New Saturday Bookfair Policy for #AWP15 Minneapolis

August 14, 2014

Before sales opened for the #AWP15 bookfair, AWP notified previous exhibitors that we can no longer make the bookfair free and open to the public on the Saturday of our conference. In making this decision, we discussed the issue with hundreds of exhibitors and CLMP, and took to heart the best interests of our smallest literary magazines and presses. Many cities require additional taxes and reports when a conference exhibition changes from a private event to an event that is free and open to the public. For most small presses, these total additional charges would negate the value of sales that might be realized by free public access on Saturday.

We wish to protect this literary marketplace for attendees and exhibitors for years to come, and limit, as much as possible, the exhibitors’ exposure to complex, changing, and costly city and state tax codes. We wish to keep the fee structure as consistent as possible from year to year.

At the 2015 Minneapolis conference, we will offer a new Saturday-only onsite registration at the greatly reduced rate of $40. This will give Saturday-only attendees access to 170 events as well as our wonderful bookfair. This Saturday-only pass will help us continue to build a bigger audience for our writers and presses, while we provide one of the best deals among literary conferences for attendees. This pass will also help keep the cost of exhibiting at the bookfair far below other exhibitions of a similar size.

AWP has worked hard to triple conference attendance over the last ten years, from 4,000 registered attendees to more than 12,000. This expansion has provided a larger audience for our writers as well as a bigger market of book-buyers and opinion-makers. The recent transition we made from hotel exhibit halls to convention centers was a difficult and costly change for AWP, but we made it happily to serve you and all our exhibitors who benefit from the improved foot traffic convention centers provide.

Home to the Loft Literary Center and some of our finest magazines and presses, Minneapolis is a lively town that loves literature. We have secured one of the best spaces we’ve ever had for next year’s bookfair, and will host another great lineup of featured presenters and conference events. We look forward to seeing you all again in 2015.

—AWP Board of Trustees & Staff

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