Now Hiring! Operations Coordinator

If you love being part of a team, and really love community building, books, authors, and events, then you’re in the right place! The Texas Book Festival is hiring an Operations Coordinator to join the team. Details below, and applications will close on July 15, 2022.

OPERATIONS COORDINATOR POSITION DESCRIPTION

The Operations Coordinator position with the Texas Book Festival is responsible for providing support to staff overseeing programs, development, finances, communications, and events. The Operations Coordinator also supports the daily operations of the office and serves as the first contact on phone and email correspondence.

All TBF staff members help with planning work, event support, and communication strategies for the annual Texas Book Festival, Reading Rock Stars, Real Reads and other literary events in Austin and around Texas throughout the year.

RESPONSIBILITIES

Literary Programming 

  • Schedule meetings for TBF staff with NYC-based publishers for annual TBF spring trip and serve as point of contact during week of visits.
  • Help Literary Director with literary programming coordination including:
    • tracking book submissions
    • communicating with authors and publicists about book submission status
    • assisting with tracking literary programming budget, including author travel stipends and coordination
    • assisting with communication around Festival author A/V presentation collection
    • assisting with year-round events
    • working with literary interns

Office Administration

  • Provide administrative support, including scheduling meetings, correspondence, meeting preparation and communication, and projects as requested.
  • Manage organization communication, including mail, email, and phone.
  • Serve as primary contact with all office vendors including building management, IT services, and insurance companies.
  • Manage office equipment and supplies.
  • Oversee retention and organization of paper and electronic files.
  • Run office errands as requested

Financial Administration

  • Collect receipts from staff and help reconcile statements.
  • Track in-kind donations.
  • Finanical support such as cutting checks, running Quickbooks reports, and other tasks as needed.

Development

  • Assist with development projects, including maintaining accurate records in donor databases, assisting with correspondence and direct mail, and other projects as assigned.
  • Assist with annual fundraising gala, including processing table/ticket sales and reconciling payments.
  • Attend and assist with Cultivation and Community Engagement events.

Event Support and Logistics

  • Assist with literary, development, school and community program events throughout the year: catering, invitations, check-in, etc.
  • Assist with sales at events where we have point of sale transactions.
  • Assist with logistics and communications with vendors, and volunteers as needed.
  • Assist with overseeing intern scheduling and tasks.

EXPECTATIONS

  • Actively participate in and contribute to organization’s long-term strategic goals and success.
  • Actively contribute to a positive, professional, and respectful work environment. Support TBF team members when they need help.
  • Embrace the all-in commitment required to make the annual Festival a success and understand that evening and weekend work will be expected in the weeks leading up to the Festival and for some outreach and special events. Flexible hours and generous time off in the off-season are provided in recognition of extra work time needed for the Festival.

QUALIFICATIONS

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • One year of relevant work experience (equivalent volunteer and/or school experience qualifies)
  • Excellent interpersonal and organizational skills. Attention to detail is critical for this position.
  • Strong technological aptitude. Familiarity with and flexibility across platforms and operating systems expected.
  • Ability to think creatively to problem solve and promote the Texas Book Festival
  • Dedication and enthusiasm for fulfilling the Texas Book Festival mission
  • Flexibility to work evenings and weekends when needed
  • Some travel required

EMPLOYEE BENEFITS

  • Health, dental, vision and basic life insurance
  • Simple IRA match
  • PTO, which increases with tenure, as well as generous holiday time off
  • HRA
  • Monthly phone stipend
  • Access to many, many books

TO APPLY

Please send a cover letter and resume to bookfest@texasbookfestival.org. Application deadline is July 15, 2022.

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2022 Festival Weekend

We’re back for the 27th Texas Book Festival Weekend! The 2022 Festival Weekend will take place on November 5–6, in downtown Austin at the State Capitol and surrounding streets.

The Festival Weekend is free and open to the public, with 250+ authors of the year’s best books. The full author lineup will be announced in September, and the schedule will be released in October.

When

Saturday, November 5, 10 am – 5 pm

Sunday, November 6, 11 am – 6 pm

Where

Downtown Austin in and around the State Capitol

  • Texas State Capitol (1100 Congress Ave., Austin, TX 78701)
  • Congress Avenue (between 8th and 11th Streets)
  • Colorado Street (between 9th and 13th streets)
  • First Baptist Church (901 Trinity Street)
  • First United Methodist Church (1201 Lavaca Street)
  • Central Presbyterian Church (200 East 8th Street)

How to attend

No registration is required for the Festival! Just show up. Free parking is available in the State parking garages northeast of the Capitol. Book ticket author sessions that require advanced registration will be announced prior to the Festival Weekend.

Books

BookPeople is the official Texas Book Festival bookseller. They will be on-site selling books for all the featured authors, and you can find Festival books year-round at the BookPeople TBF online store.

Volunteers

The Festival Weekend depends on Volunteer Committee Chairs and hundreds of volunteers. Fill out the Volunteer Interest Form if you would like to volunteer for the 2022 Festival Weekend.

Exhibitor Marketplace

Our exhibitor marketplace is back, featuring small and independent presses, community organizations, and much more! We are still accepting exhibitor applications.

Lit Crawl Austin

Lit Crawl will take place on Saturday, November 5 in East Austin. Stay tuned for more details!

2022 Poster

Stay tuned for the official 2022 Texas Book Festival Poster announcement! We will have posters and poster shirts for sale at the Festival.

Check back here for more parking, transportation, and event details. Email bookfest@texasbookfestival.org with questions. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, or join our email newsletter for updates.

Want to support the Texas Book Festival and help keep programming free and open to the public? Donate today!

See you at the Festival!

Capitol
Texas Book Festival

2022 Exhibitor Applications Open!

Join the Texas Book Festival as we celebrate our 27th annual Festival held in and around the Capitol grounds in Austin, Texas on November 5 and 6, 2022. The Texas Book Festival connects authors and readers through experiences that celebrate the culture of literacy, ideas, and imagination. The two-day Festival is a gift to the state of Texas, free and open to the public, bringing books to life through author readings, innovative panel discussions, and book signings. Advertised and promoted nationally, the Texas Book Festival attracts approximately 50,000 attendees. The Festival offers exhibitors a great opportunity to showcase their products and/or services to this large audience of book lovers.

