It’s that time of year again. The biggest names in publishing have gathered in London for the start of the 2017 London Book Fair. The LBF - usually in April - is being held a month earlier than normal this year, running from Tuesday the 14th to Thursday the 16th of March. Despite the change in date, organizers expect more than 25,000 publishing professionals to be in attendance for the three-day event.
What will be the big talking points at this year’s event? There are a number of possibilities, from the rise in bookstore sales to the growing popularity of self-publishing. ‘Indie authors’ will be a key trend for market growth, according to a new report on the Global Publishing Market. It said:
"Indie authors refer to self-publishing, where the writer has complete control over their content and its publishing. In traditional book publishing, authors earned only 15%-20% of their book's cost. However, in self-publishing, the role of the publishing house is completely overruled, which means that the authors earn nearly 60%-80% of their book's listed price as their royalty. Indie authors will constitute a major portion of the market in the coming years with the increase in the number of self-published titles and self-published authors.”
These topics and more will be covered in a series of seminars, interviews and workshops at the fair. But with so much choice and so little time, we’ve decided to help out with a brief overview of what’s happening.
The Quantum Conference - This conference is held in collaboration with Nielsen Book. It focuses on the consumer and how different audiences interact with content. As part of a new format, Steve Bohme, Nielsen Book Research Director, will present their latest consumer data outlining key trends in consumer purchasing behavior.
What Works? Education Conference - The fifth annual ‘What Works’ conference takes place between 1-5pm on Tuesday 14th March. According to the website, it will “examine the transition to digital learning technologies, publisher resources for educators, and developments in copyright.” The half-day programme has been designed specifically for those seeking insights into how international developments will impact their industries.
Introduction to Rights Conference - This half-day conference takes place on the opening day of the event and it’s aimed at those new to the rights business. It offers individual sessions that will explore each of the pertinent topics' issues and legal complexities that will give a practical guide to rights selling. This is followed by an ‘Ask the Experts’ session, which gives attendees the opportunity to continue the discussion.
Research & Scholarly Publishing Forum - Kicking off at 9.30am on Wednesday, the Research & Scholarly Publishing Forum will cover the latest challenges and trends facing research communication. Industry leaders will share their global perspectives and strategic insight into the latest policy, publishing models and technologies.
Nielsen Book & The London Book Fair: UK Children's Summit 2017 - This is one of the most interesting additions to this year’s event. Taking place in the club room on Thursday morning, this in-depth session focuses on the children’s book market, including children's bookselling, the resurgence of audio books, gifting and much more.
The Children's Media Conference Rights Exchange - The CMC Rights Exchange provides access to CMC-curated sessions and pre-bookable one-to-one meetings using the "Meeting Mojo" booking system. Delegates can also book a dedicated meeting table.
Literary Festival Forum - There are now over 350 literary festivals in the United Kingdom. Now in its third year at the London Book Fair, the Literary Festival Forum is aimed at those organising or working in areas related to literary festivals. It takes place from 13:00 - 17:00, Thursday 16 March 2017 in the High Street Theatre.
MARKET FOCUS - POLAND
The objective of the Market Focus is to promote publishing trade links with the country or region that is showcased. Poland is the Market Focus country for 2017, and the aim of the initiative is to highlight the country’s dynamic publishing industry and to increase awareness of its long literary traditions.
On Wednesday, the London Book Fair welcomes award-winning author Olga Tokarczuk as Market Focus Author of the Day in honour of Market Focus Poland 2017.
MATCHMAKING AT LBF
What is Matchmaking? According to the London Book Fair, it is a “bespoke service giving exhibitors and visitors the opportunity to connect with publishing professionals from new industries and territories and developing new collaborations.”
You can connect with publishers based on their region or interest areas:
- Baltic Countries
By Interest Areas:
- Brand Licensing
- Children’s Books
- Film & TV
The Insights seminar programme comprises over 200 seminars and events, and takes place throughout the full three days of the Fair. This year’s seminar streams are:
- Authors: Central to the business
- The Business Forum: Brands, Licensing & Beyond
- Children’s & Edutainment
- Content Across All Platforms: Gaming, Film & TV
- The Industry Around the Globe
- Literary Translation: Making Words Travel
- Market Focus Poland
- People Development: Re-Skilling Our Industry
- Pride, Not Prejudice: Inclusivity Matters
- Retail & Etail: Reaching the Customer
- The Scholarly Stream
- Schools Publishing: Lessons to be Learnt
- Technology: The Enabler
You can keep up-to-date on the latest news from LBF with the dedicated London Book Fair App, which is available to download in the iTunes and Google play store. Alternatively, you can follow #LBF17 on Twitter or visit the LBF YouTube channel for footage of seminars, interviews and event highlights.
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