The London Book Fair launches 2017 Author HQ initiatives for aspiring writers
The London Book Fair (LBF), the UK’s biggest gathering of international publishers and agents, has announced a Call for Entries for its Agent One-to-One programme and The Write Stuff competition, which both take place in LBF’s Author HQ – the area of the Fair dedicated to writers and aspiring writers.
The Write Stuff is LBF’s Dragon’s Den style panel event that will see six authors pitch their books to a panel of literary agents in front of the Author HQ audience for the chance to win a follow-up meeting with an agent. Each pitch is a maximum of three minutes, with the judging panel providing on-the-spot feedback to each pitch and the authors’ writing, having received in advance of the competition sample chapters of each finalist’s work. The winner is announced on the day The Write Stuff takes place. Natalie Hart, author of Not My Soldier, and winner of The Write Stuff 2016, subsequently secured representation with Ella Kahn, Diamond Kahn & Woods Literary Agency, who was on The Write Stuff 2016 panel of judges.
Natalie Hart, who will be at LBF 2017 to update on her year since winning the competition, said: “Participating in The Write Stuff was a wonderful experience. Although I was nervous about talking about such a personal project, the opportunity to receive expert feedback was invaluable. The competition helped me hone the concept of my novel and hugely increased my confidence in my writing. Most importantly, through The Write Stuff I met an agent who shares my vision for the novel and is a delight to work with. I highly recommend the competition to all aspiring writers.”
The Agent One-to-One programme offers Author HQ attendees the opportunity to meet with a leading literary agent, who will be on hand to review the author’s work, offer advice on the publishing process and provide feedback on authors’ pitches and ideas. Meetings are by appointment only, and arranged in advance of the Fair through the application process outlined below.
Nicki Thornton, who attended an Agent One-to-One meeting at LBF 2016, said: “Author HQ was very buzzing, and I certainly really appreciated my One to One. It was a great opportunity to have someone to read my sample chapters and to get some direct feedback before sending them out. I have never had this opportunity before, so it was interesting, as well as useful. The agent I met was so helpful in all she said and was able to pinpoint where I needed to focus some polishing and also what was working, so I got a brilliant steer. It is so difficult to work these things out yourself and getting fresh eyes is really invaluable. There is nothing like having an industry professional give you feedback to help you see your own work afresh.”
THE LONDON BOOK FAIR – NEW DATES FOR 2017 AND NEW COMPETITION ENTRY DEADLINES
The London Book Fair – 14-16 March 2017, Olympia, London
To apply for either, or both, initiatives, authors are invited to submit their application to [email protected], with a covering note and synopsis about their book (maximum word count: 250 words for each application). Spaces are limited, and applications do not guarantee an appointment. To be considered, authors must have a minimum of three chapters of their work available.
Key deadlines are:
- With immediate effect: Entries are now open and authors are invited to send in their submissions to [email protected] in accordance with the published guidelines and application process
- Friday 27 January 2017: Entries for both the Agent One to One programme and The Write Stuff close
- Monday 13 February 2017: Applicants whose entries have been successful for the Agent One-to-One programme and The Write Stuff shortlisted authors will be notified
- Monday 20 February 2017: Deadline for authors participating in either the Agent One to One programme or The Write Stuff competition to submit sample chapters of their work
- Friday 24 February 2017: The Write Stuff finalists notified
Author HQ, one of the most popular features of the Fair, will be in its sixth year for 2017. There will be plenty on offer there for both established and aspiring authors, including a three day programme of seminars, with an impressive line-up of industry experts taking to the stage to share their expertise and knowledge. In addition, authors will be on panels to share their experiences with the Author HQ audience.
All Author HQ events are free-to-attend with the purchase of a three-day LBF pass, which also includes access to LBF’s extensive Insights Seminar programme of 200+ events covering all aspects of the publishing industry. Seminar places are allocated on a first come, first served basis.
Information on how to enter the Agent One-to-One programme and The Write Stuff competition is below and can also be found at: http://www.londonbookfair.co.uk/authorhq.
Further information on the seminar programme at Author HQ will be announced in January 2017. Author HQ this year is supported by Combined Book Exhibit Author Services.
For information about The London Book Fair and ticket information, please visit www.londonbookfair.co.uk.