Yep, I was there. It was a good learning experience for me. The turnout wasn’t all a Black author (especially a Black fantasy author) looking for exposure could have expected and paid for. Still, I think I’ll give it another shot next year.
Most of the writers this year were children’s author so it was cool to see so many writers talking to Black children and children in general. Including myself, there were three other fantasy fiction authors at NBBF this year. I had at least two people ask if we were the mystery section!
I think I learned to pitch Oracle pretty well and a lot of readers seemed interested in addition to those who actually bought the book. It was very nice to meet A.L. Riley, the author of Eerth Awakening, who was sharing her fantasy/sci-fi book on my right which I’ve had the pleasure of reading after the Festival.
It was a little difficult to get around the room and meet other authors since I had to watch my table by myself without an assistant. Half the time I looked up, someone looked like they might be stopping at my table to look at or talk about my book. The other half of the time I was too nervous I’d miss someone if I left the table. BUT I did manage to meet other authors and publishing professionals.
One thing I seriously thought about: I have a Kindle and have had an Amazon account since 2001 if I’m not mistaken. Most of the books I read are from the Kindle store though I’m fairly critical of Kindle’s literary content, particularly its romance genre. But KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing) does reach a lot of readers so I’ve considered publishing there, just for the sake of outreach.