(selected by the Sorting Hat, aka my hand reaching into the empty wastebasket containing the numbered slips)
ALONG FOR THE RIDE: Darsa M. (number 10)
SHIVER (I loved this book enough to want it in hardcover, so I'm giving away my extra AND my copy, thus two winners): Eileen (number 12) and Sarah (number 34)
CATCHING FIRE: Paul Goldschmidt (number 24)
Please email me your addresses at kidliterate at gmail dot com! And thanks for playing, everyone - hopefully I'll have more fall galleys to give away soon.
I guess it was okay.
Okay, fine. I'll write more.
THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT CATCHING FIRE (excluding actual plot points, because even if Scholastic hadn't asked very, very nicely for us not to spoil the plot, I wouldn't anyway, because the surprises in this book are so awesome that I can't imagine ruining them for anyone):
1. It's fantastic.
2. It's better than THE HUNGER GAMES.
3. No, really, it is.
4. Suzanne Collins is going to blow your mind. Seriously. You're going to reach a point in the story where you are going to yell "SHUT UP! SHUT! UP!" or something similar. You are not going to believe where she takes us.
5. You are going to try to read this book slowly. You are going to fail. Give in. Plow through. You can always read it again.
6. The end will crush you like a tiny, tiny bug, because you will realize how long you have to wait for book 3.
7. It is the prettiest galley I have ever seen. It has raised letters. It has a shiny crimson cover. COME ON, Scholastic. We would have read this thing if you'd printed it out on used paper grocery bags. It didn't need to be this pretty! And there certainly didn't need to be so many of it at BEA (says the person who got one in the mail almost two weeks before). In fact, as happy as I am to have read it early, did galleys of this need to be printed at all? CATCHING FIRE was already a guaranteed New York Times bestseller. It was already going to appear on the fall sales order of every bookstore in creation. Couldn't the promo money have been better spent elsewhere, on books that actually needed it? (More on this in the BEA followup entry I have yet to write, because I saw it all over the conference.)
8. If you have read this far, and you haven't read THE HUNGER GAMES, then I do not know what to do with you. I do not understand how you have not yet read THE HUNGER GAMES, and I especially don't understand why you are still reading this. You don't even know Katniss and Peeta yet. You have no idea what a mockingjay is. Go take care of that, would you?
And while you're at it, preorder CATCHING FIRE from an independent bookstore.
I did in fact take an extra CATCHING FIRE, so you're now all up for that, SHIVER, and ALONG FOR THE RIDE. Please comment on the original giveaway post to enter!
(If there's only ONE you're interested in, please put that in your post - I'd hate to mail a galley off to someone who didn't want to read it!)
My BEA boxes did not come today. I can't imagine they won't come tomorrow; that's FOUR FREAKING DAYS! WHERE OH WHERE IS MY PRECIOUS??
(Because as I am sure you can imagine, I am suffering from a lack of books around here. No, really. Really! Why don't you believe me? Where are you going?)
SO, because I live to torture you all, I am officially postponing the drawing until they arrive. So I can give more away. And avoid more than one trip to the post office. (Because I hate the post office.)
AND, because I really don't live to torture you all, I'll be adding another galley into the drawing. I can't quite remember what's in my box, so I don't want to get too many people excited, but it MIGHT be something that starts with CATCHING and ends with FIRE. If I ended up sticking another in my box. (My first copy, which I've finished, is already promised to my boss.)
It occurs to me that I may have picked up an extra ALONG FOR THE RIDE galley at BEA, but I'm not sure. I think my boxes are arriving today, so I'm going to wait on the draw until this evening. Sorry to prolong it, but I figured if I had another to give away, well, that might make up for the wait!
I forgot to mention a happy accident from Friday - a random meeting with Lynn Weingarten in someone else's signing line (how sad that I can't remember whose? Ally Carter's, maybe?). Lynn is the author of WHEREVER NINA LIES, a book I read last year before I was really posting here yet. I really liked it, though, so I'll point you to the Book Muncher's excellent review of same. Lynn was delightful and wearing a super cute dress. I love random meetings!
