Photos From Book Expo

Inasmuch as I’m paying $10 a day for my Internet feed here at the hotel (yes, I’m too lazy to look for a wireless feed to suck off of), I figure I might as well get my money’s worth out of it and post you some pictures from Book Expo 2004. Are you ready? Here we go:

The pass, which I use to get past the guards at the McCormick Center, who assiduously attempt to keep out the riff-raff. Stupid riff-raff.

The big pile o’ Book of the Dumb, which I would sign over the course of the hour. Interestingly, it was supposed to be a two-hour session, so for the second half we had people leave their cards and we would send them an autographed book in the near future. A surprising number of people did so, which is encouraging, I think.

Me signing for a girl who was prodded into the picture by the Uncle John’s people (and myself; hey, I’m not proud). I was of course only one of hundreds of authors present to sign like crazy fools, and I do believe there is an inverse relationship between fame and length of time signing books; I did two hours, for example, but Jon Stewart of The Daily Show was only scheduled for a half hour. It makes you wonder if it’s really worth his time just to sign for a half hour.

My celebrity signing of the show: Henry Rollins. Henry, in a flagrant violation of the fame/time spent rule, was stationed on the floor for hours. The mitigating factor here is that he has his own publishing house, so he has a vested interest in being on the floor for long stretches of time. The man was the total pro, from what I could see — people would come up, all fanboy and such, and he would just take it and make it look like he was enjoying himself. And who knows. Maybe he was. But he definitely gets points for camping out for hours.

For my money, the single most frightening book advertised at the Expo.

In the children’s book area, there were several of these mascot-like creatures roaming around. I got a picture of myself with Dora the Explorer, because I figured it would amuse Athena, and there were other notable kid’s characters out as well. And then there was this fellow, whose name if I remember correctly was Dream Dog (he has a multicolored tail, which you can just barely see). The poor bastard in the suit was made to dance with little children while insipid Dream Dog music blared in the background; I feel nothing but pity for the poor college student sweating buckets in that suit. Incidentally, you can’t see it very well in the picture, but the look on this little girl’s face was one of abject terror at being made to perform with this thing.

Bear with book about to consume unsuspecting Expo attendee. I could show you what happened next, but no. It’s too horrible.

I’m flying back tomorrow; I’ll post something, I’m sure, on Monday.