WHERE AUTHORS ARE BORN
I've attended the Leimert Park Village Book Fair as an attendee, off and on, since I've lived in Los Angeles (nearly 20+ years). This was my first time attending as a participating author.
As an attendee I enjoyed meeting the authors purchasing autographed books, and just seeing how the authors would engage the attendees and how their tables were set up and decorated. I never imagined what I was observing would pave the way for me as an author in the coming years.
Interestingly, in 2013 I wrote my very first fiction novel and it flew out of me. Mind you, I had no idea what it took to write a book. I often wondered what makes up a chapter and why are there prologues or prefaces in some books and in some there aren't? I soon found out.
During the summer of 2015, as I was nearing the ending phase of the developmental editing process, I happened to check FB on my cell phone and saw that the Leimert Park Village Book Fair was happening that day. I decided to check the schedule and saw there was a workshop called, "How to Successfully Self-publish a Fiction Novel" by Pamela Samuels Young, and it was scheduled to start in 15 minutes. Still in my loungewear, a fire was lit in me. I jumped up and quickly brushed my teeth, slipped out of my loungewear and into a short summer dress, ran downstairs, slipped on my sandals, grabbed my notebook, purse, keys and was out. Thank goodness I only lived 5 minutes from the Baldwin Crenshaw Plaza, where the book fair was being held.
(To the left is me pictured with NAACP Image Award winning author, Pamela Samuels Young at the conclusion of her workshop. 2015)
Attending Pamela Samuels Young's workshop was one of the best things I could have done, as a first-time self-published fiction author.
If you're a self-published author, I invite you to visit her website, PamelaSamuelsYoung, to see where she'll be teaching and sharing next. If you're in the area, you must run to her workshop, like I did. You will not be disappointed. I took notes and followed each of the steps she outlined and researched the resources she shared.
Fast forward, a year later - I am a participating author at the same Leimert Park Village Book Fair as a 2016 Jessie Redmon Fauset Book Award Nominee in the "First-Fiction" category, which I took 1st place.
Imagine being a first-time self-published author, attending the book fair that ignited the storytelling flame inside of you, with your author table next to the acclaimed author whose one and only workshop you attended, and then taking 1st place in an award that acknowledges your literary work.
- WHAT AN EXPERIENCE - WHAT A JOURNEY -
In conclusion, I must give much thanks and praise to the 2016 Leimert Park Village Book Fair team. The setup was filled with beautiful colors, nicely coordinated, and I felt the love of literature.
Cynthia Exum led a committed and dedicated team, which was seen in how they handled the common mishaps that occur during any big event. As a participating author, I felt catered to, listened to, and well taken care of. Members from the team took their time to visit tables to personally meet the authors and I truly appreciate that. Of course, I have to lift my arms and hands up to extend the highest of love energy to a venue that begins its ceremony with libations in honor of our ancestors.
I give thanks to my family, friends and FB friends who traveled and made a point to visit me and support me by purchasing my first, self-published fiction novel, Earth's Quiet Chaos.
Peace, Love & Light,
Photo Gallery - 2016 Leimert Park Book Fair