Band-Aids and Advil: Some BEA Planning


Josie Leavitt - May 28, 2015

There are necessities for any successful trade show. Proper planning is always helpful. This year, I’ve been aided by Elizabeth’s zeal for organization. We arrived in NYC with a detailed itinerary for our days here. While that was very helpful, I have my own self to blame for the lack of appropriate, comfortable footwear. Why is it that every year I pack shoes that seem comfortable, and they never are? After two hours walking around the Javits Center my sandal-clad feet are festooned with blisters and my bag is full to bursting and my shoulders are throbbing from carrying it all over the show floor.¬†

Every year I say to myself that I will just forgo fashion and wear sneakers. And when I pack for the show I decide to leave the comfy shoes at home because I’m packing lightly to make room for the galleys and swag. In the space that comfy shoes take up in an airline approved carry-on, I can fit probably 10 galleys and all kinds of other fun things. So, I say yes to books and no to comfort. Luckily the show hotel is a stone’s throw from a drug store (honestly, isn’t anywhere in New York around the corner from a Duane Reade?) so I can get Band-Aids.
Advil is needed because, honestly, trade shows give me headaches. It’s the combination of a lack of fresh air, the endless aisles of books that are almost more than one person can take in, the dance of avoiding walking into people while looking at said books, and the carting around of more things than you need. But ultimately, trade shows are fun. Despite the throngs of people, the blisters, the headaches, ¬†there is such enthusiasm for books here it’s hard to not feel hopeful about the state of industry, and that is a very, very good thing.

2 thoughts on “Band-Aids and Advil: Some BEA Planning

  1. Ellie Miller

    My BEA-going days are long past, but I’ll never forget the thrill of my first one nor becoming increasing comfortable with the hustle-and-bustle in subsequent attendances. Once they banned luggage carts from the floor…I assume the ban is still in effect, I quickly learned that my first stop should be the checkroom (with in-out access) where I’d leave the cart with a carton – packed several flat in my suitcase – attached. Then I’d make periodic visits to disgorge once my shoulder bags got too heavy and, at the end of the day, take the carton to the mailing desk to send home book rate. Worked very well for me and enabled me to acquire more galleys than I might have been able to carry-on on departure.

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  2. Monica

    Advil was definitely a necessity this year. I also brought a bottle of water with me each day — even though I could usually hydrate during the day and didn’t want to carry it around, it was great when I finally got back to the bus station at the end of the day!

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