How To: Survive Book Festivals

5 Tips and Tricks

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It is that time of year, the time of year full of book nerd heaven—book festivals and conventions. Book Festivals and Conventions are hectic and fun, but sometimes they can be a bit overwhelming. Today I will be recommending tips to help you survive and have the time of your bookish life!

1. Bring a Portable Charger

This is a must have when you are at a convention. A portable charger will save your life more times than you can count. Trust me. I used to be the person who scoffed at having a portable charger during conventions, until that one day I needed my phone and it was dead, had my charger but had no time to go sit next to an outlet that was on the wall. Book conventions are packed with amazing things to do, and bringing a portable charger will help you have the most fun while still being able to take pictures, text friends, and follow all of those ARC drops on Twitter!

2. Bring Bandaids

This is another lesson I learned the hard way. I never brought bandaids. Until I was at Comic-Con one year wearing heels for my cosplay and got the worst blisters of all time. Even if you are wearing comfortable shoes, it is nifty to have band aids just in case others need them! Be the bandaid person. That person is always the best person!

3. Plan Your Schedule Ahead of Time

I am a hard-core organizer. That means that I usually have my cons and festivals planned to the T. I like to make a schedule by time and day with all the signings, giveaways, and panels that are happening at the times that I am interested in. This helps me stay calm during the day and not get frazzled. It also helps me remember what I wanted to go to. The important thing when making these outlines for festivals and conventions is to not take them TOO seriously. They are just outlines, not your hard-set schedule. Sometimes, it is good to just let go of the schedule and do whatever you want at the time. I just always like to have this as a starting point to help with anxiety going into the convention. Sometimes it can be a bit overwhelming with everything that’s happening and this really helps me.

4. Turn Notifications ON on Twitter

This is REALLY important. Twitter is an amazing place for notifications, especially during book conventions and festivals. Usually, a publisher or company who has a booth will always post a general hint or idea of what they are either giving away or doing as far as activities that day. I always find out about the giveaways through tweets and notifications on Twitter. Publishers and other companies are really good at letting book nerds know when to come to their booth to get awesome swag.

Extra Tip: Instagram Stories is now another great way to get these notifications as well. So try to stay on top of those if you want to spot the giveaway times and opportunities!

5. Bring Your Own Sticky Notes and a Pen

One thing I have learned over the years is to always bring my own sticky notes to a book signing or convention. This is because usually they always use the sticky notes for your name for personalization during author signings. I just find it nice and helpful for the people giving out stickies to already have my stickies in place. It makes them smile and gives them one less person to worry about when the lines get super long.

Extra Tip: When you are making your stickies… always put your first name, and open your book to the title page. Once you do that, move the book’s inside flap to hold open the title page (like a book mark) and then put the sticky note on the title page. This is always where the author will sign. If they have a different page that the author is signing on, they will usually tell you.


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