If you are a writer of children's books and you want to learn how to connect with other writers, reviewers, librarians, and booklovers online, if you want to build an online community before your book is published and learn how to spread the word about it, or if you just love children's books and blogging and want to meet like-minded souls, come to the Kidlitosphere Conference '08!
It's September 27 in Portland, Oregon and will be really fun (as well as informative). Last year, the lovely Robin Brande kicked off the first one on a whim -- she just wanted to meet face-to-face all the awesome booklovers she'd gotten to know online. So we all convened in Chicago and it was a blast. This year, the city being Portland, the organization has fallen to Jone Rush McCulloch and myself. We've booked a great hotel for the event, and have plans for a friday night Powell's Books spree too, followed by dinner and fun -- the conference and official dinner to follow on Saturday.
Many attendees will be book reviewers, many will be authors. From the author's perspective, I want to put this out there to writers: if you're not already blogging and doing online promotion for your books (published or not-yet published): you should be. And the only way it can be effective is if you genuinely connect with the spirit of the online community. It's not enough to just put up a blog that periodically announces your bookstore events. That won't get you anywhere. You have to take an interest, get to know your kindred spirits, and really become a blogger. (Take it from me: it's incredibly rewarding!)
At last year's conference, I learned about such things as "blog blast book tours" and "search engine optimization," and "podcasting," and I got to meet wonderful reviewers like Jen Robinson, Betsy Bird (who I'd been lucky to meet before), and Jules & Eisha of 7 Impossible Things Before Breakfast (who, by the way, did a lovely piece on Laini's Ladies last weekend!). There were terrific writers in attendance too, like Ysabeau Wilce and Sara Lewis Holmes.
So, join us. Portland is beautiful in September. You can go see some waterfalls, shop at Powell's, and talk kidlit with awesome people. Come, come. (click HERE for more info and to register.)