London Book Fair – April 2012 (or just LBF from now on)

Originally when I started writing the highlights from the London Book Fair I called it LBF Live! Then I realised that not everyone would know what the abbreviated LBF meant. And I’m not typing out my publishers’ name all the time so My Little Big Town will appear as MLBT from now on.

And WTF is actually ‘What The Fizz’ but I believe some people get this one mixed up sometimes.

So, MLBT at the LBF! OMG! We were Gr8! WTF! No, we were FAB! And still ROTFL!

Monday 16th

  • CEO Calvin unrecognisable in new black suit and smart shoes.
  • Author Stuart easily recognisable in Gorgeous George t-shirt and kilt.
  • The theft of one box of sweetie false teeth reported to security.
  • Stuart laughs off the theft of his sweetie false teeth, as they were the recycled false teeth and been picked up off the floor from 20 schools in Scotland. They were filthy!
  • One of the first visitors to our stand was Head of Children’s Programming for large TV Company. VERY exciting chat…. more details soon.
  • American distributor wants to stock Gorgeous George in Walmart. Calvin invited to S. Carolina.
  • LBF Security attend MLBT stand to investigate theft of sweetie false teeth. Taken very seriously!
  • 4 computer companies want licence to do Gorgeous George apps
  • Found ideal hardback/colour embossing printer.
  • TV cameraman confirms he’ll film Stuart’s presentation tomorrow.
  • Stuart remembers he’s presenting tomorrow – runs to toilet.
  • Found quality paperback printer 20% cheaper
  • Discovered 2 very good artists with excellent promise
  • Lunchtime – Everything on Wish List Achieved. If we went home now, Calvin still be over the moon!!!
  • Met a former international sportsman who now writes children’s stories. Potential future MLBT author. Talks ongoing.
  • Email from the Blair Partnership, to say they’ll be watching Stuart’s presentation tomorrow. Stuart runs to toilet again.
  • Education Resourcing Manager from one of London’s Council Libraries invites Stuart and Calvin to present full-day workshops. Explained we charged £150 per hour, she says no problem, she has a huge budget.
  • Stuart officially resigns from his ‘old’ job. Real job now confirmed as full-time author/presenter.
  • Success of Day One – 57 out of 10 

Tuesday 17th

  • Calvin interviewed as CEO of MLBT by LBF TV (TV is the abbreviation for television)
  • Stuart interviewed as author of Gorgeous George for LBF TV
  • Cameraman requests to film Stuart on his scooter.
  • Serious CEO Calvin insists that this may be an ‘accident waiting to happen’
  • Footage will now be referred to as ‘The Scooter Incident’.  To be show on LBF website.
  • Stuart has his kilt fitted with incontinence pants, in case anyone mentions his presentation again.
  • Israeli distribution wants to translate Gorgeous George into Hebrew. Unfortunately, this makes the book too long. Gorgeous George to be reformatted into Parts 1 and 2, lower price point, approx £5.99. Calvin invited to Israel.
  • Blair Partnership cancel meeting on Wednesday but ask for a meeting in their London offices.
  • Stuart, still very disappointed from this cancellation and not thinking clearly, tells the Blair Partnership he’s very busy that week.
  • Quickly realises his mistake, Stuart offers to drop all hats at a moment’s notice.
  • Calvin hears of Blair Partnership invitation. Wets himself.
  • Hugely talented pre-school author met. Potentially a big star of the future and perhaps a new MLBT author. More soon…
  • Pre-school market identified as key strength of MLBT.
  • Two more translators identified with 200 languages used.
  • Stuart’s Presentation in Children’s Innovation Zone at 4pm attracts largest audience of the LBF including 2 x press, 2 x photographers and the official LBF cameraman
  • Success of Day One and Two combined – 266 out of 10

