Fall is a magical time for the staff of the South Dakota State Historical Society Press. Throughout the next two months, we will travel to various conferences and events to promote books, talk with historians and book lovers, and meet with potential authors and illustrators.
First, two staff members will attend the first-ever Plains Publishers Conference in Yankton on 13 September. Hosted by the publishers of South Dakota Magazine, the conference will allow regional journal and book publishers to explore mutual problems and solutions. The following weekend, staff will display books at the Buffalo Roundup in Custer State Park, another new adventure for the Press.
On 26–29 September, Jeanne Ode, the managing editor of South Dakota History, will travel to Fargo, North Dakota, to attend the 47th Annual Northern Great Plains History Conference. Professors and historians from around the country will gather once again to report on their research and present panels and papers on historical topics from the history of the Civil War in Minnesota to cowboy journalism in North Dakota to farm movements in South Dakota. Ode will scout for articles and book reviewers and talk to people about their research and teaching efforts and their book needs.
That same weekend, three staffers will travel to Sioux Falls for the South Dakota Festival of Books, where eleven SDSHS Press authors will discuss their books and interact with readers. They include the 2012 One Book South Dakota selection author Michael L. Lawson, as well as Tom Dempster, Fraser Harrison, Paul Hedren, Jon Lauck, Mark Meierhenry, John Miller, S. D. Nelson, Don Simmons, Dave Volk, and Jerry Wilson. Before and after the event, Harrison, Lawson, and Nelson will present talks in various locales around the state (check in later for details of these events).
On 3 October, associate editor Patti Edman will travel to Huron for the annual South Dakota Library Association Conference to talk with librarians about their patrons’ latest reading interests. The same day, marketing director Martyn Beeny and I will head for Denver and the Western History Association Conference, where we will be taking a side trip to Castle Rock, Colorado, to talk to producers about a potential film project related to one of our books. During the conference, Paul Hedren will stop by our display to sign copies of his Ho! For the Black Hills. On 4 October, Jeanne Ode will travel to the West River History Conference in the Black Hills.
Finally, on 14 October, State Historical Society director Jay Vogt and I will drive to Lincoln, Nebraska, to attend a planning session at which eastern Great Plains historical agencies will discuss future projects and study topics.
When we all return to Pierre, we will share what we learned from authors and readers about their research and their interests, which will fuel the projects and plans we make over the next twelve months. A magical time, indeed.