Ready for NY?

Ready?  It's all relative, right?  I mean, are we ever fully ready for anything we do in life?  For those who may not know, I'm going to NY at the end of this month for the SCBWI conference.  I paid extra for the "First 500" manuscript critique.  Those first 500 have been looked at by several peepers.  I've gotten solid feedback that has helped me tweak and perfect my first 500 words.  I have the final polish to make from my last feed back but this is it.  What they see is what they get.  At this point, I'm ready to dawn on my ceremonial robes as have a bonfire with the pages if I have to look at them again.  Which tells me I need distance from this intro.

Besides the first 500, what else do I need to do to be ready?

Wardrobe.  California girl needs to buy some close-toed shoes, because I don't think flip-flops will cut it big city.  Plus it doesn't scream professional.   Warm clothing would be nice.  Girl needs to go shopping.  And why girl has decided to speak about herself in third person is beyond me.

Elevator stomach just did a loopty-loo.  At past conferences. I have purposely never written an elevator pitch because my MS wasn't ready.  What's my excuse now?  I have none.  I've tried to come up with a solid pitch, but they all sound stupid.  For the most part, I think its because of what I say when the normal "Joe Friend" finds out I'm a writer. You know what I'm talking about. Friend, who is not a writer (and does not have a clue about the industry) finds out you are a writer.

"What's your book about?"  (cue Elevator pitch)
Then you tell them it's an urban fantasy about blah, blah, blah.
Their response "You always did like that weird stuff." Judgement dripping form their words.  But then they ask,  "Can I read it?"
Then you have to explain you're not published and hurriedly rush into the whoas of how one gets published and by the time you get to the how many years before it would see the shelf, their eyes glass over.
"Why don't you just make into one of those e-books?"
You try not to reach out and choke them, screaming Really?!? Brilliant idea!  I'll just email Amazon a copy and it will be up for sale by the afternoon!  Instead you simply say, "Well, it's a little more complicated than that.  How's your family been?" Smile, as you change the subject.  

What else?  Getting my expectations in check.  I would be lying if I said I hadn't fantasized about finding my agent at conference.  Conference in NY, capital of the publishing industry, of all places!  And you know what, it's okay to dream.  Realistically, I'm going to learn and make connections, everything else will be icing.  It's all exciting and scary but I'm ready....I hope.