Free Resources Make It Easy to Celebrate Banned Books Week

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Here's a look at some of the freely available resources that make it easy for booksellers to participate in this year's celebration of Banned Books Week (from September 26 through October 3).

  • The American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression (ABFFE) offers a Banned Books Week Handbook, which describes a variety of activities, simple displays, and easy events. It also features posters that can be downloaded and reproduced at a local copy shop for a nominal fee. This year's handbook includes two posters based on the new graphic novel adaptation of the anti-censorship classic Fahrenheit 451 (Hill and Wang).

  • A map of book-censorship incidents, published on the official website of Banned Books Week, displays more than 120 book challenges that have occurred since the beginning of 2007. The map is drawn from cases documented by the American Library Association and the Kids' Right to Read Project, sponsored by ABFFE and the National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC).

  • ABFFE and the American Library Association help booksellers promote their Banned Books Week activities via www.bannedbooksweek.org. The site features a state-by-state list of participating bookstores and libraries. Bookstores and libraries can submit details of their Banned Books Week celebrations for posting to the site at bannedbooksweek.org/signup.

  • To commemorate Banned Books Week, Ellen Hopkins, the author of Crank and Tricks (Margaret K. McElderry Books), has written the poem "Manifesto," which is featured on a poster from the Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing. Booksellers can download the poster from simonandschuster.com or request a copy via e-mail to Ellen.Chan@simonandschuster.com. (Limited supplies of unsigned posters are currently available.) S&S also offers a tip sheet on how to use the poster. (Look for an interview with Ellen Hopkins on the Kids' Right to Read Voices Against Book Censorship page on Wednesday, September 16.)

  • For a limited time, ABFFE is also discounting its popular Freadom products. The Freadom T-shirt is available in four colors -- black, royal blue, charcoal gray, and forest green -- for $12 ($10 for orders of 12 or more). Imprinting is available for $1 per shirt. There are also Freadom buttons, bumper stickers, and bookmarks. A small Freadom button is sold in three different colors that are sold mixed in bags of 100 ($30). A hundred bookmarks are $5. (Download an order form.)

Banned Books Week is also the perfect time for stores participating in the ABA Gift Card Program to promote their back inventory of FREADOM gift cards. ABFFE provided the cards for free to booksellers participating in the ABA Gift Card Program in return for a donation of 10 percent of the gift card sale and any amounts later added to the card. The donation supports ABFFE's crucial work fighting censorship and supporting free expression. All three past designs are still good, and additional holders can be purchased at jettdirect.com/aba.

For more information about Banned Books Weeks and other FREADOM products, visit abffe.com or contact Jamie Chosak at (212) 587-4025, ext. 13, or jamie@abffe.com.