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JoNightshade
04-24-2008, 11:49 PM
http://www.latimes.com/extras/festivalofbooks/

Anyone heard of this thing? Been to it?

I can go if I want, but should I? What do I do there? (Other than stalk Ray Bradbury? :))

maestrowork
04-25-2008, 12:06 AM
It's the biggest book fair around there. Many bestselling authors will be there. You should go if you can.

Medievalist
04-25-2008, 06:27 AM
It's fun, but huge. It's worth going just to look at books, but yes, it's interesting.

Don't try to park on campus; park in Westwood, and walk in or take the bus.

JoNightshade
04-27-2008, 02:51 AM
Okay, I went. First of all, Medievalist, thanks for the Westwood recommendation - we parked and took a shuttle in. Thank goodness I planned in advance for that or we would have been circling for hours. :)

Secondly: Meh. This is my general reaction to the fair. Maybe these things just aren't my cup of tea, but I ended up just wandering around for hours. I was kind of freaked out by all of the bizarre self-published nonsense... everything from the second coming to new age gurus and 9-11 conspiracists. Also, the really funny thing was how many booths there were devoted to Atheism. They were almost identical to all of the booths with religious groups. We were joking that maybe they had their own atheist services when we realized their meetings actually WERE on Sunday morning.

Anyway it was just really hard to tell what was worthwhile and quality among all the weirdo stuff. I ended up not talking to anyone there because I was scared anything that looked interesting would turn out to be something freaky. (For instance there was a children's book booth that looked really cool only half of it turned out to be some adult semi-porno stuff and the kids books were... disturbing.)

There was supposed to be a whole strip of comic/manga related stuff... but instead it was about 3 booths of independent comic companies and then just random stuff. (The I love my mommie booth? The verizon booth?) We were never able to find the signing area at all for the couple of artists/authors that were supposed to be talking, and they were not "famous" enough to be included in the fair programme.

The food was INCREDIBLY expensive (all of it was through UCLA campus dining - methinks they were earning their food budget for the year), and it was $3.75 for any beverage, even water.

And it was beastly hot.

But I got to see Ray Bradbury again, that was cool.

Smiling Ted
04-27-2008, 07:41 AM
Secondly: Meh. This is my general reaction to the fair. Maybe these things just aren't my cup of tea, but I ended up just wandering around for hours. I was kind of freaked out by all of the bizarre self-published nonsense...

Anyway it was just really hard to tell what was worthwhile and quality among all the weirdo stuff....

There was supposed to be a whole strip of comic/manga related stuff... but instead it was about 3 booths of independent comic companies and then just random stuff. (The I love my mommie booth? The verizon booth?) We were never able to find the signing area at all for the couple of artists/authors that were supposed to be talking, and they were not "famous" enough to be included in the fair programme.

The food was INCREDIBLY expensive...

I was there today, and found it productive. But last year I had the same experience you did. I think the trick - as with so much in LA - is to be prepared.

If you go to the website, http://www.latimes.com/extras/festivalofbooks/, there's a list of times and places for all the different panels, events and interviews, and a map. I found three panels that looked interesting, and two of them were worthwhile. The panels are kind of the meat of the fair...the booths are just booths.

Generally speaking, the smaller the booth, the crazier the occupants.

There are a few outdoor vending machines that offer drinks and snacks at a much more reasonable rate (at the southeastern area of the fair, near the "inverted fountain").

And there were also some anime/manga booths that weren't in the "comics strip."

For what it's worth - not contradicting, just offering advice for anyone who wants to go tomorrow....

Medievalist
04-27-2008, 07:51 AM
Damn.

I'm going tomorrow, but I was really tired yesterday, and just didn't have the time and energy to be more, well, helpful.

You kinda need to know where to go on campus, but there's decent affordable-by-students food, and lots and lots of vending machines for water, and cups and water stations.

Christine N.
04-27-2008, 06:00 PM
One of my favoritist, I have a profession crush on authors, James Owen, is scheduled to be there this weekend.

We're having a similar thing here in Philly next month, except no panels. Just a big outdoor book festival all weekend. Philadeplphia Book Festival (http://libwww.freelibrary.org/bookfestival/)

I'll be at the South Jersey Authors Tent (I think that's what it is; a bunch of us got together and got a booth) signing books. Stop by if you're in the area!