|Q: What conventions are important for an author to attend?
State reading councils and regional conferences offer a good opportunity to make contacts for school speaking appearances. SCBWI conferences provide information and networking opportunities with editors, art directors, writers, illustrators, and others in the industry.
Authors can also consider attending major national conventions, such as the American Booksellers Association [now BookExpo America], the American Library Association, and the International Reading Association to learn more about the industry. You can contact these organizations at the numbers listed below for fees, registration information and dates. You can also ask for a list of regional meetings.
American Booksellers Association – 800-637-0037
They can provide a list of regional meetings and contacts.
[National convention, formerly the ABA Convention, is now run by BookExpo America – call 800-840-5614 for information]
American Library Association – 800-545-2433
Authors and illustrators can register independently for both the January ALA Mid-Winter convention, at which the Newbery and Caldecott winners are announced, and for the larger American Library Association annual convention in June. The ALA also has a list of state library association meetings, which is available on request.
International Reading Association – 302-731-1600
Authors and illustrators can attend and can register on-site at the convention. Call for more information.