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AAP's Get Caught Reading table
AAP’s Get Caught Reading table

More than 220 authors, musicians and other artists joined 150 booksellers and presses at New York City’s biggest free celebration of authors and books at the Brooklyn Book Festival on Sunday, September 13th. Book lovers of all ages had an opportunity to meet authors, attend panels and browse through books. Well-known publishers  such as HarperPerennial, Drawn and Quarterly, and DK publishing were in attendance, as were independent presses such as Akashic books, Giron books, and PM press. Readings and literary activities were held all day in the children’s area, sponsored by Target, and poetry and writing workshops for teenagers  took place  in the main workshop tent. The event was held outdoors at Borough Hall and with no rain in site, it was a perfect day for discovering new and talented writers.

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Eric Watts and Trevor Robinson of BedStuy Stories

New  publishers, too, had a chance to reach book lovers.  Eric Watts had an opportunity to showcase his books and his fledgling company BedStuy Stories. (While he  attends other fairs and speaks at smaller venues, he says this was his largest audience  to date). Various authors signed books for fans and niche presses gave out postcards, bookmarks and free books. Bibliophiles had an opportunity to listen to authors such as Edwidge Danticat, Paul Auster and Naomi Klein and attend panels on “Literature and the Digital Age” and “The Future of Literary Fiction.”

SPI Alum Jaime Nelson and Archipelago Books

SPI Alum Jaime Nelson and Archipelago Books

NYU’s School of Continuing and Professional Studies  and NYU press were also in attendance, as were several Center for Publishing students.  M.S. in Publishing students Jessica Wells and Preeti Chhibber talked to adults and children about the Association of American Publisher’s Get Caught Reading campaign. The festival was sponsored by  organizations including The Brooklyn Literary Council, BAM, the National Book Foundation, Comic-Con and Housing Works.

If you missed this event, be sure to check out upcoming Book festivals:

National Book Festival, September 26, 2009 – http://www.loc.gov/bookfest/
Frankfurt Book Fair, October 14, 2009 – http://www.buchmesse.de/en/fbf/
Alternate Press Expo, October 17, 2009 – http://www.comic-con.org/ape/
Boston Book Festival, October 24, 2009 – http://bostonbookfest.org/
New England Book Festival, November 25, 2009 - http://newenglandbookfestival.com/
London Book Festival, December 18, 2009 - http://londonbookfestival.com/portal/
DIY Book Festival, February 2010 - http://www.diyconvention.com/

And don’t forget that BookExpo America is back in New York again next spring on May 26th and May 27th – http://bookexpoamerica.com

by Alyssa Léal

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