Monday, April 28, 2014

Announcing the 2014 Armchair BEA Agenda!!

By now, your calendars should be marked and your excitement should be rising for the 2014 Armchair BEA. This year, we are excited to bring you the fifth annual event that parallels with Book Expo America in New York City. We are approximately one month away from the big kick-off, and we want to ensure that you have enough time to prep for our daily discussion posts and allow yourself to participate more fully during the week by meeting new bloggers, chatting about books and blogging, joining in our Twitter parties, and shooting a few pictures for our Instagram challenge. For that reason, we share with you our official 2014 Armchair BEA agenda today.

Please note that we have continued with the dual daily topics, one that is blogging related and one that is related to the books that we love. However, this year, you will find that we have left you with more flexibility and less confusion when it comes time to share by using only one linky per day. We will bring you more information on these logistics when we kick off the event, but for now you can start brainstorming how you intend to contribute to the conversation.

Without further ado, we enthusiastically present to you our 2014 Armchair BEA Agenda . . .


MONDAY, MAY 26, 2014: INTRODUCTIONS & LITERATURE 

Introductions 
As in past years, we will provide you with a list of ten questions and ask that you answer FIVE. We are currently in the midst of revamping the questions, so all our returning participants will be happy to see a whole list of new choices. The list of questions will be published in approximately two weeks, so stay tuned. 

Literature 
What do you think of when you think of literature? Classics, contemporary, genre, or something else entirely? We are leaving this one up to you to come up with and share the literature that you want to chat about the most. Feel free to share a list of your favorites, break down your favorite genre, feature your favorite authors, and be creative about all things literature in general. 


TUESDAY, MAY 27, 2014: AUTHOR INTERACTION & MORE THAN JUST WORDS

Author Interaction 
Let’s talk interacting with authors IRL (in real life) or online. This is your opportunity to talk about your favorite author readings that you have attended. Or, you can feature your favorite author fan moment (i.e., an author sent you a tweet or commented on your blog). Maybe you even want to share how your interactions have changed since becoming a blogger or share your own tips that you have learned along the way when interacting with authors as a blogger. 

More Than Just Words 
There are so many mediums that feature more than just words and enhance a story in a multitude of ways. Examples may include graphic novels and comics, audiobooks, or even multimedia novels. On this day, we will be talking about those books and formats that move beyond just the words and use other ways to experience a story. Which books stand out to you in these different formats? 


WEDNESDAY, MAY 28, 2014: EXPANDING BLOGGING HORIZONS & NOVELLAS/SHORT STORIES

Expanding Blogging Horizons 
What do you think about when you think about going beyond blogging or expanding your horizons? Is it a redesign of your blog? Have you branched out into freelance writing or even published a novel of your very own? Or, have you moved into a different venue like podcasts or vlogging? This is the day to tell us about how you have expanded on blogging in your own unique way. 

Novellas/Short Stories 
Now it is time to give a little love to those little stories in your life. Share your love for your favorite shorts of any form. What is a short story or novella that doesn’t get the attention that it deserves? Recommend to readers what shorts you would recommend they start with. How about listing some short story anthologies based upon genres or authors? 


THURSDAY, MAY 29, 2014: GIVEAWAYS & BEYOND THE BORDERS 

Giveaways 
One of the favorite days of past years is our day of giveaways! You host the giveaway on your own site and link it up here for all our participants to come and visit. Don’t forget to give Armchair BEA a little love when advertising, but you can choose your own guidelines and deadlines. 

Beyond the Borders 
It’s time to step outside your comfort zone, outside your borders, or outside of your own country or culture. Tell us about the books that transported you to a different world, taught you about a different culture, and/or helped you step into the shoes of someone different from you. What impacted you the most about this book? What books would you recommend to others who are ready or not ready to step over the line? In essence, let’s start the conversation about diversity and keep it going! 


FRIDAY: TOPIC OF CHOICE & MIDDLE GRADE/YOUNG ADULT 

Topic of Choice 
Today is the day to talk about something that you feel we have missed or that you want to spend a little extra time chatting about. Ideas include, but are not limited to: a genre that does not fit into those featured earlier this week; logistics, such as blogging resources, procedures, or advice; or something completely fun with book to movie adaptations or favorite blogging games, features, memes, events, and/or activities. It’s your freebie day to choose what you like! 

Middle Grade/Young Adult 
Our final genre of discussion is one that we know is a popular one these days: books for the younger crowd, from middle grade to young adult. If you do not normally talk about this genre on your site, maybe you want to feature books that you remember impacting you during this stage in your life. If this is where you tend to gravitate, maybe you want to list your favorites, make recommendations based on genres, or feature some titles that you are excited to read coming later this year. 


