Get Caught Laughing at Ellen Degeneres

Emmy-winning writer and comedian Ellen DeGeneres will address the book industry in a solo comedic benefit performance Saturday evening, May 31, 2003, at BookExpo America (BEA) in Los Angeles. Proceeds of the performance will benefit the Book Industry Foundation, which is comprised of the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression (ABFFE) and the Association of American Publishers' Get Caught Reading campaign.

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The panelists for this year's "Editor & Bookseller Buzz Forum" at BookExpo America (BEA), which will be held at the Los Angeles Convention Center in Los Angeles, May 29 - June 1, 2003, have been selected. The editorial Buzz Forum, where leading industry editors and publishers pitch their key titles to booksellers, book reviewers, and other industry professionals, quickly became a focal point for BEA conference activity when it was launched at last year's BEA in New York City. The panelists this year include: Sonny Mehta (President & Publisher, Alfred A. Knopf); Starling Lawrence (Vice Chairman, Editor-in-Chief, WW Norton & Co.); Susan Kamil (Vice President, Editorial Director, Dial Press); Alice Mayhew (Vice President, Editorial Director, Simon & Schuster); Claire Wachtel (Executive Editor, William Morrow & Co.); and Julie Grau (Vice President, Co-Editorial Director, Riverhead Books). The Buzz Forum is scheduled for the afternoon of Thursday, May 29th.

"We are enormously pleased to see the caliber of people participating in this year's Buzz Forum," notes Greg Topalian, Industry Vice President and Show Manager for BEA. "The convention has a long history of being a place where major titles are launched, and so it was with this tradition in mind that we created this venue. The Buzz Forum is the perfect place to hear and see what publishing executives think will be the most important and significant books on their respective lists."

Last year, when the "Buzz Forum" was first introduced, a standing room only crowd gathered to hear editors discuss their feeling and passion for upcoming titles, several of which went on to become bestsellers later in the year. Among the books presented were Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides; Take On the Street: What Wall Street and Corporate America Don't Want You to Know, by Arthur Levitt; You Are Not A Stranger Here by Adam Haslett, and My Losing Season by Pat Conroy. Editors who participated included Nan Talese (Nan A. Talese Books), Erroll McDonald (Pantheon), Jonathan Galassi (Farrar, Straus & Giroux), Morgan Entrekin (Grove Atlantic), Leigh Haber (Hyperion), Geoff Shandler (Little Brown & Co.), and Jennifer Barth (Henry Holt & Co.).

In conjunction with this year's Buzz Forum, BEA convention officials note that there will be several separate editorial "Buzz" workshops, dedicated to specific areas of interest. These will include a Children's Book Buzz Workshop, African American Book Buzz Workshop, and a Spanish / Latin American Book Buzz Workshop.

For more information concerning BookExpo America and registration for the above events, please call 800/840-5614 or 203/840-5614 (International) or visit the BEA web site at

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BookExpo has also announced speakers for its special events, including its annual celebrated Book & Author Breakfasts.› The speakers appearing in the morning on Saturday, May 31st are Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Jhumpa Lahiri, and Gerry Adams, and the breakfast will be hosted by Noah Adams.› The speakers participating in the morning program on Sunday, June 1st are Madeleine Albright, Maxine Hong Kingston, and Michael Moore.›

This year's Saturday Book & Author Luncheon will have a political slant, as some of the nation's top commentators, including Al Franken, Molly Ivins, Bill O'Reilly, and Tucker Carlson, will participate in a lively discussion of their forthcoming books.› On Sunday, June 1st Jonathan Lethem, Dennis Lehane, Anita Diamant, Suzan-Lori Parks, and Cristina GarcŐa will speak at a Book & Author Tea from 10:30am - 12pm.› "The Heard Word": BEA's Audio Book & Author Tea, which is annually hosted by the Audio Publishers Association, will take place on Saturday, May 31st and will feature Alisa Valdes-Rodriguez, T. Jefferson Parker, and Doris Roberts.›

As previously announced, Ellen DeGeneres will address the book industry in a solo comic benefit performance at 9:00pm on Saturday evening, May 31st at The Wiltern.› Proceeds of žBEA's Evening with EllenÓ will benefit the Book Industry Foundation, which is comprised of the American Booksellers Foundation For Free Expression (ABFFE) and the Association of American Publishers žGet Caught ReadingÓ campaign.›

"This year's special events are notable not only for the range of speakers participating at BEA, but also for the wealth of knowledge these speakers bring to their individual areas of interest," notes Greg Topalian, Vice President and Show Manager for BEA.› "BEA's speaker program is a highlight of convention activity and I am always pleased and grateful to see that publishers recognize this by submitting their most interesting authors for consideration.› We try to balance our final selections with authors who are not just well known, but who may also have something of an interesting personal nature to share.› This year, many of the authors participating in our speaker program are distinguished not just by who they are, but by what they have done, and we look forward to hearing their observations based on their unique set of experiences."

The roster of BEA '03 Special Events include:

Friday, May 30
Children's Book & Author Breakfast

8am - 9:30am, Concourse Hall, $25

Barbara Park, Junie B., First Grader: One Man Band, Random House Books for Young Readers
Walter Dean Myers/Christopher Myers, Blues Journey, Holiday House
Robert Sabuda, Alice's Adventures In Wonderland: A Classic Collectible Pop-Up, Little Simon/Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing

Presented in cooperation with the Children's Booksellers and Publishers Committee of American Booksellers Association, Association of Booksellers for Children, and the Children's Book Council.›

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Saturday, May 31
Book & Author Breakfast

8 am - 9:30 am, Concourse Hall, $25

Toni Morrison, LOVE, Alfred A. Knopf
Jhumpa Lahiri, The Namesake, Houghton Mifflin
Gerry Adams, A Further Shore: Ireland's Long Road to Peace, Random House
Host: Noah Adams, The Flyers, Crown Publishers

Saturday Book & Author Luncheon: MediaTalk
12pm - 2pm, Concourse Hall, $40

Al Franken, LIES: And the Lying Liars Who Tell Them, Dutton Books
Molly Ivins, BUSHWHACKED, Random House
Bill O'Reilly, Who's Looking Out For You? , Doubleday Broadway
Tucker Carlson, POLITICIANS, PARTISANS AND PARASITES: My Adventures in Cable News, Warner Books

The Heard Word: BEA's Audio Book & Author Tea
4pm - 5pm, Concourse Hall, $15›

Alisa Valdes-Rodriguez, The Dirty Girls Social Club, Audio Renaissance
T. Jefferson Parker, Cold Pursuit, Brilliance Audio
Doris Roberts, Are You Hungry, Dear? , Audio Renaissance
Host: Audio Publishers Association

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Sunday, June 1
Book & Author Breakfast

8am - 9:30am, Concourse Hall, $25

Madeleine Albright, Madame Secretary, Miramax
Maxine Hong Kingston, Fifth Book of Peace, Alfred A. Knopf
Michael Moore, Warner Books

Sunday Book & Author Tea
10:30am - 12pm Concourse Hall, $15.

Jonathan Lethem, The Fortress of Solitude, Doubleday Broadway
Cristina GarcŐa, Monkey Hunting, Alfred A. Knopf
Dennis Lehane, Shutter Island, HarperCollins
Suzan-Lori Parks, Getting Mothers Body, Random House
Anita Diamant, Pitching My Tent, Scribner

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For more information concerning BookExpo America and registration for the above events, please call 800/840-5614 or 203/840-5614 (International) or visit the BEA web site at