meet Jana Oliver, while in line for the signing! I also meet a wonderful blogger in line Jamie from bookmarked! I stole that picture of us from her! (And of course there was a slew of other authors and bloggers that I didn't mention above.)
  • After TAC, J and I walked down to Little Italy and had a wonderful italian dinner outside on the street. Home-made noodles people!
Tuesday May 23, 2011
  • The Children's Author Breakfast rocked! I sat with an awesome group of bloggers and the speakers were fantastic! LOVED!
  • The first official day of BEA. I was a little disappointed, honestly. I just remember on the shuttle ride home, thinking... 'why did I do this again.' I love BEA, don't get me wrong the meeting authors, bloggers, getting books signed, meeting my pub contacts. But the other stuff... the pushy people, the rude people... ugh. Courtesy goes a long way. I understand that as a blogger I might not be the number one person that a publisher wants to talk to, but when you're talking to me, it's nice to be acknowledged and looked in the eye. And as I wanted to keep this the "highlights" of the week, that's all I'm going to say about that.
  • The highlight of my day was going out to dinner with some of my fellow bloggers. Shanyn (Chick Loves Lit), Carla (The Crooked Shelf) Jamie (The Perpetual Page Turner/The Broke and the Bookish), April (Good Books and Good Wine). There is nothing better than a good conversation with friends.
Wednesday May 24, 2011

  • Today was a big day for me. I was hosting Michelle Hodkin, debut author of The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer

    on the Insight Stage... holy crap! To say I was nervous was an understatement, but luckily Michelle is awesome and it flew by so fast, I might even go as far as saying that I had fun! There was a lot of things going at the same time we were on stage, but we still had a fairly packed house! I was thrilled for Michelle. Funny story... there were two ladies (librarians at that!) at the stage before Michelle and I started, and Michelle had asked them where they lived. To which they replied Indiana. Now being from Indiana, I of course asked where, and they said it was a small town we probably wouldn't know where, but I told them I was from Indiana, so they told me they were from Kendallville... and what do you know, Kendallville is right next to where I live! Small freaggin' world.

  • The wonderful Heidi from YA Bibliophile knew how much I LOVE Mary E. Pearson and her novel The Adoration of Jenna Fox

    ... and Mary happened to be signing the next book called The Fox Inheritance

    , at the same time I was on the insight stage, so Heidi got me a personalized signed copy. I screamed. I'll admit it. And she got me a ticket to get a copy of Ally Condie's Crossed

    . And she picked me up a copy of Laini Taylor's Daughter of Smoke and Bones

    ... Heidi is awesome, I love her.

  • I also happened to receive two books I was very excited for Lola and the Boy Next Door

    by Stephanie Perkins and The Future of Us

    by Jay Asher & Carolyn Mackler (Both which I've already read, and they ROCKED!)

  • After BEA, Heidi & I grabbed some dinner at the Shake Shack. Melanie of Reclusive Bibliophile joined us shortly after. I didn't realize how famished I was until I inhaled my entire meal.
  • We then parted ways with Melanie and met up with Chelsea of Coffee and Cliffhangers and headed to the 2k11 signing at Books of Wonder. There was a wonder line up of authors: Bettina Restrepo - Illegal

    , Amy Holder - The Lipstick Laws

    , Angie Smibert - Memento Nora

    , Carole Estby Dagg - The Year We Were Famous

    , Gae Polisner - The Pull Of Gravity

    , Christina Mandelski - The Sweetest Thing

    , Sheila O’Connor - Sparrow Road

    , Alissa Grosso - Popular

    , Amy Fellner Dominy - OyMG

    , Geoff Herbach - Stupid Fast

    , Kiki Hamilton - The Faerie Ring

    & Trinity Faegen - The Mephisto Covenant

    . The authors did a reading and a q&a and then a signing. Most the time reading can me a 50/50 for me. I either love them or hate them. Several books were sold to me because of the author readings at this event!

  • On the way home I tried to by a single ride ticket from a subway attendant. What a nice guy! I walked away as we all three muttered... "WHAT AN ASSHOLE." Tips for you if you need to interact with the subway personal. Don't ask for what you want, because they won't have it and will give you what they want. And don't ask how much you owe them, just throw money in there.
Thursday May 25, 2011
  • The last day of BEA. I didn't have many author signings that I wanted to do today. My goal was to meet my and remaining pub contacts that I'd yet to meet. It was a very productive day. I was wonderful to get to thank those publicists in person for sending you book for review. And even though I had a little scuffle in the morning (which you can read about below), I did not let it ruin my day!
  • I did wake up early to get into the exhibit line so as I could stake out the penguin booth for Maureen Johnson! I was really close to the beginning of the line too. Until a group of bloggers "came to talk to their friends" and didn't leave. You might have read about this on twitter, because I WAS NOT HAPPY. Not only did they cut in line, but they also made a teenage girl who suggested to them since this was a popular author if they could go to the end of the line since people were already waiting, cry. Yes that's right, they made her cry. Now I did not hear what they said to this girl, but I did hear her talking to them and she did not deserve whatever they said to her. Tensions were apparently high... people were cranky, wore out and stressed out. I'd like to say I gave the butters the benefit of the doubt, but it was one of the same group of bloggers that cut in line in front of me several times last year. And that's all I'm going to say about that.
  • I left BEA early with Chelsea and Tara from Hobbitsies. We had a late lunch at a yummy Mexican place and had a great conversation. Tara ended up coming back to my hotel room with me, where we charged our phones! And we made plans to meet up with Chelsea later and head to the Scholastic, This Is Teen event!
  • The This Is Teen event was AWESOME!! Bloggers were invited to come early for a meet and greet. I know that it wasn't what I was expecting... the three authors: Meg Cabot, Maggie Stiefvater & Libba Bray were in the crowd mingling! We got to talk with them, snap pictures, fangirl over them... WOW! And I had a refreshing this-is-tini drink!

  • Afterward was the signing. The authors did a hilarious q&a session and then they split up to sign their books. Scholastic was nice enough to give the attendees of the meet & greet session a goodie bag of books from each author! So I was able to get book signed from each one! If this event is coming to your area (San Francisco, CA | Naperville, IL | Wellesley, MA | Miami, FL) GO! You will not regret it!
Friday May 26, 2011
  • The Book Blogger Convention!
  • There were some great sessions this year! I ended up leaving a few hours early to take a nap at the hotel, but I really got some great information while I was there. I really enjoyed all the speakers and panelists! There were a few cringe worthy moments during the q&a session of the "ask the publicists" panel, but the good moments far out weighed the bad. It was wonderful to see how much it had gown since last year. Thanks Michelle for all your hard work!
  • After my nap I meet up with Heidi and Erica of The Book Cellar, and had a wonderful dinner and HOURS of conversation. I couldn't have ended on a better note.
In closing and reflection on my entire trip, it was a success!

I do want to thank the wonderful publicists who took the time out of their busy BEA schedules to talk with me, and share some exciting titles with me!

And to all the bloggers I met for the first time that I didn't mention above... Katie of Babbling About Books, And More!, Stacy and Shannan of Girls In the Stacks.com, Sara of Novel Novice, Jeffery & Jeremy West of Novel Thoughts, Farrah and Brittany of I Eat Words, Danny & Heather of Bewitched Bookworms, Kelsey of Reading or Breathing, Lindsi of Books, Sweets and other Treats & Sassymonkey! IT WAS AWESOME TO MEET YOU!! And I know there were more of you... and I am drawing a blank, I see faces but can't remember blog names, I promise I didn't not list you intentionally!

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NYC/BEA Wrap-Up Post + TIME