Also, despite being at the same event, I never got to meet Jessica Burkhart, and despite many visits to the Harper booth, I never ran into Molly O'Neill. Those were the two biggest disappointments of the conference!
Okay! So I was joined late Friday night by Patti and Elizabeth, both who had travel mishaps of one variety or another (although Patti's were much, much worse). After far too little sleep (four and a half hours for me for the second night in a row, and they weren't consecutive) we were up and headed back to Javits. My back and legs? Still tired from the day before. It is HARD to do the whole weekend!
We started the day upstairs, because I hadn't done much up there at all on Friday. Picked up some galleys and giveaways for the summer reading program. (My thoughts on BEA the show and what was on display will be for another post entirely.) And then we just started hopping from downstairs to upstairs and back. The whole day is sort of a blur. I had a great explanation of Moleskine products and a useful visit to the Dover booth. I tried unsuccessfully to buy a sample shirt from Wonder Shirts (Molly will just have to wait for her Knuffle Bunny shirt a little longer). (Just to be clear, I didn't expect them to sell me their only sample, but figured it wouldn't hurt to ask! Their "no" was very nice!) I got books signed by a very charming Mark Teague and an absolutely lovely Gabrielle Zevin.
AND I got books signed for Greg by (among others) George Pelacanos...and James Ellroy.
Hoo, James Ellroy.
"Hello," he said.
"Hi! Can you sign this for my husband Greg?"
Ellroy rolls his eyes. "Just goes to figure that the hottest woman through my line so far is married."
Okay, here we go - here's the famous Ellroy in public!
He then goes on to propose that we have an affair. I point out that the convention is filled with single women; he informs me that he prefers married women. "Well, you are my husband's favorite author, so maybe he wouldn't mind," I tell him, as Patti and Elizabeth are practically rolling on the floor and the rest of the line is looking on in...horror? jealousy? hilarity? amazement? "But he's a really nice guy, so I probably wouldn't do that."
"Oh, I know just what kind of guy he is!" booms Ellroy, and proceeds to write (and read aloud, as he's writing) something completely offensive and foul and hilarious in Greg's galley. SO foul (and loud) that a Random House rep sidles up to him and whispers something, and we heard Ellroy mutter "yeah, I know, keep it down, move it along." He lets me go with further statements about finding him on Facebook, especially if I change my mind, and, practically peeing ourselves with laughter and shaking our heads in complete disbelief, we walk away to let someone else get the full-on Ellroy experience.
"Did that just happen? That just happened," I must have said ten times in the next two minutes.
Greg has never met James Ellroy, and is dying to, but as I told him yesterday I am glad he didn't, because that never would have happened if he had. AND he never would have gotten the galley signature that he did, which is one-of-a-kind to say the very, very least.
(I can't repeat it here. This is a blog about kids' books. If you want to know what the galley says, email me.)
After the Ellroy Experience everything else is much...quieter. Thanks to a tip from the man in front of us in the Ellroy line we met Amber Tamblyn, who was signing her poetry chapbook a couple of aisles over. (I got one for you, Eliza! She wrote something very cute in it!) I spent a lot of time talking to my friend Sue, who's a rep at Scholastic, and I got to meet Paul from Simon and Schuster who makes sure I get the books I want to read. I skipped a lot of signing lines on Saturday, especially if I had already picked up the galley.
I didn't meet very many booksellers, which was a shame - I spent more time on the sales floor and not a lot of time in the special events. But I did meet publicists and editors and authors and sales reps and gave out a lot of cards, so hopefully that helped Pudd'nHead get its name out there so we can start to draw more authors to our shop. I walked and walked and walked and walked, and think I budgeted my time well. Finally on Saturday at 4:30 we went to the shipping area where I paid a lot of money to ship home 85 pounds of books, and we got on the shuttle and went back to the Marriott, having decided that coming on Sunday wasn't necessary.
