Last week, I was lucky enough to be able to attend Book Expo America, the North American publishing event held yearly at the Jacob Javits Center in New York City. This was my first time attending this event and I can honestly say it was a bit overwhelming. I was so excited when I got my badge, it says "press" on it!
See my pretty Cover Contessa badge? The lovely and amazing Lisa Amowitz made it for me. You need to check her out!
I was also lucky enough to get to go with my bestie and blog contributor D'vora, of International Girls YA Book Club, who was certainly as excited as me to attend this amazing conference!
Day #1 was spent browsing the CIROBE remainders and getting the "lay of the land" for when the actual booths and exhibitions opened on day #2. This year we did not sign up for the blogger conference, but I am considering doing it next year for sure. I have heard great things about it!
Once we checked into our hotel and got our badges for the conference, we decided to wander the city a bit. It was awesome acting like tourists in our own town (since we both hail from New York but now live in New Jersey). Here's some of the fun we had!
New York City just started a new bike initiative. You can rent a Citi bike for the prices listed below and use them to do short errands or trips throughout the city. Right now these racks are only in a small area of the city, but there are plans to add more. You can return the bike to any one of the racks you find! Awesome idea to cut down on the congestion of cars.
Then, we took a walk over to Times Square. Let me tell you, it's not what it was when I was growing up. There's so much to see. But mainly, we just wanted to go to these two places:
And of course we had to get a picture of ourselves with the giant M&M, and that's me making a kissy face at the Hershey Store!
And you always see the most interesting things when you're in NYC!
Then we made our way to Radio City Music Hall and Rockerfeller Center where we people watched and witnessed some more interesting stuff!
Our final stop was FAO Schwartz, where I used to spend much time as a child! Fun to go back as an adult for sure. Things sure have changed in the years I've been going there!
After walking 22 blocks, we had to make the trek back down to 38th street where our hotel was. Did we take a cab? Nope, not us New Yorkers, we walked it! Well, that was a mistake. I had on my comfy sandals, but I still got blisters. Not something you want the day before BEA starts, believe me! In total I think we walked about 5 miles the first day!
This was the view from our hotel room window.
Nice pool, right? WRONG! That was the roof of part of the building which apparently takes on water when it rains! HA!
Finally, we went out to eat and had some yummy falafel at an AMAZING little hole in the wall kosher place on 37th street! D'vora caught me savoring the fried eggplant from my sandwich!
Once we got back to the hotel, we actually spent the evening in the room of Trisha Woodridge, Michelle Pickett, Marie Romero and Sherry Ficklin (all authors and editors from the awesome Spencer Hill Press. No pictures of that because we all looked like heck from our long days of walking and traveling!
All in all it was an amazing day, even if it didn't involve as much book stuff as we would have liked it to!
Stay tuned for tomorrow when I talk about BEA Day #2!