No Longer Spanish Impaired

Dr. Camilo Cruz discusses the person behind the reader at BookExpoAmerica

By Margo Dannemiller
Published on LatinoLA: May 27, 2003

No Longer Spanish Impaired

Until now the book buyer has been referred to as ?the reader,? just a statistical figure. Dr. Camilo Cruz will tell you that the difference between really getting to know the people and their dreams and just sticking to the numbers is like the difference between having a meal and simply reading the menu. Whether you are a Latino literature expert or still a bit Spanish-impaired, Dr. Cruz?s ?witty and wise? presentation at BookExpo America at the LA Convention Center in Los Angeles on May 29 promises a new twist on one of the fastest growing markets in book publishing today.

?BookExpo America reflects what is going on in the book industry, and nowhere is that more evident than in the growth of our business in the Spanish arena," notes Greg Topalian, Vice President and Show Manager for BEA. ?We are keeping pace with the interest in Spanish-language books and authors by further developing our Spanish Book Pavilion and the Spanish and Latin American conference programs.?

As a Hispanic author, publisher and entrepreneur and trainer, Dr. Cruz has a unique appreciation of the Hispanic community, the challenges they face and the aspirations that fuel many of their buying decisions. Everyone knows the Hispanic market is a vibrant market, but not everyone knows how to read it. Dr. Cruz will share his insight on what to publish and how to sell Spanish-language books in the United States.

What do we know about our Hispanic community as consumers?

Market: 38 million? Dr. Cruz says: the Second-Largest majority in the US

Purchasing power: 450 billion per year; median income: $41,000

Market size: $400 million in book purchases in 1999

Purchasing power: 450 billion per year; median income: $41,000

"How-to/self-help/life skills" titles are the most popular among Hispanic readers

The author of more than fifteen personal and professional development books, Dr. Cruz will soon co-author works for the Hispanic community with best-selling American authors Mark Victor Hansen and Brian Tracy. His titles are carried by the country?s largest Spanish-language book distributors. In April, he offered the first author presentation in Spanish at Barnes&Noble/Chelsea in New York City. LA VACA, Dr. Cruz's first e-book was offered on-line at http://www.elexito.com and was downloaded nearly 30,000 times in six days.

On Thursday, May 29 at 5:00 pm in Room 504 at the LA Convention Center, he will share this experience and provide specific examples for re-igniting plans and priorities for the Spanish-language book industry.

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