Gothenburg Book Fair 2019 done right

Oh my goodness. What a weekend! I’ve learned so much stuff that I can’t really think straight right now. I’ve talked to publishers, editors and authors and learned exacty what I needed to learn. The planning of a book and the writing itself, I have under total control, but what happens after? Who are all the different people helping with the script? If I get a publisher, all works out with the help of the publisher. But if I do this whole thing by myself, I now know who to contact about what parts I need help with. And that is such a reassurance and relief and a huge motivator. I want to be done with the script so I can start exploring that part of writing a book as well.

Yesterday I did some calculations, and if I write 500 words per day, I will reach my 100k goal by New Year’s. Wouldn’t that be awesome? To have the first draft done in three months? It would be unreal.

The Book Fair is not about just writing, it’s also about reading and I bought some books. Six to be exact. And four of them are signed, that’s not too bad! I had Dmitry Gluchovsky sign Metro 2033 and 2034. 2035 had sold out. But I already had that one at home, but in hard cover. My square brain likes order and having two paperbacks and one hardcover just wont feel right. I might buy the last one in paperback and sell the hardcover so it looks unified in my bookshelf.

The other two signed books are Hjärnstark and Skärmhjärna by Anders Hansen. He is a psychologist and I’ve heard a lot about the first book and I couldn’t say no to a signed copy after listening to him talk to a moderator at the fair. I’m not super interested in celebrities, but authors who have accomplished something (that I now can relate to) is different. I get really starstruck when meeting authors and talking to them. I talked a little with Dmitry yesterday, but I had no idea what to say so I just babbled and probably sounded like an idiot. But he is a really fun guy! I heard him talk today at a seminar with Un-Su Kim, a korean author. They discussed how the written word is affected by other media today. Very very interesting seminar. And funny!

The last two books I bought was Fire & Blood by George R. R. Martin and a cookbook with mug cakes. I’ve been meaning to get it for a while now and it was there, so why not. Recipes for mug cakes can be nice. Quick dinners or snacks. I was looking at a cookbok with Korean BBQ recipes. But I didn’t get it. Maybe I should have?

It was a very fun weekend. I am so full of energy right now. So much motivation and inspiration! This was exactly what I needed right now when the dark fall is just around the corner. Dmitry Gluchovsky signing books.

Un-Su Kim and Dmitry Gluchovsky discussing the impact of visual media on the written word.

Gothenburg Book Fair

In Gothenburg there is a book fair held annually. And as a book enthusiast, I am embarassed to admit that I have never been, until today. If I hadn’t had an appointment, I probably wouldn’t have gone at all because of the demonstration. I won’t go into detail about it because it is extremely upsetting and I honestly don’t understand how the city of Gothenburg could approve of a Nazi demonstration. So many thousands of people on both sides coming to Gothenburg of all places, from all over Europe to demonstrate. Svenska Mässan, which is the place where most fairs are held in Gothenburg, was right in the middle of all the action but mom and I were lucky and didn’t get in the middle of anything.

We started our day at Heaven 23, the top restaurant in Gothia Towers. In all the years the hotel have been there, I have never been to that restaurant and had one of their famous shrimp sandwiches. But today I did! And at one of the best tables, right next to the window with an overview of all the chaos down in the street. Lots of people there, but we were lucky. Nice experience!

So anyway, at 16:30 I had an appointment with a literary consultant. They offered free analysis of the first chapter. I was nervous, but the woman I had who read my chapter was really nice and gave me some really helpful tips. For example, I was really good at making the text flow, well-written, and good environment descriptions. The first part of the first chapter was really good, built up some suspension, but it got kind of flat at the second part. I put together chapter 1 and 2 as they are written now because it made sense. There is kind of an anticlimax, I build up for some suspension but then leaves it. So I will add some action, or maybe not action, but something exciting instead of the “perfect” and boring paradise life.

Something else she told me that really inspired me was that I need to direct the reader in some direction. Either plant hints about what will actually happen, or lead the reader in a different direction and make them surprised when something else is revealed. I have planted lots of small hints, but they are not enough to guide the reader in any particular direction. I have to think a little bit about that I think. But I already know what kind of suspense I will add. I got the idea exactly when Anna-Carin told me about it. It will be awesome!

There was also a monter where there was supposed to be a short seminar about how to publish a book and what to think about. I was there, waiting, but when I got there the owner of the publisher told me that the security guards told them to keep the volume down. But the monter behind them were allowed becase the security guards didn’t want there to be any conflicts. The monter behind was Nya Tider (the nazi paper)… She is gonna post a presentation online in a week and I will look at it then. She gave me lots of help there though and I knew what kind of questions to ask at least one publisher that I have looked at before. It sounded really nice! But that is far away. Hopefully only a year, but we will see.

Anna-Carin also gave me lots of advice, like what I should do if I get stuck. I should try to write from a third person perspective and from other people’s point of view. Now I will get very “stuck” with my main character, to whom I draw lots from myself. She told me it could be good to write some other things and feelings to get perspectives that will give me a better understanding of the story.

Lots of good help and if I get really stuck in the future or need anything, I now know where I can turn. Unless it is way too expensive. But she was really professional and helpful and kind and excited. It was a good experience and I am now more thrilled than ever to continue to write!

This fall has been better than this year’s summer. Beautiful evening in downtown.