Boston Book Festival

October 24, 2015


Friday, November 13, 2015

Seeking a Hubbub 2016 Intern

The Boston Book Festival is seeking an intern to help us prepare and execute the second annual Hubbub (BBF children’s festival), to take place on June 4th, 2016.

We are looking for candidates who are capable and confident withgeneral office tasks; copywriting and editing; devising and implementing a marketing strategy; creating, maintaining, andenhancing documents using Word, Excel, and Google Drive; communicating with media outlets, sponsors, publicists, and community organizations; and distributing marketing collateral, but who can also rise to the challenge of unusual (and potentially hilarious) situations. Your tasks may range from working with authors both famous and infamous to tracking down missing costume characters (what’s a Frog without his Toad, anyway?). Also, we are a small office so there is a good deal of schlepping involved at certain points in the year. The good news/bad news is: everyone does everything!

We hope that you have excellent written and oral communication skills, are highly organized, motivated, project-oriented, willing to work on a team, and knowledgeable about and/or interested in some or all of the following: children’s literature, event production, logistics, and project management. We really hope that you are outgoing, fun, friendly, and eager to work with a small, committed group of people in a casual office environment.

The ideal candidate will be able to join the team in mid-January and work through mid-June 2016. Candidates can expect to work between 8-12 hours per week through March and 12-15 hours per week through the beginning of June. Hours and schedules are flexible; occasional evening hours for special events will be required (with plenty of advance notice). You will also be expected to check your BBF email daily and respond as needed, even when you are not in the office. Boston Book Festival offices are located in Somerville (in a chocolate factory!).

Please send a cover letter and resume to Sarah Parker,, and please specify any restrictions. Candidates who are invited to interview will be asked to provide a writing sample. Applications are due November 30th.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

BBF 2015: Under the Radar

Just like you, we’re counting down to the 2015 Boston Book Festival! It’s Year 7 of the BBF, and by now many of you are seasoned book festival pros, but here are some inside tips and under-the-radar events we want to make sure you know about!

Visit the BPL. Last year, we had to take a hiatus from hosting sessions at the Boston Public Library. But this year, they’re back on our map, hosting some really terrific sessions for kids and teens in their equally terrific new Children’s Library and Teen Central spaces. Even if you don’t have a kid, the BBF is your perfect opportunity to check out their renovation progress—just be sure to use the Boylston Street entrance for easiest access to all our BPL-based programming!

Take a walk. Celebrate the first anniversary of Boston’s first-in-the-country Literary District by taking a stroll through Boston’s literary history with friendly tour guides from Boston By Foot. Free mini-tours start at First Church on Marlborough Street and wind up in the heart of the BBF action in Copley Square. Big Picture photo
See the big picture. We were blown away by the talents of the young photographers who took part in our Big Picture Photo Contest at Hubbub back in June. Our friends at Cronin Hill Photography have picked the winners, and you can see a selection of photos on exhibit from all the young photographers at First Church all day during the BBF and through the end of October!

Make a day (and an evening) of it. Our memoir keynote featuring Amanda Palmer might be sold out, but that’s no reason for you to head home early! We are hosting two free events at the same time: a conversation with literary agent/memoirist/novelist Bill Clegg and our annual Poems and Pints evening featuring three stellar poets, including award-winning spoken word artist Sarah Kay. Either event is a great way to cap off your BBF day!

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Frequently Asked Questions About Hubbub Festival

So this is another book festival, right?
Well, yes—sort of. We’re hosting more than a dozen authors and illustrators for kids, but also puppeteers, dancers, scientists, drummers, artists, handbell ringers … you get the picture. We’re hoping Hubbub has something for everybody!

What ages is Hubbub best for?
The short answer is that we’ve designed the festival with activities geared toward kids ages zero to twelve. But the truth is that we hope our programs appeal to kids of all ages—and their parents and caregivers, too!

What’s the best way to get to Hubbub?
We do have a great parking deal with LAZ Parking that enables your family to park in one of two nearby parking garages all day. But consider taking the T—Copley Square is easily accessed by the green and orange lines as well as commuter rail … and even if the magic has worn off for you, your kids will still love riding on the train.

What’s your rain date? You’re looking at it! Hubbub will take place June 20 rain or shine (but we’re strongly wishing for shine)!

Do I need to buy tickets for the session with Mo Willems?
Nope! Mo’s event is free and seating will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

So what time should we get there?
Mo’s event is in a venue seating 800, so we hope there will be room for everyone. We plan to open the doors by 9:30 for his 10am event. Of course, it never hurts to get there early …

Can I drop my kids off with you and go grab a latte? Um, no. With the exception of a handful of drop-off writing, drawing, and computer animation workshops for older kids and some workshops just for grownups, Hubbub is a festival for the whole family to enjoy together!

Will food be available?
Yes! We will have two food trucks and other food vendors on the square. There are also family-friendly food options available in the Boston Public Library and at several quick-service restaurants along Boylston Street. You won’t go hungry, we promise!

