Leipzig Book Fair

The last few months have been extremely busy and this blog got too little attention from me. I’m sorry for that and hope to change it again. I like the variety of authors we’ve got here. Today, I’d like to introduce the best book fair for interacting with German readers to you: Leipzig Book Fair.

Leipzig Book Fair Logo

There are two big book fairs in Germany every year (and tons of smaller, more targeted ones), one in Frankfurt and one, lesser known, in Leipzig. The book fair in Frankfurt is a lot bigger than the one in Leipzig, and it’s more focused on the publishing professionals. Leipzig is more cozy and fully aimed at readers. So if you plan on connecting with readers, Leipzig is the place to go.

I joined a group of German Indies who all received the Qindie (a quality badge for Indie publications) and we set up our booth for the second time. Last year was successful (with quite a long tail of sales after the fair) but flawed. This year, we came better prepared.

 

Here are a few tips on how to visit a book fair as a presenter:

  • no more than 2 authors at the booth or there’s no room for readers
  • put several samples, flyers, bookmarks etc. into one folder, readers like to take those along much more than loose booklets or pieces of paper. We spread nearly 1000 of those
  • know at least the basic gist of the books on display so you can help readers to find the right book; even if they don’t buy yours, they will remember the friendly face and maybe recommend you to a friend (happened to me) and also, the other author will help to promote your books if he notices your efforts
  • if possible walk around the fair and look at other booths so you can talk about the fair in general with the people stopping at your booth- enjoy yourself; getting a booth usually is expensive and you will most likely not make the money back during the fair, but the increase in visibility will help you long term
  • bring food since buying it at the fair is expensive

 

Now to the Leipzig Book Fair in particular.

lbm2016_0869There are 5 halls connected with glass tunnels. Usually one of the halls is reserved for Comics, Mangas, Anime, and Cosplayer. Naturally the Cosplayer spill over into the other halls too, so you’ve always got something to look at with awe (I’ll be posting the nicest costumes on my author blog soon). Be prepared for crowds, especially in the reading arenas, often many people squeeze together to listen to a presentation. I really enjoyed all the halls, but spend only little time with the school books. One thing to take into account is how tired your feet grow when you move around the halls for any length of time.

This year 260,000 visitors came to Leipzig, and of those 195K entered the halls (96K for the Mangas and Comics alone). Despite there being more people than last year, I think they spread out better. I was able to move through the halls on every day. Last year I got stuck in the corridors and tunnels. In total there were0 2.250 presenters from 42 countries.

If you plan to come to the next Leipzig Book Fair (as a visitor or a presenter) please contact me. I’d love to meet you there. And now, tell me if you’ve been to a book fair in your home country. What was it like? And if you haven’t, what’s preventing you from it?

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About Cat-Gerlach

I am an author and a triple mum. I am living in Northern Germany with my family and my dog.

Posted on April 20, 2016, in about writing, Age - Adult, Age - Middle Grade, Age - Young Adult, Authors - Katharina Gerlach, misc and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. I enjoyed your pictures from last year and can’t wait to see what you have this time. I have never been to an event of any kind with half that many people present, sounds quite overwhelming. And three full days? The local fairs I’ve been to have ranged from as many as a few hundred attendees down to about as many as would fit in my car.

  2. Awesome, Cat! Can’t wait to hear more 😀

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