The Blabbermouth report on my BEA2012 Day #1

So this is about getting to BEA:

  • Woke up at ungodly hour to make 6am train in to Manhattan. Yes, 6am train.
  • Forgot to pack water and snacks.
  • Might have gotten on train to get to the city or might have been mysteriously transported to Penn Station; no recollection of which.
  • Walked uphill at a 60 degree angle for 3 Manhattan blocks to get to Javitz Center.
  • Saw about 30 NYPD in full riot gear in a blocking formation on 31st street, next to Javits; must have been protecting VERY hot galleys
  • Got badge and found my WNBA-NYC friend Roz on the front of the Author Breakfast line. Cut her.
  • Made myself comfy at the more expensive table seating and slurped the weak coffee they served. Asked for something gluten free to eat instead of the bagels and muffins offered and was served a beautiful fruit plate. Thanks BEA! You’re ok!

Here’s what I remember about the Author Breakfast itself:

This is not the actual plate of fruit…

  • Junot Diaz has an endearing verbal tic… he keeps checking in with the audience with a muttered “yeah?” at the end of his sentences. He also said something sublime while talking about his new book, This is How You Lose Her: “There is no greater human vocation than love.” I love that.
  • Barbara Kingsolver, whom I love so much that yes, I want to marry her, was a delightful speaker who was talking about the craft of writing and said something like, “You can look into a human brain by many methods but you can’t look out of it. That’s our job.” Or maybe it was “That’s where we come in.” Or something like that. She talked about climate change, Angry Birds and host Stephen Colbert’s penis.
  • Norwegian author Joe Nesbo said that the best part of reading his own books translated into English was that there are long words in it that he didn’t know existed and he looks at them and says, “I wrote that!”
  • Of course, Stephen Colbert, who was the emcee and also talked about his penis, was hysterically funny!

After the breakfast I wandered around the convention floor like the deer in the headlights that I knew I’d be, before going to the panel on Science Fiction and Mainstream – Crossing Over, and then the one on The Ongoing Evolution of YA fiction. At the first panel I noticed there were more skinny jeans, piercings, tattoos, and steampunky boots and hats. Nice. At the second, the panel was awesome with the stand-out panelist (for me) being Melissa Marr.

I refused to fight for ARCs of anything today and I refused to stand in line for them. My day ended on an awesome/sweet/serendipitous note when I asked for a second copy of Trevor, a novella, by James Lecesne for my client Bill Konigsberg, who I knew would like it. Turns out James is a Bill fan, so he signed the book “Bill Konigsberg, You’re my hero!” Reading the book on the train ride home, I saw that James even mentioned Bill as one of the authors who writes elegantly and often about LGBT teens. Cool, right?!

I walked uphill back to Penn Station, lugging two totes of books. I had 4 minutes to catch my train. I seemed to have purchased a mixed drink on the train platform. I felt so Madmen. BEA 2012 Day One done.

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4 responses to “The Blabbermouth report on my BEA2012 Day #1

  1. Awesome report, Linda! You’re a trooper. And may I just say that I have a huge crush on Junot Diaz? And when he’s not at BEA, he’s right up the road from me, at MIT. I should get more serious about stalking him.

    Sounds like a great day, if exhausting. Congrats to you and Bill Konigsberg! I hope you remembered your water and snacks today.

  2. Joe Nesbo was the one author I caught online yesterday morning. Funny guy.
    Wow, so cool about Bill!
    Thanks for the update!

  3. Yea you got a fruit plate! And props for 3 blocks up a steep hill, but it sounds as though it was well-worth the effort.