The 2023 Festival will be held on Saturday, October 21.
2023 FAQ for Authors and Vendors
Are you an author? We invite you to participate by submitting a program proposal or renting a booth in our Festival Marketplace.
When and where is the 2023 Festival?
Saturday, October 21, 2023, 8:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m. at the Charleston Coliseum and Convention Center in Charleston, WV.
How many people attend this event?
We estimate around 4,000 people attended our in-person event in 2022.
What kinds of programs is the Festival interested in?
The Festival is built around a series of programs presented by authors and other individuals or organizations. Generally speaking, authors who are invited to present programs have published a new book or won an award within the last two years, or have an old book that is newly relevant.
Festival programs deal with a wide range of life images and interpretations that are accessible through literature. Although the Festival is primarily aimed at readers, we also offer programs for writers. Appalachian literature and its function for those of us who live in the region will always be emphasized, but the Festival will incorporate authors from other areas of the country as well.
What is the Festival Marketplace?
The Festival features a Marketplace where you will find book sellers, publishers, individual authors, and other literary vendors offering a variety of books and related items, including books to be signed by Festival authors.
How can I participate as an author or vendor?
A) Submit a program proposal via a Program Proposal Form by March 15. Proposals will be reviewed by the Festival Selection Committee; applicants will be notified by June 1.
B) Rent a booth by submitting a Marketplace Vendor Application by August 1. Applications will be reviewed on a first-come, first-served basis and will be reviewed continually until all spaces are filled. If your application is accepted, we will send you an invoice for payment. DO NOT SEND PAYMENT WITH YOUR APPLICATION.
Who can be vendors?
Book sellers, publishers, individual authors, and others who have a literary mission.
Do I need to submit my book?
No, but please be sure to include your website URL on the vendor application.
May I partner with another author in renting a booth?
Absolutely! However, you are responsible for finding your own booth partner.
What are the deadlines for Marketplace vendors?
August 1: Deadline for vendors to be listed in promotional materials (e.g., newspaper insert, event program)
August 1: Deadline for vendors to submit list of authors who will be signing books at their booth. Please email your list to WVBF@kcpls.org.
What comes with my booth rental fee?
The Marketplace is set up like a trade show with curtain walls. For each 10’x10’ booth space, the Festival provides one covered, skirted 8’ table. You also get as many chairs and S-hooks as you need. You are permitted one Marketplace announcement per hour, and you are welcome to hand those in to the person with the mic at the Kanawha County Public Library (KCPL) booth.
What extras can I buy for my booth?
Enhancements are available directly from the Charleston Coliseum & Convention Center for a fee. Your final packet (mailed in August) will have forms for your order. The list includes carpeting, electricity, internet access, telephone lines, TV cable, water, compressed air, extra tables, comfortable chairs, easels, wastebaskets, stools, etc. You may also opt to have your merchandise or booth supplies shipped to the Convention Center.
What should I bring with me?
We encourage you to bring a variety of topics, including West Virginia and Appalachian titles, children’s books, gift books for early holiday shoppers, and other book-related merchandise. We also recommend that you make the most of your space with signs, banners, and other decorations, and that you consider having prize drawings. Vendors keep all proceeds from book and merchandise sales.
Do I need to collect sales tax?
Your final packet (mailed in August) will include information from the West Virginia State Tax Department regarding sales tax.
How can I promote my booth?
The Festival partners with local newspapers to promote the Marketplace. If we receive your payment by August 1, we will list your organization in the newspaper insert (if applicable), event program, and on the Festival website. You may also choose to purchase advertising of your own.
What about refunds?
If your vendor application is accepted, we must receive your payment by July 1. In order to receive a refund, we must receive your notice to cancel your vendor space by July 1. Refunds will not be issued after July 1.
When is setup and breakdown?
(Times subject to change)
Friday, October 20, 2023 prior to Festival: Booth setup from 3 p.m. - 8 p.m.
Saturday, October 21, 2023 prior to Festival: Booth setup from 6 a.m. - 7:30 a.m.
Saturday, October 21, 2023: Marketplace hours are 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. Booth breakdown 8 p.m. - 11 p.m.
Will there be further communication?
In August, accepted vendors will receive a final packet including information about load-in and booth enhancements available through the Charleston Coliseum & Convention Center, and more.
How is the Festival funded?
The Festival relies solely upon individual and corporate contributions and grants and is not a fundraiser. Any revenue generated is applied directly to the Festival. If you or your organization would be interested in contributing, please contact us at: email@example.com or 304-343-4646, ext. 1284.
How can I get tickets?
Our event is free. You do not need admission tickets for any of our speakers’ programs. However, in cases where we anticipate a large crowd, we do issue "boarding zone"-type tickets for headlining authors' book signings.
Where can I get food while I’m attending the Festival?
The Charleston Coliseum & Convention Center provides a snack bar area in the Marketplace and determines operating hours. There are also several restaurants within walking distance, and you can find some recommendations on our Info page.
Vendors will be notified as soon as possible of any changes to the Festival.
For more information, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 304-343-4646, ext. 1284
February 1: Program Proposal Forms and Marketplace Vendor Applications available for download
March 15: Program Proposal Forms due
June 1: Notification of accepted program proposals
July 1: Payment due for accepted vendors
August 1: Last call for vendors to be listed in Festival promotional material
August 31: Accepted vendors to receive final info packet
Download Application Forms