Kidlitcon, the wonderful yearly gathering of book bloggers (Sacramento, October), is seeking proposals for sessions, and I have a rather personal interest in having lots of proposals come in, because I am the Program Organizer, and need program elements to organize.
So I thought to encourage folks to submit I would share the story (not very interesting, but there it is) of how I myself bravely submitted a session idea, and what happened next.
Be the conversation you want to have!
(this is the title of the story, not just a random marketing slogan)
The wonderful thing about Kidlitcon is talking to like-minded people about subjects of keenly shared interest. But I wanted to make certain sure that the subject I most wanted to talk about, blogging middle grade books, was going to be discussed, and the only way to do this was to propose a session myself. I didn't want to be all alone at the head of the room, so I asked the Kidlitosphere group* if there was anyone who would join me, and lo! Katy of BooksYALove and Melissa of Book Nut became my comrades in presenting!
The actual session was tons of fun, with lively audience participation, and we all got so enthused talking about the second topic on the list we'd prepared that we never got to the rest. (This second topic was the issue of "boy book/girl book" -- gendered marketing, reader/parent bias, individual readers vs gender blocks, the idea that boys don't read girl books, or don't read at all, etc etc. (This could be a session all by itself, with YA books and picture books too.)
This year there's a Theme to Kidlitcon--Blogging Diversity (and here's one of the organizers, Tanita Davis, talking about what we mean when we talk about diversity). But! (I will make it an even bigger BUT!!!) This does not mean that diversity will be the only thing talked about. On Friday there will be times where there are two sessions at the same time, and so there will be room for general bloggish sessions as well as those focusing on diversity. I hope that lots of bloggers come who have never been to a Kidlitcon before, who haven't had a chance to talk about some of the topics that have come up in the past, and I want to be sure that there are things on the program to inspire and enthuse them (not that diversity sessions won't inspire and enthuse, but I want entry level sessions too).
Here's a sample Kidlitcon schedule (from 2011)--take a look, and think about what conversations you want at this year's conference!
The deadline for proposals is August 1; here is the submission form. If you think you might want to talk about something but are uncertain, do feel free to email me (charlotteslibrary at gmail dot com), and I will offer advice, encouragement, the possibility of matchmaking with others interested in the same topic, etc., to the best of my ability.
(and if you have never been before, and are on the fence about even coming, here are recap posts that some of us who went to Austin last year wrote. None of us regretted it....)
*a Yahoo list for children's book bloggers; more info. on how to join here