Application Instructions

Due to increased interest in our exhibitor space over the past few years, we require all exhibitors to first send in an application to be reviewed by a selection committee. The committee will accept applicants on a rolling basis, and upon acceptance, applicants will be provided with the payment link or instructions to send a check. We do not accept cash as form of payment.

First, submit the application with the form below or download the PDF here.

Exhibitor Pricing

Standard Exhibitor Booth

$825.00 Early Registration Discounted Fee, Apply before August 5, 2022

$725.00 Additional Early Registration Discounted Fee, Apply before August 5, 2022

$925.00 Standard Registration Fee, Apply before September 16, 2022

$825.00 Additional Standard Pricing, Apply before September 16, 2022

$1,025.00 Late Registration Fee, Apply between September 16, 2022 – October 7, 2022

$925.00 Additional Late Registration Fee, Apply between September 16, 2022 – October 7, 2022

Standard Booth Fee includes:
  • 10′ x 10′ booth space within a large tent
  • One 8′ covered/skirted table with two chairs
  • One identification sign within booth
  • One parking pass
  • One exhibitor listing in Festival publication
  • One exhibitor listing on Festival website, including link to your website
  • Access to electricity

Non-profit Booth

$525.00 Non-profit Registration Fee

There is no early registration for non-profit booths. If you are a non-profit, you must submit a copy of your 501(c)3 status certification with your application and payment. Limited availability. 

Booth fee includes:
  • 10′ x 10′ booth space within a large tent
  • One 8′ covered/skirted table with two chairs
  • One identification sign within booth
  • One parking pass
  • One exhibitor listing in Festival publication
  • One exhibitor listing on Festival website, including link to your website
  • Access to electricity

Open Pavilion Exhibitor Table

We will not have Pavilion Exhibitor Tables in 2022.

Cancellation Policy

If you must cancel your reservation, a letter or email requesting a refund must be sent to the Texas Book Festival and Debra Saleny. Refund terms: 50% through September 2, 2022. 25% between September 3 and September 16, 2022. No refunds after September 16, 2022. The Texas Book Festival will take place rain or shine. Refunds will not be issued due to inclement weather. If the Texas Book Festival is cancelled, all exhibitor fees will be refunded. The Texas Book Festival will follow all public health advice and mandates from Austin Public Health, and will use those guidelines to make event changes and cancellations. If the Festival changes to virtual, exhibitors will be offered a virtual listing for $100, and refunded the remainder. Exhibitors may choose a full refund if they do not want a virtual listing.

2022 Exhibitor Application

  • For non-profit organizations only
    Choose the category that best describes you or your organization
    Two exhibitors may share a booth or table. The Festival will only accept one application per booth or table. That application must designate the company with whom they are sharing the booth or table, and assume full payment for the booth or table. Complete the following section only if you are sharing a booth or table.

    Turnkey Event Rentals

    Texas Book Festival has selected Turnkey Event Rentals to serve as the independent contractor to provide services and equipment to exhibitors. Complete information concerning equipment and services that the exhibitors may purchase or rent will be included in the exhibitor’s information kit that each exhibitor will receive in late September. Turnkey Event Rental will maintain an exhibitor service desk on site.

    Care of Exhibit Space

    TBF will arrange for cleaning of aisles and removal of trash from large receptacles at the end of each tent. The exhibitor will keep their booth or table space in a neat and professional manner and appearance. Handwritten signs are not permitted. Overflowing trash should not be visible within your booth. Fire Department safety regulations require that aisles be kept clear at all times. Decorations, signs, banners, etc. may not be fastened to tents and other structures. The Exhibit area is a non-smoking area; smoking is NOT allowed in any exhibitor tents, or within 15’ of any TBF tents or structures. No possession or consumption of alcohol is allowed on Festival grounds.

    PLEASE DO NOT leaflet or distribute products in the aisles, near the doors or outside of the exhibitor tents, or on festival grounds. Exhibitors must remain within their booth or table space. Mascots cannot roam the festival grounds.

    Helium Balloons

    Due to safety issues created with the use of helium tanks, and a fee to retrieve balloons from trees near and on State Capitol grounds, helium balloons are not allowed at the Festival.

    Dogs

    Dogs and other pets that are part of a display must be fully vaccinated. No aggressive dogs allowed. All pets must be leashed and in complete control by the owner at all times. Owners accept full responsibility for the safety of their pets and all visitors.

    Operating and Vacating Hours

    Each exhibitor will maintain and operate their booth or table between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. on Saturday, November 5, 2022 and 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. on Sunday, November 6, 2022. The exhibitor will remove all contents of booths no earlier than 5 p.m. and no later than 7 p.m. on Sunday, November 6, 2022, except for boxed materials to be shipped at the exhibitor’s cost arranged prior to the Festival. The exhibitor agrees that no Festival titles shall be sold. Other titles by Festival authors are permitted. Any exhibitor who has not occupied the booth or table by 10:00 a.m. November 5, 2022 forfeits the use of that space, no refund available

    The exhibitor agrees that no Festival titles shall be sold. Other titles by Festival authors are permitted.

    Subletting of Space

    The exhibitor shall not assign or sublet any space allotted to the exhibitor and shall not advertise or display goods other than those sold by such exhibitor in the regular course of its business. The space assigned to the exhibitor is for its own exclusive use and may be used only for the display and sale of its goods and services.

    Cancellation and Refund Policy

    If you must cancel your reservation, a letter or email requesting a refund must be sent to the Texas Book Festival and Debra Saleny. Refund terms: 50% through September 2, 2022. 25% between September 3 and September 16, 2022. No refunds after September 16, 2022. The Texas Book Festival will take place rain or shine. Refunds will not be issued due to inclement weather. If the Texas Book Festival is cancelled, all exhibitor fees will be refunded. The Texas Book Festival will follow all public health advice and mandates from Austin Public Health, and will use those guidelines to make event changes and cancellations. If the Festival changes to virtual, exhibitors will be offered a virtual listing for $100, and refunded the remainder. Exhibitors may choose a full refund if they do not want a virtual listing.

