My First BEA

20 May

MISC01Last year, right after BookExpo America (BEA) was over, I was talking to a co-worker and mentioned that I’d love to go, she was in agreement so we decided to trek to NYC for BEA this year.  Unfortunately, due to scheduling, we’ll only be able to go for just Thursday, but I am so excited about attending!

I’m definitely a little (a lot!) overwhelmed about going – there are tons of things happening all day, not to mention checking out all the great new books being published over the next six months or so.  Currently, I’m combing through upcoming releases looking for anything that catches my eye.  If you’re looking for a few published lists, check out Kirkus, School Library Journal, and Publisher’s Weekly.  My next thought is to categorize books into a few areas so I don’t miss out on my “must-haves.”  I’m thinking a color coded list might be the best option.

I have learned that there is no reason to take absolutely everything – especially because I never have as much time to read everything I choose anyway!  Even being really selective in Las Vegas last year for ALA, I brought home an entire suitcase filled with books – no joke!  So, I’ve learned to focus on choosing things that really pique my interest, are being talked about in the blogosphere, or are written by authors that I absolutely love.  And when I’m done with ARCs, I often hand them over to family and friends to read, use them as prizes for library programs, and pass them on to teacher friends to grow their classroom library – they definitely don’t go to waste!

The other thing I want to do is brush up on or at least make a quick list of some of my favorite books over the past year and who published them.  The people working the booths at ALA are always excited to talk about and hear about how excited people are about upcoming and past releases.  And if BEA is anything like ALA, they appreciate being noticed – not only to get an ARC, but to talk to, just because.

I would have loved to have had time to attend the BEA Bloggers Conference on Wednesday, but since we’re only going up for the day, it’s not feasible this time around – maybe in the future I’ll be able to attend and connect with other bloggers around the country.

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