Monsters, Bums and Bogies, with a Dash of James Bond
London Book Fair Visit
Monday 15th April 2013
The genre that I am most interested in is Children’s fiction. So first event on my agenda was in the Children’s Innovation Theatre, which was a session called ‘Monsters, Bums, Bogies & books that children want to read,’ held by Stuart Reid who is a children’s author of the successful Gorgeous George series. Stuart’s energy and passion is quite infectious. He wants to write books for children and not for what parent’s, or schools believe the children should be reading. He is not afraid to write about bogies or poo!
Next stop on my list was the ‘Author of the day’ talk by William Boyd.
However, the Earls Court venue is huge. Asking for help was not straight forward either, the staff kept sending us in the wrong direction. At one point we had been told to head up an escalator, for which my sister jumped on. I flashed my pass and was stopped foot poised mid-air, before being told, actually this wasn’t where the ‘Author of the day’ talk was being held and it was in-fact, at the Rights International area. It was a hilarious sight to see my sister trying to run back down the up escalator. Bridget Jones, eat your heart out!
Anyway, we made it with minutes to spare. Even though the talk was in Earls Court two building, this COULD be accessed from the main venue (row H just keep walking straight) –phew!
The interview with William Boyd was great. He had been asked by the Ian Fleming estate back in 2011, to be a continuation author for the next James Bond book, which is due for release later this year. It was also pretty exciting, because William Boyd used this event to reveal the new book’s title, (drum roll please…) which is to be, ‘Solo.’
He appeared super relaxed when interviewed by Kamila Shamsie, an author in her own right and reviewer/columnist for The Guardian. He also didn’t blink an eye when cameras were flashing like disco lights before his eyes.
The Author Lounge held really interesting talks for writers throughout the course of the day e.g cover designs of books and how to get a literary agent. To say the area was heaving, was an understatement. You need to get there pretty early to bag a seat in this area.
Note to self, organise, organise, organise! I’m hoping if I repeat it enough times, eventually it will sink in.
Anyway not all was lost, as my sister and I took refuge at The Combined Book Exhibit stall, where we sat and contemplated our, OK MY, bad planning. Roy Baker who worked on this stall was happy to let us rest our weary bones and explained what the stall was all about. Basically, for a fee, the company, 'New Title Showcase' showcase books from various writers/publishers for Book fair type of events. So people who go down the self-publishing route can get their book displayed, for the duration of the fair. This raises the authors profile and has the added potential of being discovered by scouts.
I didn't know what to expect from this experience, but I found it extremely interesting, though a little daunting. Would I want to go back next year? A big resounding yes. Maybe, see you in April 2014!