    Liability

    The exhibitor assumes the risk of loss and all liability for any damages, liability, or expenses, arising from, out of or by reason of the exhibitor’s occupancy and use of the exhibition premises, or any part thereof. The exhibitor shall at all times protect, indemnify, save, and keep harmless TBF from any damage, liability or expense arising from or out of any loss or injury to any property or person, including the exhibitor, its agents, sponsors, employees, and business invitees, which arise from or out of or by reason of the exhibitor’s occupancy and use of the exhibition premises or any part thereof. The exhibitor is encouraged to insure itself against property loss or damage and against liability for personal injury at its own expense. The Texas Book Festival is not responsible for items left behind at the Festival. All items left behind will be disposed of at 9:00 p.m., Sunday, November 6, 2022.

    Security

    TBF will furnish security on a 24-hour basis, but the furnishing of security shall not be deemed to imply any liability or acceptance of responsibility on the part of TBF, its volunteers, or representatives, or to modify in any way the assumption of risk and release provided for above. All property of the exhibitor will remain under the exhibitor’s custody and control at all times. All containers, packages, and vehicles are subject to inspection.

    Sales Tax

    If sales or orders are taken at your booth, a Texas Sales Tax Permit is required. The permit can be obtained free of charge by calling the Comptroller’s Office at 800-252-5555 or by contacting them in writing at 1711 San Jacinto Blvd., Suite 180, Austin, Texas 78701-1416, (512) 463-4865.

    By submitting this application, the applicant and all parties who will be setting up, tearing down, and working at the festival agree to abide by all rules and regulations described within the contract.

 

Now Hiring a Event Production and Logistics Coordinator

The Texas Book Festival is looking for an Event Production and Logistics Coordinator. Please send a resume and cover letter to bookfest@texasbookfestival.org. Application deadline is Monday March 28, 2022. Email bookfest@texasbookfestival.org if you have any questions.

POSITION DESCRIPTION
The Event Production and Logistics Coordinator position with the Texas Book Festival is responsible for supporting the event production, logistical, and volunteer needs in the planning and execution of the Festival’s year-round literary, development, and outreach programming, including the annual Texas Book Festival. 

The Event Production and Logistics Coordinate must be able to organize a high volume of details in a fast-paced environment and be able to execute on the many physical components of onsite event management. On-the-spot problem solving and prioritization are key, as are strong communication and people skills.

All TBF staff members contribute to strategic planning, event support, and communication strategies for the annual Texas Book Festival, Reading Rock Stars, Real Reads, and other literary events in Austin and around Texas throughout the year.

RESPONSIBILITIES

General Volunteer and Logistics Coordination

  • Serve as volunteer coordinator for any office or event volunteer needs
  • Provide logistics coordination and support for TBF literary, development, and outreach events
  • Run logistics-related errands for office and event needs

Annual Festival Coordination and Logistics

  • Serve as primary liaison with Texas Book Festival Volunteer Committee Chairs (VCCs) 
  • Recruit volunteers
  • Work with Deputy Director, Literary Director, and contract Festival logistics team to help manage Festival venues, tents, maps, banners, signage, exhibitors, and food vendors and to help produce Festival-related materials 
  • During Festival Weekend, manage VCC communication and assist with Festival set-up and break down
  • Run logistics-related errands leading up to and during the Festival Weekend
  • Coordinate TBF merchandise orders

Virtual Event Coordination

  • Research virtual event platforms and evaluate best platform for the event
  • Able to learn new software and create how to use guides for training purposes
  • Train technical support staff, including refresher sessions 
  • Run session analytics

EXPECTATIONS

  • Actively participate in and contribute to organization’s long-term strategic goals and success
  • Actively contribute to a positive, professional, and respectful work environment. Support TBF team members when they need help
  • Embrace the all-in commitment required to make the annual Festival a success and understand that evening and weekend work will be expected in the weeks leading up to the Festival. Flexible hours and generous time off in the off-season are provided in recognition of extra work time needed for the Festival.

QUALIFICATIONS

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • At least two years of relevant work experience in event planning and execution (volunteer, intern, or extracurricular experience may fill this expectation)
  • Experience in recruiting, motivating, and managing volunteers 
  • Excellent communications skills (oral, written, and presentation) 
  • Excellent interpersonal and organizational skills. Attention to detail is critical for this position.
  • Strong technological aptitude. Familiarity with and flexibility across platforms and operating systems expected.  
  • Ability to think creatively to problem solve and promote the Texas Book Festival
  • Dedication and enthusiasm for fulfilling the Texas Book Festival mission
  • Flexibility to work evenings and weekends when needed
  • Frequent travel required

Please send a resume and cover letter to bookfest@texasbookfestival.org. Application deadline is Monday March 28, 2022. Please email bookfest@texasbookfestival.org if you have any questions!

Reading Rock Stars Houston

On March 10, the Texas Book Festival returns to the Houston area to visit four elementary schools in Aldine and Humble as part of the Festival’s annual Reading Rock Stars program. Throughout the days, eleven nationally-acclaimed children’s authors will visit each school and present to students, a culmination of weeks of each school’s preparation for the program. Additionally, TBF will gift each student a copy of the visiting author’s book.

TBF will donate more than 2,000 books to classrooms at Wilson Elementary School, Thompson Elementary School, Harris Elementary School, and Magrill Primary School.

With this latest round of Reading Rock Stars, the Texas Book Festival will have given more than 133,000 books to students in elementary schools across Texas since the program’s inception.

The Texas Book Festival’s Reading Rock Stars literacy program brings books to life for children in elementary schools by inviting authors and illustrators into classrooms with entertaining presentations that inspire students to read, write, and create. Thanks to generous support from sponsor H-E-B and many individual donors, the Texas Book Festival gives each student an autographed copy of their author’s book and provides the school library with a new set of books by the visiting Reading Rock Stars authors. After each presentation, the author personally hands an autographed copy of their book to each student.

