By Scott Lorenz
If you are a Jewish author or specialize in writing about Jewish issues, you should consider visiting book fairs in the Jewish community. Book fairs are excellent places for authors to interact with the public as well as network with book industry leaders, publicists and book editors. Book festivals and fairs are held year round all over the United States.
As a book marketing specialist, I’ve see too often authors focusing on websites, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest to the exclusion of good old fashioned face to face sales. While social media can be very effective when used properly, authors should never overlook opportunities to meet the reading public face-to-face.
Here’s a list of 17 Jewish Book Fairs and Festivals for 2015. Keep in mind that links change all the time and festivals come and go. Some links are for the previous year because that’s all that was available at the time of this writing.
- JCC San Antonio will host Mark Lee Greenblatt, Author of Valor: Unsung Heroes from Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Home Front on May 20, 2015 at Barshop JCC. To receive more information about their Author Series or any other Arts & Culture event, sign up for their Email Mailing List. If you have any questions, please contact Aliyah Kuchinsky at 210-302-6827 or visit http://www.jccsanantonio.org/index.php?src=gendocs&ref=Author%20and%20Speaker%20Series&category=Arts%20and%20Culture
- Shalom Austin’s Austin Jewish Book Fair will be finalizing their schedule in late July/ early August. Check out http://shalomaustin.org/bookfair for further information or contact Crystal Connelley at 512-735-8098.
- JCC of North Shore is finalizing their schedule for the Jewish Book Month fair, and will have more information in early July. For more information please contact 781-631-8330 or visit http://www.jccns.org
- JCC Charleston will have their finalized list for the Charleston Jewish Bookfest in late July. For more information please visit http://charlestonjcc.org/cultural-arts/charleston-jewish-bookfest/ or call 843-571-6565.
- JCC Dallas is finalizing their schedule of events for the 2015 Book Fair and will be ready in September. For more information, please contact Rachelle Weiss Crane at [email protected] or 214-239-7128 or visit http://www.jccdallas.org/index.php?src=gendocs&ref=Book%20Fair&category=LifeLearning
- JCC Indianapolis will host The Ann Katz Festival of Books & Arts on October 28- November 15, 2015 For more information please contact Martha Karatz at 317-251-9467 ext. 2209 or by email [email protected] or visit http://jccindy.org/community/festival-books-arts/
- Jewish Community Center of Greater Ann Arbor The 28th Annual Jewish Book Festival will take place in November 2015. For more information please contact Karen Freedland, Cultural Arts and Education Director, at [email protected]org or 734-971-0990. You can also visit http://www.jccannarbor.org/#!book-festival/c1f1b
- Weinstein JCC will host the Fife-Davis Family Annual Jewish Book Fair & Gift Shop in November 2015. For more information please visit http://www.weinsteinjcc.org/cultural-arts/book-fair/ or contact Erin Mahone at 804-545-8644.
- Columbus JCC is finalizing the fantastic 2015 line up for JCC Bookfair 2015! For more information about sponsorship contact Bookfair Director Debbie Vinocur at [email protected] or 614-559-6214. Check http://columbusjcc.org/programs/cultural-arts/jewish-bookfair/ for updates as they become available.
- Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center in Houston, TX will be holding their 40th Annual Jewish Book & Arts Fair and will begin in November 2015. For a calendar of events and complete brochure, visit http://www.erjcchouston.org/index.php?src=gendocs&ref=BookAndArtsFair&category=Arts or contact The Evelyn Rubenstein JCC at 713-729-3200.
- JCC Memphis is finalizing their schedule for the 2015 Jewish Literary and Cultural Arts Festival, and will be ready in the upcoming months. For more information visit http://www.jccmemphis.org/index.php?submenu=Culture&src=gendocs&ref=jewishliterary&category=Culture
- Louis JCC’s 37th Annual St. Louis Jewish Book Festival will be in November, 2015. For more information, please call the St. Louis Jewish Book Festival Hotline: 314-442-3299 or visit http://www.jccstl.com/programs/arts-culture/st-louis-jewish-book-festival/
- JCC of Metro Detroit’s 64th Annual Jewish Book Fair will be held November 4 – 16, 2015. At this event, fabulous authors from all over the world will present their books. For further information visit http://www.jccdet.org/bookfair-home/
- Marcus JCC Atlanta’s Book Festival will be November 5-22, 2015. For 23 successful years, the Book Festival of the MJCCA has offered a fifteen-day literary extravaganza featuring an exciting lineup of the year’s most exceptional authors, speakers, and celebrities. Join thousands of your fellow book lovers to listen, meet, and interact with your favorite authors in a variety of forums, including author meet-and-greets, book signings, a community read, and panel discussions. Check out http://www.atlantajcc.org/interior-pages/arts-and-culture-book-festival/ for more details.
- JCC of Greater Washington will host the 43rd Annual Book Festival from November 5-15, 2015. The festival will present an exciting line-up of best-selling authors as well as up and coming writers new to the literary scene. The nine-day Festival will be packed with engaging author events, children’s programs, book signings, and a bookstore brimming with Jewish must-reads. For details, to request a Book Festival brochure contact Lynn Gittleson at 301-348-3840 or [email protected] or visit http://www.jccgw.org/arts-culture-jewish-life/literary/
- Mandel JCC in Beachwood, Ohio will be celebrating the 16th Annual Festival of Jewish Books & Authors from November 5-19, 2015. Stay tuned for details and a full listing of authors, which will be announced in the upcoming months. For information please contact Julie Frayman at [email protected] or 216-831-0700 ext. 1316. Please check back at http://www.mandeljcc.org/book-festival/festival-of-jewish-books-authors/ for announcements.
- JCC Jewish Book Festival The Cherie Smith JCC Jewish Book Festival is one of Vancouver’s leading cultural and literary events, attracting a large and varied audience of over 5,000 people of all ages. The festival will be held November 21-26, 2015. For more information please contact Nicole Nozick at 604-638-7278 email her at [email protected] or visit https://www.jccgv.com/content/jewish-book-fest
Book fairs typically seek out guest speakers or panelists. By volunteering to speak at a Jewish book fair, you will pique the interest of new readers and potentially gain a few new fans. Additionally, you can add the speaking appearance to your resume and press material. Be sure to plan ahead because book fairs, speaking engagements and readings are all planned months in advance. For more book fairs and festivals visit http://www.book-marketing-expert.com
The Bottom Line: Reach out to the Jewish community and attend a Jewish book fair or festival.
About Scott Lorenz
Book publicist Scott Lorenz is President of Westwind Communications, a public relations and marketing firm that has a special knack for working with authors to help them get all the publicity they deserve and more. Lorenz works with bestselling authors and self-published authors promoting all types of books, whether it’s their first book or their 15th book. He’s handled publicity for books by CEOs, Navy SEALS, Homemakers, Fitness Gurus, Doctors, Lawyers and Adventurers. His clients have been featured by Good Morning America, FOX & Friends, CNN, ABC Nightly News, The New York Times, Nightline, TIME, PBS, Los Angeles Times, USA Today, Washington Post, Family Circle, Woman’s World, & Howard Stern to name a few. Learn more about Westwind Communications’ book marketing approach at http://www.book-marketing-expert.com or contact Lorenz at [email protected] or by phone at 734-667-2090. Follow Lorenz on Twitter @aBookPublicist