Thursday, April 19, 2012

My London Book Fair Adventure

All I can say is that I have even more respect for my agent after spending a few hours at London Book Fair...I was shattered. How she survives after three full days plus the parties....

I went to see what all the fuss was about....
Earl's Court

On the surface it's just like other trade shows I've been to...loads of people, massive displays but the difference is that LBF is about books...and every one attending is passionate about them - well maybe not the coat check lady but then I didn't ask her because she was scary.
A fuzzy view

I went because I was curious. Nothing more than that I'm afraid. I had no secret agenda - well I knew a few friends would be there (Mel Sherrat, Maria Duffy) but found so many more...
Vanessa O'Loughlin

I wanted to get a picture of Carole Blake with my book on her desk and I did...in fact when I waved from the distance and she called me over she was actually pitching my book. How cool? How scary...
A US publisher sitting with my agent Carole Blake with The Cornish  House on display
I met a few people from Orion. I had great catch up with my Choc Lit buddies.
Sue Moorcroft

Me and Pia Christina Courtenay
Was it worth the cost of admission? Yes, because in today's market authors need to know how it all works. The more you know the more you understand. I attended part of the session on self-publishing. This was fantastic. Yes, I have a wonderful publisher but in the publishing world today the author needs to be savvy about selling books. The authors on the panel were successfully selling their books and had a lot of knowledge to share. I loved Linda Gillard's comment that she looks at readers as potential friends and that makes marketing much easier. It was a key point that I will take away with me...
Sam Missingham at the Bookseller stand

So no great revelations but a decision that if possible I will visit again next year and get a feel of the mood in the industry which this year according to my sources was positive....
The RNA's RoNA brochure on the Choc Lit stand


13 comments:

Philip C James said...

Thoughts well worth sharing, Liz, especially the observation about readers as friends. ( You share the same interests as each other, obviously.)

catdownunder said...

The real problem with going would be seeing all those new books that you absolutely have to read - my list is already far too long!

Lesley Cookman said...

I've been twice (Hazel bought my ticket!) and it's exhausting. I agree, we need to be aware of everything that's happening in the book trade, self publishing included. Looking forward to your launch!

Sheryl said...

The world is getting bigger, Liz. Always something we can learn. Thank God for friends! Nice post. :) x

Lorna F said...

Hi Liz - it was lovely to meet you yesterday. It was my first visit to the Fair too and I felt very much as you do. It was fascinating - and exhausting!

Lorna F said...

Blogger has just lost my first comment so here goes again! It was lovely to meet you yesterday. It was my first visit to the Fair too and I feel as you do - it was both fascinating and exhausting!

liz fenwick said...

Thanks Philip!

Yes, Cat, the temptation of all those books!

Thanks Lesley :-)

Sheryl - it's getting bigger but also smaller in a funny old way...

Lorna - I came back and put my feet up for a few hours and tackled the big evening! Lovely to meet you in person!

lx

Louise said...

Thanks for the photos and the info, really interesting stuff.

Hazel Gaynor said...

Hi Liz - what a great round-up! It was lovely to meet you, if only very briefly :)

Linda Gillard said...

My first Book Fair too! It was good to see you again, Liz. Thanks for quoting my comment about painless self-promotion for the shy. Over the years, so many of my readers have become my friends, this is now how I see my readers. For self-promotion to work (very necessary for indy authors) you can't just offer readers your book, you have to offer a little of yourself. But readers have so much to give in return! :-)

liz fenwick said...

Louise a pleasure :-)

Hazel - next time I will be better organized and we will have a proper chat!

Linda - you are an inspiration and what you say applies to all authors whether indy or traditional! Are you going to the conference this year?

lx

D.J. Kirkby said...

I am glad you found it worth going. I am sad I couldn't go this year but I plan on going next year. See you there!

liz fenwick said...

DJ...definitely travel permitting!

lx