The BookExpo America conference in NY started yesterday with pre-conference seminars and the keynote last night. First let me say Wooo hoooo!!! I know I’m a book nerd, but this is like the superbowl of books… it is Mecca for book nerds everywhere and I am finally here! I’ve been wanting to come to BEA since 2003 when I first got into the biz, and seven years later, here I am.
Yesterday was filled with animated discussions about the state of the industry, where eBooks fit in and how the economy has hurt sales. There were talks on social networking and plenty of FBing and Tweeting going on. And then there was Barbra.
The keynote address was ticketed and the room was packed. The publisher did the introductions and out comes Oprah’s friend Gayle King to interview Barbra. Right behind her is the legend herself Barbra Streisand. Of course a standing ovation ensues. And can I just say – it was cool just be in the room with Barbra Streisand. (I had good seats, too – which didn’t hurt!)
Alas the very private Ms. Streisand was there to talk about her new book MY PASSION FOR DESIGN which comes out this November. The book is a look at all of the work Barbra has put into designing the multiple homes she has on her California property (and of course the beautiful results). But the conversation was also personal. She talked about her childhood and told some stories about her movie making and singing and admits she has some “strong” feelings about color, both positive and negative.
To put it bluntly – Barbra does not like orange, and is not to fond of yellow either (certain yellows, anyway). Like really. She means it. Rumor has it that BEA had special versions of their logo made up that didn’t include the orange just for her. No, really.
The conversation was intimate – though dare I say a teensy bit boring, and it seemed like Barbra had brought along a bunch of slides that she wanted to show that Gayle never let her get around to. Which was too bad… that would have been fun. Oh well, I guess I’ll just have to buy the book.
The good news, I now know what my Mom is getting this holiday season!
PS – We’ll have the book available for pre-sale shortly. Will keep you posted!
PPS – I think I could’ve given Gayle a run for her money (as an interviewer that is!) and I want to prove it. I’m trying to get a show all about books picked up for Oprah’s new network. Your votes can help! Check it out.