Posted by Lizzie Lamb
At first sight, the programme for the first ever London Author Fair looked interesting, yet so much looks interesting these days, particularly if you’re the type of writer who finds business fascinating.
So after weighing up the pros and cons, money invested, energy expended, and a whole day writing sucked away forever – I used the first ever London Author Fair as a totally, valid excuse to whiz to the capital and procrastinate with all the other authors in attendance. However, if I thought a lazy day, swanning about, taking leisurely notes was on the cards, I was in for a short, sharp, kick in the pants.
The London Author Fair was high energy, full-on, non-stop and totally absorbing. With no less than 21 workshops – running con-currently – nine seminars and over 50 publishing professionals giving talks, hosting, teaching, sharing their expertise and industry knowledge; it was one of those days where I wanted to put everything on a memory stick and download it directly into my brain.
It managed to be a huge event and a one-to-one experience at the same time. I chatted with well- known literary agents, a couple of journalists, made friends with award-winning authors, learned about Discoverability – yes, there was some pretty amazing American input throughout – and generally had a brilliant day. All made even more pleasurable by the arrival of best-selling authoress and chum , Adele Parks, who spoke eloquently and realistically about the industry, making a staunch and much applauded defence of good books and good writing whatever the genre, length or format.
In short, the industry is not changing, it HAS changed; the task now is managing change; but fear not, I’ve seen the future, and it’s definitely author-shaped!