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Home from BEA!

May 30, 2015

…AND BOY ARE MY ARMS TIRED

For serious, though, I forgot how heavy books are. I mean, duh, right, but I have a bad back and I forgot how quickly my back starts to hurt from things that are common at BookExpo America: standing for long periods of time, sitting on the hard floor for long periods of time, and lugging a zillion books.

Not a zillion. 139 this year, with 9 more Image Comics first issues.

You can see them there in my trunk, sort of. That is the trunk of a woman who just got home from BEA. Because my car was in a parking garage most of the time I was in New York, I would dump out my suitcase and then go back the next day for more, trying to sort them a bit before the attendant brought the next person’s car, but I didn’t do such a great job.

I have a ton of pictures, but none this year of celebrities, because I didn’t feel a need. Almost everyone I got a book signed by that made me excited was someone I’d already met at a previous Expo. The only person I sort of wish I’d taken a picture of is Mo Willems, because he looks so different from last time! He grew his hair out and it makes him look like a completely different person. Very laid-back. Although I heard he’d been living in Paris. Maybe that was part of it too.

All the pictures I’ve taken have been since I got home.  One of all of them piled across my table. Sets of the piles to show off the titles. One of the ones I got signed to me or don’t even have to think about keeping. I’ll post them when I have a bit more time to get them from the iPad to the laptop.

This year I’m not donating most of them to my old library in New Jersey. I think we’re going to take some of the signed books and do something cool with the library down the street and the Friends group. I’m very excited to talk possibilities with the director and youth librarian.

Here’s a new thing I learned about BEA this year: being able to use a rolling cart is a mixed blessing. On one hand, you don’t get the red marks on your shoulders from the bags, and you definitely don’t bleed where some of the less bare-shoulder-friendly bags scrape. On the other, rolling bags with only two wheels do not turn well, and they take up a lot of space, and sometimes it’s easier to push them but then you take up even more space. And at the end of the day, you weave like a drunk from the uneven weight inside or just being tired, I never did figure out which.

You run over people’s feet and into their heels and it’s embarrassing but everyone was really great about it. Even the ones who insinuated I snuck the bag in were polite after I explained that I have surgery this upcoming week. (Don’t worry, it’s not a major surgery, and I should be okay very soon after.)

But anyway, 139 books, that’s not my record but it’s pretty good for someone who was on her own and having some physical issues. That includes the new Richelle Mead, Mo Willems, Neal Stephenson, Meg Cabot, Brad Meltzer, Newt Gingrich…so so many, and I’ll be discussing them soon.

But first: bag video Monday!

(PS Hi to anyone who Googled “Action Librarian.” It was so nice to meet you all!)

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