I’m definitely planning on going to a major book conference this year, but I’m not positive if I should head to BEA (the tried and true) or attend one of those other guys – the other major book conferences.
So, BEA is coming up in May, of course. If you’re not sure what BEA is, check out my recap posts about BEA 2014. Last year was my first year attending the conference and I LOVED it! I honestly think that the best part about it was meeting other bloggers and getting to know them. It really made me feel like a part of the blogging community for the first time. I still keep in touch with a lot of the bloggers that I met there and there was just a certain excitement about being involved in something so HUGE!
Now, I am 99% sure that I’m heading back to BEA again this year, but there’s one thing holding me back. The conference is going to be in Chicago next year (my neck of the woods) and I heard a rumor that it will be in Chicago for the next five years – but this is JUST a rumor (I haven’t found anything to substantiate that – does anyone else know anything about that?).
Anyway, it got me thinking. If BEA were actually in Chicago for the next five years, I would have really easy access to it, so maybe it would make more sense for me to attend some other book conference this year. I really can’t afford to go to more than one major conference per year (especially because me traveling is just a little too hard on the family) – so, is there another conference besides BEA that I should try to go to? Has anyone been to other conferences that were amazing that I should look into? What other major book conferences are there? I know about ALA (don’t even get me started on how I missed ALA Midwinter in Chicago because I was roped into doing hospitality for my daughter’s gymnastics meet – a truly horrible experience), but are there other conferences that are awesome that I should be looking into? And, speaking of ALA, would it make sense to skip BEA this year and head to ALA in San Fran instead? Has anyone been to both? Which do you recommend?
Like I said, I’m fairly certain I’m going to go to BEA, but I just want to make sure there isn’t something else I’m missing out on out there – and I know lots of you have been to plenty of conferences. I need your wisdom!
If I do go to BEA, I need to get my ducks in a row quickly. I’ve talked to my roommate from last year a couple of times, but she lives in Ireland and may or may not be coming this year. Anybody heading to BEA and looking for a roommate? (Let me know in the comments or shoot me an email.) Sharing the costs of a hotel is pretty much a must – it’s by far the biggest expense of the trip.
Oh, and if you are heading to BEA (especially if you’re a first-timer), check out this list of posts with BEA tips that I compiled last year. I’ll put together a new one for this year, but the tips are going to be pretty similar, so this is a great place to start!
So, let me know what you think. Is it BEA or bust?
Or should I be considering the other guys? I want to know!