Surviving your first London Book Fair

London Book Fair is coming up next week and I’m pretty excited for it. This is my first one ever, and I’m guessing the same will be the case for many of you guys? Its a huge event for the publishing industry, and is an amazing opportunity for networking. I got in touch with a few publishing bods who had been before to get some¬†tips and tricks to help you (and me) make the most of it.

  1. This place is huge and there are a lot of stalls, so you need to come prepared. Comfortable shoes, food, water, a phone charger and a notepad would all be a wise investment in your bag.
  2. As job hunting is the main focus of this blog, I must point out that you’re not going to be able to apply for anything at the fair. Remember this is a trade fair for professionals, they’re all here for a reason.
  3. At the same time if you want to network, this is an amazing opportunity. With so many publishing people under one roof, you’re bound to connect with someone who may be very useful in the future.
  4. Go to events, seminars and conferences. Take notes, ask questions, get as much out of them as you can.
  5. Stay on Twitter! Everyone I’ve spoken to about this have all said this. Track the hashtag to see what the big events are, where people are and whats going on – meaning you can ask people if they’re free for a chat. Join in with the conversation!


Sounds easy right?

Here are my top seminar picks to help entry levellers get as much out of the fair as possible:

Tuesday 12th

  • 9:45 – 10:00, Introduction to Publishing – The Roles of Publisher and Agent, Author HQ.
  • 11:45 – 12:30, Everything You Need to Know About Today’s Publishing Landscape, Author HQ.
  • 13:00 – 14:00, Women in Comics: Is the Graphic Novel Industry Failing to Recognise Female Characters? Club Room National Hall Gallery.
  • 14:30 – 15:30, What Else Should Publishers Publish? Club Room National Hall Gallery.
  • 14:30 – 15:30, Making Books Trends: From the News Headlines to Twittersphere, How Can Books Set the Agenda? Olympia Room Grand Hall.
  • 15:45, 16:30, Successful PR & Marketing Strategies, Author HQ.
  • 16:00 – 17:00, How to Get into Publishing, Olympia Room Grand Hall.
  • 17:30 – 18:30, How to Get Ahead in Publishing, Olympia Room Grand Hall.

Wednesday 13th

  • 9:30 – 10:30,¬†BA Bookseller Seminar: Sourcing & Using Information to Help You Run a Better Bookshop, High Street Theatre.
  • 9:45 – 10:30, Successful Social Media Strategies, Author HQ.
  • 11:00 – 12:00,¬†Why semantics matter? Adding the semantic edge to your content, right from authoring to delivery, Tech Theatre.
  • 13:00 – 1400,¬†Diversifying the industry: meet the organisations making publishing more inclusive, Olympia Room Grand Hall.
  • 14:30 – 15:30,¬†What Works: Gender Equality by Design – How to Eliminate Gender Bias in our Industry, Olympia Room Grand Hall.
  • 4:30 – evening, Book Machine Networking Event, Tech Bar.
  • 5:00 – evening, The Bookseller/The SYP Networking Event, EU Comics Bar.

Thursday 14th

  • 11:00 – 11:45,¬†Poetry: Performances, Panel Discussions, and more from Inpress, Globe Theatre.
  • 14:30 – 17:00, Clinic, Olympia Room Grand Hall.
  • 15:15 – 16:15,¬†Literary Festival Forum: The Value of Literary Festivals: Do they sell more Books? Club Room National Hall Gallery.
  • 6:00 – evening, The Bookseller/The SYP afterparty, Cumberland Arms.

Find the full list of events here.

If you don’t already have a ticket, you can buy one here, or for those of you currently unemployed the wonderful people over at might be able to sort you out with a free one, more details on that here.

And finally when you get there, don’t forget to come say hi – I’ll be the one looking completely lost and confused at the John Blake stand.



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