Attending THE book fair as a child for me was a special memory. Filling out the order for my newest Judy Blume. It came back to me in full force when I attended Book Expo America as an adult and a writer trying to gain traction. It brought me to tears as I walked into the building, up the stairs and into the ginormous hall that would be home for the next four days.
Sometimes it feels like a step forward is the most important step you can make and everything, I mean EVERYTHING rides on that event. It’s how I attended the Book Expo America Book Fair last week.
I had to do well and overcome my introversion, speak to everyone who passed within earshot of my booth and meet that one person. Only that would make this worthwhile, nothing short of meeting THAT person would do.
Sometimes we have predetermined expectations or hopes for an event. It doesn’t always work out as we plan. Though I met several small publishers, publicists and bloggers, it wasn’t what I hoped for. It was something worthwhile.
When you see inside the industry up close and personal, you can see your faults and stifle the tears, or you can see your strengths and walk with your head held high. It was an emotional whirlpool that made me want to keep pushing forward or quit all within a matter of minutes.
What I did instead of let the fear and loathing bring me down, I spoke with other writers, shared information and experiences, encouraged others and took A LOT of notes.
It wasn’t what I expected when I signed up, but the experience left me with a sense that the future is still within my reach, I just need to stretch a little longer.
In the Chicago area, come find me at the Printer’s Row Lit Fest, June 11-12.