Right now in New York City BookExpo America (BEA), the definitive Book Expo in America is taking place at the Javits Center. This four-day event is being capped off on Saturday by “BookCon,” an open to the public event (for $30).
BookCon is billed as the consumer-facing day, meant to bring the sexy, exciting stuff off the page and onto a panel. Make no mistake, BookCon wants to be Comic Con. The tag line is “where story-telling and pop culture collide,” which is incorrectly supposing that they usually don’t.
I have sympathy for BookCon. It’s a shame that authors do not receive the same kind of celebrity that other creators do. Even their screenwriting cousins on TV seem to get more “pop-cultural” coverage — Vince Gilligan, Shonda Rhimes, Matt Weiner and Aaron Sorkin to name a few. Though this years’ BookCon will feature a mix of high profile writers and celebrities, this is a decidedly less exciting event than the ever-growing comic version in San Diego. Because BookCon should be an over-the-top celebration of reading and wordsmithing, I’ve put together a list of things BookCon could do to turn BookCon into a page turner.
I read that you should date a girl who reads. I’m not sure if this implies that you are a guy who reads, but regardless, literacy is sexy as they say. In this Jane Austen-style courtship process, couples will be paired together to dance, talk and marry.
Like an actual club. Get it?
Speed reading contest
Like competitive eating for your eyes
Dunk Nicholas Sparks in a tank of tears
Attendees will have the chance to try to dunk Nicholas Sparks in a pool of tears by throwing his books at a target.
Finish Infinite Jest
This contest is sponsored by Scion.
Pen name revealing gameshow
In this To Tell the Truth style gameshow, we’ll get to the bottom of who is who.
Workshop your short story with a crowd
Watch as creative writing professors tear into your deepest confessions and offer advice on character.
Win a dedication page
Save Jonathan Franzen in this family disaster-themed obstacle course and you could be thanked in his next novel.
Kite Fighting with Khaled Hosseini
The Javits Center has high ceilings I hear.
Bus tours to New Jersey with Junot Diaz
Let Junot take you on a scenic tour of Newark, New Jersey. Can you find your way back to the city? Are you more a Yunior or an Oscar? Only one way to find out.