In each of the categories, we have given you some examples to get your creative juices flowing. However, we encourage you to take the topic and make it your own. You can choose to go with one of our recommendations or you can choose to go your own direction with the topic. 

We are very excited about our 2014 agenda, but now it is your turn to weigh in! What do you think? Which one of the topics are you most excited to dive into? After sharing your thoughts, be sure to share the agenda with all your blogging friends!

Not yet registered for the event? You can register here!

Friday, April 25, 2014

Introducing Our International Committee!

As you all know, Armchair BEA parallels Book Expo America.  However, as you also all know the love of reading is a global phenomenon and many of our Armchair participants go beyond the borders of the USA.  Therefore, we have created a team to bring in an international perspective to our event and everything associated with it.

A couple of weeks ago, we put out a call to expand our International Committee.  We are now excited to announce our newest members of the team.

CJ (ebookclassics) -- Canada
cjzvanitajs AT gmail DOT com
Twitter:  @ebookclassics

Deb (Read Write Tell) -- Canada
justdeb AT debamarshall DOT com
Twitter:  @debamarshall

Suzy (Fiction Dreams) -- Portugal
suzyturnerbooks AT hotmail DOT com
Twitter:  @suzy_turner

These three additions will be joining Julie (from the UK) who was included in our original team announcement.  For all contact information for our International Team as well as the rest of the Armchair BEA team, click on over to the Contact Us tab located at the top of our homepage.

Please give our new team members a warm welcome and feel free to share your ideas of what you would like to see from them during the week of Armchair BEA.  Please note:  Not all ideas may be able to be incorporated, but all will be considered.

Monday, April 21, 2014

We Want YOU to Volunteer!

Do you love to get to know new people and share cheer? Do you like to encourage others? Do you like to have fun? Have you been wishing you could be an important part of Armchair BEA? Here is your opportunity! 

We are in need of Cheerleaders. Everyone needs a little encouragement along the way and this group gets to do just that. It doesn’t matter if you have done this in the past or you would like to give something new a try, we would love to have you join us. As a cheerleader, volunteers are given a certain number of blogs a day during Armchair BEA to comment on to spread encouragement and a sense of community. Commenting is a very important job as it helps every participant feel included in Armchair BEA!

To help ensure that you feel prepared to fulfill your role during this week, we are happy to announce that each cheerleader will receive a Cheerleading Survival Packet with tips, suggestions and a selection of fun buttons created just for you (like the one featured here)! We want you to have fun while you are helping us ensure that everyone is included! The more volunteers we have the easier it will be for everyone, so grab your friends and sign up together!

This year we are also looking for Team Captains, so if you are interested in a small leadership role, please indicate that on the form below. The number of captains will depend upon the number of cheerleaders participating. In addition to the team captains, we have also heard your feedback from last year and have revamped other logistical issues to improve the cheerleading team all around this year!

Volunteers need to be available during the week of the event, Monday, May 26 - Saturday, May 31, 2014, to comment on their assigned blogs. Deadline for signing up to be a commenting volunteer is Friday, May 16.

Please fill out the following form. If you have any questions, please email one of the commenting committee members: Becca (becca7931@yahoo.com), Chrissy (punkfarie@gmail.com), or Tanya M. (momssmallvictories@gmail.com).


Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Join the Armchair BEA Interactive Community!

We have an exciting announcement for you about Armchair BEA 2014!  Before I share it with you though, let me just say a few words on where the idea originated . . .

Every year that we have held Armchair BEA, we have asked participants to complete a closing survey to share their thoughts, experiences, and opinions.  We read every single response and take notes for future years.  One of the changes that we are making this year is to add a more interactive community that is more conducive to discussing our topics during the week of Armchair BEA, but also beyond the specified dates of the event.  



As the title suggests, we have added a Google + Community to aid in this interactive piece for 2014!  We envision this place to be where you can chat about certain topics, ask questions of your fellow bloggers, and to further the conversation.  You can even expect official threads for each of our topics this year, including a special introduction thread coming soon.  We do NOT see it as a place to post self promotional links or to spam our fellow members.  If this happens, the posts will be removed as well as the guilty members.  We want this to be a positive place for you to come and chat about books and blogging from your comfy armchair.

Be sure to click here and request to join.  You can also find a direct link located on our right sidebar for easy reference.

We hope that you will join us in enhancing the Armchair BEA Community!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Armchair BEA 2014 Registration is Open!

The Fifth Annual Armchair BEA is now open for participant registration!!

Armchair BEA is an online conference that runs in conjunction with Book Expo America in New York City. There are a large number of people around the world that are not able to join in the literary celebrations in the Big Apple, so Armchair BEA brings the celebration to you by allowing networking among other book bloggers, authors, and publishers as well as special coverage of the event, all from the comfort of your very own armchair. For more information, be sure to check out our FAQ page!

