Quotes from a day at the London Book Fair

So yesterday was my day at the London Book Fair – a slightly more subdued experience than usual given it was the first time I had attended on the last day of the fair. You can feel a palpapal difference on the last day. The fair kicks off with a buzz of adrenalin (something akin to going into battle) but by the end, the long hours of back-to-back meetings starts to show (no actual wounds but no doubt a few might feel they could use a stretcher). As a publicist, I have a far easier ride than those who work in a Rights deparment and usually have the time between meetings to flit about the stands (which usually involves me salivating over cookbooks) and to attend seminars.

And here are some quotes that marked my day:

  • ‘You musn’t stop, sit down and take a break. That’s when you realise how tired you are. You just have to keep going!’ Words of wisdom from agent Svetlana Pironko of the Authors Rights Agency.
  • ‘There are self-published authors in the US who are millionaires!’ An argument used by a speaker (who shall remain unnamed) blatantly promoting his self-publishing business and the idea that anyone who has a book in them can get it self-published and will be a success. Hmmm, I see a few flaws there…
  • ‘Nice to meet you and take some sweets!’. Ah, the joys of freebie treats at the fair. I had clocked those packets of M&Ms on table the minute I sat down at the table for my speed-date meeting with NetGalley.
  • ‘Don’t be a *%$&. Be Smart. Be Funny.’ Guidelines for Twitter from publicist Joe Pickering at the talk on social media, Twitter to Woo?. It was a useful talk and now I have the perfect excuse to corrall my colleagues into tweeting…because really, let’s face it, you just don’t want to hear from me, do you? The one disappointment was that I posed the first question to the speakers after the talk (yes, kudos to me) but this year Joe wasn’t giving away a free book as a prize for 1st Question. *sigh*
  • ‘No. [accompanied by haughty glare] They are all being donated to students at Le Cordon Blue schools.’ The response I got when I asked, at the end of the day, if I could pilfer The Art of Pasta, from the Gourmande Cookbook Corner stand they were packing up.  I went home empty-handed.  Sodyathen, Monsieur.

Chiara Priorelli, Publicity & Online Marketing Manager

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