Friday, April 15, 2022

Flowertown Festival

Flowertown Festival April 1-3 at Summerville, SC


The Flowertown Festival in Summerville, SC was a festival on steroids. When I took a break for coffee and slipped into the stream of people passing our booth, it was so crowded I moved when everybody moved. Despite the number of people, not many stopped to look at and/or buy books.

On the drive back to Lexington, Doug and I took stock of the weekend. By the time we had packed up the tent, unpacked, set up, and manned the booth for three days, we had more invested in the festival than we got out of it. I'm not good at selling books, and this weekend was no different. However, I'm not the only author still looking for a profitable way to market my books.

The winds of change keep telling us that books are in transition, if not disappearing.

— Print journals are becoming more rare

— Literary journals charge reading fees for submissions

— Number of independent bookstores declines

— Mergers of big publishing houses—

HarperCollins buys Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Hatchette buys Workman Publishing

Penguin Random House is trying for Simon & Schuster

— Appearance of artificial language programs such as AI writing

— Adult literacy below 6th grade level for 54% of population

Artists, including painters, potters, sculptors,, have a similar problem to writers in that they have limited venues to sell their art. It's a dream of mine that artists and writers get together for festivals to attract a different crowd.

As for festivals, going forward, I will be more selective about the ones I attend. I have good expectations for Art in the Park at Sumter, SC on Saturday, April 23. It's sponsored by a nonprofit association. Best of all, I've been invited to read from one of my books.

Ready at my booth at 9:00 AM


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