Last year, we had almost 600 registered participants partaking in our daily discussion topics, twitter chats, new instagram challenge, and giveaways. This year, we hope to be even bigger and better. We have greatly increased our team this year to accommodate our larger numbers and to bring in new, innovative ideas. In the weeks to come, we will be announcing our official agenda, scheduling twitter chats, and soliciting your help to cheer on our participants. In the meantime, mark your calendars for Monday, May 26-31, 2014, grab our new button to add to your site (please be sure to credit our artist Amber!), and complete the registration form below.  We have heard your feedback this year, and will be sending an email in the weeks before Armchair BEA kicks off with reminders and special links.

(Please be sure to only register once. If you're unsure if you've registered check our List of 2014 Participants first. There may be a time delay in seeing your name appear on this list because we manually check each entry.  Thanks!)


Questions:  Email us at armchairbea (at) gmail (dot) com

Please feel free to spread the news 
and see you back here very soon!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Expanding Our International Committee

Book Expo America is an event primarily for those stationed in the US.  The perk of Armchair BEA is that you can experience the event from your own home no matter where you are in the world.  Last year, we implemented an International Committee to aid in ensuring that we are bringing an international component to this global event.  This year, we are looking to expand it even more than where it currently stands.

What might you be doing as a member of the International Committee?
  • Assist in soliciting international sponsors to serve more of our international participants.
  • Lead a Twitter party at a time that is more convenient for our international participants.
  • Write an internationally-focused guest post during the week of Armchair BEA.
These are just a few ideas.  We encourage the committee to brainstorm and determine the best ways to improve and serve participants, particularly outside of the US.

What qualifications do you need to serve on the International Committee?
  • Live outside of the US.  (It is the INTERNATIONAL Committee afterall!)
  • Maintain your own book blog or contribute to one.

How do you apply?

Simply fill out the form below.  Submissions will be collected through Sunday, April 20.  Applicants will be notified during the week of April 21-25.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Calling All 2014 Sponsors!

Part of the excitement of attending BEA is meeting so many wonderful authors and publishers, as well as all the amazing books you come in contact with and get to bring home. Armchair BEA strives to bring as many of the aspects of Book Expo America as possible into the homes of our fellow book bloggers in every way possible, including through our sponsors. Each year we've had outstanding support from Sponsors, from authors to publicists and many of the publishing houses attending the event in New York. (View the full list of all past sponsors here.)  This year we'd love to continue that tradition and this is where our Sponsors come in! 

 As part of this event, you will have two options . . . 

(1) **Sponsorship** hosted right here on the Armchair BEA site.  Keep reading for more information.
(2) A giveaway hosted on your own personal blog or site. For these personal giveaways, we will have a post available during the week of the event for you to link to your own site.  Personal giveaways are separate from sponsored giveaways, so please do not fill out this form if you fall into this latter category.

You may be asking...who qualifies to be an Armchair BEA Sponsor? 
  • A Sponsor could be an author, a publicist, a publisher, a bookstore, and potentially even other fellow book bloggers. 
  • Please Note: Due to the high number of Sponsors over the last few years, we are asking that book bloggers wishing to sponsor Armchair BEA be those that are unable to participate in the "Giveaway Day" during the event week. If you know that you will not be able to participate in the event (for whatever reason) than please feel free to fill out the form below to sign up to be a Sponsor!

What does being a Sponsor for Armchair BEA provide you with? 
  • Listing on the Armchair BEA Giveaways Page as a Sponsor, including links back to your website or other specified page. 
  • Advertising of whichever title(s) you wish to provide with your Sponsorship. 
  • Mention on social media sites such as Twitter (@ArmchairBEA), Pinterest and our Facebook Page.
  • Photo ops live from BEA from our on-site corespondents. *Limited spots available. See the sign-up form.*
  • Viewing by hundreds of book bloggers as well as their followers. (Last year we had over 500 participants!)
  • Possibility of promotion by the bloggers who receive winnings. (Though it is at each individual blogger's discretion what they choose to share on their personal sites/blogs, we will encourage them to make mention of their winnings in some form either via an In My Mailbox post, review, or a way they are comfortable with. Again, not required.) 

We believe that our Sponsors truly make Armchair BEA one of the best ways to participate in BEA from the comfort of their very own homes and appreciate each tremendously! If you wish to be a Sponsor for Armchair BEA 2013, please take a few moments to fill out the form below. 

PLEASE NOTE: If you wish to have your item(s) hosted here, credit and link love will be given to you and we will handle the contest itself; however, you will still be responsible for shipping your item(s) to the winner(s). Shipping information will be provided to you by one of the members of the Armchair BEA Sponsorship Team once they have been selected. Sponsorship offers will be accepted until Sunday May 18, 2014 to allow for time to prep proper publicity for each. Thank you!

