Being new to the book blogging community, you’re going to want to network and attend as many bookish events as you can. It’s such a great way to meet fellow book lovers and talk to them in person. The beauty of being a book blogger is that you don’t have to interact with others in person, you can also do it online!
The best way to find out if an author is coming into your town, city is Chapters/Indigo’s page of Store Events. Bookmark this page. Also follow @indigogreenroom on Twitter because they will tweet the moment the find out an author has confirmed to be in one of their stores.
Sometimes the stores display the signings up front so be on the look-out for that. Another way is to follow your favourite authors also on Twitter and make sure to check out their tweets. By following both authors and Canada’s largest book store chain, you’ll definitely be in-the-know of all their signings. This is also a wonderful way to meet fellow book lovers in person. Just strike up a conversation with the people sitting next to you, or in line.
Still the best way to find out about book events is by word of mouth, and by being a blogger, that medium is Twitter. Everyone is constantly tweeting, and conversing, all the time. 24-7. Make sure to follow your local book stores (indie or chain stores) and they will keep you in the loop of all these events. Follow authors, publishers, publicists.. They are constantly promoting their events, so make sure to check their tweets and posts often.
(Word of warning: try not to ask publishers about ARCs or events or books or author emails etc. This is unprofessional and will just annoy the person. Wait until they do a CALL-OUT for bloggers or events and then you may answer them.)
Your own publisher contacts will invite you to these events and they’re mostly book launches or previews. Publishers send out invites for this one, so if you’re invited, take the chance to go! You’ll get to meet the author and quite possibly get the book signed.
Book launches include a little presentation by the author, signing and a Q&A. Interviews are usually recommended since you get to speak with the author one on one or even do a group interview. Previews are also super fun since you get to know which books are up and coming that the publisher is super excited about. These can include presentations on each of the books, and sometimes an author will come by and you get to do a signing!
Organized by book bloggers, you get to join in and talk with fellow readers and bloggers alike. If you’re within the Ontario area, there’s the Ontario Blogsquad Meet-Up. For a one-time fee (includes a full course meal), you’ll get to frolic with people who love books as much as you do! Oh and did I mention that you can also talk to publicists and authors as well? I had so much fun and have been going ever since I started blogging. Recap of the 2012 Ontario Book Blogger Meet-Up is here. Try to Google meet-ups within your own area, if there isn’t one, make your own!
The Toronto Book Fair is a new expo that is starting this year, and I can’t hardly wait. The fair will span 3 days in November and the prices can be found here. I have no idea what to expect, but it’s about time we have a book expo.
The name is misleading since it’s for librarians, but if you dig deep into the admissions page, they have passes for attending the exhibit itself. Definitely worth a trip if you’re looking to talking to publishers in person! It’s rather a small convention, and I’ve only been once, but it was worth its weight in gold since I got to talk to publishers in person. Make sure to bring business cards because people will ask for it. There’s also signings with authors, and publisher exhibits which showcase their latest and upcoming books. Some might be display copies only so make sure to double check. Follow them on @ONLibraryAssoc.
One of the largest expos that I have seen and heard about, BEA is probably a book bloggers heaven. Everyone in the book publishing industry gather for a couple of days and meet, greet and talk about books. I have never been, but I am hoping to go one day. From what I have gathered from several recaps and vlogs, book bloggers can buy a badge under Non-Editorial Media. But if you get the BEA Bloggers Conference pass since it’s a lot cheaper than buying a badge for Non-Editorial Media. For the autographing sessions, a $1 nominal fee is required for each author.
NOW Toronto is a newspaper in the Toronto area and they also have an online presence. The biggest section for me to visit is the Book Listings page. I bookmark this page and find all the events that are happening in the city.
Faze Magazine is a Canadian teen magazine sold at Chapters and Walmart. They had their Breathless Reads event coincide with their Faze Super Girl event and I was lucky enough to attend it.