Another page turns at the Miami Book Fair
By Rachel Galvin
For the 26th year, this annual event has brought in the masses – authors and book lovers as well as families looking to introduce the love of the written word to a new generation. The vendor booths at the street fair were filled with a wide variety of booksellers, including the ever-popular Books and Books. Books in Hebrew were present as were many books in Spanish. Christian books, Yoga books, Kabbalah books, horticulture books, self-help books, non-fiction, fiction, children’s books –you name it, they had it. Guests left with bag-loads of books they had purchased at reasonable prices.
Other authors gave books away for free. Mississippi-based author Elton Hill gave away his poetry book “Poetic Gesture” to simply “get it out there.” This was his first trip to Miami and he brought his family with him. “I plan on doing more traveling. I plan to talk to my marketing agent (XLibris) to see where to go from here.”
His 67-page book concentrates on his life’s joys and sorrows. But many poems seem to speak to society as a whole. But, it is his poems about his children that seem to encompass his reason for writing the book. “…what a better way to express my love for them then to put it in a book for all eyes to see,” he said on his final page.
Local author and businesswoman Gigi Stetler hopes others will be inspired by her book “Unstoppable: Surviving is Just the Beginning.” She tells her true story of dealing with crazy characters – everything from people stabbing her in the back in the business world to a homeless man stabbing her, literally, 21 times. Hers is a story of survival and perseverance. “I hope to turn negative to positive. I didn’t come to the book fair with expectations of selling hundreds of books, but to understand the readers, put a smile on their faces.”
Author Lloyd D. Hildebrand hopes to enlighten readers on ‘2012,’ a theme that has recently been shoved more into the spotlight withthe Nov. 13 release of the movie by the same name. Through years of research, Hildebrand has uncovered from a variety of sources reasons that 2012 is sure to be a year of great change. From Web bot to the Holy Bible, he takes readers through different viewpoints on this theme in his book “2012: Is This the End?” He said, “I have done very well here at the book fair. This is my first year here. I didn’t know what to expect and it exceeded my expectations.”
Spokespersons from the South Florida Writers Network were also present, hoping to recruit members. The group offers guest speakers, meetings and a monthly newsletter and, best of all, members can have their books at the book fair at the booth (rather than having to pay for a booth themselves.) For more information, visit www.SouthFloridaWritersAssn.Org.
Authors can get the word out about their book through publicity. One option is Smith Publicity (www.smithpublicity.com), who had a booth there. Sandra Diaz, president, explained many creative ways in which their company could help writers to get their message out across the country.
Many authors spoke at the book fair this year, including Al Gore. Writers will have the chance to listen to additional writers, poets to be exact, coming up at the Palm Beach Poetry Fest (Jan. 13-23), which had a booth at the fair as well. For more information, call 561-243-7922, ext. 1 or visit www.palmbeachpoetryfestival.org.
Kids had the chance to join in the fun making their own comic books and participate in other activities at the Comix Galaxy. Also in the children’s alley, storytellers wove tales and costumed characters came out to play!
These are just a few highlights at this annual event, which was filmed again by C-Span’s Book TV. Miss the fair? There is always next year… until the page turns…
For more information, visit www.miamibookfair.
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