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Top 10 Sound Bites from BEA 2011

June 2, 2011

I love Book Expo America (BEA)! I know it’s clique—but ‘kid in a candy store’ is the only way to describe it. (And it’s not just hard candy–they’ve got great fudge and lemon squares, too.) This was my third year to attend this part-circus, part-conference, part-party-fest—and I’m just now recovering from how overwhelming the experience is for me. Kind of. I cruise the aisles like an ADD boy sans Ritalin, gawking and gaping, “Oh, look—I have this book—and here’s the author—let’s stop and chat with her!” “Oooo—here’s the sequel to that great book we discussed last year—let’s take a look.” And “Look—there’s the Fancy Nancy author—she’s my niece’s favorite!” But contrary to the way it sounds, I do attend informational sessions, too. My favorite is the panel of publishers moderated by Carol Fitzgerald (of fame) on what they’re touting as their Top Book Club Books in the upcoming year—but more about that on another blog… And I love to attend as many author breakfasts and insight stage talks as I can squeeze into my schedule. Here are the top 10 sound bites I jotted down from those sessions:

10. Roger Ebert (Life Itself author) on humble beginnings: “I spoke on Oprah’s Baltimore show—between the Vegetarian Chef and the chipmunks with hula hoops.”

9. Karin Slaughter (Fallen author) on gender communication: “My father was a story-teller. If he was a woman, he’d be called a gossip. But he’s a man, so he’s a story-teller. ”

8. Jane Lynch (Happy Accidents author) on first reading about a character on a new sit-com called Glee: “Sue Sylvester may or may not be on horse estrogen.”

7. Brad Meltzer (Book of Fate author) on publishing persistence: “I received 24 rejects on my first book—even though there were only 20 publishers at the time. Some had to write me twice to tell me they hated my book.”

6. Ellen DeGeneres (Seriously…I’m Just Kidding author via video) on creative book publicity: “If you have any of those Oprah Book Club Stickers—put it on my book cover.”

5. Sarah Wendell (Beyond Heaving Bosoms author) on receiving free books after her book blog became popular: “Why didn’t I blog about Ferraris?

4. Jane Fonda (Prime Time author) in response to being told “you look fabulous” from an audience member, Jane replies, “Good genes—and a lot of money.”

3. Jon Meacham (American Lion author and Executive Vice President at Random House) on other good books at the show: “Jesus has a book over there. It’s sold well.”

2. Katherine Paterson (Bridge to Terabithia author) on Social Media: “I’ve never met a person who tweeted her way to wisdom.”

…and the top sound bite heard at BEA 2011…

1. Lisa See (Dreams of Joy author) on visiting a small villa in China: “I eat everything they give me. So if they serve pig penis, I eat it.”

Now, I can’t wait for my 46-pound box of books to arrive and see what goodies I collected. I tell you—ADD kid in a candy store…



2 Comments leave one →
  1. June 2, 2011 11:50 am

    I love this Marsha! Thanks. I wasn’t able to get there this year, so this was a great way to at least get some of the juicy bits!

    — Dana Barrett, Midtown Review

    • June 2, 2011 1:01 pm

      Dana: I looked for you at Carol’s and at Book Blogger Con. You MUST go next year! It was WAY too much fun! Cheers! BCC

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