BEA, 3 days away.

javitsJavits Center map

Jacob Javits Convention Center, NYC. Home to annual car and dog shows. In a few days, host to something a bit more interesting. The biggest author and book event is the US, Book Expo America.

A general description:

BookExpo America (commonly referred to within the book publishing industry as BEA) is the largest annual book trade fair in theUnited States. BEA is almost always held in a major city over four days in late May and/or early June. Nearly all significant book publishers in the United States, and many from abroad, have booths and exhibits at BEA, and use the fair as an opportunity to showcase upcoming titles, sell current books, socialize with colleagues from other publishing houses, and sell and buy subsidiary rights and international rights (although not on the scale of the rights negotiation that occurs at the Frankfurt Book Fair in October). Authors, Readers, librarians, and buyers for book retailers also attend the event.

Keyword: READERS.

Did I drop $100+ for a badge, granting me admission to the exhibits and events? Nah.

I don’t need to sign up and have breakfast with a published author. I do that every day.

I won’t be standing in lines or listening to panels or filling a bag with publisher swag. No.

I love books. I love authors. But I’m going there for another reason, to work, to spread the word, to market, promote, and advertise.

During the last few months, I received several emails from the BEA, asking me if I wanted to pay (a lot) for placement in their showcases or purchase similar services. I declined. I’ll be out front, on the sidewalk, in the parking lot, near the front door if security allows, reaching the readers before they even enter the convention center. No fees, free. As an indie, my budget is low, but I’ve got time, tenacity, and comfortable shoes.

If you are attending, enjoy. Say hello if you see me.

I’ll be wearing this:


indie hero shirt

Handing out 5000 of these:

cards

And 1000 of these:

WP_20140519_019

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46 thoughts on “BEA, 3 days away.

  1. Good luck Brian, should be fun dodging the security guys once the promoters figure out what’s going on out the front. Carpe Diem! Respect REDdog

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  2. Sounds like a great plan. I wish you the best of luck. I, for one, think your book is awesome! By the way, I am now following you on Twitter under the name Leila Oakes… my alter ego. I’ll find you on FB too with that name.

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  3. Props to your guts! (thanks for the follow of my little seedling a few days ago!) Respect to you and your work. Your tenacity is lovely. 🙂 Hopefully it all goes down without too much trouble. I understand all too well finances getting in the way of progress.

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  4. I’ve never been (never know when it is and anyway never have the time off), but this sounds like pretty much one of the best opportunities an indie author could ask for. Will there be a recap post afterwards?

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    • This is my first. Taking two days off from my day job. It’s a great opportunity. Several thousand book lovers all in one place. Possibly a follow up post, if I can find the time. Thanks for your comment.

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  5. Wishing you the best of luck and admire your pluck and determination. You have given me an idea for Frankfurt’s book caper; perhaps I’ll be out there next year following your example:)

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  6. Until recently, I had been totally oblivious to the concept of Indie authors. But the more I have read about them ( through blog posts), the more I have come to respect them (and you). So all the very best for BEA! And thanks for visiting my blog and following.

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  7. Well done! Good luck with the plan. Let us know how it goes. I performed a “guerrilla” operation at an Arts and Crafts Fair here in Spain a few weeks ago. Some “proper” writers were in attendance offering to sign and sell their books. I merely handed out some “flyers” about my ebooks and some business cards. Generated quite a bit of activity and sales during the following week.

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  8. You go, Brian! My traditional pub paid my way into the BEA *years* ago when it was in Chicago. It was great to meet her there (I was based in Ohio at the time; she was in Texas), but the overall experience as a writer was pretty demoralizing, believe it or not. I bumped into another writer (our conference ID tags said “AUTHOR” to distinguish us from PUBLISHER or other labels) who was feeling the same way. My sister, who works for a publishing company, told me the focus of BEA is NOT on authors nor writing, but on publishing. The BEA was (at least at that time) the Big Dance for publishers — connecting to each other and to distributors to buy and sell.

    I’m really curious to find out how your experience goes as an indie author operating outside the dance hall, Brian, especially in the follow-up. Was it worth the time and effort and $$ that you put into the materials to hand out? Did you make any significant contacts?

    Kudos on finding an imaginative way to make a conventional event work for you in an unconventional way 🙂 So in keeping with the indie spirit!

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  9. Working hard – that’s what all of us need to do – in both our writing and in getting it out there. Wish you the best.

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  10. Hi Brian!
    Thanks for following. I’m a happy camper now you are joining me as I trip around by RV, plane, car and time machine to the past.
    Comments, compliments, critiques and wisecracks are most welcome.
    Good luck to you. Love your header. Do kids know what it is? Haha.
    “See” you again soon.
    Which Way Now 101 aka Carol

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  11. Your photo brought back memories Brian of an exhibition I went to at the Javits, the first ever I think, in the 80s. It was boiling hot, no air-con, no cafes. I remember we walked four blocks straight into a bar and ordered three beers each! Good luck! SD

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