Buenos Aires Book Fair - April and May

There are 19 replies in this Thread which has previously been viewed 6,034 times. The latest Post () was by Splinter.

    • Official Post

    Splinter , as an author, I strongly recommend you register as a professional visitor (link), this way you can visit the Fair also in those days not open to the general public. And you can access for free in the ones open to the public. On the Feria's website there is a detailed list of activities for professionals, but in general you can browse editorial stands and sit down to speak with people from the management. it would be a great opportunity to pitch your book and do some warm marketing!

    • Official Post

    Splinter , as an author, I strongly recommend you register as a professional visitor (link), this way you can visit the Fair also in those days not open to the general public. And you can access for free in the ones open to the public. On the Feria's website there is a detailed list of activities for professionals, but in general you can browse editorial stands and sit down to speak with people from the management. it would be a great opportunity to pitch your book and do some warm marketing!

    That's very kind of you serafina

    I'll definitely do that, however, that link isn't working :(

    • Official Post

    May I also suggest you to try reach publishers in advance? If you browse the fair website, there should be a list of publishers/exhibitors. You can select some to reach in advance to arrange a meeting beforehand. This is how I saw it done a few years ago.


    I originally went there to see if there was any translation opportunity but this is the largest book fair for Latin America, so nobody is interested in Italian translations.



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    • Official Post

    Thanks to Serafina's help, I registered as an author and am going to the fair this morning in advance of the public.

    I'm hoping to speak to some publishers with a view to translation to Spanish and publication of The Last British President in Argentina. I'll report back later today.

    Glad to see someone is following my advices. My husband didn't register when I told him to and free registration is now closed.

    He was so pissed he said I wouldn't go, either. To hell with that. I am going without him!

    • Official Post

    Did you get a pro registration serafina ? Might I see you there if I return?

    Anyway, I've just got back from hawking my book there with mixed results, mainly because the decision makers were thin on the ground. I spoke to about thirty publishers, which I'll have to follow up with emails.

    One publisher wanted me to send the manuscript in Spanish which she would send to about 25 readers, then they'd have a meeting to decide if they would publish it. However, I would have to pay for that service and she couldn't tell me in advance how much it would cost. No thanks.


    It really is an impressive and massive show, with the majority of companies simply wanting to sell bucket loads of books, so with me trying to flog them my book, I felt a bit like a poacher. But that didn't put me off.


    I really couldn't leave without buying a book, so I bought Neil Gaiman's American Gods. I've heard so much about this writer, so I thought it was time to give him a crack. It's also become a TV series, i believe.


  • I have found the Book Fair to be a chore the times I have gone. It wasn't what I wanted it to be, just an endless maze of book stores basically. I would have liked more interaction and events based on writers and books, instead of just trying to be sold something. Either way, I can see how it might have potential for Splinter as someone trying to spread the readership of his work. Although, that publisher offer seems like a big NO DEAL to me. Should never give a publisher money.

    • Official Post

    Did you get a pro registration serafina ? Might I see you there if I return?

    Yes, I registered on the very day I posted on this thread because I have been going as a pro for about three years now. The first year I went as general public, then I learned they have educational events for translators (mostly related to literary translation, but anyway it was interesting to dip my toes into unknown waters) and the "rondas de negocios". However, I share your feeling about being too a small fish in a big, big pond if you want to make business there.


    I didn't arrange for any meeting, I was just browsing among the stands to get a feel of what kind of books each publisher had on display. Smaller booths were friendlier, however nobody actually followed up when I left our business card. It doesn't help being a newbie in the industry (literary translation is a whole different world from business translation) and not having any book translated under my belt. And, as I said before, there is no interest toward Italian from smaller publishers, while bigger ones aren't here to find Italian translators.


    However, I now register to attend events for translators only, although they have limited seating available. I can go there anyway and see if there has been any cancellation. In the past edition, there was no check on who actually was entering the conference hall and there were many empty spots, anyway.


    With your pro pass you can access the fair also during the days open to the public when there are other events, but don't expect publishers to mix with the public. There is a dedicated area available for business meeting all around, but the main fair becomes a giant shopping floor for the maaaaany visitors. It gets really crowded on the weekend.


    I agree with your reaction to the request of having the book translated at your own expenses -- this is not how it should be done.

    Current rate for fiction book translation is ARS 750 per thousand words. https://aati.org.ar/es/aranceles-orientativos

    • Official Post

    Before moving to Argentina, I ran a business in the UK which involved doing a lot of trade fairs, where we would sell our products, drum up business and make new contacts.

    Often we would be approached by strangers trying to sell us their products or services, which usually got us a little irritated since we had paid a lot of money to buy the stand etc, but they were simply hawking their stuff about, without having paid a cent.

    I don't mind being bare-faced about selling, especially since I'm a trained salesman. However, one has to keep the radar finely tuned and to know when you're being a nuisance, which is the impression I got during my five hours at the book fair.

    Besides, most were asking for a Spanish translation for submission, which kind of puts me back to square one and the route I will probably end up taking. Translate and publish on Amazon, rather than wait for the whims of publishers.

  • Splinter

    Changed the title of the thread from “Buenos Aires Book Fair - April 25 to May 13, 2019.” to “Buenos Aires Book Fair - April and May”.
  • Yesterday we went to the Buenos Aires Book Fair, not with a book to sell, but to see how the book market works here.

    There are publishers and independent publishers, as they are termed. Naturally, traditional publishers operate like any other - you need to convince them that your book is worth taking on and investing in. I've tried that and going cap in hand again is an unpleasant thought and can take several months, usually with no for an answer.

    On the other hand, with independent publishers, who are really self-publishers with print on demand, you pay up front to get your book published and to hold a stock which you can sell yourself. That's the route I took and for 50 physical books, the up front admin costs were about 50% of the total.

    In other words, you pay through the nose. My book, The Last British President in Spanish was priced at around $2700 in 2022 with Tinta Libre, but today is $27,000, so you can see the inflation effect which is around 1000%.

    But it's the eBook market that interests me and I have big ideas in that direction, which is why I'm going back to the book fair today to meet up with some fellow authors. For example, the eBook version of my book is $13,500.

    Publishing your book for free in this country doesn't exist - KDP and D2D for example, will let you do this and they take commission on books sold. That doesn't happen here.

    More later.

  • But it's the eBook market that interests me and I have big ideas in that direction, which is why I'm going back to the book fair today to meet up with some fellow authors. For example, the eBook version of my book is $13,500.

    Publishing your book for free in this country doesn't exist - KDP and D2D for example, will let you do this and they take commission on books sold. That doesn't happen here.

    Interesting to hear there is a ebook publisher that is specific for Argentina. Years ago, it had been entertaining to learn The Martian author Andy Weir story of self publishing via blog and KDP before a physical book deal. https://www.businessinsider.co…came-so-successful-2015-6

  • But it's the eBook market that interests me and I have big ideas in that direction, which is why I'm going back to the book fair today to meet up with some fellow authors.

    I wonder if the British Embassy has some networking opportunities or at least would host a book event or make it available for sale. GlasgowJohn is your man. I am as useless as a 10 pesos bill.