Wednesday, June 22, 2016

See You at ALA or at #ALAac16

Dear Kim,

I know that you are unable to join me at ALA this year, but I wonder if any of our readers will be in Orlando this weekend for the American Library Association’s annual conference? 

I’ll be the girl wandering the aisles of the exhibit hall, wide-eyed and mouth in awe of the new books on display. (That probably describes well over half of the attendees!) I guess new friends should find me at the YALSA booth on Sunday from 11:30-1:30 instead. I'll be more helpful and less moonstruck there. And I'll have pens!

ALA always throws a nice party. They work hard to bring authors and educators together. To celebrate books and learners. To encourage us to think about what needs to happen in our libraries to support our children and teens.

Publishing professionals and seasoned librarians will preview new books and tell us about books that are missing from the shelves of the libraries. I look forward to learning from writers like Amy Lukavics at The Horror! The Horror! Authors Who Write to Scare; and Padma Venkatramen and Leigh Turina at Capturing the Experience of Intersectional Identities; and Varian Johnson, Ashley Hope Perez, and Kelly Starling Lyons at Not Your Granny's Dinner Conversation: Diversity, Race, Sex, and Gender. The exhibit hall, as I mentioned, is a bit overwhelming, luckily there are plenty of small group meet and greets (happy hours) and YALSA award chats to connect with other young adult writers and educators.

While we celebrate books this weekend, in our hearts we all carry the sorrow of the events that shook Orlando this month. There will be a memorial service at the Orange County Convention Center at 8am on Saturday, June 25.  

ALA posted ways that we, as teachers, librarians, writers, illustrators, and publishing professionals, can get involved in the Orlando community during our stay. I hope friends will find the nearest blood bank while at ALA. There will be a OneBlood donation station on Saturday and Sunday at the convention center. They are specifically looking for Double Red Cell donations. Follow the link below to see if you are eligible.

See you in Orlando or on the #ALAac16 thread this weekend.

Much Love,