Jun 6, 2012

New York and Book Expo America (BEA)

Monday and Tuesday of this week, I was in New York For BEA (Book Expo America). I’d been warned about the massive scale of this convention but even so, the scope blew me away. I read that the expected attendance this year is around 30,000, which is basically a small army of book people. (And it felt like war sometimes in that exhibit floor, let me tell you.) But it was awesome to see blogging friends, author friends, and HarperCollins folks, and amazing to see the book industry supercharged and thriving. Go books!

I started the week at IDPF (the digital/ebook Con) learning about advancements going on in that end of the book spectrum. Lots of cool stuff to look forward to; ebooks are really going to transform in the coming years. Here’s a shot of this small, specialty conference within a conference which ran all day Monday and part of Tuesday. Maybe it's because I live close to Silicon Valley, but the possibilities for digitally enhancing books are really intriguing me lately.

Among many others, this painting blew me away.
I challenge you to try this pose and expression at home.
Really. Try it. I'll wait... Are you laughing yet?
This is one of the most alluring portraits I've ever seen.
No matter where I was in the Frick, there she was, watching.
After a full day of sessions, I met Donna Cooner (friend, fellow YA Muse, and author of SKINNY/Scholastic October 2012) in SoHo for sushi and blood orange martinis. They did not suck, and I was so happy to talk with Donna, whose book is on the YA BUZZ Panel, and so deserving of the honor.

On Tuesday, I started the day with my amazing editor at the Frick Collection (we’re both art nuts). I'd never been to this museum but I'll definitely go back. The collection is beautiful, and the museum itself is gorgeous.

This isn't me in the red dress, but I've decided one day I will go to a gallery in formal wear because that is just the epitome of decadent coolness
Me with the one of the YA stars of the show, Donna Cooner
I returned to BEA in the afternoon and waited in line (a very long line) to have my copy of SKINNY signed, and then went to the Apocalypsies event – another highlight of my trip. This group of 2012 debut authors is truly outstanding, talented, supportive, and I’m just dang proud to be among their ranks.

I attended the HarperCollins cocktail reception that evening. There, I met Neil Gaiman (lifelong dream – check!). I also had the opportunity to meet Veronica Roth, author of DIVERGENT and INSURGENT. Veronica and I know each other through twitter and social media, but I’d never met her in person. I suppose it won’t surprise you to know that people have confused us because of our similar names. (It’s a case of mistaken identity that’s utterly flattering to me. Those of you who have read her books know why.) Anyway, she’s an absolutely lovely person. As impressive as I knew she’d be.

Me and Tamara at the Apocalypsies event
Spending time with Tamara makes me happy, as you can see.
Her upcoming novel, Time Between Us, deals with time travel. Maybe that's why?

I had to opportunity to talk with Brian Murray as well. He’s the President and CEO or HarperCollins Publishers Worldwide. I have to say, I was incredibly impressed with how approachable, intelligent and warm he was. We spoke for a little while about the future of ebooks, a topic he’s passionate and very knowledgeable about, and I left our conversation even more inspired to venture into this territory than before.

Apocalypsie Power!
Tamara Ireland Stone, me, Donna Cooner and Tiffany Schmidt
(None of us knows Robert B. Parker, nor have we fooled him.)
(Once or twice.)
After that, I had a quick bite to eat with my editor and then met some friends for drinks back in SoHo, before turning in.

Awesome time at BEA. If you have the opportunity to go too, take it!


  1. Looks like a great time! 30,000 people?! That is enormous!

    1. It was MASSIVE. I have a bone to pick with you, Ms. Shepherd. You're responsible for my lack of sleep...

  2. Aww! These pictures are awesome! Wish I could have been there.

  3. I'm with you on going to a gallery in formal wear, would love to do that some day!

  4. I've been trying to comment on this post for weeks, and my work computer has been a huge fail!

    First of all, LOVE that leather jacket you wore to BEA. Second of all, super jealous of how much awesome was had by all! I think I would go into hyperventilation mode if I was ever able to go... so much to do and see, and so many people to meet! I'd be overwhelmed with meeting the person selling tickets, haha!

    It's also really nice to see you got to visit a museum during your down time. The photos from your visit look beautiful! I love walking around those big halls of paintings and sculptures and just marveling in their beauty. :)

    Thanks for sharing!

  5. Hey Veronica .I love your books and wish you could add on . don't stop I love them <3 . and you are my Favorite Author.