Get to know the authors and their books:

Chris Barton is the author of many picture books including the award-winning What Do You Do with a Voice Like That?: The Story of Extraordinary Congresswoman Barbara JordanNew York Times bestseller Shark vs. Train, Sibert Honor-winning The Day-Glo Brothers, and Texas Bluebonnet Award Master List books The Amazing Age of John Roy Lynch and Whoosh!. He visits schools by the score and also loves speaking to professional gatherings of librarians, educators, and his fellow writers. Chris and his wife, novelist Jennifer Ziegler, live in Austin, Texas, with their family. For more information about Chris, please visit ChrisBarton.info.

How to Make a Book About My Dog How to Make a Book (About My Dog)

How do you make a picture book? Well, you need an author, an illustrator, and . . . a dog?! 

Acclaimed author Chris Barton and his trusty pooch Ernie show readers how to make a nonfiction picture book . . . about Ernie! From coming up with ideas, researching, and writing the first draft to find the perfect illustrator, deciding what goes on the cover, and getting every last word just right, you’ll see how a book is made from beginning to end.  

From acquisitions and editing to graphic design and dog treats, find out what’s required to bring a book to life. This title perfectly blends how-to and humor for an informative look at book publishing. And look, this is part of the marketing step! 


Varian Johnson is the author of several novels for children and young adults, including The Parker Inheritance, which won both Coretta Scott King Author Honor and Boston Globe/Horn Book Honor awards; The Great Greene Heist, an ALA Notable Children’s book and Kirkus Reviews Best Book; and the graphic novel Twins, illustrated by Shannon Wright, an NPR Best Book.

Varian was born in Florence, South Carolina, and attended the University of Oklahoma, where he received a BS in Civil Engineering. He later received an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts and is honored to now be a member of the faculty. Varian lives outside of Austin, TX with his family.

Playing the Cards You’re Dealt

Ten-year-old Anthony Joplin has made it to double digits! Which means he’s finally old enough to play in the spades tournament every Joplin Man before him seems to have won. So while Ant’s friends are stressing about fifth-grade homework and girls, Ant only has one thing on his mind: how he’ll measure up to his father’s expectations at the card table.

Then Ant’s best friend gets grounded, and he’s forced to find another spades partner. And Shirley, the new girl in his class, isn’t exactly who he has in mind. She talks a whole lot of trash — way more than his old partner. Plus, he’s not sure that his father wants him to play with a girl. But she’s smart and tough, pretty, and knows every card trick in the book. So Ant decides to join forces with Shirley — and keep his plans a secret.

Only it turns out secrets are another Joplin Man tradition. And his father is hiding one so big it may tear their family apart…


Xavier Garza is a prolific author, artist, and storyteller whose work focuses primarily on his experiences growing up in the small border town of Rio Grande City. He graduated from the University of Texas-Pan American in 1994 with a BFA in Art and has exhibited his art and performed his stories in venues throughout the United States. He is the author of Rooster Joe and the Bully / El Gallo Joe y el abusón (Piñata Books, 2016), The Donkey Lady Fights La Llorona and Other Stories / La señora Asno se enfrenta a la Llorona y otros cuentos (Piñata Books, 2015), Maximilian & The Mystery of the Guardian Angel: A Bilingual Lucha Libre Thriller (Cinco Puntos Press, 2011), Kid Cyclone Fights the Devil and Other Stories / Kid Ciclón se enfrenta a el Diablo y otras historias (Piñata Books, 2010), Zulema and the Witch Owl / Zulema y la Bruja Lechuza (Piñata Books, 2009), Charro Claus and the Tejas Kid (Cinco Puntos Press, 2008), Juan and the Chupacabras / Juan y el Chupacabras (Piñata Books, 2006), Lucha Libre: The Man in The Silver Mask: A Bilingual Cuento (Cinco Puntos Press 2005), and Creepy Creatures and Other Cucuys (Piñata Books, 2004). Xavier Garza lives with his family in San Antonio.

La Llorana Can’t Scare Me/La Llorona no me asusta

Little Damian is getting ready for bed, and the spooky monster called La Llorona is hollering up a storm outside his bedroom window. But he’s not afraid. “You can’t scare me, silly Llorona,” says Damian, “and neither can your monster friends!”

When evil-looking witch owls fly around his room and little green duendes, or goblins, make creepy noises under his bed, he’s still not frightened. Not even a little bit. The Donkey Lady, a chupacabras and even some little devils parade through his room, but Damian still isn’t afraid. A witch casting spells, a ghost rattling its chains, a cucuy with a burlap bag to catch him … nada. None of them can terrify brave little Damian. How can a little boy like him be so fearless?!?

No one knows it, but Damian has a secret weapon: a night light shaped like a mighty wrestler wearing a silver mask. When he plugs it in, its bright light terrifies all the monsters and sends them running for a place to hide! Touching on issues such as bedtime rituals and nighttime terrors, children ages 4-8 will enjoy this entertaining story that features creepy creatures familiar to many Hispanic kids.


Jasminne Mendez is a Dominican-American poet, playwright, translator, and award-winning author of several books for children and adults. She is the author of two hybrid memoirs, Island of Dreams (Floricanto Press) and Night-Blooming Jasmin(n)e: Personal Essays and Poetry (Arte Público Press). Her second YA memoir, Islands Apart: Becoming Dominican American (Arte Público Press) is forthcoming in May 2022 and her debut poetry collection, City Without Altar, was a finalist for the Noemi Press Book Award for Poetry and will be released in August 2022. Her debut middle grade book Anina del Mar Jumps In (Dial) is a novel in verse about a young girl diagnosed with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis and is set to release in 2023. Her debut picture book Josefina’s Habichuelas (Arte Público Press), was released last year. She is represented by Stefanie Sanchez Von Bortsel at Full Circle Literary.

