Thursday, May 31, 2007

BEA Day 0: Books and boxes and bulls (and teamsters, oh my!)

BEA 2007Hullo folks hullo and greetings from BookExpo America 2007, the nation's leading trade and exhibition show for publishers, booksellers, authors, agents, publicists, media, and Nancy Pearl, Action Librarian! All these fine folks and more will converge upon the Enterprise-sized Jacob Javits Center in beautiful west side Manhattan over the next four days to see upcoming books from the big fall holiday season. How important is BEA? Let me put it this way: they even have their own blog.

BEA opens to paid industry members tomorrow, so today is technically "Day Zero"—set-up and installation of display booths on the big main floor for the zillions of publishers and other exhibitors (like Norton, the publisher that yours little stuffed truly help out sometimes to sell books). That means today is a heavy lifting day, so bring your tape gun, Velcro, and extra-strength Advil to help unpack boxes and crates and get ready for the event of a lifetime year! Until BEA 2008 in Los Angeles, of course.

I'll be working in the Norton booth all weekend, so watch out for me underfoot as you pass through—I'm the one darting back and forth between people's shoes restocking free catalogues and giveaway book galleys. When I get back to the lovely Jolly Hotel (the happiest hotel of them all!) I'll try night to log on and blog on (unless I'm really exhausted...believe me, it's hard work!). I'll try to give you the skinny, reporting on trends, events, and humorous giggle-worthy sights from the show floor. Will Marvel Comics learn the lessons I so sternly gave them in my BEA report of last year? Judging from recent events, no, probably not.

In the meantime, here's Bully's Very Special Scrapbook of adventures on Day Zero, unpacking crates, opening boxes, stacking galleys, and just generally havin' so much fun that only a flurry of photographs can capture the sheer glee:

Wearing the proper outfit is very important for an event like BEA. Here my very good friend Miss Carol helps me get dressed for the weekend:

You should really wear work clothes for set-up day, but I just couldn't resist getting dressed up all special 'n' stuff. And look! I have my official BEA badge on!

What's in these boxes? Somebody open 'em up fast so I can see! I would do it myself but I am not allowed to have a box cutter.

Booksellers and publicists will want copies of our Fall catalogue so they can see what we're publishing! I am helping to stock stack and stacks of catalogues in our racks. Come on by and help yourself to one!

Many publishers give away free "advance reading copies" or "galleys," which makes BEA a dandy way to get an early "read" (tee hee) on forthcoming books. Don't be greedy; only take one of each!

More galleys, artfully arranged. I'm making base camp here, and I'll head for the summit in the morning.

Hey, where are the Fantagraphics guys! Hurry up and get here to unpack your boxes! I wanna see the new books!

Much of the heavy lifting and construction is done by trained and licensed teamsters. Here's two of the best! These guys are burly, brawny, and very friendly. Nobody drives forklifts better! Thanks for the dirty jokes, guys!

Uh oh...I think these crates may have vampires in them. Let me go get some garlic before I open 'em.

This crate contains Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein. Come on out, Harvey! You don't have to hide...Grindhouse wasn't that bad!

I made myself a little fort out of discarded pallets.

More boxes to open! That's pretty much the entire day, in fact. My hooves are aching from carrying boxes like these.

Many booths will have appearances by authors...swing by and meet and greet 'em! These fine authors will appear throughout the weekend at the Norton booth, signing galleys or broadside posters. Please do not ask them to sign their book to "Lucky eBay winner."

We are also giving away these ultra-cool Paul Krugman "Conscience of a Liberal" buttons on neat collector cards to coincide with his new book. I am wearing my special "Conscience of a Little Bull" button. I hope Paul doesn't mind.

Mmmmmmmmm, pie.

Mmmmmmmmm, ravioli!

It had been a long and busy day and my hooves hurt from carrying boxes and books around. Tomorrow: BEA Day 1: when the action really starts!


FoldedSoup said...

That's a very smart vest, Bully! Chicks dig the vests!

umm... don't know about cows though, sorry...

Looks like working fun!

Erin Palette said...

Oh, Bully... you didn't make a fort out of Palettes (eek!), you made a fort out of pallets.

I require dinner and salacious conversation before I allow anyone to make a fort out of me!

Anonymous said...

So do you still get the dime when you're doing chores outside the house? This weekend looks like it's going to pay for a *lot* of comics.

On the plus side, I think you may have already sold me on that Batali cookbook. Yum.

Dorian said...

Even after I volunteered to be booth-monkey for BEA this year, I wasn't selected to go...drat. No Bully for me.

Bully said...

Erin: Eeek! i always have trouble with that spelling. Thanks for the eagle-eye. I will correct it but you get the credit! I also misspelled "Mongol." P'raps I was thinking of the Superman villain. Yikes. A fort is good to hide from him, too.

KM: What, you mean people get paid to do this? Hmmm. By the way, the Dolce Italiano cookbook is by Gina dePalma, not Mario Batali. (Mario contributes the introduction as Gina is the pastry chef at his restaurant Babbo.)

Dorian: Trade ya! (It's in LA next year, maybe you will get to go then! I know I will have to!)

Erin Palette said...

Aww, Bully, I told you it was okay! You're the smartest li'l stuffed bull I've ever met!

*gives Bully cuddly snuggles and candy beans*

Anonymous said...

I'll be there Saturday, Bully!
See you then.
Great report as always.

Gary Esposito