My friend Kymm came to the show as well, and she'll be joining us here at Kidliterate soon. I'll introduce her as soon as she has a review ready to go!
The rest of the time in NY (til Sunday at 2:30, when I headed off to the airport with Nikki) was spent eating at the Cowgirl Hall of Fame; walking right past the Obama's date night and thinking that the reason all the cops were there was that a funeral was going on; eating cupcakes and drinking prosecco at Sweet Revenge; finally getting a full seven and a half hours sleep; walking across the Brooklyn Bridge on a beautiful day with my best friend; eating dim sum at Red Egg; eating Pinkberry.
Last night I went to bed at 11:30, woke up at 8:30, and then fell asleep again around 10 and slept for another hour and a half. I feel almost human. The weekend kicked my butt, but it was worth it.
Thoughts on BEA itself (displays, publisher presence, event scheduling, offerings etc) to come hopefully later.
I shipped home 85 pounds of books, catalogs and giveaways from BEA.
I am more tired than I can remember being in...maybe forever? Coming tomorrow: the story of the last two days, and, I hope, at least one review.
In numerical, random, brief (possibly):
1. Had four and a half hours sleep last night. Cannot sleep alone in these freaking hotel rooms. Elizabeth and Patti (I hope -her flight was severely delayed and now she's flying into a different airport) are spending the night with me tonight, so hopefully I sleep better.
2. Am exhausted. See above, plus 9-4:30 walking around show floor (on two levels) almost continuously, lugging bags of books and catalogs. PLUS walking from Javits Center to subway with Gabriel, then around the East Village, having dinner and drinks, and then finally pooping out on the band we were going to see and coming back to the hotel. (Seeing Gabriel is worth the extra tiredness.)
3. Attended ABA Celebration of Bookselling luncheon. Forgot that each table has an author sitting at it. Was somehow assigned to table 2. In front of the stage. One of the tables with one of the major winners of the first Indies Choice Book Awards. The table with SHERMAN ALEXIE. Now: I was across a big round table, and the other people there were his adult editor, his YA editor, his wife, an ABA official, and two other booksellers. And there was a little time before and after the awards for conversation, but not much. So I didn't interact with him at the actual eating part, but just to sit there and listen to him talk about whatever was pretty awesome. This is an author who I have loved since studying him in college (thank you, Dr. Joe Coulombe), and I have taken great joy in selling his YA novel to teens and adults alike. I've met him at BEA before (and actually had just been in his signing line about an hour previous to lunch), and was thrilled to get to talk to him again. After the lunch I went up, reintroduced myself, told him how much I had learned since beginning to read his work, and asked him (camera in hand) if I could get a picture.
He said, "With the two of us?"
I said, "No - I want you to take one of me."
He laughed. Hard. (I made Sherman Alexie laugh! People, he is one of the funniest authors I've ever met.) His editor took our picture, and I will post it tomorrow.
4. Last night, after seeing Neil Gaiman in the West Village, I came back to the hotel and posted to Twitter: "saw @neilhimself walking in the West Village, wearing a very jaunty hat."
And then Neil tweeted to me (!): "@mposten so the hat, as a disguise, isn't up to much, but succeeds as a hat...?"So before the lunch, the authors were just standing around chatting to people, and it turns out that Nikki, my boss, knows Neil's editor. So Nikki told her the story, and at one point Neil looked over, and his editor told him that I was the one who Twittered (Tweeted? which is it?) about his hat, and he shook my hand and we chatted about it for a moment. We revisited the fact that it was a lousy disguise (I told him that I never recognize anyone on the street, ever, but knew him immediately) and he pointed out that I had not realized that he was walking with half of the Magnetic Fields, after which I told him that I didn't know what they looked like but that nevertheless the hat was not hiding him. Then the lunch started and we all sat down.