Josefina’s Habichuelas/Las habichuelas de Josefina

Like all kids, Josefina loves to eat sweets. She loves warm chocolate chip cookies right out of the oven, cupcakes and candy! One night, while eating a piece of flan, Mami asks her to consider giving up sweets for Lent, the 40 days leading up to Easter. “That’s impossible!” Josefina says. When Mami promises to teach her how to make her favorite dessert, habichuelas con dulce, she agrees to give it a try.

Josefina can’t wait to end her fast and eat the delicious sweet cream beans, her family’s traditional Easter dessert. While she and her mom, tías, and abuela prepare the dish, they dance to merengue music and tell stories about life back in the Dominican Republic. The kitchen fills with the aromatic smells of cinnamon and sugar, but it’s the feelings of love and happiness Josefina will never forget. On Easter Sunday, when the family eats the special dessert she prepared, the girl’s grandmother proclaims, “It’s the best pot of habichuelas con dulce I’ve tasted in my life!”

This heart-warming, bilingual picture book for children shares a universal story all kids can relate to—learning about one’s culture through food, music, and family stories—while focusing on a cultural tradition specific to the Dominican Republic. As a bonus, the book includes the recipe for this special dessert—in both English and Spanish!



Anna Meriano grew up in Houston and graduated from Rice University with a degree in English, and earned her MFA in creative writing with an emphasis in writing for children from the New School in New York. There she met CAKE Literary founders Dhonielle Clayton and Sona Charaipotra, who started her on the Love Sugar Magic journey. Anna has written three Love Sugar Magic books.

Love Sugar Magic: A Mixture of Mischief:

Anna Meriano’s unforgettable family of brujas returns for one more serving of amor, azúcar, and magia, in this breakout series that’s been called “charming and delectably sweet.” (Zoraida Córdova, award-winning author of the Brooklyn Brujas series)

It’s spring break in Rose Hill, Texas, but Leo Logroño has a lot of work to do if she’s going to become a full-fledged bruja like the rest of her family.

She still hasn’t discovered the true nature of her magical abilities, and that isn’t the only bit of trouble in her life: Her family’s baking heirlooms have begun to go missing, and a new bakery called Honeybees has opened across town, threatening to run Amor y Azúcar right out of business.

What’s more, everyone around her seems to have secrets, and none of them want to tell Leo what’s going on.

But the biggest secret of all comes when Leo is paid a very surprising visit—by her long-lost Abuelo Logroño. Abuelo promises answers to her most pressing questions and tells Leo he can teach her about her power, about what it takes to survive in a world where threats lurk in the shadows. But can she trust him?


Nidhi Chanani was born in Kolkata, India, and raised in California. She holds a literature degree from the University of California, Santa Cruz. She creates illustrations that capture love in everyday moments. In 2012 she was honored by the Obama Administration as a Champion of Change. Her illustrations are often featured at Disney Parks. She’s the author of the graphic novel PashminaShubh Raatri Dost/Good Night Friend, a bilingual board book; and illustrator of the picture book I Will Be Fierce. Nidhi draws and dreams in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and kid.What Will My Story Be? by Nidhi Chanani

What Will My Story Be?

From the creator of the critically acclaimed graphic novel Pashmina, comes a new picture book that encourages kids to be their most creative selves and to imagine all the places that their stories can take them.

After spending an afternoon listening to her aunties tell her stories from their pasts, a young girl ruminates on all of the tales that she can create using her imagination and begins to feel as if the possibilities for her future are endless. Filled with Nidhi Chanani’s signature vibrant illustrations, What Will My Story Be? is for anyone who finds inspiration in the quiet moments and cherishes the wisdom of the generations that came before them. Perfect for fans of Alma and How She Got Her Name by Juana Martinez-Neal, Drawn Together by Minh Le and Dan Santat, and You Matter by Christian Robinson.


Nicholas Solis has been writing all of his life, starting with knock-off Encyclopedia Brown mysteries and oddly deep poetry for an 8-year-old. Since then, he’s continued to write picture books, travel blogs, teaching blogs, middle-grade novels, and poetry about farts (decidedly less deep). In 2018, he was the recipient of the Walter Dean Myers Grant from We Need Diverse Books, and in 2020 he was nominated for the 2020 Austin SCBWI Cynthia Leitich Smith Writing Mentor Award and was the winner of the Austin SCBWI’s 2020 Creators of Diverse Worlds Scholarship.

His debut author/illustrated book THE STARING CONTEST (Peter Pauper Press) was released September 23rd, 2020. MY TOWN, MI PUEBLO (Nancy Paulsen Books), and THE COLOR COLLECTOR (Sleeping Bear Press) are scheduled for 2021.

Nick is also an award-winning elementary teacher with a Master of Arts degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Texas and a Master of Arts degree in Educational Administration from Concordia University. He has traveled the world and taught students in Tanzania, India, and Morocco. From all of his travels he has learned one important lesson: No matter the circumstances, kids are kids. When he’s not traveling, he enjoys spending time with his wife, their dog, and his brand new baby boy in Austin, Texas.

He is an active member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and of 12X12. He is also a writing fellow at The Writing Barn.

He also came in second on Hollywood Game Night. Seeing as how there are only two contestants, you could also say he came in last. 

The Color Collector

The Color Collector is a poignant story about newness, friendship, and common ground. When a boy notices the new girl picking up all manner of debris and litter on their walks home from school he wants to know why. So she shows him the huge mural she’s created in her room that reminds her of the home she left behind. He learns all about where she’s come from and they both find how wonderful it is to make a new friend.


Named State Poet Laureate of Texas in 2015, Dr. Carmen Tafolla is an award-winning poet and children’s author, storyteller, performance artist, motivational speaker, scholar, and university professor.

The author of more than 30 books and a Professor of Transformative Children’s Literature at UT San Antonio, she holds a Ph.D. in Bilingual Education from the University of Texas and a B.A., M.A., and a Doctorate Honoris Causa in Humane Letters from Austin College.  Tafolla has performed her one-woman show throughout the Americas, Europe, and New Zealand, and her work appears internationally in textbooks, newspapers, journals, magazines, elementary school Big Books & posters on city buses, and engraved on sidewalks and museum walls. Tafolla credits the community around her with her inspiration and her training, and says her works are inspired by “ancestors whispering over my shoulder.”

