Thursday, May 3, 2018

Book Conventions & Festivals: A How-To Guide

I have been to a few book conventions, festivals and author signings in the past couple years. It’s definitely not enough to make me an expert, but I can say that I do know a thing or two about attending them. If you ever find yourself wanting to experience a mass of book lovers and go see authors, here are a few tips to make your trip a successful one.

Make sure you know how you’re getting there. Book your flight or train ticket in advance so you can have the ticket printed and in hand when boarding. If you're driving, make sure you have a set of directions to help you navigate. It also isn’t a bad idea to have a full tank of fuel before you start the trip to limit stops.

Make sure you know if the event is ticketed or not. Nothing is worse than getting somewhere and finding out that you can’t attend because you didn’t get a ticket and they’re sold out. I’d hate for you to miss an event so please check to see if you need tickets or not.

While it is great having a credit card on hand for any expenses that may pop up, I recommend bringing some cash as well. Now you don’t have to go all out and bring $1000, but even $100 helps if something turns out to be cash only.

When I attended Yallfest (this will work for other big book events as well) I created a schedule of all the authors I wanted to see and ARC drops I wanted to go to and laid it out in a time frame. Granted, there were authors and drops I couldn’t make it to, but I definitely tried to make my favorites top priority.

This one I learned while attending Yallfest. Because authors can have some really long lines I recommend that you create name tags for your books. It’s as simple as writing your first name on a post it and sticking it on the title page of your book. That way, when it gets to be your turn, the author can just flip to the page and write your name out and sign your book. Not only does it help things move smoother, but it also helps so the author doesn’t mess up your name.

Not only are book events amazing, but they are also incredibly fun. I can’t tell you how many friends and acquaintances I have made just while waiting in line. I don’t come from a very bookish family so getting to meet more people that loved Books as much as I did was exhilarating.

I really hope these tips help you out the next time you plan on going to a book event in the future! And maybe one day I can get to see you guys at an event!

Have you been to a book convention? Are there any tips I missed? 
Let me know in the comments!