BookExpo and BookCon 2018 Show The Enduring Positive Power of Words & Writers

Diary of a Wimpy Kid greets readers of all ages.

If anyone ever tries to convince you that people don’t read anymore, send them over to the Jacob Javits Center in June. At Book Expo and Book Con, lines of pulsating enthusiastic fans wait the same way that one would expect fans to camp outside award shows, film premieres or rock concerts. But these groupies, these fans or fandoms prove that storytelling and the power of the written word- whether it is in print or on a swipeable tablet-  is still as strong as ever.

It still pleasantly surprises me every year, to see the growing number of (especially) young readers in attendance. Authors who were just breaking into the publishing industry and popping onto readers’ radar have, in a short time, become the respected and revered figurehead creators of what has now become an exciting, expanding fandoms. But Book Expo America is so much more than cosplaying fans, ravenous galley drop grabbing hoards, sold out author signings and insider industry announcements.

At Book Expo you can find a plethora of attendees from all different aspects of the publishing industry. Authors, publishers, librarians, retailers, business services, bloggers and popular public figures attend three complete scheduled days of workshops, panels, discussions, signings and more. This year, the expo placed a greater emphasis on the interaction between Editors, Publicists and Retailers by creating a slate of opportunities for them to discuss things like author events and product placement.

One of the most important, and hopefully not overlooked aspects of the week resided in the PEN America Rights Fair where attendees were able to learn more about not only publishing and publishing overseas, but about defending free speech and writers during a time when those basic human rights and privileges need to be protected, preserved and nurtured most.

Expo highlights included Main Stage talks led by / featuring Megan Mullally, Nick Offerman, Trevor Noah, Bernie Sanders, B&N Chairman Len Riggio and John Kerry. In addition to the many new and established authors in attendance, the team behind Dear Evan Hansen, Rick Riordan and Eoin Colfer received long lines of warm wishes from fans.

Whether you enjoy reading or can build furniture out of the stacks of books crammed in your living space (who, me? lol), Book Expo and BookCon is definitely the must-see Book fandom event of the year. The only problem is trying to decide whether to read your new books in chronological order of their release date, or to start by randomly selecting a newly minted spine from new your Jenga style stack.

Did you enjoy this story? Did you attend Book Expo or Book Con and want to chime in about your experience, ask a question or just say “Hello There!” Then leave a comment , or give us a shout out on Twitter @galaboutown . We also appreciate your participation, as it is a chance for you to show our friends at Book Expo and Book Con your appreciation for their decision to invite us to cover the festivities. Feel free to share this post and blog with your social media accounts and subscribe to have future posts delivered straight to your inbox or device.

P.S. You can revisit our previous author interviews and more throughout this blog.

Cheers! Erin.


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