Goals for Book Expo

Josie Leavitt -- May 27th, 2014

As Elizabeth and I prepare to leave for Book Expo tomorrow we made a list of some of the goals we’d like to accomplish in New York. This is our 17th show and we have found it enormously helpful to make a list of what we’d like to get done; then we can divide and conquer and to get the most done. So, this year’s list:

- The first on the list is to remedy is my total forgetting to get tickets for the Children’s Breakfast. Our dear friend (and guest blogger) Kenny Brechner is accepting the Pannell ward and we’d love to see it, but I missed the chance to get tickets and now the link is gone from the website.

- We need to take advantage of show specials. This requires doing some work today about what backlist the store needs and anticipating summer book needs. But the specials are usually quite good and can help make the summer a profitable one.

- Finding new sidelines. This usually falls to Elizabeth, who has a uncanny knack for discovering totally off-the-beaten-path items that leave our customers remarking, “You have the coolest things.”

- Bringing our own Band-Aids for the inevitable blisters that crop up by Friday. You know, if the Javits Center wanted a new revenue stream they’d sell Band-Aids along with the $10 cups of coffee. Nothing is more uncomfortable than hobbling to a drugstore toting massive bags of swag to buy moleskin and blister aids.

- Meeting folks from publicity departments. Often, getting to know a publicist is the best way to get events arranged. It’s so much nicer to make a real connection with these folks than just filiing out the event grid.

- Saying hello to my phone reps who are actually at the show. Again, putting a face to the voice is always fun and I usually learn something really great about my reps that enriches our relationship.

- Seeing our friends and colleagues is not a just a goal: it’s the highlight. I missed the show last year, so I’m really eager to see everyone again.

- Trying not pack too much linen. Sure, it  looks great at 8 a.m. but by noon after going to a breakfast and walking up and down the show floor all morning, that crisp look becomes something similar to a crumpled tissue.

- Saying no to swag I’ll never use. I cannot stand it when I unpack the boxes I’ve shipped back to the store and realize that I’ve taken totebags full of things I don’t want: tiaras, things with feathers, stale jelly beans, etc.

- Oh, looking at the new books is also fun.

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