BookCon2016: A Wrap-Up (& Absence Apology)

Well hello to all of you beauties, long time no see! Before I get off on how amazingly awesome BookCon 2016 was and how much you missed out on if you didn’t get to go, I would like to apologize to all of you for my month long absence. After Genrethon I kind of went into a reading slump and just could not pick up a book. I tried Passenger and just wanted to shoot myself and nothing else sounded interesting. Luckily, I decided to pick up The Winner’s Curse to read on the plane to Chicago since it’s the May BOTM for Hype or Like Friday. And guess what?! I LOVED it and finished it the other night! SHE’S BACK!!!!

Okay, now on to BookCon amazingness… I’m just gonna basically bullet point some things of interest because my mind is literally jumping all over the place right now. This is the problem with being away for soooo long!


  • This was my first time to Chicago and I have to say it’s a wonderful city! Also, McCormick Place is apparently the largest convention center in the world and after experiencing it for myself, I would say that certainly seems pretty damn accurate. BookCon was literally only in the West Building… There are 3 other buildings this size!!!


  • None of these photos have been edited and were all taken with my iPhone, so sorry for the bad quality! There are a few from Instagram that have been edited but just a couple. Also, yes that is a massive scab on my nose. I got sunburned last weekend and then it blistered up, and yes I know it’s hideous.


  • Okay, so how the signings work is that all of the major author signings required wristbands to be able to get in line. BookCon doors opened at 10am on Saturday but the wristbands were given out starting at 8am. Each author wristband was in a separate line so you had to try and make it in all of the lines to get the ones you wanted, and even then you weren’t guaranteed to get one as there was only a certain number being handed out. Me and my friend Samantha decided that we just weren’t interested in getting into all of that craziness as the authors we wanted were doing in-booth signings as well so we were just gonna focus on making it to those. And thank God we decided to do that! There were tons of girls upset and crying because they missed out on wristbands, and some had even been in line for HOURS. I can’t even with that craziness!


  • This is what it looked like when they opened the exhibition floor and we were actually towards the front of line. We got there about 9:30 and got to bypass the entire line pretty much because there were too many people in the ballroom waiting area so we got to moved to the hallway on the side and basically just went straight on into the convention. Oops!!!


  • The first author I got to meet was Dela who just released her debut novel, The 52nd. I had been seeing this book all over bookstagram and the blogging community so I knew I had to get it when I found her booth. She is the nicest person too! I told her that I was blogger and how I had heard about her book and she got all excited and we ended up having this huge conversation about how great bookstagram is. She was so happy to hear about how I had found her book that she even signed a bookmark for me, on top of signing her book. I may be doing a giveaway soon for it! I also found out that she’s turning the book into a series!


  • This is the line for the in-booth Melissa de la Cruz signing. We saw people lining up for a signing and so we just jumped in before we even knew who it was! Luckily, it ended up being someone I was familiar with! I read her Blue Bloods series a long time ago and enjoyed it. She was really nice and was signing a bind up of the first few chapters in her upcoming book, Something in Between, which will be released in September.


  • The first panel of the day (and only one we went to) was Unwritten: Stories You Haven’t Read (Yet), which was with Del Rey authors – Naomi Novik (Uprooted, Temeraire series), Scott Sigler (The Generations Trilogy), Justin Cronin (The Passage Trilogy), and my reason for attending, Pierce Brown (Red Rising Trilogy). I’m so glad we attended this panel because they discussed their personal writing processes and how they came up with the ideas for their books. It was extremely interesting and ended up being Samantha’s favorite part of the day, and she only attended it because I wanted to! Fun Facts: Pierce Brown doesn’t outline but turns in post-it notes to his editor. Hahahaha! And Justin Cronin doesn’t let anyone read his book until he completely finishes it, not even his editor!


  • This is a view of just a part of the exhibition floor. It was lunchtime and during two really popular panels so it looks fairly calm. Don’t let it fool you though, this convention was anything but!


  • This is a small view of the line for Pierce Brown’s in-booth signing. We were close to the front and I was basically freaking out at this point.


