Sunday, 30 March 2014

2014 US Adventure: BEA, TAC & ATX

In just under two months I'll be journeying to the United States for my annual leave.  It will be relatively quick - 2.5 weeks - but completely jammed packed.

The last time I was in New York was four years ago and I was able to meet with a host of authors and bloggers.  It was completely life changing in many ways but specifically a meeting in Penguin US HQ made me realise that I wanted a career in YA books.  I knew I had to move to Melbourne and redefine my career and soon after I found myself at the Centre for Youth Literature that fulfilled both those requirements in a beautiful way.

So what's my plan?

I arrived in NYC just in time for...

Teen Author Carnival

Celebrating its sixth year (wow), it is the brainchild of three book bloggers (Devyn, Mitali and Korianne).  This will be the first time I'll get to see this baby of theirs in person and I'm sure my chest will be puffed with pride.

What is it exactly?  It is an opportunity for young adult readers to directly connect with young adult writers.  Previously this has involved multiple panels and a signing. I am very excited to attend, see my mates in programming action, and meet authors that may (or may not) be available here in Australia.  Info.

BEA Bloggers Conference 

Maureen Johnson has been announced as the keynote speaker, the Libba Bray-fronted Tiger Beat will perform, and the panel topics look great.  Though previous years have received some criticism, booking Johnson shows that the organisers are using their advisory committee and thinking about the audience more.  Info.

Book Expo America / Book Con

BEA is the pilgrimage for book bloggers and librarians of which I am (kinda) both.  I am both excited and terrified of this expo as it's reportedly huge, crowd-y and crazed. The lure of ARCs isn't strong to be honest.  It's really a fact finding mission: 1) grow my knowledge of upcoming trends and debut authors, and 2) talk to as many YA related people as possible from bloggers, librarians, publishers to authors.

On a fangirl note, AS King is going to be there.  As are Reading Matters 2013 author extraordinaries - Garth Nix, Libba Bray and Raina Telgemeier - reunion!  Cherry on the already amazing cake...Lenore Appelhans, my lovely Lenore, will be there as an author.  We will finally meet after several near misses - victory!

What I would like from you all is some assistance.  If you've been to any of these events before, what advice can you bestow upon me?

After all that fun I'll be travelling to the wonderful Austin, Texas. I have one non-festival day so I shall be hiring a car and checking out Friday Night Light landmarks like the fabulous fangirl that I am.

ATX Festival

Young adult literature is my passion and profession but TV also has a great possession of my heart.  ATX is about to host its third year of programming -

"Our focus is on the celebration of the medium: looking back at its history, where it is now, and where it is headed. ....consist of events where attendees can interact with actors, writers, directors, creators, showrunners, music supervisors, casting directors and studio executives involved in all stages of bringing their favorite series to the small screen."
Anyone who knows me (or follows me on Twitter) can see why I am excited to attend.  They've already announced an Everwood reunion with programming also around, Rectify, Orphan Black, Bates Motel, Justified and Revenge.  They are also honouring Henry Winkler aka The Fonz, which means I could potentially met my childhood dreamboat (who didn't have a crush on him as a kid?)

Fingers crossed there will be some additional programming around my beloved teens! Young adult adaptations are becoming increasingly popular with networks like ABC Family, CW and MTV so it would be great to see some of this covered.  But I'll admit it will be nice to sit back and enjoy a festival without having an organisational or chairing role.  But...I am also aware I will be itching to lead a panel within seconds. ATX - if you need a chair...? (Worth a shot.)  Typically the sessions are chaired by TV reviews and journalists from online and print media which is an excellent opportunity to match faces/voices with the articles and tweets.

I love hearing about the writing process in whatever medium and I cannot wait to hear from executive producers, screenwriters and showrunners.  I will be in heaven. The only thing that could make it any better would be if The Originals, Orange is the New Black, Arrow, or Hannibal were represented in some way.  Here's hoping...Info.

The lovely Posh from Forever Young Adult is from the area and we're planning on catching up. See? Book bloggers everywhere!

So hit me, people. Any recommendations for:

  • surviving the festivals, conference and convention
  • where must I visit, and eat.
  • who is also attending?


Marg said...

One day I will make it BEA! One day.

Lenore Appelhans said...

Can't wait!!

Kelly J. said...

My two favorite, always-recommend places in Austin to eat are both near the downtown core. You have to go to Juan in a Million for a Don Juan breakfast taco (and get extra tortillas). Then at some point, go to Amy's for ice cream.

I also highly recommend Kerby Lane, which is a diner (but a VERY GOOD diner) and then if you want a little "fancier," you go to Hyde Park Bar & Grill and get the fries and sauce with them.

Of course, you have to go to Book People in Austin, as well. It's conveniently across the street from Amy's.

Have fun!

Liviania said...

I second Kerbey Lane, especially if you like pancakes.

If you like Thai, Titaya's is awesome.

Adele said...

Marg - I've been saying that for years and now it is upon me. The same shall happen for you!

Lenore - I can't wait more :P

Kelly - Thanks for the recommendations. I love me some food, especially 'breakfast tacos' which aren't available in my fair country.

Liviania - Who dares to not like pancakes? Someone broken inside....

Martina Pysing said...

I am jealous. Enjoy.

Mary @ BookSwarm said...

Woo-hoo! That's a thrilling schedule! I'll be at BEA -- maybe we'll bump into each other at something. I run into so many interesting people there!

Keri said...

This will be my fourth year attending BEA and I'm just as excited as ever.

If you're looking for tips and such, this page has ALL THE LINKS to helpful blog posts by various attendees:

Look forward to seeing you at BEA!