BookExpo America (BEA) 2013 in one word… Amazing! Every year in NYC book enthusiasts, publishers and authors from all over the world convene for three days at the Jacob Javits Center on 34th Street to network, educate and promote everything and anything related to books. Of the many conventions that come thru to the Javits center this is one of my favorite because it’s my opportunity to meet some of my favorite authors and connect their words and stories to a real person.
This year was electric! My first stop was Amber Communication Group, Inc (www.amberbooks.com
). What I love about Tony & Yvonne Rose is that their publishing company is dedicated to African American authors. Their focus this year is self help books and celebrity biographies but Yvonne is quick to tell you, “If it’s good we will publish it.” In business for over 15 years Amber books knew what to do to ride the wave of recessional times even when urban literature was booming. “During those times I switched the company’s focus to pop culture nonfiction and found new readers and new revenue. Our way of competing was to put out biographies of (hip hop stars) Kayne West, Lil Wayne, and Jay-Z. “Being able to adapt to changing times has been one of the keys that has kept Amber Books in the forefront of African American publishing for 15 years,” states Tony Rose. The company is doing so well they even received the 2013 NAACP Image Award for their published book Obama Talk Back – Global Lessons
– A dialogue with Americas Young Leaders
Even though Lil Wayne’s biography is with ACG, his daughter, Reginae and fellow rapper Baby’s daughter, Bria wrote a book published by Cash Money Content. Their book titled Paparazzi Princesses is about two characters Kayla & Promise who are the daughters of two legends in rap music. The story gives you insight on the trips, cash, clothes and famous friends but also the high expectations of super successful parents, fair weathered friends and paparazzi. The book is also co-authored by Karyn Langhorne who is the author of Pretty Ugly and A Personal Matter along with four other titles.I guess the saying like father like daughter fits, smile. For moore information you can go to www.cahsmoneycontent.com. Thank you Donna!
From Amber Communication Group, Inc I decided to visit a dear friend of mine Gary Heyward who five years ago self-published his debut title Corruption Officer. He had his own booth and I wanted to see what he has learned and done since the inception of his book and career as an author. Here’s what he said: “Things have been wonderful. Right now I have an action doll to coincide with my book. I did that to separate me from everyone else. I also have a movie deal on the table. I have learned so much since we first spoke. If there is one thing I want people to know is this… it’s possible! All you have to do is do it,” explains Gary when I asked him what was the most important lesson he learned from taking his dream to a reality.
As I walked thru the expo there were so many titles and booths you really didn’t know who to speak with first, but Katherine Woodfield got my attention due to the title of her book, Don’t Buy That Health Insurance.
She explained that with the new Obama Care law there are many things that are our legal right to receive, and that we don’t have to buy that coverage when deciding on various health insurance packages. She explained, “After reading my book you will learn how to reduce insurance premiums and lower you medical expenses. Health insurance should protect you against financial ruin, not cause it!” The trick to choosing the right plan for your family is to do some homework first. This book outlines the things the insurance companies don’t want you to know. For moore information on this book you can go to www.healthcare-insurance-education.com
There were also a few fun books that were represented at the expo. An interesting one I found was a comic book that is going to bring attention to the historical value of the civil rights movement. Congressman John Lewis has joined forces with Top Shelf Productions and co-writers Andrew Aydin & Nate Powell to publish the first ever graphic novel that is certified by the House Committee of Standards. March is a trilogy with the first novel appearing in stores everywhere August 13, 2013. Many years ago, John Lewis and other student activists drew inspiration from the 1958 comic book Martin Luther King and the Montgomery Story. Now, John’s own book will bring days to life for a new audience, testifying to the power of nonviolent action to bring about social justice. AND GUESS WHAT??? We have a collector’s edition of An Advance Look At March for the Bronze Magazine reader who gets re tweeted the most about this article focusing on March.
As I turned the corner after meeting Congressman Lewis (who signed my copy of March)
I saw a huge word, Excelovate
. In front of the word were three sisters and a bunch of children’s books, one with a blue ribbon. You know, being in a Bronze state of mind I had to ask what these progressive sisters were doing. I met the CEO or as I like to say SheEO, Claudette McGowan who explained that Excelovate
was their creation. It means to excel
at the same time. She continued to explain that her company Excelovate is a North American Human Seri e company that operates from Ontario, Canada that focuses on helping people and enriching lives. Excelovate specializes in book publishing, mobile application development, coaching and consulting. What was beautiful about this publisher was their dedication to our youth. They recieved the Mom’s Choice award for a title wriiten by the SheEO Claudette, Big Big Topics for Little Little Kids.
