Self Publishing Book Expo

I got up yesterday at 5 a.m. to catch a 6:59 train to NYC. My destination was the SPBE held at the Sheraton in Times Square. I didn't know what to expect. I had found out about it last year but didn't have the bucks to attend and wasn't sure it would be worth the $135 ticket price if I did. Add to that the $85 train ticket, parking $8. Food, $50 (okay, I had a nice dinner and a glass of wine instead of a cheap sandwich). So the whole thing cost a few dollars. I was excited and hoping that I would come home with a lot of good information and I did. I learned a lot of things that I could do to take my book to the next level, but sadly, I also learned about some mistakes I have made. I attended panels on epublishing with Smashwords founder Mark Coker, (@markcoker) and learned about how to turn "Millicent and the Faraway Moon" into an epub format, a panel on bulk distribution with Brian Jud, (@bookmarketing) president of Book Marketing Works, another on getting found by book buyers with Patrick Brown (@patrickrbrown) of Goodreads. And that was just the morning. I did become a little testy when I found that there was no break between panels for lunch so I had to bug out of one few minutes early to grab a sandwich to take to the next panel with me. After that I attended another panel on distribution which put me in contact with David Lamb (@lamb) , the very warm and friendly president of Vantage Press. I split the last panel between Marketing and Getting Noticed by Influencers  and a panel on Facebook, Twitter and Linked In which I really didn't think I needed but found out very quickly that I did. That one was presented by the very nice and nerdy social media guru David Vyorst. (@dvyo). 

All in all it was a great day. The panels were led by very knowledgeable people in the self publishing industry and they were all nice and down to earth enough to approach with just about any stupid question. There was one lady who seemed to show up in every panel I went to who seemed to be completely clueless and seemed to have cornered the market on both stupid and irrelevant questions, that, had the presenters not had the fortitude to move past her, the panels would have gone completely off track. So, kudos to them.  There were many panels that I couldn't attend because there was only one session of each, so I guess my critique would be to think about making it a two day affair and offer two sessions of each panel. Also. build in some time for lunch. Other than that it was a great day that started off with a relaxing train ride where I met a really nice entrepreneurial woman, Amanda Steinberg ( (@amandasteinberg). I got back to my car in Wilmington at 10 pm. very tired but  satisfied at having enjoyed a very productive day and met some great people.