Queens Book Festival

The Newest and Most Inclusive Literary Event in Queens
The Queens Book Festival, debuting on August 7, 2016, will be the largest and most inclusive literary gathering in Queens. It will fill the borough with literary talks from over 100 authors as well as hundreds of exhibits within a walkable venue. Over 10,000 diverse people of all ages are expected to attend, thanks to the Festival’s robust media plan. The Festival will be entirely free to the public and actively will serve as a diverse platform for the “World’s Borough.”

The Queens Book Festival is a grassroots project begun by Queens’ residents in the fall of 2014. The Festival was created to introduce the borough and area residents, especially the children and young adults, to the many facets and genres within the literary world including new and immerging technologies that revolutionize how the written word is consumed. It is designed to ignite and foster a passion for reading in the children and youth of the borough while also encouraging literacy. At the same time, the Festival will celebrate authors and their literary contributions, while connecting these artists to the community at large.

The festival now has an executive director and small staff, and is in the process of forging strong partnerships with several Queens and NYC Literary and Cultural Institutions, dozens of publishers, independent bookstores, and literary nonprofits. Our work increasingly is being affirmed by local organizations and major corporations inquiring into the Festival’s sponsorship opportunities.

Over 100 top local, national and international authors will speak on stage panels spanning many topics and literary forms. There will be several reading sessions in tents featuring authors from Queens, the outer-boroughs, and from throughout the nation.
Authors will include international and national award winners, New York Times bestselling authors, and genre favorites—alongside emerging talents, particularly from diverse backgrounds. A priority is amplifying underrepresented voices.
Of the 100+ authors, a third will be local, and a third national—making the Queens Book Festival the most international public literary festival in the borough. We intend to bring together authors to create a major festival focus on the Queens experience.
In addition to the immigrant experience, major themes across the fiction, nonfiction and poetry genres will include race and class; feminism, LGBTQ, and gender transformations; educational institutions and parenting; war, violence/nonviolence, and veterans; urban development; privacy, surveillance, and expression, including digital impacts; other local and global human rights; food; and more.

The event’s venue, Kaufman Astoria Studios, will be filled with exhibitors from independent bookstores and publishers, literary nonprofits, writing programs, library services, and literacy programs.
A Marquee Stage full of conversations and discussions on social and current issues.
A Children World, serving pre-K through 4th graders, will fill with a storytelling area, literacy activities, educational publishers, and fun interactive exhibits.
Young Adult authros will discuss their ventures into teen and yound adult topics.
A Culinary Stage will offer talks with emphases on culinary diversity.
Several tents will showcase workshops, author readings, poetry performances, and much more.

We are leading a coalition of community groups, literacy organizations, libraries and schools to create an inclusive festival that responds in part to the growth of the literary community of the borough and the literacy needs of the borough’s youth.
Our Literary Committee consists of several individuals from a vast spectrum including literary publications, cultural institutions, and literacy non-profits.
We have created a QBF Writing Contest for the school students in Queens to motivate students from grade 5-12 to participate in the Festival. The contest also incentivizes the students to learn and improve their writing skills.
Several build-up events, Queens Bookmarks, are set to take place for the twelve months leading to the Festival. Programs including reading series, literacy events, author talks, book release parties, visual arts activities, and performing arts showcases will occur throughout different neighborhoods in the borough.


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