  • I DIED… I finally got to meet Pierce Brown. He was so nice and funny, too! When I first walked up, he goes, “You have really white teeth!”. I got a little embarrassed about it and he was like, “No no, not in a bad way but a good way!”. Then he mentioned the Friends episode where Ross got his teeth whitened and a spray tan and we just started talking about how hilarious it was. Then this glorious photo happened. And before I left, he double checked what my name was and then liked our picture on Instagram. Basically, we’re best friends now. Haha!


  • Obviously, I’m a bit excited that I was able to snag a ticket for the Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff signing. That line was insane! It snaked around like 5 different booths and the authors even walked the entire line and filmed us. They were so excited and happy that so many of us were lined up just to see them.


  • And look what they were giving out to be signed! I saw that people got copies of this at BEA and I was so jealous! But when I saw this was what they were signing, I literally freaked out! And Kristoff and Kaufman were the nicest people! I wish I could’ve gotten a photo with them but I felt bad taking up more time since there was such a long line behind me. We discussed how I got my dad to read and then obsess over Illuminae, which they were really happy and surprised to hear. Kaufman told me about Kristoff’s upcoming book, Nevernight, which I’m now dying to read. It sounds sooooo good!



  • These are just a bunch of freebies that were being given out – bookmarks, pins, stickers, pens/pencils, magnets, etc.


  • Apparently after every one of these kind of conventions, there’s a bunch of drama that occurs. BookCon 2016 was no different. This time it was about the people who grab multiple copies of the free books and ARCs being given out, and about how people are already selling these ARCs on eBay which is basically stealing from the author and publisher.
    • Multiple copies: I am all for being pissed off about this. It’s very upsetting to see people running and grabbing multiple copies of books to use in giveaways, etc. By doing that, you’re only promoting yourself and blog, twitter, instagram, social media account. You’re actively keeping someone else who truly has been looking forward to reading this book from getting one, all because you’re greedy and selfish. It’s disgusting to me. There’s no reason to act that way. In turn, you’re bringing a bad name to the blogging community. This has become such a problem that there have been talk of not allowing bloggers to attend conventions and expos, like BEA and ALA. I’ve seen the photos and proof of this firsthand, and I have to say, I’m not impressed with that behavior at all. If you’re that type of person, shame on you.
    • Selling ARCs: DON’T DO IT. I don’t care if someone is offering to pay you for that ARC, or whatever. It literally says on the book, do not sell because it is for promotional use only. ARCs cost the publishing companies money to make, in hopes that they will see a return on the investment later on when the book is finally released. By you selling that ARC, you’re basically stealing the publisher’s money, as well as stealing from the author. It’s not illegal in the literal sense, but it’s damn well close enough. As a book lover, sharing it with someone should be the only thing that matters, not making money from it. Instead of selling your copies, trade them, give them away, donate them, etc. Don’t be an asshole.
  • And finally, BookCon 2017 will be returning to NYC next June! Samantha and I are already making plans to attend. Hope to see you there!

Have you attended any book conventions or expos? Do you have future plans to? What have your personal interactions with authors been like, good or bad? Tell me about your experiences!

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Obsessive book reader and blogger. Texas girl. Sports fanatic. Lover of travel, video games, and scented candles. I also just really enjoy sleeping. #noshame

48 thoughts on “BookCon2016: A Wrap-Up (& Absence Apology)”

      1. It must have been very annoying. But I have to admit I am very jealous of you guys that got to go. The ARCs that were available looked amazing! I saw a few Promise of Fire ARCs in some people’s photos and it had such a gorgeous cover. I hope you enjoy all the books you managed to get. You deserve it after waiting in those lines 😀

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Well luckily, I didn’t have to deal with any of the problems personally which is good! There were a few ARCs that were being given out that I wasn’t aware of, so I did miss out on some like A Torch Against the Night. But I did get quite a few still and I’m looking forward to reading them and sharing them with you guys! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  1. I attended the Young Adult Literature Convention (YALC) here in the UK last year and I loved it! I didn’t realise we had a book convention in the UK and it was just as I’d dreamed it would be (although only on one floor haha). I’m going this year again and V.E. Schwab and Maggie Stiefvater are gunna be there and I’m so excited!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. What a thrill to read your account of BookCon2016. I’ve never been to a book convention before, so it was great to experience it through your post. You and Pierce Brown look REALLY good together, Ms. White Teeth. 😉 What were some other things the authors talked about in the “Unwritten: Stories You Haven’t Read” panel? The snippets you mentioned, like about the Post-Its, got me curious. Agree, agree about greedy people taking multiple copies of ARCs and selling them. It’s shameful.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, I’m glad you enjoyed it! My mind is all over the place right now so I was afraid it felt a little disjointed haha… Thanks, I think we look pretty good together too hahahaha!

