June 8, 2014

BEA 2014: All the Adventures, Pt. II


I intended for this recap to be in a single post, but I realized I was (as usual) talking too much. So, check out BEA 2014: All the Adventures, Pt. I - with highlights from Wednesday and Thursday - if you missed it.

FRIDAY

My first stop on Friday morning was the BEA shipping area - BYE MONEY! I wasn't even shipping that many home because I packed so well that I was able to fit most of my books in the one bag (carry on size cuz I've got skills) but the BEA shipping center has only one size box with a flat rate. It was great if you were packing it to the brim... not so much if you had a measly ten pounds. From there, I made my way to the Sarah J. Maas signing line for Heir of Fire.
Sarah signing is the ONLY legit picture I took during the BEA day.
My entire morning was dedicated to the wonderful Sarah J. Maas. The line was insane, which I kind of expected but not really to that degree. Although I can't lie, it was amazing seeing so many people lined up for and passionate about a book that I also love. I talked to the lovely Jaime and Erin (Fic Fare) and Charlee (I can't remember if she blogged!) while in line, which made the time pass pretty quickly. I also spotted the adorable Sash (Sash and Em), but I didn't get to chat with her until I found her again on the floor later that day. She also wins the cutest outfit award because she looked so stylish!


After finally getting my most desired book (note: it didn't leave my tote the rest of the trip), I had to make up for spending all morning in a line. I kicked into high gear and made my way around the BEA floor. At that point, I knew the layout of the floor pretty well so I felt like I was more confident in where I was going and what I was doing. I snagged fewer books than the day before, but a lot of them were titles that were higher on my priority list. I also felt like I waited in more lines on Friday, but I'm not sure if that's true or I was just so tired that I was more conscious of standing around.


The one thing I didn't really do, aside from take pictures (obviously), was pass out business cards or network. As much as I enjoyed BEA, I did feel that the expo was geared more towards getting books than networking. Each booth was so busy throughout the day that there was hardly time to really chat with the publicists working at each one. You could ask a question or two, but the environment wasn't really conducive to making connections and building relationships. That's not a complaint really, but I was surprised because I felt like so many posts discussed making contacts, handing out business cards, etc. For me, those moments were few and far between because there were just so many people around with so much going on. A few publicists were so kind and grabbed me books that I had missed out on, but I didn't have many "making contacts" moments. But maybe I was just too nervous to try!

We finished a little earlier on Friday, freshened up at the hotel and headed to the Book Blogger Picnic, which was organized by Alexa (Alexa Loves Books), Katelyn (Tales of Books and Bands), Jen (YA Romantics) and Andrea (The Overstuffed Bookcase). We weren't there very long before it started to rain, so Betty, Gaby (Queen Ella Bee Reads)Lauren (Love Is Not a Triangle) and I made our way to a diner to get some food.

Dinner at the diner  | Photo from Betty
We had a great meal and even better conversation, and I was so thankful for the opportunity to grab dinner with these girls. It's so nice to have a moment where everything slows down and you just get to chat without being pulled in a million directions. While the meal was delicious, the dessert is what stole the show...

INSOMNIA COOKIES! | Photo from Betty
Gaby took us to Insomnia Cookies, and I fell in love. I adore anything with sugar, honestly, but I definitely can't pass up on a cookie. I had two: M&M and Snickerdoodle! Mmm... I wish I could have another right this minute. We headed back to hotel after that, and I was already getting sad thinking about how I'd be heading home the next day.

SATURDAY

At that point, I felt like I had more than enough books. I didn't know what to expect with the addition of BookCon, but I didn't have much of a schedule because all I really wanted to do was hang out with Cassie (Books with Cass). Betty and I packed up the night before, and we headed over to the Bloomsbury offices that morning so Betty could go to that breakfast. Cassie met us there, and we loved on each other out front.

Book Best Friends! | Photo from Betty
Betty then headed in to the breakfast, and Cassie and I sat down at a Starbucks across the street. Honestly, I'm so thankful that this morning worked the way it did. Betty and I had debated what we wanted to do that morning earlier in the week since we weren't sure on the timing of everything, and I didn't want Cassie to be really late to BookCon. Well, I think it all turned out perfectly!

