For Your Consideration: BEA 2013
With registration for BookExpo America having opened last month (press registration begins later this month), there’s been a lot of buzz online from people who are excited about going, contemplating going, or wondering if they should go.
Who BEA Is For
Anyone involved in the publishing world, and yes, that includes bloggers. It is a trade only event, which means you do need to be involved in the book world in some way. Author, librarian, blogger, publicist, and more are welcome.
Some people think bloggers are on the low end of the publishing totem pole, but I can assure you that is far from the truth. Don’t think because you’re a blogger that you don’t matter. I had a blast last year meeting authors and publicists I had worked with since launching my blog in 2011.
I’m not gonna sugar coat it, kids: BEA ain’t cheap.
It’s held in New York City, arguably the most overpriced but fantastic city in the continental US. I mean the sales tax alone is like 14%. There’s a lot of fees that stack up:
-Price of BEA is $104 for bloggers (and most others!) if you register before May 15, 2013
-Hotel cost (varies)
-Travel to New York
-Travel while in New York (taxis, subways, etc.)
It all adds up, and I get that. But there are a lot of ways to help alleviate some of those costs:
-Roomies are your friends. No, literally. Room with friends and split the costs. Plus, if you book through the BEA site, they have some discounted hotel prices.
-Pick the easiest way to travel and don’t over pack to avoid costly charges. Also, BEA offers some discounts depending on your preferred mode of transportation.
-Split the costs while at BEA with those you are with. Share a cab ride, split a pizza or a $5 subway sub.
-Use the shuttle that BEA provides—I know some people claimed they had a bad experiences in the past, but I loved it.
-NYC has some of the best cheap food. Don’t go for the 5-Star dining experience—unless you can afford it, in which case I expect an invite, mmkay? Instead grab a slice of pizza at an off-the-beaten-path Italian joint. One of the best meals I had last year was at such a place where they had killer garlic knots (relax, I had gum on me) that were 4 for $1. These things were the size of my fist!
-Don’t forget to factor in the books. Yes, you can get a ton of books (which are a HUGE perk), but you’ve gotta get them home. I recommend finding the nearest post office and shipping media mail. I lucked out and had one on the same block as my hotel, so I shipped stuff daily.
Still On The Fence?
When I decided in the summer of 2011 that I wanted to hit BEA in 2012, I emailed several people who had went and picked their brains for details. Not a single one dismissed me. They were all very accommodating and helpful—they loved talking about BEA as much as I loved learning about it. And I made some cool friendship from talking to these people who I also got to meet at BEA (Hey, Audrey! *waves*)
Look, you have several months to BEA. 145 days, according to the countdown widget on my Droid.
What? Don’t judge me.
If you think there’s a shot you’ll be attending BEA or are curious, start planning now. Start saving your money as if you are going. Make a budget. Worst case scenario you don’t go and have some extra money come May. Which you can then use to buy books.