BEA Tips and Tricks! (2014 Edition)

Posted May 5, 2014 by Kaitlynn in Book Expo America / 6 Comments

It’s just about that time again.  BEA 2014 is just around the corner. I don’t know about you guys but I’m getting pretty darn excited.  And a little nervous.  I’m always like that.

Since this is my fourth year attending the conference I thought I’d post some of my personal tips and tricks.  These are things that I’ve found useful to know from my past experiences.  I am by no means a BEA expert though.

Bring food!

Pack snacks for when you’re sitting in lines for autographs/galley drops.  It’s always good to bring things that you can eat on the go.  It’s also much cheaper than trying to find something to eat at the Javits or in the surrounding area.

Pack a variety of clothes!

Weather in NYC can  be a little crazy.  It’s good to pack an assortment of clothing styles.  It also can get pretty chilly in the Javits center so it’s good to bring some sort of light cardigan.  You also never know what you might be doing once you leave the Javits so it’s good to have some clothes that might be a little fancier if you end up going to a nice restaurant for dinner or a show.

Wear sensible shoes!

I know that sounds kind of old ladyish (I just made that word up!) but it’s good to wear shoes that may not be the cutest but are comfy.  You are going to be doing a lot of walking and a lot of standing in lines and your feet will hurt.  Your feet will hurt no matter what but sensible shoes will make them hurt less.  (I don’t know how some people wear heels to BEA.  They are crazy!)

Don’t spend all your time getting autographs!

I know there are some amazing authors signing their books at BEA but don’t spend all your time in autographing lines.  BEA is one of the only times you’ll be able to talk to publishers face to face.  Utilize that time!


Take some time to relax and see the sights.  You’re going to be in NYC: enjoy that.  Go and see a show or do something you wouldn’t normally get the chance to do.

Bring a rolling bag!

Bring a rolling bag or suitcase to check at the Javits.  It’s a couple dollars per bag per day but it’s so worth it.  You can take books to your bag(s) throughout the day and your back and shoulders will thank you for it.

Bring at least one sturdy tote bag!

You will get tons of totes from publisher booths but you should bring at least one with you.  The ones you get won’t always be sturdy so it’s good to have an extra in case one of your free ones breaks.

Bring some cash!

Bring some cash to the Javits, both for checking your bag and for donations at autographing lines.

Be professional but have fun!

Remember that you are representing your blog so don’t do anything stupid but also remember that this is a vacation for a lot of us and we deserve to have a good time.

Don’t just go for the books you know about!

Take some time to talk to the publishers and see what books they are excited about and see if you can get copies of those.  You might just find a new favorite author that way.

I know I haven’t covered everything about BEA but these are just some of the little things.  Feel free to leave questions in the comments and I’ll reply to them (if I know the answer)!

Oh and I did do a post like this last year.  Some of the tips are the same but there are some others in that post if you’d like to check it out here.

6 responses to “BEA Tips and Tricks! (2014 Edition)

  1. stephanie scott

    I’m grateful for those willing to brave the BEA crowds for the sake of sharing their book knowledge later. Sounds like an amazing time. Great tips for any conference or convention 🙂

  2. Thanks for the tips 🙂 We’ll at BEA for the first time, plus we’ll be exhibiting so we’re all super excited 🙂 Hope to see you around, we’ll be at Digital Discovery Zone, booth: DZ2261. All the best!

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