It's the most wonderful time of the year! ... No, not Christmas; BEA!
BEA stands for Book Expo America. It's the week when all publishing people make a pilgrimage to the Jacob K. Javits Center waaaaay on the West Side of Manhattan. We met, we try to get free books, we wait an hour for a coffee at the one Starbucks. Mostly we complain about the Javits Center. (It is too far. The food is expensive. The a/c doesn't work/works too well.)
Everyone is there. Publishers you never heard of are there. Authors are doing signings to promote their books. All are trying to hand you a flyer or button or promotional material. You want to see everything but that would take four lifetimes.
The first year I went, I got so much free stuff that my bag cut into my shoulder from the weight. It's my BEA war wound.
Now I just try to make lots of appointments, put my head down and elbows out and try to make my way through the crowd to get to them. He who has the sharpest elbows, wins.