This summer will mark my fifth anniversary of blogging. And one of the things I’ve really wanted to do is attend the Book Expo America Bloggers Conference. Have you been? What did you think?
I read some good critical reviews of last year’s conference, and it sounds like the blogging sessions aren’t always terribly informative. And there’s no agenda yet to look at. But I think meeting other book bloggers would be wonderful. Of course maybe there are book bloggers in the DC region who would like to meet up occasionally – in which case I would love to help plan something.
Bloggers, have you been to BEA, and if so, which parts? The Book Expo sounds fun, but I’m not a big fan of lines and crowds, and to be perfectly honest I’m not super interested in meeting authors. I’d much rather read their books! I’ve been to book signings and find them a pretty artificial experience, except for the part where you hear an author talk about or read from their books. You need special tickets to get in to see the really popular authors; is this worth it? What about the Avid Reader Pass, which gets you tickets to ten authors plus covers your autographing fees?
I’m interested in seeing all the publishers and hearing about new books though. I think they give out a lot of free books, right?
BEA is in New York City on the last week of May. The Bloggers Conference is Wednesday, May 27. While NY isn’t far, going on a Wednesday means taking most of the week off. Is it worth it? I’d have to take a train up on Tuesday, and then I imagine I’d stay for the rest of the week. I’m not super concerned about the conference fee but the cost of travel, hotel, and time off work is significant.
It would help if I was more excited about spending time in New York. I was born in NYC but I’m really not much of a fan. DC has pretty much everything NYC has, and is smaller and more manageable. If I was into Broadway or high-end shopping, I suppose I’d feel differently. New York has great kosher delis, but really I’m not too into the foot-high meat sandwich idea.
I do have relatives there, which is a plus.
The real question is whether BEA and the Bloggers Conference is good for my blog. This year, I’d really like to expand the reach of the blog, and expand MY knowledge about blogging. In my first few years, I was really focused on the content. But I want to know so much more.
Of course it’s early to decide, since agendas haven’t been developed and the early registration deadline isn’t till May 8. On the other hand, the husband and I have limited time to travel this year, and planning our vacation and any visits to friends and family has to happen soon.
So, if you’ve been to BEA and the Bloggers Conference, what did you think? What were the highs and lows? Will you go again?
Note: I’ve decided to post at least once a month about blogging issues, for the Book Blog Discussion challenge at Feed Your Fiction Addiction. Check it out for other posts about blogging.