A brave young butterfly, a small boy, and a dancing blue planet build a bond of love and hard work, drawing on the magic of their relationship. A delightful adventure into the migration of monarch butterflies, and the value of protecting those things we love, this touching story is told in simple but poetic language aimed at children from 5 to 99 and is beautifully illustrated with the rich colors of the Mexican forests where the monarchs head each winter.


Andrea Wang is an acclaimed author of children’s books. Her book Watercress was awarded the Caldecott Medal, a Newbery Honor, the Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature, a New England Book Award, and a Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor. Her other books, The Many Meanings of Meilan, Magic Ramen, and The Nian Monster, have also received awards and starred reviews. Her work explores culture, creative thinking, and identity. She is also the author of seven nonfiction titles for the library and school market. Andrea holds an M.S. in Environmental Science and an M.F.A. in Creative Writing for Young People. She lives in Colorado with her family.

The Many Meanings of Meilan

The Many Meanings of Meilan by Andrea Wang

Pure joy and the power of community radiate from this sweet picture book about a young Black girl’s perseverance and confidence in following her double Dutch dreams.

Africa’s grandmother was a double Dutch legend, and Africa knows she can become the same. Her brother scoffs when she signs up for a double Dutch competition, though—how can she hope to compete when she’s never done it before? But Africa has all the tools she needs: memories of her grandmother, her bestie Bianca’s dance moves, her friend Omar’s rhythm, and her classmates’ Mary Mack timing and cartwheels.

If Africa can pull everything together to jump some winning moves, she might just fly, but it’s the birthmark in the shape of her name that tells her she’s always been a winner.

Reading Rock Stars Rio Grande Valley

On March 3 and 4, the Texas Book Festival returns to the Rio Grande Valley to visit six elementary schools as part of the Festival’s annual Reading Rock Stars program. Throughout the two days, nine nationally-acclaimed children’s authors will visit each school and present to students, a culmination of weeks of each school’s preparation for the program. Additionally, TBF will gift each student a copy of the visiting author’s book.

TBF will donate 3,915 books to classrooms at Hurla M. Midkiff Elementary School, Bryan Elementary School, Guillermo Flores Elementary School, Enedina B. Guerra Elementary School, Cesar Chavez Elementary School, and Dr. R. E Margo Elementary.

With this latest round of Reading Rock Stars, the Texas Book Festival will have given more than 133,000 books to students in elementary schools across Texas since the program’s inception.

The Texas Book Festival’s Reading Rock Stars literacy program brings books to life for children in elementary schools by inviting authors and illustrators into classrooms with entertaining presentations that inspire students to read, write, and create. Thanks to generous support from sponsors—including H-E-B and the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley—the Texas Book Festival gives each student an autographed copy of their author’s book and provides the school library with a new set of books by the visiting Reading Rock Stars authors. After each presentation, the author personally hands an autographed copy of their book to each student.

Get to know the authors and their books:

Jon Scieszka was born in Flint, Michigan on September 8, 1954. It was a Wednesday. Right around lunchtime.

He is the second-oldest, and nicest, of six Scieszka boys. No girls.

His mother, Shirley, worked as a registered nurse.

His dad, Louis, was an elementary school principal at Freeman Elementary.

His dad’s parents, Michael and Anna, came to America from Poland. “Scieszka” is a word in Polish. It means “path.”

Steven Weinberg

I write and illustrate kids’ books about mutants fixing climate change, being a middle kid, chainsaws, beards, roller coasters, and dinosaurs. And I paint landscapes and fish, too. Basically all the fun stuff.

My books have been called “Brilliant” by Dave Pilkey, “thrillingly shameless” by the NY Times, “guaranteed to fuel read-aloud energy” by Publisher’s Weekly. They have won awards such as the Virginia Reader’s Choice Award (YOU MUST BE THIS TALL) and the Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection (ASTRONUTS: MISSION ONE THE PLANT PLANET), and the best board book of 2021 by Parents Magazine (WASHER AND DRYER’S BIG JOB).

My art has been featured in The New York Times, on book covers, beer cans, in magazines like Gray’s Sporting Journal and Boys’ Life as well as being exhibited across the country.

I live in the Catskills with my wife Casey Scieszka, our daughters Amina and Felix, our dog Waldo, and our bed and bar called the Spruceton Inn (and Artist Residency!) that we all run together in the backyard.

3D-book-cover-MISSION-3-1400.jpgAstro-Nuts Mission Three: The Perfect Planet

In this final book in the series, the crew (AstroWolf, LaserShark, SmartHawk, and StinkBug) must find a planet fit for human life before it’s too late.

So when they land on a place called “the perfect planet” their mission sounds way too easy. However, they quickly discover they’re dealing with the most dangerous specifies of all time . . . humans!? The AstroNuts have to work fast to convince the humans to risk death for the sake of their own lives!


Diana Lopez

Diana López is the author of the adult novella Sofia’s Saints and numerous middle-grade novels, including Confetti GirlNothing Up My Sleeve and Lucky Luna. Her debut picture book, Sing With Me: The Story of Selena Quintanilla, is available in English and Spanish. She also wrote the novel adaptation for the Disney/Pixar film Coco. Diana retired after a 28-year career in education at the middle grade and college levels, but she enjoys meeting with students when she visits schools to chat about books and writing. She lives in her hometown of Corpus Christi, Texas.

Sing with Me: The Story of Selena Quintanilla by Diana López

Sing with Me: The Story of Selena Quintanilla:

An exuberant picture book celebrating the life and legacy of Selena Quintanilla, beloved Queen of Tejano music.