Sponsors, if you still have questions feel free to contact Tif, Tanya, or Stephanie at armchairbea (at) gmail (dot) com. If you unable to view the form below, you can also access it here.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Introducing the 2014 Armchair BEA Team & NEW Design!

Last month, we put out a call for help in changing up and expanding our Armchair BEA team.  We received a wonderful response and we are now very excited to announce and introduce the *NEW* 2014 Armchair BEA team!

Before I make the new team announcement, however, I want to make sure you are all reading directly from the website.  I ask this because we also have a *NEW* design courtesy of Amber from Shelf Notes.  Go on, click on over, and check out this new beauty!!

Everyone is already hard at work.  Over the next few weeks, you can expect posts to increase here with more information on our 2014 event, including sponsorship information, registration, a call for commenting volunteers/cheerleaders, and much, much more.  You do not want to miss out!

Armchair BEA can be found on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.  We can also always be reached via email at armchairbea AT gmail DOT com.

We close with our NEW team.  Please give them all a warm welcome!


MENTORS (from the Original Armchair BEA Team)

Danielle (The1stDaughter/There's A Book)
the1stdaughter AT gmail DOT com
Twitter: @the1stdaughter

Florinda (The 3's Blog: Reading, 'Riting, & Randomness) 
florinda AT 3rsblog DOT com 
Twitter: @Florinda_3rs 

Tif (Tif Talks Books)
tiftalksbooks AT gmail DOT com 
Twitter: @tiftalksbooks


SPONSORSHIP TEAM

(Chair) Tif (Tif Talks Books)
tiftalksbooks AT gmail DOT com 
Twitter: @tiftalksbooks

Stephanie (Cover2CoverBlog) 
cover2coverblog AT gmail DOT com
Twitter:  @gorelenore

Tanya Patrice (Girlxoxo)
gyrl1214 AT aol DOT com  
Twitter:  @tanyapatricexo



PARTICIPANT COORDINATORS

Julie Goucher (Angler's Rest)
juliegoucher AT gmail DOT com 
Twitter:  @juliegoucher

Suey (It's All About Books)
jenstusue AT yahoo DOT com 
Twitter:  @sueysays


PRIZE TEAM

April (The Steadfast Reader)
thesteadfastreader AT gmail DOT com 
Twitter: @steadfastreader

Judith Henstra (Leeswammes' Blog)
leeswammes AT gmail DOT com
Twitter:  @leeswammes 

Rebecca Scaglione (Love at First Book)
rebecca AT loveatfirstbook DOT com
Twitter:  @rebeccascags 


AGENDA COORDINATORS

Tanya Patrice (Girlxoxo)
gyrl1214 AT aol DOT com  
Twitter:  @tanyapatricexo

Tif (Tif Talks Books)
tiftalksbooks AT gmail DOT com 
Twitter: @tiftalksbooks


INSTAGRAM CHALLENGE

(Chair) Jasmine (The Bookish Mama)
thebookishmama AT gmail DOT com
Twitter:  @jasmine_marie 

Amanda Furman Maestra (Amanda's World)
amandakfurman AT gmail DOT com
Twitter:  @maestra_amanda 


SOCIAL MEDIA COORDINATORS

(Chair) Jasmine (The Bookish Mama)
thebookishmama AT gmail DOT com
Twitter:  @jasmine_marie

Jennifer Smeth (Book-alicious Mama)
bookaliciousmama AT gmail DOT com
Twitter:  @bookaliciousmom 

Sophia (Loving Lit)
Sophia AT lovinglit DOT com
Twitter:  @sophiareads 


COMMENTING COMMITTEE

(Chair) Becca (Lost in Books)
becca7931 AT yahoo DOT com
Twitter:  @imlostinbooks 

Chrissy (Punk's House of Books)
punkfarie AT gmail DOT com
Twitter:  @punkfarie 

Tanya (Mom's Small Victories)
tanya AT momssmallvictories DOT com
Twitter:  @momsvictories


INTERNATIONAL COMMITTEE**

Julie Goucher (Angler's Rest)
juliegoucher AT gmail DOT com 
Twitter:  @juliegoucher


ON-SITE CORRESPONDENTS

(Coordinator) Florinda (The 3's Blog: Reading, 'Riting, & Randomness) 
florinda AT 3rsblog DOT com 
Twitter: @Florinda_3rs 

Amber Ostheimer (Shelf Notes)
shelfnotesblog AT gmail DOT com
Twitter:  @shelfnotesblog

Sheila DeChantal (Book Journey)
journeythroughbooks AT gmail DOT com
Twitter:  @bookjourney 

Sophia (Loving Lit)
Sophia AT lovinglit DOT com
Twitter:  @sophiareads 


**We are still looking to expand our International Committee.  Be watching for your opportunity to join our team in the near future!