Some of you may be thinking – summer? It’s February.

Yes, but if you want to do shows, you need to plan early. I started thinking about the summer of 2017 back in August, 2016.

I used to work fairs all summer long. The heat and dust started getting to me as I grew older. A few years ago I switched to the library show market. They are usually indoors and have air conditioning!

Many library systems have showcases for their summer reading programs. These start as early as September in some states. That means I needed to know the theme, create a show concept, name it and design my promotional materials. All before I had finished my 2016 programs.

I started booking shows at the showcases. Multiple postcard mailings followed to fill in my library schedule. I also reached out to the few outdoor events I still accept. My summer will be full by the end of this month.

I’m already planning my fall schedule and my holiday 2017 marketing.

If you want to work, you need to think ahead. Learn what you can about the markets you are interested in pursuing. Do your homework. Know what others are doing. There are plenty of shows out there – now go get yours!