What can book fairs do for your journal publishing career?
As I write this, I am on my way home on the train from London Book Fair 2022
You might be wondering why I, as a member of the journal publishing industry, was attending a book fair. Well, there are two major book fairs in the publishing world, the London Book Fair (LBF) and the Frankfurt Book Fair (FBF). Both are primarily dedicated to trade publishing, but they both have large halls dedicated to academic and scholarly publishing, including academic journals.
Although many journal publishers have a physical presence at the book fair, purchasing exhibiting spaces, this has always struck me as a little odd for two reasons:
Are publishers buying up exhibition spaces in a rather childish game of “my stand is bigger than your stand”? Do they really attract new business at these stands or is it just a way of marking their territory? A sort of territorial publisher face-off if you will. Either way, one good thing about the stands is you usually get some great free stuff (and an excellent range of new stationary). But this is besides the point.