After the lunch I went over to Nikki to show her the picture of me and Sherman, and she asked me if I wanted her to take a picture of Neil and I. Um...yes. So we went over and I asked, and he was lovely, and I told him that if my husband found out I'd met him but didn't get a picture that he would be unhappy. I told him that I loved his books, but that Greg was a huge, huge comics fan. And Neil said, "Oh - he's one of my people." And we took the picture and I thanked him and off I went! (I forgot my stupid camera cable - pictures have to wait!)
5. Also went up and introduced myself to Stefan Merrill Block, because his roommate is a friend of mine. He's a cutie and about fourteen years old. (Or maybe I'm just getting really ancient.) I did not get to meet Steve Kluger, which was a bummer.
6. I got to meet Annie Wedekind, who is just as lovely as her first book. I have her second and third books now and can't wait to break them open.
7. Despite resolve not to take a ton of stuff (and galleys far harder to come by this year), somehow I ended up with three tote bags full of stuff that I took to the shipping area. Must be more careful tomorrow, because OW, my back, from lugging them from the ABA bag check to the shipping area. OWWWWWWWWWWW.
8. I bought an awesome shirt from Unshelved.
9. I handed out lots of cards and met booksellers, publicists, librarians, authors, bloggers, editors, and sales reps. I've never met so many people at BEA before. It seems I'm a lot more outgoing with the combination of the blog and basically running a whole kids' section. I also have very nifty business cards now with my shop info on one side and my blog info on the other. Also, I did a little author wooing for Children's Book World, which made me feel good.
10. Got to see my former boss and former coworker and dear friend from CBW, which was so great. We had terrific cake at the Workman booth even if they did run out of the new Cake Mix Doctor book before we were able to have one signed.
11. Am totally exhausted. Thought I had more to say, but cannot remember it. Brain...shutting...down. Patti and Elizabeth should be here soon, so I'm going to go put my jammies on and wait for them.
12. Oh wait! Almost forgot (this is how tired I am) - I FINALLY got to meet Chris Van Dusen! WOO! He was so nice, and remembered that we'd exchanged emails long ago and that our shop was basically responsible for IF I BUILT A CAR winning the E.B. White Read-Aloud Award. I was so happy to finally get to tell him in person how much I love his books.
I LOVE BEING AN INDEPENDENT BOOKSELLER SO MUCH.
I ended up skipping the Day of Education to go to dinner with two friends and a new baby, but did attend the Teen Author Carnival in the West Village. I had a great time seeing my friend Melissa Anelli again and finally meeting Sarah MacLean! I also got to thank Libba Bray for the awesome pro-gay-marriage post she wrote on her journal the other day and have a nice long gab with Aimee Friedman. AND I got to gush to Elizabeth Scott about her books, and urge Lauren Barnholdt to please keep writing awesome tween for me to sell, and meet Coe Booth and Cinda Williams Chima! I didn't get to talk to everyone I wanted to talk to, but I had a great time talking to those I did. (And man, I know I'm forgetting people. Eep.)
(Then I went out to dinner and to see 9 to 5 with my friend Mike. Oh, 9 To 5. You're so cute and earnest and gosh darn it, you're trying so hard. Who's a little musical? But you have Allison Janney, Queen of All Things, so I am glad I saw you.)
Oh! But on the way to the subway, I saw Neil Gaiman walking in the West Village, sporting a very jaunty hat. I was very excited. I did not go up and fangirl, but chose to just smile like an idiot for three blocks. I will see him speak tomorrow.
Tomorrow it's off to the Javits for the incredibly punishing schedule I've drawn up for myself. I'm getting up at 6, so why, at 11:55 PM, am I writing this post?
(And I haven't even mentioned that I received and FINISHED Catching Fire, or that I am reading Shiver and am so completely in love with it. Or that you all need an ARC of The Blonde of the Joke, like, right now.)