Los Angeles Times 2012 Festival of Books
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Los Angeles Times 2012 Festival of Books

Los Angeles Times 2012 Festival of Books

Last Updated on November 24, 2021 by

Los Angeles Times 2012 Festival of BooksThis year's Festival of Books, number 17 and the second year at USC was terrific with an estimated 100,000+ attendees. The book industry's Book Expo America should take a page from this (no pun intended) and open BEA to the public for at least a day.

Author Solutions, the large self-publisher services provider seemed to be everywhere with nine booths for author signings and one to promote their services. There were a number of other publishing services providers there such as writer support groups, printers and an eBook service company. I was also pleased to see Small Demons there. They are nearly ready to publically launch their book discover tool.

I spent some extra time in the Kobo (eReader) booth to talk to them about their new self-publishing platform (similar to KDP and Pubit). I was told it would be out relatively soon (weeks or months, not late this year). He also reminded me that Kobo Pulse, a collection of social reading features, is integrated with Facebook in an exclusive arrangement.

From the Facebook site: Today you can share what you’re reading, your favourite passages and even your Reading Life awards with friends and family on Facebook and Twitter.

Sounds like a killer feature for readers and authors alike.

The highlight was the panel featuring Go the F**k to Sleep author Adam Mansbach, illustrator Ricardo Cortes and Akashic Books publisher Johnny Temple. Here are a few of the nuggets from one of the more enjoyable panel discussions I've ever heard.

  • Adam was asked how long it took to write the book. He said it took about a half day. He went on to say that authors like to give just the writing time without mentioning the time spent on revisions and re-writes. “They do a disservice by obscuring the process”.
  • This is one tight business relationship, a real team. Adam made clear that there was an enormous amount of trust between them which came in handy when far larger publishers tried to convince them to ditch Johnny.
  • Grandmothers and Facebook were key marketing factors. When discussions (about the content) got out of hand it seemed like it was a grandmother that stepped in to add perspective and settle things down. A woman in Australia posted the entire book on her Facebook page. Adam called to ask her to remove it in return for some signed books. She said she would oblige but that she had already sent more than 400 people to buy it online. He said never mind, it was okay.

This might have started off as a joke but more than a million units sold later, they are still having fun.

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