From a very early age, young Selena knew how to connect with people and bring them together with music. Sing with Me follows Selena’s rise to stardom, from front-lining her family’s band at rodeos and quinceañeras to performing in front of tens of thousands at the Houston Astrodome. Young readers will be empowered by Selena’s dedication–learning Spanish as a teenager, designing her own clothes, and traveling around the country with her family–sharing her pride in her Mexican-American roots and her love of music and fashion with the world.


Raquel Ortiz

Raquel’s book Broken Butterfly Wings: Alas de mariposa rotas tells the story of a girl who wants to be a great dancer but she feels she can’t get anything right. Then, when she feels the beat of the drums, she loses herself in the music.

Raquel was born and raised in Lorain, Ohio. She is the author of two other bilingual picture books: Sofi and the Magic, Musical Mural / Sofi y el mágico mural musical (Arte Público Press, 2015) and Sofi Paints Her Dreams / Sofi pinta sus sueños (Piñata Books, 2019). She has worked at The Brooklyn Museum, the Allen Memorial Art Museum and El Museo del Barrio. Currently, she creates educational material for the Puerto Rican Heritage Cultural Ambassadors Program at the Center for Puerto Rican Studies at Hunter College in New York City.

Broken Butterfly Wings: Alas de mariposa rotas:

Gabriela is super excited when her gift from Titi Sylvia finally arrives. She loves the colorful, glittery butterfly wings! She stands in the middle of her room and flaps and flaps her new wings, but nothing happens. She jumps off her bed, vigorously moving the wings up and down, but again, nada. She hops down the hallway and the stairs, but she still can’t fly!

Disappointed, Gabriela goes to the garage, digs into her father’s toolbox, and sets about trying to fix the broken butterfly wings. Maybe she can add a battery or an engine. Her father has a better idea, though, and encourages her to close her eyes and think about where she would like to fly. Soon she is envisioning El Yunque, a rainforest on the island of Puerto Rico that is full of tall green trees, humming waterfalls, and chattering birds. She can even hear the coquí, a tiny tree frog that lives only on the island, singing its special song: coquí-coquí.

Demonstrating the joy found in using one’s imagination, this bilingual picture book depicts a young girl drawing on her senses—smell, hearing, sight—to return to a beloved place. Kids will appreciate the beauty of the rainforest’s birds, frogs, and other natural wonders while admiring a strong girl willing to create solutions to problems.


Victoria Castillo

Victoria is an illustrator and comic artist who has a Bachelor of Arts in creative writing from the University of North Texas. Her Colombian mother and Mexican father ensured that she was exposed to different cultures from an early age. She has traveled extensively, and those adventures taught her the importance of diversity. She credits her passion for languages and communication to these experiences. The illustrator of The Little Doctor / El doctorcito (Piñata Books, 2016), Victoria loves vibrant, expressive shapes and colors. She surrounds herself with books, toys, music, cartoons, and monsters of various forms and sizes for inspiration in her drawing, sculpting, and painting. She lives in Texas with her family and numerous dogs.

Luna Luminosa, Dónde Estás? / Luminous Moon, Where Are You?

Juanito looked outside one dark night and discovered the moon was nowhere to be seen! Where could it have gone? Is it hiding under the bed or behind a great mountain?

He wonders if the coyote took it to his lair, but the wily canine couldn’t catch the slippery moon. “Aaah-ooooooh, aaaah-ooooooh, aaaah-ooooooh,” he cries sadly. Maybe the cicada’s deafening screeches made it disappear! Or did the owl bewitch the luminous moon? Perhaps the frog drowned it in the lagoon! Could the fireflies’ bright lights have hidden its glow? Juanito just doesn’t know!

This charming story by Aracely De Alvarado introducing the phases of the moon to children is enlivened by Victoria Castillo’s bright, eye-catching illustrations depicting the nighttime sky and animals in their habitat.  Kids ages 4 – 8, and some adults too, will enjoy repeating the sounds animals make—in English and Spanish!


Anna Meriano

Anna Meriano grew up in Houston and graduated from Rice University with a degree in English, and earned her MFA in creative writing with an emphasis in writing for children from the New School in New York. There she met CAKE Literary founders Dhonielle Clayton and Sona Charaipotra, who started her on the Love Sugar Magic journey. Anna has written three Love Sugar Magic books.

Love Sugar Magic: A Mixture of Mischief:

Anna Meriano’s unforgettable family of brujas returns for one more serving of amor, azúcar, and magia, in this breakout series that’s been called “charming and delectably sweet.” (Zoraida Córdova, award-winning author of the Brooklyn Brujas series)

It’s spring break in Rose Hill, Texas, but Leo Logroño has a lot of work to do if she’s going to become a full-fledged bruja like the rest of her family.

She still hasn’t discovered the true nature of her magical abilities, and that isn’t the only bit of trouble in her life: Her family’s baking heirlooms have begun to go missing, and a new bakery called Honeybees has opened across town, threatening to run Amor y Azúcar right out of business.

What’s more, everyone around her seems to have secrets, and none of them want to tell Leo what’s going on.

But the biggest secret of all comes when Leo is paid a very surprising visit—by her long-lost Abuelo Logroño. Abuelo promises answers to her most pressing questions and tells Leo he can teach her about her power, about what it takes to survive in a world where threats lurk in the shadows. But can she trust him?


Margarita EngleMargarita Engle

Margarita Engle is the Cuban American author of many books including the verse novels Rima’s RebellionYour Heart, My SkyWith a Star in My HandThe Surrender Tree, a Newbery Honor winner; and The Lightning Dreamer. Her verse memoirs include Soaring Earth and Enchanted Air, which received the Pura Belpré Award, a Walter Dean Myers Award Honor, and was a finalist for the YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction, among others. Her picture books include Drum Dream GirlDancing Hands; and The Flying Girl. Visit her at MargaritaEngle.com.

A Song of Frutas:A Song of Frutas

From Pura Belpré Award-winning author Margarita Engle comes a lively, rhythmic picture book about a little girl visiting her grandfather who is a pregonero—a singing street vendor in Cuba—and helping him sell his frutas.

