Overview: Book fairs and festivals offer authors an excellent place to interact with fellow authors and publishers, network with book industry leaders, locate the help you need, such as a publicist or book editor, and learn what’s new in the marketplace. Here is a list of 20 book fairs and events that are worthy of your attendance.

Authors who want to sell books need to do what anyone else with a product needs to do – find the place in the marketplace where your buyers can be found. And, in the case of authors, readers will be found in largest numbers at book fairs, festivals and conferences.

Book fairs and festivals are held every season around the world so it’s a fairly easy task to locate one to promote your book. As an internet book marketing specialist, I am the first to impress on authors the new and powerful marketing avenues open to all authors on the Internet – from book websites to book trailers to social networks like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. While these are fantastic tools when used properly, authors should never overlook opportunities to meet the reading public face-to-face.

Book fairs usually want speakers. By volunteering to speak, the author not only gains great exposure but can also add that appearance to their resume and press releases. But plan ahead; dates for panel participants, speakers and autograph sessions are arranged months in advance.

Book fairs are excellent places to interact with fellow authors, publishers, network with book industry leaders, locate the help you need such as a publicist or book editor, and learn what’s new in the marketplace. For more information about book marketing visit http://www.book-marketing-expert.com and for upcoming book events on C-SPAN2 visit: http://www.BookTV.org. Here’s a list of upcoming book fairs and events that are worthy of your attendance in 2012.

    1. BookExpo America, June 4-7, 2012, Javits Center, NYC, the ‘Big Daddy’ of all book events. It worth a trip just to see what the book business is all about. There are plenty of great seminars to attend, book signings and events. I highly recommend all authors attend http://www.bookexpoamerica.com

    1. American Library Association Annual Conference June 21-26, 2012, Anaheim, CA some 25,000 experts in the market who will help you advance your career http://www.alaannual.org/

    1. Decatur Book Festival, Aug. 31- Sep. 2, 2012, Decatur, GA, largest independent book festival in the country. Since its launch, more than 900 authors and 260,000 attendees have attended this event in downtown Decatur. http://www.decaturbookfestival.com/Community/index.php

    1. Sonoma County Book Festival, September 22, 2012, Old Courthouse Square, Santa Rosa, CA. attended by thousands of book lovers. http://www.socobookfest.org

    1. Fall For the Book Festival, Sept. 26-30, 2012, George Mason University’s Fairfax Campus, Fairfax, VA., sponsored by George Mason University, Fairfax County Public Library and Barnes & Noble. Attended by more than 150 authors. http://www.fallforthebook.org

    1. West Virginia Book Festival, October 13-14, 2012 is destination for over 7,000 people whom go to network and hear from various authors in West Virginia. http://wvbookfestival.org/

    1. Frankfurt Book Fair, October 10-14, 2012 in Frankfort, Germany. Considered the biggest book show in the world. www.book-fair.com

    1. Texas Book Fair, October 27-28, 2012, State Capitol Building, Austin, TX, established in 1995 by First Lady Laura Bush, a former librarian, more than 45,000 attend. www.texasbookfestival.org/

    1. Kentucky Book Fair, Saturday, November 9-10, 2012, Frankfurt, Kentucky, attended by up to 5,000 people including 150 authors http://kybookfair.org/

    1. Miami Book Fair International, November 11-18, 2012, hosts over 350 authors to discuss their work and 250 publishers. http://www.miamibookfair.com/

The bottom line: Make it a priority to visit a book fair in the coming weeks and months. You’ll be glad you did!