London Book Fair 2019: Day 1 Takeaways

Greetings from London. I can’t believe I’m back here, but I am. And for once I’m not here for sightseeing or to see relatives. I’m here for the London Book Fair. Unlike other writing-related events such as festivals and readings, the London Book Fair is a trade fair, centred around the business of books or the book business. 

From the moment I walked in, I was overwhelmed by the plethora of activity. Three floors of booths, talks, agents and exhibitors that just goes on and on and on. It was hard not to feel intimidated. It’s like EVERYONE is here and I don’t know where to start or where to end. I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many writers, publishers and service providers for authors all gathered in one place in my life. 

I can’t believe I’m here again, close to five years after I first tried my hand at publishing my fantasy book. I’ve grown up a lot since then and learnt a lot since my first attempt. In hindsight, I can’t believe I didn’t give up. 

And now the time has come, for me to try again. And unlike last time, where I felt like I had a long long way to go, this time I feel like I’m almost there. I can see the finishing line on the horizon and I’m excited. 

So here’s what I took away from today’s long list of talks.

  1. The book industry is a business, not an indulgent creative pursuit.
  2. Whilst there are general trends regarding what sells and what doesn’t, there really is no way of knowing whether your book will take off or not.
  3. Life is a journey and might as well enjoy the ride.

I’m tired and my brain is fried. Till next time, sweet dreams. 

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