The Mishegas of BEA

Mishegas - Book Expo America Logo

I’m excited and overwhelmed as I frantically get ready to head to “The Big Apple” next week for the Book Expo America (BEA) with the St Louis Jewish Book Festival Committee. It’s the largest gathering of book trade professionals (authors, publishers, agents, printers, librarians, bloggers, booksellers, etc.) in North America, attracting thousands of exhibitors and attendees from all over the world.

I get to wear a name badge, so that I look official as I represent the most successful Jewish book fair in the country and search for authors to come to our 34th annual event in November, which features legendary actress, author, comedian Carrie Fisher this year, in case you haven’t heard.

The first time I was in New York was in 1986 right after I graduated college and interviewed with editors at Conde Nast and Hearst Publications for freelance writing jobs. No one warned me at the time that I should wear tennis shoes—not high heeled fucscia pumps—when dressed in a skirt and walking 10 blocks down Fifth Avenue. My goal this year is to not get too many blisters, or worse, get run over by a cab.

I’ve been advised to dress comfortably and not wear open sandals otherwise my toes will get crushed by crazed people dragging wheeled totes all over Javitz Center. I’m excited to see Jimmy Fallon, Kirstie Alley, and Stephen Cobert at the author breakfasts among other celebs and notable authors scheduled to appear at the convention. Maybe I’ll even get a few autographs. I will hoard as many free books, bags, pens, and coffee mugs as possible, and I’m sure I’ll have some interesting stories to blog about, so stay tuned.

You can attend BEA events via live streaming through social media—not even sure what that means—by going to www.bookexpoamerica.com . The only thing you can’t do from home is eat a corned beef sandwich at Carnegie Deli, so sorry.

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