Friday, May 25, 2012

A Book Expo Love Connection

A dozen years ago (June 3), I met the woman I would marry, at Book Expo America.  I went there, to Chicago, hoping to make new client and media connections.  Instead, I found the love connection.

We got married two years later so we’ll be celebrating our 10-year anniversary this summer, along with our seven-year-old son and our four-year-old daughter. 

I met Laura, then the head of audiobook marketing for Random House, at a book launch party for the then nationally syndicated gossip columnist Liz Smith.  I had crashed the party with some of my colleagues.  I was introduced to Laura, by her sister Amy, whom I worked with at the time.  I didn’t even know she had a sister.

We grabbed dinner as a group, that night, and then we all went dancing.  I felt drawn to her instantaneously, though I didn’t think at the time I’d see her again.  I didn’t want the weirdness of dating a co-worker’s sister.  But that didn’t stop Laura.

She got my email and contacted me.  We agreed to meet for dinner and a movie—as friends.  We saw a Woody Allen movie and enjoyed sushi afterwards.  We split the check, just to reaffirm it wasn’t a date.  We’d meet several more times for non-dates.  In fact, the first three times we went out I didn’t even kiss her.      

By the fourth outing I realized that we were dating and things changed quickly.  We moved in together 10 months after our BEA encounter and the rest was history.  When we got engaged, Liz Smith wrote about how we met at her party.  The framed Newsday article still hangs in our house.

Will you find a connection at this year’s Book Expo?  No doubt it is a great place to meet authors, editors, literary agents, editors, publishers, and publicists.  I’ve been attending the annual ritual since my first one in Las Vegas, 1990.  Though the number of attendees and exhibitors has been shrinking the last few years I find the show is worth participating in.  In fact, the company I work for, MEDIA CONNECT (, will have a booth for the first time in its 50-year history.  Come by and visit at #3879 if you’re at the show.

You might just meet the author or publisher of your dreams—or a special someone that will remain with you forever. 

Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer.  You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at He feels more important when discussed in the third-person.

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