APRIL 15, 2020
BY ALEX GREEN, PUBLISHERS WEEKLY
School book fairs are an essential source of revenue for independent bookstores, distributors, and large publishers alike. They are also one of the most significantly impacted areas of book sales in a world being reshaped by the new coronavirus. With near-total nationwide school closures, the fallout has been abrupt and has also led to creative workarounds as companies re-envision what a book fair can be.
For Scholastic, which runs the nation’s largest book fair program, virtual book fairs have replaced in-person ones. Within weeks of the coronavirus shuttering schools, the publisher has translated the entire workflow of running a book fair onto a new digital platform, which offers a quick setup that includes digital flyers for educators and PTOs to share the fair, and a way for students’ extended families to participate.