The book helps parents talk about bullying, talking to strangers, a new baby in the famliy etc. Congrats ladies… keep doing your thing! If you want more information you can go to www.excelovate.com
After about four hours of researching new titles I decided to look for interesting entertainment and that’s when I came across Ellora’s Cave. This publisher focuses on erotic books that are graphic and man I mean juicy. Their booth has male dancers and all. I think what I loved best about Peggy’s (the SheEO) authors is most of them were over 50 and writing erotica. Don’t you love it! Peggy explained that she started Ellora’s Cave to empower her daughter who loved romance novels but didn’t like that the books gave nicknames to body parts and weird statements during the love scenes. Her daughter decided to write a more graphic book and had trouble getting it published. However Peggy states that Ellora’s Cave is successful and proves to all the nay sayers that women do want real names and real statements during the climax of the book and sex… lol. I found one title intersting; Take it Off, The Naked Truth about Male Strippers. Man you think female strippers deal with a lot. I guess in the end it’s all about perspective. Peggy gave me a calendar of their cover models to give to a Bronze Reader. Enjoy!
Speaking of exotic, as I was walking around I bumped in Zane. She is so cool! Yes ladies she is as wonderful as her books. So humble and kind. Love it. Well she gave me the whole scoop. First she has a new book entitled Busy Bodies
. It drops July 16th so get your pre-orders ready. It’s her 32 or 33rd book. Can you believe it? She said she never thought her career as an author would take her international. She went on to tell me that she is doing a lot more than writing books and publishing them. She has her TV series on Cinemax that airs every friday at 11pm called Zane’s Jumpoff
. She has a new movie dropping later this year and that is called Addicted
thru Lionsgate. However the biggest scoop she gave us is the development of her new wellness division and her new nutritional supplement Deseral
for women and Gladiator
for men. You take the pill twice a day and it will help with many things including increasing your sex drive and clearing your skin. Go to www.zaneswellness.com
. IF you want to see the whole interview you can click here… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o2wTOmnN5Ac
From entertainment I decided to look for what was going on with technology and I must say even though Sony was broadcasting live Shindig was interactively live. This little booth on the corner broadcasted 50 authors during the three days of the expo. What was amazing is the authors got to talk with fans from around the world and actually sold their book(s) during the interview. Now that’s social media on steroids! I was so impressed that your host with the most will be hosting her own Shindig event at the end of June teaching Branding on A Budget. If you want to know moore go to Shingdig.com.
Another technology gadget that impressed me was Samsung and their new platform for books. College students, the days of carrying tons of books to class is over. All you need is a Galaxy 4 or soon 5. With the Galaxy you can download your books but then you can write notes on the pages, hightlight content and even cut and paste. Crazy! All in the palm of your hand.The book pages even turn as if you were reading a real book.I love it. Go to http://content.samsung.com/us
As the day began to close and the expo began to end I thought the only thing I have not covered was self help books. I found some amazing books. One was not a self help but at the same time it was. James Williams, an a active duty army man, wrote a book titled Chasing the Eagle
. His book was about his own personal journey to success and how you can make dreams come true. Truly inspiring. Another book that I enjoyed learning about was, Exotic Music of a Belly Dancer
by Brian Sweany. Brian’s male coming of age book shows how perspective in life can transform you from victim to valor. It’s all in how you look, approach and decide on things that happen to you. Two books that captured my heart as well as my attention was Anne Palmer’s book, The Gifted Trap.
The daughter of a Tuskegee Airman, Palmer explained in her book that many times we get in our own way. We don’t proclaim, acknowledge or appreciate all the wonderful things in our life to affirm the beauty in our lives. Instead we focus on the negative and what we don’t have or what we have not achieved. She stated that those things trap us. We give that to ourselves. The Gifted Trap shows you how to let go and live. Wonderful. Her website is www.thegiftedtrap.com The last book but definitely not the least was written by Stuart Taylor. His book is right in time with the struggles of today’s society and the economy. It’s called How to Ace A Job Interview! In speaking with Stuart he explained that he wrote this book because he found many people did not get the job not because they were not qualified, but because they didn’t have the necessary interview skills to land the job. His book gives you all the insights, rules and protocol to actually help you have a better interview. It even has a worksheet for you to properly assess your strengths and weaknesses.
Well as you see I had an action packed day at BEA 2013. If you want to know moore about BEA you can go to http://www.bookexpoamerica.com.