Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Big Bad Wolf Jakarta 2016 and Tips for the Upcoming BBW

These days and the days ahead, we are getting lots of break here in Indonesia. Especially with the public holiday falling every other day of the week, I can't help but feel some sort of excitement. While I am not the best in coming up with a good plan to spend my holiday...and honestly, even if I do come up with a plan, I am also not the best in committing with the so-called plan. Ha!

My biggest mission during these holiday is of course to update my blog. Haha, how many times have I said that? But, as you have read in paragraph one, I am not the best in keeping up with my plan. It has come to the point where I felt like my hands have become too rusty to type as fast as I used to. And my brain has probably messed up some grammar and vocabulary so things might not be that coherent, lol.

But if anything, I am the laziest when it comes to selecting and editing pictures. Argh, whenever I am selecting pictures, I always ended up reminiscing the moments and being nostalgic. Editing the pictures is a pain because I can not seem to get the color in my mind right and I can not seem to keep all the photos in one theme. Blah! But, NO, they are not going to stop me from writing ((fire!!!))

That's why, while I have a handful of times in my pocket, why not write about the long overdue post? Yep, this should explain if by any time in the future, you saw lots of throwback posts. I can write whatever I want, yes? 

Enough for the rant. Haha.

As the buzz of Big Bad Wolf 2017 going around my social media radar, I can't help but reminiscent about the crazy time when I went there. I didn't get to write about that experience on the blog but it was definitely one that I can't easily forget.

What is Big Bad Wolf?

Before we go on further on the story, I think you should first know what Big Bad Wolf is. It is basically a giant crazy book fair with huge discount. Majority of the books are in English language. The book fair was initiated in Malaysia but has now expanded across South East Asia. They sell books from various genre: from fiction, non-fiction, literature, children books and even hobby-specific books like craft, automotive, sport, etc.

And do you know what is crazier? That they open the book fair for mostly 24 hours a day! So you can come at any time at your convenience.

So if you have some kind of love for books, then THIS. IS. YOUR. HEAVEN. Or let me just say, Heaven on Earth.

Road to Big Bad Wolf 2016

I have heard the news about Big Bad Wolf again from social media and they were even advertised on TV. I feel like I MUST GO. It is no longer a want or a need, you guys. It is a must. Yep, so I have also been spreading the news about this event myself, hoping that I could find some company to go to the book fair.

Prior to that, I have also done an extensive research about this event. I scroll through the Big Bad Wolf Jakarta tags on Instagram and read people's blogs about their experience there. From what I have read, I came up with two conclusions: (1) There were LOTS of books, and (2) There were even LOTS MORE of people.

I secretly felt so happy because this means that there are lots of people who love reading and print is not dead. Throwing invisible confetti. 

The thing about Big Bad Wolf Jakarta is, they are not actually in Jakarta. Yep, what can you expect from a wolf? It is meant to tell you a little lie to sweeten things up, hehe. The exact location is in Serpong which is Jakarta's neighbor. But calling it Big Bad Wolf Jakarta's Neighbor City would probably be too long, no? Just kidding.

Since it was not exactly in Jakarta, it was also not that easy to go there unless you have your own vehicle. The best way to go via public transport like train or some kind of shuttle bus. Back then there was no direct TransJakarta yet. Another option is to use (online) taxi. But since it is outside Jakarta, you had to take the highway and of course it would be a bit expensive. So it is best to go with a couple of friends and split the bill. That way, you can also save more money to buy the books.

So, while I was actively looking for friends to accompany me to go there, two of my book-lover-friends agreed that we should go together. I told them about my research and suggest that the best time to go there was during midnight to avoid the crowd. Guess what? We all agreed. Haha!

My Big Bad Wolf Experience

This account is from May 2016 when I had my virgin Big Bad Wolf experience. It has been almost a year now, but I can still remember how crazy that day was, haha.

Since the three of us lived in different parts of Jakarta. Even one lives in Cikarang, that's like another city beyond Jakarta and Bekasi. So we agreed to meet in Ratu Plaza which is relatively in the central of Jakarta. We met up at around 9 PM and felt a bit hungry so we went to eat KFC first.

By 10 PM, we ordered Uber and off we went to Serpong. The exact venue was in Indonesian Convention Exhibition (ICE) in BSD City. We arrived there after about an hour thanks to the smooth ride and little traffic. And believe me or not, it was still crowded. We still had to queue for 10 minutes before we can got inside.

When we can finally got in, we were like OH. MY. GOD. There really were lots of books.

Thankfully, they had a pretty nice layout and they had this kind of big banner hanging from the ceiling to tell what genre belonged to which section. Unfortunately, we went there a couple of days after the opening, so some of the books were scattered all over the place. They still belong to the genre though but not exactly in a tidy arrangement, which was understandable. 

First thing first, we just walked around the entire hall occupied by Big Bad Wolf. We picked some books, read the synopsis, picked some children books, got amused with the pop-up design, picked some other books, had an inner debate and so on. 

We also walked around separately and just wandered around and picked the book that caught our interest and dumped it into the trolley. We then sat down in a quieter corner, sorted the book, drank some water, took some pictures and walked again. And then, yep, sat down again, sorted the book again and this time, asked for the opinion from other friends instead of having an inner debate. That's the perks of having friends to accompany you, haha.

So, this all happened in the span of like 6 hours? Haha! Yes, it was not a type error, It was freaking six hours! From 11 PM to 5 AM in the morning. Nope, we did not sleep, and yes, being a design student, we have practically become a pro in pulling an all-nighter. But there was a moment when we sat so long, probably 30 minutes or more and just took a decent break. 