Can I bring my grilled cheese into the puppet show?
No! Because of the historic nature of our venues, food is not allowed in any programming venues, nor are strollers.

OK, then where should I leave my stroller?
We will have a designated stroller parking area on Copley Square, on the south side of the square next to St. James Ave. Look for the friendly stroller parking attendant, who can help you stash it safely away from the action.

I see that you have events happening at the Boston Public Library—I thought that was closed for construction … ?
You’re absolutely right that parts of the BPL are under renovation, but we’re holding our events in the McKim courtyard and on the recently reopened 2nd floor of the Johnson Building, both of which are open to the public (and beautiful, too!). Getting around the BPL right now can be challenging, though—pay attention to the program guide to know which entrance to use for easiest access to which programs!

Wait a minute—am I reading this right? Is this festival really FREE?
Absolutely! With the exception of the Dan Zanes & Friends concert (tickets will be available at our merchandise booth), Hubbub is completely free for all! If your family has a blast at Hubbub and would like to help us build next year’s festival and keep it free, please consider becoming supporters!

Where can I find more information?
Visit the Hubbub website, for starters—it has all the tools you need to plan your day. Once you arrive in Copley, look for the Hubbub tent or talk with one of our friendly yellow-shirted volunteers to get a program guide and get all your questions answered. We can’t wait to see you at the very first Hubbub!

Sunday, June 07, 2015

Give P. A. Shaw Elementary School a Little "Shelf Help"!

Join us in supporting the recipient of our first-ever Shelf Help initiative: Morgan VanClief, library paraprofessional at P.A. Shaw Elementary School in Dorchester! You can help us stock the shelves of their shiny new library with brand-new books, hand-picked for their students' needs and their curriculum.

If you would like to donate a book to the project, please visit the P.A. Shaw Elementary wish list. If you’re attending Hubbub on June 20, you can also buy and donate books to the project on the spot—just stop by our merchandise booth for details!

The P.A. Shaw Elementary School reopened this past year with a whopping six kindergarten classrooms to serve the growing population of Boston’s youngest students. Ms. VanClief notes that many of her students live in the inner city and come from low-income families, and therefore don’t have access to books at home. “To see them come to school and be fascinated by all that books have to offer is truly amazing,” said Ms. VanClief. Additionally, these students are not only eager to read and learn but also enthusiastic to share knowledge with their families, siblings, and grandparents outside of school.

This past school year, Ms. VanClief had no resources and no actual library. Despite not having a single bookshelf, she began to build a library from the ground up to provide her students with access to titles. We are very excited to help Ms. VanClief continue to build her library and support the exponentially increasing curiosity, creativity, and literary exploration of her students, through book donations from our supporters, partners, and friends in the Boston community.

Just click here to see the wish list and donate a book! You can also contribute financially by donating to the Boston Book Festival and indicating “Shelf Help” as the gift recipient.

Ms. VanClief hopes that these new books will not only enrich her students’ reading experiences and build their confidence as library users but also inspire and cultivate a lifelong love of reading and literature. Thanks for helping us get books into the eager hands of a new generation of book lovers!

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

BBF Unbound 2015: Seeking Submissions

2014’s series of BBF Unbound community-curated sessions was rich and diverse, focusing on such topics as inspiring young readers to social change, demystifying the business of publishing, and exploring the literary history of McLean Hospital. We love hearing your ideas for sessions and working with you to develop successful BBF presentations and workshops.

We’re now accepting proposals for 2015 BBF Unbound sessions, to be presented at the Boston Book Festival on October 24.

We are looking for outside groups/individuals who can introduce fresh voices and new ideas to the BBF. Be creative! The session can involve a debate, demo, workshop, literary improv, dramatic readings, panel discussion, literary games, etc. We are not looking for product promotions, plugs for businesses, or sessions featuring a single author publicizing his or her book.

You will be responsible for running your session, i.e., gathering participants, beginning and ending on time, and covering any expenses (beyond room rental and basic A/V). We will publicize your session on our website and in our Program Guide, and we will expect you to publicize it as well.

We will evaluate proposals based on: 1. Will the content appeal to the BBF audience? 2. Does the content offer something different from standard BBF fare? 3. Is the individual/group offering a plausible plan for implementing the session?

In your proposal, please tell us:

Who You Are (your name, name of organization [if applicable], your bio, your or your org’s website):

Title of Proposed Session:

Description of Session (150 words max):

Intended Audience:

Implementation Plan (400 words max, including answers to the following questions: If there are expenses associated, how will you fund your session? How will you guarantee your proposed participants' involvement? How will you communicate your plans and needs to BBF staff? Through what channels will you publicize your session?):



Audiovisual Requirements:

Deadline for Application: July 17

Notification: mid-August

Questions?: Contact Norah Piehl, 617-714-4748,

Submit all materials (including samples of previous work, if applicable), to:

Norah Piehl, Deputy Director
Boston Book Festival
1100 Massachusetts Ave., Suite 300B
Cambridge, MA 02138

We look forward to reviewing your submissions!