Since we are gearing up for our 8th Authors Fair at the Mt. Shasta Mall in Redding on November 10 (replaces our regular meeting), I thought a little history of the fair would be in order. In 2004 Kelly Brewer, then editor of the Record Searchlight, approached Bob Rock, then president of the Writers Forum, with an offer that we couldn’t refuse.
An acquaintance had mentioned a similar event he attended in a major city in the Northwest. A strong community supporter, he asked her why Redding didn’t have one. Brewer agreed that it was a good idea. And to sweeten the pot, she offered full support of the Record Searchlight in getting it launched; stories, coverage, and most important, free advertising. Note: Recent cutbacks in the newspaper biz mean not all advertising is free, but requesting the paper be the sole co-sponsor allows for matching ads. Sort of a BOGO situation: Buy One, Get One free.
I was still working at the Record Searchlight at the time, and it was suggested to me to apply for a Scripps Foundation Volunteer Grant of up to $1000 to cover expenses. In earlier years I discovered how supportive the foundation was in awarding grants to local non-profit events that employees volunteered their time, having been involved with the Saving Strokes program of the American Heart Association.
The fair grew and grew, becoming very popular with local authors. But we lost the right to claim Annual when in 2010 planning fell through the cracks, and rather than produce a half-assed event, we opted to cancel. However, being gun-shy in 2011 and determined to not repeat our failure, we came back with a vengeance, devising a new approach for advertising that drew over 30 authors!
If you are an author with books, you can rent a full or half table, and join in. Writers Forum members can rent a full table for $20 or a half table for $10. Non-members can rent a full table for $40 and a half table for $20. Tables are limited, so get your registration application in early. To see pictures from last year, click here. If you’d like to volunteer at Writers Forum table at the Authors Fair or if you’d like to volunteer to relieve the authors as needed, please leave a comment with your name and phone number and we’ll be in touch. It’s an event not to be missed!