      Well Sigler mentioned that he is really into outlining his novels. His last novel had over 45 pages single-spaced as an outline. He likes to set his books up that way so when he gets ready to actually sit down and write, the process is much more easier, especially since his books are thrillers so he has to plan out all of the twists and turns. Novik shares her writing with some of her close fan fiction peers because that’s how she first got into writing and so her books are basically already edited by the time it gets to the actual editing process.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Great post! I was one of those who stood in line for the wristbands and it was CHAOS. By the time I reached the Queue Room, majority of the authors I wanted to see were full 😦 I need to do my research next time around for the in-booth signings, looks like you had a great time!! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh gosh, that sucks! We had actually sat down Friday night and were trying to plan who all we wanted wristbands but then we were reading comments on the app from others who had been before, and they said wristbands just weren’t worth it unless there was one author that you just had to see because you spend so much time in line when you could be walking the floor instead. So we decided since it was our first time and the ones we had to see were also doing in-booth signings, we would just skip out on the wristbands this year. I’m so glad we did, too! I hope you had a great time though!


  4. I am so jealous as you just don’t get big book cons like that in Scotland. We did have a visit from Pierce Brown a couple of months ago and I totally agree with you on how lovely he is 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! I could kick myself for not taking more but when you’re there you just don’t think about it. I do regret not getting one with Kaufman and Kristoff though!.. Hahahaha I’m not really sure that counts as hitting on me. I think he was just trying to break the ice.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It looks like a madhouse. I would probably only last a day with all that chaos. If you come to NYC next year, I’ll definitely meet up with you. It looks like shopping with books but way more fun. I don’t know. He could’ve just said hey and called it a day. Now you can check compliment from a cute author off your list. Haha!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. It was INSANE for sure. But you get there and you’re like, I’m finally with my people! Yay, I’m definitely going next year and might do BEA as well!.. Hahaha well here’s hoping! He knows how to reach me lol. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Holy shit, you had such a wonderful day! And Pierce Brown seems super nice.
    Also I completely agree about the whole ARC selling drama.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh this event looks amazing! I’m going to YALC in London in July and your post has made me like 100 times more excited for it! But oh that is great about getting a Gemina ARC you must have been seriously thrilled to see they were signing those here as well as BEA!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I think I get more and more excited for it every day! By the time it gets to July I won’t be able to think of anything else 😀
        I hope it’s as good as everyone seems to think it’s going to be 🙂 will you posting a review when you’ve finished. I’m desperate for any information on this book! 😀

        Liked by 1 person

      2. You’re going to have a wonderful time!

        Oh yes, I’ll definitely be posting a review within the next few days. I don’t think it’s going to take me very long to speed through this book, haha! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Ahh, this looks amazing! I am simultaneously heart-eyeing and crying, haha. Super jealous that you have a copy of Gemina, oh man. I am DYING to get that book. Your haul looks amazing and wow, ngl Pierce Brown is a babe 😂😂

    Totally agree with your stance on all the drama that unfolded too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hahaha thanks! Yeah, meeting Pierce and getting a copy of Gemina were my two number 1 things that I had to do! I’ll definitely be posting a review of it when I finish it and let you know if it ends up being worth it (though I totally know it will, haha!)… Yeah, like it sucks that the issues had to be addressed and all of this drama occurred, but there was a reason for it and that’s the worst part about it. We, as bloggers, should be the ones advocating for integrity when it comes to the writing, publishing, and distributing of books.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. How awesome! Pierce Brown was at Texas Teen Book Festival last year, and in a panel I attended. I want to say that Rick Yancey was also on the same panel – just checked my post, yep! – and Pierce talked about writing in the woods. He is hilarious!

    Liked by 1 person

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