GoodEReader has devoted a portion of this site to bringing readers information on the technology and publishing events that take place worldwide throughout the year. Depending on the needs and interests of the readers, many of these events can present great opportunities for attendees to discover the latest in tablet and e-reader technology, or garner some valuable networking in the publishing industry.
ThrillerFest, a multi-day event held annually in New York now in its sixth year, wrapped up today and GoodEReader spoke with several attendees about their perceptions of one of the largest suspense writers’ events.
One annual attendee is suspense/romance author Rebecca York, whose novels have been published by Harlequin and whose upcoming novella will be released by Harlequin’s ebook imprint Carina Press next month. While she was a panelist this year for the session on crafting female villains, “Channeling Lillith,” York enjoys the opportunity to catch up with other authors and industry professionals whom she only gets to see at events of this caliber. For York, the breakout sessions on honing your craft are just as important as the chance to meet up with editors, agents, and publishers.
“I was very interested in the information on authors going back to their publishers and getting the rights’ to their out of print books in order to pursue publishing them electronically. Harlequin doesn’t revert rights back to the author, but I learned that it’s something I should look into for the books that I have published that were not through Harlequin,” says York of some of the digital publishing news she picked up at ThrillerFest.
For Janet Reid, literary agent with Fine Print Literary, these events are more than just a reunion or the opportunity for some vital networking with fellow publishing professionals. The potential for discovering a new writer from among the authors who take advantage of writing conferences is too good to miss.
“If you’re a writer and you’re looking to make connections, there’s a whole lot to be said for a conference. I met with several writers outside the pitch fest, just very casually, and I read two manuscripts overnight for writers I’m interested in. That doesn’t happen often, but it does happen. The only way it happens is if you’re there, ready to take advantage of an opportunity,” adds Reid.
For some, though, the implications of staging an event of this size can mean frustration. As Barnes & Noble was the major sponsor of the event, they had the exclusive right to sell books and ebooks at the event, meaning that Autography and other writers or publishers were unable to sell ebooks on site. That’s a problem when the software Autography developed allows authors to digitally sign ebooks. In order to demonstrate the capability, Autography was faced with either asking its authors to give away their ebooks for free or taking orders for signed ebooks to be sold at a later date.
“We’re not allowed to sell ebooks, so nobody is using us to autograph their ebooks – including the two authors we’d previously arranged for. But we’re happy to be here with all of these writers and industry professionals. I’m doing a panel and will let people sign copies of Autography’s ebook brochure, and I’ll give away copies of my books, but that’s about as far as we can go here,” says Tom Watters of Autography on the first day of ThrillerFest speaking on the non-vendor status of the event.
As the event wrapped up, the blogs lit up with success stories of sought-after meetings and elevator pitches. Authors, agents, editors, and publishers have all come away with their own versions of the highlights of the event, and many are eagerly anticipating the next conference on the calendar.