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Upskilling Tips for the London Book Fair 2023

By Meghan Capper, Misha Manani and Joe Pilbrow


The London Book Fair (LBF) is the biggest publishing event in the UK. Many international and UK-based publishers, booksellers, marketing agencies, distributors and literary agents gather at Olympia London for three days. It is useful for publishing hopefuls aiming to develop their knowledge and network. It is also great for publishing professionals to learn, connect and exhibit. This issue, we are highlighting the unmissable seminars and exhibitors to visit and share our advice for maximising your experience.


Useful Seminar Programmes


Day 1: 18 April 2023


Shaping the Business and the Art of the Book Industry: an interview with the CEO of HarperCollins Publishers regarding the future of publishing.

So We Opened a Bookshop: fresh insights into the business of bookselling from the owners of three new bookshops.

How to Create Successful Influencer Marketing Campaigns: an exploration of book influencers and social media marketing; a must-see for aspiring marketing executives.

Partners, Not Censors: explaining the process and debunking myths surrounding cultural accuracy editing; a topical discussion on social responsibility in publishing.


Day 2: 19 April 2023


Global Audio Publishing Opportunities: Spotify Vice President and Chief Digital Officer at HarperCollins discuss emerging opportunities in audiobooks.

Sustainability in Books Publishing: gain valuable insight into a major issue in publishing today.

Is the Publishing Industry an Attractive Workplace for the Generation of Tomorrow?: discover industry professionals’ thoughts about recruitment in publishing; no doubt they’ll have tips for publishing hopefuls too.

Indie Publishing: The Creative Heart of the Industry: hear the challenges and successes of independent publishing from founders of indie presses.


Day 3: 20 of April


Reaching a TikTok Generation: learn how marketers leverage social media for the benefit of readers and publishers alike.

Around the World in Books: a look at the most popular books from last year and what trends are dominating the industry.

SYP - The Price(s) of Publishing: how the cost of living crisis will impact those looking to enter the sector.

The Power of the Written Word: a discussion on the role of the industry in bringing societal topics like mental health, inclusivity and sustainability to the forefront of public consciousness.



Top Exhibitors to Visit


Conglomerate Publishers: Hachette (6D81), HarperCollins (6D10), Penguin Random House (6D11), Pan Macmillan (6D50), Simon & Schuster (6D20).

Independent Publishers: Faber & Faber (6D80), Bonnier Books UK (6D40), Nosy Crow (1E28), Sweet Cherry Publishing (1F31), Atlantic Books (6E81), Canongate Books (6D84), Profile Books (6D90), Thames & Hudson (6E50), The Indigo Press (2D94), Bloomsbury Publishing (6D60).

Academic/Scholarly Publishers: Sage Publishing (7A30), Cambridge University (3E240), Oxford University Press (7G20), Springer Nature (7J10), Agenda Publishing (7E50), Peter Lang Group (7E50), De Gruyter (7C03), Taylor & Francis Group (7H10).

International Publishers: 24 Ore Cultura (Italy) (6F30), National Book Council of Malta (6E45), Bilgeoguz Publishing House (Turkey) (7E31), Clio Publishers (Ukraine) (2B01), Diogenes Verlag (Switzerland) (6D71), Sheth Publishing house (India) (1F21), Fischer Kinder- und Jugendbuch Verlag (Germany) (6D61), Giunti Editore Spa (Italy) (2D86).

Literary Agencies: Curtis Brown Group, David Higham Associates, Aitken Alexander, Lorella Belli Literary Agency, A.M Heath, C&W, Felicity Bryan Associates, Greene & Heaton, Peters Fraser & Dunlop. However, access to the agenting section is restricted.

Additional Exhibitors: Independent Publishers Guild (7E50, 6E70), Publishers Association (6G55), The Bookseller (2A111), Book Trade Charity (6G36), Society of Authors (1E500).


You can find the full Exhibitors Directory here.


Top Tips


Ask questions: there are question-and-answer sessions or chances to approach the panellists/speakers at the end of seminars. It is a great way to stand out, introduce yourself and satisfy your curiosity!

Use the ‘Add to Plan’ icon: go through the seminar session directory and add the talks you are interested in. Click on the heart in the top right-hand page and export as PDF. Print this out or download it on your phone to track your schedule.

Look around the stands: exploring the stalls makes you aware of the book market which is great to share in applications or interviews. A book might catch your eye, the design of the stand or a marketing campaign. Remember our recommendations above to hit every aspect of the industry.

Attend the Bookcareers Careers Clinic: Suzanne Collier hosts a session for jobseekers at LBF. This is from ​​3:00 p.m. to 4:45 p.m. on 20 April, but look for updates on Twitter. To register, click here. There is also a must-listen-to podcast about Making the Most of the London Book Fair 2023.

Bring a notebook and pen: LBF is filled with publishing professionals, so you never know when you will need to jot notes down. It could stem from seminars, socials or networking opportunities!


Thank you for reading issue sixty-nine! Join us again for issue seventy, where we will cover Upskilling Dictionary: Marketing.

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