Tag Archives: LBF 2012

London Book Fair 2012: A Novel Experience!

Walking up to the entrance of the grand exhibition hall, I was filled with excitement and uncertainty as to what each day would bring! I flicked through the pages of the LBF directory: the vast number of companies was overwhelming.

As the morning of the first day began, the atmosphere was electric. The theme for LBF 2012 was China, and walking around it truly felt like that. Oriental symbols, pictures, fashion, people, food even! Heading towards the Author’s Lounge, as ‘Fast-Print Publishing Assistant’, I was ready to be of assistance.

Throughout the day, Leah and I spoke to authors interested in self-publishing and listened to their unique stories. Each author shared an individual tale about the inception of an idea for a book that they had transcribed onto paper. Their passion for writing was admirable and their personal journeys spoke levels about their commitment to being published. Conversations never ran dry but were always exciting and totally unpredictable, and so each day I came home exhausted.

The second and third day brought further excitement, and we spent a little more time walking around the fair and understanding the different areas of publishing. It was interesting to see the different cultures of organisations as people conversed over coffee or discussed business contracts – diary in one hand, iPad in the other. We attended a seminar on ‘Careers in Publishing’ organised by the SYP, providing guidance on how to break into the industry. It was both insightful and entertaining; it gave me many useful tips for the future!

Around 4pm each day the fair became quieter as people made their way home and companies began packing up. At this point, I was able to reflect on the day’s activities and simply breathe in the atmosphere, whilst coming to the realisation that I was actually quite tired and needed to put my feet up!

By and large, the experience was invaluable and certainly provided insight into the world of Publishing. I hadn’t realised how many different areas of publishing there are, and how friendly people can be. It appeared that people work hard in the industry and still maintain an amiable, calmness about them that was pleasing to see. I relished the opportunity to be part of London Book Fair and hope to be back there next year, perhaps working for a publisher!

By Rebekah Ducat

The London Book Fair 2012: A bright spot on a rainy day

The dull day outside was immediately forgotten once I stepped inside the halls of Earls Court Exhibition Centre. I had been let out of work for the morning to visit the London Book Fair (thank you, Walker!) because they felt that it was worth the visit, and it truly was. There was a buzz to the place; it was so bright and alive. It was certainly an experience walking through those doors for the first time! There were people browsing and people striding around like they ruled the world, and indeed, this is where it happens; British and international publishers come together to deal.

This year the book fair was focused on the Chinese market (heads-up: next year it’s Turkey!). I wish there had been the opportunity to ask about that market, but everybody was so busy with their sales. While that was unfortunate, there was so much else to focus on. The Book Fair has everything you could want, from children’s publishing houses like Little Tiger to small independents from the far corners of Wales. There’s something there for everyone.

Soon I had to head upstairs to my chosen seminar, which was the SYP’s ‘How to get into publishing’. The hall was really busy (lots of competition but nice to know there’s hope for publishing yet!) but having a prime seat I really felt a part of what was going on. The talk was brilliant with Neil Morrison, Alistair Horne, Mary Ann Kernan, and Suzanne Kavanagh contributing, all of them experts in the industry. Before I knew it they were asking for the last question and the talk drew to a close. How disappointing but really useful!

Next year I plan to visit many more seminars, as there was so much on offer and so much to learn. It’s an exciting time to be involved in publishing and so I look forwards to what the future brings!

Photo courtesy of Rebekah Ducat