Wednesday 18th

  • Spanish printer has potential to do 20,000 books within 2 weeks invites Calvin to Spain.
  • Yvonne Jane Wright, author and creator of Ecobears proves she can scooter!
  • Distributor from Egypt, invites Calvin to Cairo for meeting.
  • Alina, MLBT sales rep proves she definitely cannot scooter!
  • Market for Anisha’s Adventures & The Ecobears identified in India. Calvin invited to New Dehli
  • Stuart consoles himself with lack of international invites by indulging in a morning of high brow comedy, now known as the ‘Poo Pranks’
  • LBF Security turn blind eye to ‘Poo Pranks’
  • Other exhibitors complain to security about MLBT ‘Poo Pranks’
  • LBF Security step into the Poo Prank controversy.
  • LBF Security bribed with free copies for Gorgeous George and the Giant Geriatric Generator.
  • Barney, the LBF security sniffer dog is blamed for the mess of poo near stand A620
  • LBF management report that complaints MLBT carry-on is due to jealousy from larger exhibitors not getting the same attention as MLBT.
  • LBF management report that MLBT stand is the most talked-about exhibitor in the LBF organiser’s offices.
  • Children begin to arrive into the trade fair (well, about 10 of them). Nonsense with balloons ensues.
  • All 150 books given away. Brilliant feedback from parents reading with kids on Monday and Tuesday night.
  • Calvin asked for the only LBF testimony from the Children’s section.
  • Event Director reported as ‘bursting into tears’ upon reading Calvin’s testimony.
  • LBF Cameraman Mark confirms that the ‘Scooter Incident’ will be on YouTube shortly.
  • Jez the LBF Technician asks Stuart to present at a cancelled slot on stage at the Innovation Zone again.
  • When? asks Stuart, In 2 minutes, replies Jez. No time to go to toilet. Incontinence pants prove to be a success.
  • Presentation at Innovation Zone has 10 people in the audience at the start, 70 at the end.
  • Jez, the LBF technician confirms Stuart’s presentation was voted by staff as the best at LBF.
  • Hong Kong distributor asks for 8000 copies Gorgeous George to be sent to their Asian market
  • Another Asian presenter keen of Gorgeous George Parts 1 and 2. Calvin invited to Hong Kong.
  • Calvin’s is presented with original art from comic book ‘Ghost Boy’. Wets himself. Calvin gutted that he didn’t take up the incontinence pants offer.
  • Allan the LBF voiceover man phones his teacher sister to book Stuart into Middlesex school for readings.
  • Calvin asked to be a judge at a Children Book competition.
  • South African distributor wants Calvin to visit them with a view to a deal.
  • Stuart gutted that Calvin is getting all the invitations to travel the world.
  • South African packaging firm want to package first three Gorgeous George books as a box set for local distribution.
  • Canadian publisher’s grandfather founded a town of Bo’ness in Canada in 1920’s. Stuart and Hank laugh at the small world but he doesn’t offer to pay Stuart to visit.
  • Finally!!!!! Stuart asked to visit S. Africa to present to Cape Town schools by Netherlands book charity, if they purchase Gorgeous George books.
  • Key Waterstones people want to discuss future signings/appearances at flagship stores!
  • The Children’s Literary Support Agency offer full service and access to contacts with any help whatsoever. Just need to drop them an email.

Distribution Markets – Just the red hot leads

  • Asian distributor interested in all books for Asian markets
  • 2 x Malaysian distributors want all books
  • Chinese distributor very interested.

    Look closer. Is that poo in his hand?

  • Indian distributor very interested
  • Turkish distributor very interested
  • 100% secured distribution to India, using lower price point books.
  • Russia distributor very interested.
  • 2 x Dubai distributors invite Calvin and Stuart to Dubai to promote Gorgeous George.
  • European distributors secured for MLBTs new Graphic Novel titles, Barley & LORBS
  • European and USA distributors for Jonny Moor, Calvins spooky picture book secured.

In Calvin’s own words, and probably nothing to do with the fact that he was invited half way around the world, the success of our attendance at the LBF  – 742 out of 10!

If all these deals come off, the only parts of the world where you won’t be able to buy a Gorgeous George or MLBT book will be South America or the Antartic.

3 Responses

  1. Jazzy J
    Jazzy J at |

    I can provide very satisfactory references for the secretary’s post which I am sure is going to be coming available.

  2. Bob
    Bob at |

    Your adventure at the LBF sounds Awesome, remember your friends and family when your both rich and famous :)

  3. ROSIE
    ROSIE at |

    It sounds like you had a great LBF.wish i had been there sounded so exciting well deserved you have worked so hard.remember me when you are rich and famous ha ha.

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