When we visit mi abuelo, I help him sell
frutas, singing the names of each fruit
as we walk, our footsteps like drumbeats,
our hands like maracas, shaking…

The little girl loves visiting her grandfather in Cuba and singing his special songs to sell all kinds of fruit: mangolimónnaranjapiña, and more! Even when they’re apart, grandfather and granddaughter can share rhymes between their countries like un abrazo—a hug—made of words carried on letters that soar across the distance like songbirds.


 Angela Dominguez
Image of Angela Dominguez
Angela Dominguez was born in Mexico City and grew up in the great state of Texas. She now resides on the east coast with her boyfriend, Kyle, and their petite dog, Petunia. She is also the author and illustrator of several books for children and a two-time recipient of Pura Belpré Illustration Honor. Her debut middle-grade novel, Stella Díaz Has Something To Say, was a New York Public Library and a Chicago Public Library pick for Best Books for Kids, Sid Fleischman Award winner, and an ALA Notable. She recently illustrated Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor’s newest picture book, Just Help! How to Build a Better World. As a child, she loved reading books and making a mess creating pictures. She’s delighted to still be doing both.

Stella Díaz Dreams Big: Stella Díaz Dreams Big

In Stella Díaz Dreams Big, by award-winning author and illustrator Angela Dominguez, how will Stella fare when the waters get rough?

Stella is happy as a clam in fourth grade. She’s the president of the Sea Musketeers conservation club, she starts taking swim lessons, and she joins a new art club at school. But as her schedule fills up, school gets harder, too. Suddenly the tides have turned, and she is way too busy!

Stella will be in an ocean of trouble if she can’t keep her head above water. But with her trusty Sea Musketeers by her side, she hopes to make her big dreams come true!

Based on the author’s experiences growing up Mexican-American, this infectiously charming character comes to life through relatable storytelling including simple Spanish vocabulary and adorable black-and-white art.


Dr. David Bowles, UTRGV Assistant Professor in Literatures & Cultural Studies, on Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2019 at the Liberal Arts Building South in Edinburg, Texas. UTRGV Photo by Paul Chouy

David Bowles

David Bowles is a Mexican-American author from south Texas, where he teaches at the University of Texas Río Grande Valley. He has written several titles, most notably The Smoking Mirror (Pura Belpré Honor Book) and They Call Me Güero (Tomás Rivera Mexican American Children’s Book Award, Claudia Lewis Award for Excellence in Poetry, Pura Belpré Honor Book, Walter Dean Myers Honor Book).

His work has also been published in multiple anthologies, plus venues such as Asymptote, Strange Horizons, Apex Magazine, Metamorphoses, Rattle, Translation Review, and the Journal of Children’s Literature.

In 2017, David was inducted into the Texas Institute of Letters.

My Two Border Towns:My Two Border Towns by David Bowles

Amplify Austin 2022

The Texas Book Festival is participating in Amplify Austin to help fund our year-round literary programs. We strive every day to inspire Texans of all ages to love reading through Real Reads, Reading Rock Stars, and Texas Library Grants. Schedule your donation to the Texas Book Festival through Amplify Austin!

Donate $100 or more during Amplify Austin to join TBF as a Festival Friend!

In honor of its 25-year anniversary, Tito’s Handmade Vodka is working with I Live Here I Give Here to spread love and goodness throughout Austin. Donate to your favorite Arts & Culture nonprofits, and Tito’s will add an extra $25 to your donations—just be sure to enter #LoveTitos in the public message box at check out. Tito’s will help maximize donations up to $25,000.

Follow the Texas Book Festival next week as we release select virtual sessions from 2021. While we might have spent more time at home over the past two years, our programming and community didn’t slow down! Thank you for being a part of the Texas Book Festival, and we’re looking forward to seeing more of you this year.


Amplify the Texas Book Festival!

Real Reads

Real Reads brings critically acclaimed and popular YA authors like Jason Reynolds, Jacqueline Woodson, and Nic Stone to middle- and high-school students. Not only do the students get their own new, hardcover copies of the books, but they get to meet the authors! These students participate in a book club curriculum leading up to the Festival Weekend, where they get a private session with the author to ask ALL their questions.

 


Reading Rock Stars

Since the program began, the Texas Book Festival has given out more than 133,000 books in Title I public elementary schools.  The Reading Rock Stars program is available to Title I Elementary schools in Austin, the Rio Grande Valley, Dallas, Fort Worth, Houston, and Aldine. More than a one-day author visit, we work with schools ahead of time with curriculum guides, follow up to determine impact, and commit to each school for three years.


Texas Public Library Grants

The Texas Book Festival was founded in part to support Texas libraries as invaluable community resources. With these crucial funds, libraries purchase the books needed by their unique community, whether large-print books, bilingual board books, or just new fiction. Since 1996, the organization has funded 1,305 grants totaling over $3 million to 600+ libraries in every corner of the state.


Schedule your donation at https://amplifyatx.ilivehereigivehere.org/texasbookfestival and change lives through literature and literacy. Happy reading!

Follow our progress and all Texas Book Festival news on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. #txbookfest

Celebrating Black Culture Month

In February, the Texas Book Festival will highlight Black storytellers, authors, booksellers, and community leaders in celebration of Black Culture Month.

We are joining the national Black History Month conversation, but we are also using February as an opportunity both to share the contemporary work of incredible individuals, organizations, and Texas booksellers including Black Pearl Books, Kindred Stories, and The Brown Bookshelf to celebrate lasting and year-round commitments to inclusive literary communities.

Is there is a Black author, bookstore, or literary organization you would like Texas readers and TBF audiences to know about? Take a moment to share over on our Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter pages.

Announcing the 2022 Festival Dates!

We’re excited to announce the 2022 Texas Book Festival will take place on November 5 and 6, 2022. We look forward to once again bringing together authors and readers to celebrate books and reading.

Mark your calendars to join us November 5 – 6! In the meantime, reminisce on this year’s festival — or catch up on what you may have missed — with these 2021 Festival photos.

Submissions to participate in the 2022 festival will open in late January.

Sign up for our email newsletter and follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook to stay up to date with 2022 Texas Book Festival news!