500 India-inspired messenger bags, 300 T-shirts, 150 signed copies of Father for Life, and dozens of dinosaur finger puppets and posters equal giveaway-happy BEA attendees and exhausted Abbevillains! We had a very full and successful opening day at BEA, and we certainly did our part to contribute to the mad hunt for the best conference giveaways. Our India bags were a huge hit, with one woman calling them the prettiest bags she’s seen in 18 BEAs! Bags are the essential, perhaps the ULTIMATE BEA giveaway for 3 reasons: 1. bags hold giveaways; 2. bags are walking advertisements; and 3. bags hold giveaways (seriously, that bears repeating—BEA turns everyone into bag ladies. Everyone eyes everyone else’s bags to see if any bag is nice enough to track down, and our quality bags led many people to our booth).
The big event at the AbbeBooth today was New Father series author Armin Brott‘s arrival and book signing. With Father’s Day around the corner, many folks were thrilled to meet Armin and pick up a personalized copy of Father for Life. We ran out, but Armin will be back to sign more tomorrow. Perhaps the most exciting part of Armin’s book signing was author Richarde Louv‘s visit. The author of Father Love and, more recently, The Last Child in the Woods, Louv inspired Armin to also research and write about—and for—fathers. These new-age dads swapped books and stories while their shared publicist, Meg Parsont, reflected on Brott and Louv’s collective three decades of fatherhood publishing. The BEA warm-and-fuzzy reunions continued when Meg turned around to see fellow publicist Jeany Wolf, who is representing our forthcoming Daughters of India book.
So beyond the bags and other freebies, BEA offers professionals from all sides of the publishing industry a chance to hob nob and swap business cards. Writers came by hawking book proposals and sample chapters. Printers and suppliers stopped in to get in touch with our production manager. Reviewers and book buyers visited to check out our forthcoming books and get on our catalog mailing lists. And our publishing and editorial staff had meetings with foreign publishers and other industry professionals galore literally until the lights flicked off in the convention center!
Then it was off to flag a cab—no mean feat in downtown Los Angeles, let me tell you—for the Abbevillains attending the Independent Publisher Book Awards ceremony. Our winners:
GOLD MEDAL (parenting): Fathering Your School-Age Child: The Wonder Years, 3-9; by Armin A. Brott
SILVER MEDAL (coffee table book): Bulgari, 2nd edition; by
BRONZE MEDAL (photography): Travels with Van Gogh and the Impressionists: Discovering the Connections; text by Lin Arison, photography by Neil Folberg
All very exciting! Not sure how we ended up with one medal of each type, but that makes for a nice collection. That’s all the news fit (or unfit) to print for now. Tune in tomorrow to hear about our juice-and-cookies Abbeville Family fun and gift basket drawing! For more on our BEA events, click here.