It’s only March, but the scent of books is already in the air. Look left or look right book events and festivals are all over the place. Whether it is your first time attending or not, it’s important to have a checklist that will make you enjoy the events/festivals as much as possible. Here is the checklist that you need to be the happiest booknerd.
1. Schedule, schedule, and schedule.
This is the most obvious thing to do, but unfortunately, this is the thing that people tend to take for granted. Visit the event’s website or the authors that are attending online pages (Twitter, Facebook, etc) to check when the event is happening. Websites also contain the information where it’s going to be. If it is a big event, check whether your favorite authors are going to be there or not. If they are, check what time their events are going to be and if there are time conflicts between 2 or more of your favorite authors.
2. Tickets, tickets, and tickets.
Nothing is more frustrating than being on time, but you don’t have tickets for the event. Again, check the event’s website if the event is ticketed or not. If it is, buy tickets as soon as they become available. Remember, fandom is not a small world. A lot of our peers want tickets too as soon as possible.
2. Bring Books, Books, and Books
Signings are the main event of book events. What’s the use of attending one if you don’t have books for the authors to sign? Remember: if a bookstore is hosting the event, they usually want you to buy the books from them or they’ll never allow you inside the event. If not, bring those lovely books of yours. You don’t have to spend money.
3. Bring Post-it notes and a Sharpie Pen
Beside getting your books signed, authors sometimes personalized their autographs. They are kind enough to do that even though their lines are millions of miles long. To be a nice fan, stick Post-it notes with your name on it even if your name is just as easy as “Joe.” It will make the lines go faster. And if your books are all labeled, still bring extra Post-it notes and a Sharpie pen. I’ll tell you why later.
4. Wear Comfortable Shoes and Bring an Extra Shirt
Yes, you look fab in those high heels, but ditch them whenever you are attending a book festival. Trust me, it requires a lot of walking and standing up under the sun. Since you are under the sun a lot, bring sunscreen and an extra shirt. Trust me, you don’t want to be reeking in sweat when you say hi to your favorite author.
5. Ca$h, Ca$h, and Ca$h
“I’m just there to see Ms. Sarah Dessen.” That’s what I told myself two years ago. I did not bring money because I knew the temptation to buy a lot of books are all over the place. But when Ms. Robin Benway and Ms. Morgan Matson spoke and told people about their books, I instantly regretted not having money so I could buy their books and had them signed. Bring at least $40 – $60.
I know book events are tiring, but they are very fun. But with proper preparation, you’ll not just have fun; you’ll have a blast.