When we first walked around, the cashier was a bit packed with people waiting for their turn to pay. But by the time we went there, it was empty, haha. And people just started coming in to the venue.

By the time we finished our transaction, we started to feel tired and felt hungry. So we went to the nearest McDonald's and had our breakfast there. Now that I thought about it, I realized we ate junk fast food twice. But it's okay, because we were full and at least had some energy to stay awake for our ride back to Jakarta, haha.

We left with a smile from ear to ear, knowing that we got really good deals for our books. But somewhere over the corner of my wallet, I can hear an agonizing cry. Haha.

What I Bought in Big Bad Wolf 2016

I bought a total of 8 books with 3 of them in Bahasa Indonesia and 2 of them design books for my references. Since this is about a year later after the initial event. Can you guess how many books have I finished? 

The answer is: none.

I know, I know, I am also ashamed of myself. But, insert some kind of lame excuses here. 

So I can not really go on and review each of the books. But I can tell you the reason why I bought these books in the first place. Let me start from the top to the bottom:

  1. Menjadi Selamanya by Luna Torashyngu. The author here is someone whose works I have read across my senior high school time. I liked his works and I thought it was nice to read his book again. Turned out the genre was horror. Ack! And I just knew it like a couple of days ago, so I gave it to my other friend.
  2. Travelove by Andrei Budiman, dkk. This is a compilation of travel stories related with love. I have tried reading it but honestly did not really enjoy it so I took a break.
  3. The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo. I knew about this book back when I was in senior high, so I decided to give it a try. There were some other titles under this author too but I just bought this one. And no, I have not read it yet.
  4. Will You Remember Me by Amanda Prowse. This book looks like it is going to be a tear-jerking book with cancer as a premise. I thought it would be a nice book when I felt a little bit mellow. I have read the first few pages and I probably decided I am not in the mood of mellow to continue, haha.
  5. Five Star Billionaire by Tash AW. Why did I buy you again? I forgot. I just remembered that there are about two or three versions of this book with same price tag. Of course I am going to opt for the hardcover one.
  6. Pictographic Index 1. This one is for reference though I have just flipped through them.
  7. The Design Entrepreneur. This one is also for reference. I like the idea of discussing design as a business. And nope, have not read this one either.
  8. SHINee in Barcelona. Did I need to say more? Haha. I love SHINee so much. And they were much cheaper than the original price, so I had to. This one is for collectible though.
I spent way more than I thought and in a very rare circumstances like this, I bought books impulsively because, OMG they were amaaazing. I did not have any regret, I just wished I had spent my money wiser and not get caught up with the overwhelming feelings. Ha!

Tips for the Upcoming Big Bad Wolf 

Well, that is that about my Big Bad Wolf story. Since the upcoming Big Bad Wolf 2017 is coming real soon, I thought I can give you some tips. 

  • If possible, go with friends. When you arrived you can walk separately. But going with the right friend would be helpful to discuss about a book and you can make a smart decision.
  • Do some research, Big Bad Wolf usually posted some popular books on their site or social media. If you go on later days, you can stalk on Instagram and see what everyone is buying. This way you can make a list on your book target.
  • Avoid the crowd by going around late of night until early in the morning. I know this is not applicable for everyone especially parents. But if you are young and wild and free, I suggest you go after 10 PM until before 9 AM. Less crowd meaning more comfortable time to wander around.
  • Really spare your time to go there. I don't know about you but if it was me, I can not stay there for just 1 or 2 hours. Especially if you went on much normal hour like afternoon, you might expect some queue in the entry. This is also expected when you are paying in the cashier unless you do not buy anything which is probably impossible.

  • When you first got in, no, don't take a selfie yet. Find a trolley. Trust me, you will need it. Unless you are a master in mind-controlling you will more likely get tempted with the books there.
  • It's even better if you bring your own suitcase. Yep, it is even encouraged by the promoter. Just be considerate in bringing your suitcase around so it would not disturb the other visitor.
  • The moment you stepped inside, you would definitely get overwhelmed. It is normal. I suggest you take a look around to understand the layout and the venue and not rush into buying everything.
  • Take time to sort through all your books before proceeding to pay. You don't want to regret an unnecessary purchase later. If possible, browse about the title on the internet and quickly read some reviews. It can probably help you in judging the books.
  • For parents to-be and parents with young children, this is your happy place! There are lots of amazing books with great story and illustration as well as some classic children books and educational books alike. And they are much cheaper here. Yuhuu!
  • Bring extra cash. The only card payment accepted last year ((and probably this year as well)) was from their partner, Bank Mandiri. So if you do not have any Mandiri card, it's better if you brought extra cash in hand. With that said, you can also control your budget and hopefully not overspent.

Ah, what a long post it was. I have been writing for 2 hours with only one toilet break, but I felt so accomplished, yay! I should stop now so I can edit my photos and then go back home. 

I hope you found this post useful and entertaining. I tried to be funny, okay? Haha. Hoping to see you guys on Big Bad Wolf 2017 and let's see what kind of story I am going to tell this year around.


  1. How's the variety of Fantasy book such as Game of Thrones, LotR, Brandon Sanderson books, etc, YA and self-help.

  2. Sorry for the late reply. There are lots of Fantasy Books, but I can not recall if they had Game of Thrones or Brandon Sanderson. For LotR, I think they did not have it. They also had quite lots of books for young adult and self-help genre.