AUSTIN—The Texas Book Festival, considered one of the premier literary events in the nation, will be held Oct. 25 and 26 in 2014, and for the first time will be “bookended” by the newly-named Texas Teen Book Festival on Oct. 18.
The Texas Teen Book Festival is one of the largest of its kind in the nation, a major annual event in the young adult YA world that draws some of the most popular authors who write for the age group. YA literature is one of the hottest categories in book publishing today, drawing not only teen but adult readers in significant numbers.
Formerly known as the Austin Teen Book Festival, the gathering of young adult authors and readers, which attracted a record audience of 4,000 in 2013, has been sponsored by the Austin Public Library Friends Foundation since 2011.
“It’s invigorating to join forces with the dedicated collaborative that has nurtured this grassroots young adult literary festival to where it is today,” says Lois Kim, executive director of the Texas Book Festival. “With back-to-back festivals, we aim to put books and reading front and center for all Texans this October.”
This year, the Texas Teen Book Festival will be co-presented by the Library Foundation and the Texas Book Festival. Other key players are programming partner and co-founder BookPeople and venue sponsor St. Edward’s University, where the Texas Teen Book Festival will be held in 2014.
Both the Texas Book Festival, held in and around the State Capitol, and the Texas Teen Book Festival are free and open to the public thanks to generous donors, sponsors, and volunteers.
Fans of the Texas Book Festival can expect to see more of everything they love about the festival this year, especially in the blocked-off streets surrounding the Capitol, Kim says.
“In 2014 the Festival will offer even more on the streets for all to enjoy: pop-up shops, the return of Texas Monthly’s TMBBQ ’Cue Court, interesting food trucks, and a multitude of opportunities to engage with publishers, indie presses, and unique organizations.”
The Austin Teen Book Festival started in 2009 when librarian Heather Schubert partnered with Book People to organize a gathering at her school district library. Five hundred people and 16 authors attended the first year. By 2013 the one-day Festival had grown to host more than 40 authors, four publishers, 17 sessions, and a fervent fan base of 4,000 young adult readers of all ages.
“I couldn’t be more excited that our homegrown Teen Book Festival will now be stewarded by the Texas Book Festival, which will strengthen the Festival for years to come,” says Schubert.
Tim Staley, Library Foundation executive director says: “As we turn our attention to the 2016 opening of the new Central Library, and grow our other core programs, now seemed like the perfect time to integrate this big event into the Texas Book Festival’s programming—especially as they are custom-built to put on literary festivals.”
About the Texas Book Festival
The Texas Book Festival celebrates authors and their contributions to the culture of literacy, ideas, and imagination. Founded in 1995 by first lady Laura Bush, Mary Margaret Farabee, and a group of volunteers, the nonprofit Texas Book Festival promotes the joys of reading and writing through its annual Festival weekend, the one-day Texas Teen Book Festival, the Reading Rock Stars program, grants to Texas libraries, youth fiction writing contest, and year-round literary programming. The Festival is held on the grounds of the Texas Capitol each fall and features more than 250 renowned authors, panels, book signings, live music, cooking demonstrations, and children’s activities. Thanks to generous donors, sponsors, and nearly 1,000 volunteers, the Festival remains free and open to the public. www.texasbookfestival.org, www.facebook.com/TexasBookFestival, www.twitter.com/texasbookfest, #txbookfest, www.texasteenbookfestival.org
About the Austin Public Library Friends Foundation
The Austin Public Library Friends Foundation supports the Austin Public Library by increasing public awareness about the library and its importance to the community, and by raising funds to enhance library collections, programs, and facilities. Its programming includes the New Fiction Confab, Mayor’s Book Club, Illumine literary awards, and Badgerdog writing programs. www.austinlibrary.org, www.twitter.com/APLFF