Monday, October 17, 2011

Holidays and Special Occasions

Week of October 16—Finding Hooks to Inspire Your Books
Monday, October 17—Holidays and Special Occasions

When I visited Barnes & Nobles yesterday there were three (yes, THREE) separate Halloween picture book displays in the children’s book area. Holidays are a simple way to organize a display in a store or library, to create a flyer about new releases, or to organize critiques in a newspaper. You might have written a story that fits into one of the holiday “hooks” listed below, or perhaps one of these holidays will inspire a new story.

Let me quickly add that just because you have a holiday hook does not mean you have a winning book. (Oh, that it could be that easy.) And not every holiday is equal in the eyes of those who market and promote books. I have what I think is a wonderful Thanksgiving book, but my agent is reluctant to send it out to publishers. It seems that Thanksgiving is a short season for books to be on the shelf since it’s sandwiched between the Halloween push and the Christmas holiday rush. Because of that, few Thanksgiving books are published each year and, as rule, they don’t sell in large quantities because they are displayed for such a short period of time. With that in mind, choose your hooks carefully!

Holidays and Special Occasions
New Year’s Day
Inauguration Day
Marin Luther King Day

Groundhog Day
Valentine’s Day
Lincoln’s Birthday
Washington’s Birthday
President’s Day

St. Patrick’s Day

Mardi Gras
Good Friday

April Fool’s Day
Arbor Day

National Teacher’s Day/Week
Mother’s Day
Memorial Day (formerly Decoration Day)

Flag Day
Father’s Day

Independence Day (4th of July)

Labor Day
Patriots Day
Citizenship Day
Grandparents Day
Rosh Hashanah
Yom Kippur

Columbus Day (Discoveries Day or Pioneers Day)

Election Day
Veterans Day
Thanksgiving Day

Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day
Christmas Day

(Please note: There are many other high and holy days of which I am less familiar. Please consider those as other “hook” options.)

Events that Occur Less Frequently
Leap Year
The Olympics
Presidential Election

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