So, a month later, I'm finally getting around to posting about BEA and BookCon 2015. BEA (BookExpo America) is the mac daddy of publishing industry trade shows in North America. Anybody who is anybody attends along with a few newbies like myself. Agents, publishers, bloggers, bestselling novelists and even TV, film and recording stars attend hoping to generate buzz about and/or discover new books.
BookCon is a two day event wherein the exhibitors are allowed to sell their books directly to the public on a retail basis.
I attended the BEA and BookCon with Dietrick (my significant other and cover designer) and my good friend Marjorie Belson – the author of a fantastic memoir called “Nothing is Promised.” Marjorie and I shared a booth.
Since I'm a small indie publisher and a new author, I was a bit intimidated about having a booth alongside the heavy hitters who normally attend. But I figured that if I wanted to generate buzz about my novel – “Just Dreams” – I needed to be there in publishing mecca. My aims were to get librarians and booksellers interested in picking up the book on a wholesale basis, find new readers, and get bloggers to review the book. I also hoped to sell a good number of my books to the public at BookCon and to find new fans.
As far as I'm concerned, both BEA and BookCon were resounding successes. At BEA, I met librarians, bloggers, agents, and other industry professionals who gave me invaluable marketing and other advice, offered to review my books, and/or expressed an interest in having me present author talks and participate in book signings. I met with existing fans and found some new ones and I practically sold out my stock of books at BookCon.
All in all, I had a great time and learned a lot. Dietrick had a great time too. He met famous actors and scored dozens of free books handed out by publishers during BEA.
Time will tell whether booksellers and librarians pick up “Just Dreams” as a result of the exposure I received at BEA and BookCon. I'll be sure to keep you posted.