She and I had got to spend awesome one-on-one time together, and I liked her even more in person than I did in all of our Twitter, text and video conversations. Seriously, spending time with her at Starbucks was one of the best parts of the whole trip. I MISS THIS TINY TATER TOT.

Finally together! | Photo from Cass
We made our way back to the Bloomsbury office as the breakfast wrapped up, and I got to meet the lovely and delightful Estelle (Rather Be Reading)! I'd hoped to see more of her during the trip, but I was so glad that I at least got to see her smiling face in person (even if it wasn't nearly enough time together). 

Yes, I'm super tall. | Photo from Estelle
Alexa and Cassie headed over to BookCon, and Betty and I grabbed our bags from the hotel so Mr. Betty could pick us up right at Javits once we were done for the day. As soon as we made it over there, Betty got in a crazy long signing line. I stayed on the BEA-only side for just a bit and had one of my favorite conversations of BEA with a publicist at HarperCollins. At the end of our conversation, she grabbed me one of the few books I'd been sad about missing out on - The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton. YAY! 

I then went to the BookCon side of BEA and rescued Cassie from the insanity. It was packed at BookCon, and we were both frustrated with the way everything was (un)organized on that side. Betty made her way out and declared herself done for the day. I got to meet Linz (The Kid: A Book Devotee) in the lobby - she'd come in for BookCon and was also disappointed by the day. At that point, it was close to the time when Mr. Betty was going to be getting us anyway so we talked a little more, said our goodbyes, grabbed our bags and waited out front.

Mr. Betty AND the Baby Bettys soon arrived, but Cassie called Betty and told her that we HAD to wait just one minute before leaving. She managed to charm her way into the display copy of one of the titles I'd really hoped would be given out at BEA - Wildlife by Fiona Wood. It was originally published in Australia, so you know it's basically guaranteed to be AMAZING. Such a surprise and the perfect way to end my last BEA day!

An unexpected BEA surprise!
I got to sit in between the Baby Bettys in the backseat during the ride to the airport. We played with their sticker books, and they told me all about their adventures that week. They also gave me my favorite swag from the whole trip:

Bracelet from the Baby Bettys - WHAT WHATTT?!
I hugged their sweet mama, blew the girls kisses, thanked Mr. Betty and headed into the airport. As tired as I was, it was so sad to head home! I knew that I'd be in heaven once I could put on my pajamas, look at my books and snuggle up in my own bed, but it was a bittersweet goodbye because I just wish they all lived closer to me.

I enjoyed a delicious cheeseburger at a restaurant in the airport and wasted time before my flight. It ended up being delayed taking off and then couldn't land on time in Atlanta because of bad weather, so I was more than ready to be home by the time I finally got off the plane. But Dark Triumph by Robin LaFevers was the perfect way to pass the time - I couldn't put it down!

Nick picked me up, noted that increased weight of my carry on and probably got scared when he saw the maniacal grin on my face. As tired as I was, I wasn't too tired to tell him about ALL THE BOOKS!
BEA 2014: All the Books
coming soon...

7 comments:

  1. Aw such great pictures! BEA has seemed like a ton of fun. I'm going to have to find a way to go next year!

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  2. Yay Hannah! Again, I'm seriously thrilled that you were able to come into town for BEA this year. It was so great to meet you, and I now officially call you a friend in real life! I hope that the next time we get to be in the same place, we have a chance to properly hang out and chat over books (and Diet Coke for you, sweet tea for me) :)

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  3. It has been so fun to read your recap of BEA! It is making me really want to go. I am also encouraged by Betty going -- I always feel like I can't go because of my baby beast. :) I am not great about commenting these days but I am still reading and enjoying your blog! Looking forward to seeing your book haul. Glad it was so fun!

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  4. Yup, that Sarah J Maas line was insane! It was totally worth it though, I loved getting to meet her! Also that cookie place looks amazing!!

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  5. AAAAH, so many of my favorites in one place! Y'all look so cute. Betty! Estelle! Cass! I'm jealous, Han. Haha. Seriously, I'm glad you had such a great experience at BEA. :)

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  6. I'm loving reading about your experience! And while I wasn't able to go to BEA, and would love to make it eventually, it definitely feels like you managed to really capture it with your posts!

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