Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Books For Readers FAQ

Books For Readers logo_Final

The donation period for 2019 has ended. See you next year!


SCBWI members, donate new books by  PAL authors and illustrators 


2019 Book Donation Recipients:

Madison Reading Project in Wisconsin

REACH, Inc. in Hampton Roads, VA


2019 $500 Donation Recipients

Southern Arizona Chidren’s Advocacy Center in Tuscon

The Community Library Project in Delhi, India


A: SCBWI BOOKS FOR READERS is our worldwide book drive. Its mission is 3-fold:

  • To help increase book access for readers in desperate need of books by collecting and donating books that SCBWI members create
  • To help promote our authors, illustrators, and their books
  • To advance our mission as an organization of book creators and literacy advocates

The selection committee, comprised of SCBWI staff and members of the SCBWI Board of Advisors, will choose 2 organizations to receive the books.


Q: Who can nominate organizations or causes, and what is the nomination period?

Only SCBWI members (Associate, Full, PAL) may nominate organizations or causes for the book donation. Nominations can be submitted starting at 2pm ET/11am PT on March 19. Nominations close on Monday April 22 at 2pm ET/11am PT.

Q: When can I start sending books for the book drive? How will it work? 

A. SCBWI BOOKS FOR READERS will accept books through July 31, 2019. You may donate PAL/traditionally published books only. Members can send them to our NEW address (please, no in-person drop offs)

6363 Wilshire Blvd, Suite 425

Los Angeles, CA 90048

Attn:  SCBWI Books for Readers

Be sure to put the “Attn: SCBWI Books for Readers” line with the address. We receive many deliveries and we want to ensure yours gets included in the proper place. SCBWI HQ will accept, collect, store, curate, and distribute the books to the regional recipients prior to the celebration events to be held in Fall 2019.

Depending upon the size and need of our recipients, SCBWI HQ will curate the number and type of books to be distributed and donate any surplus books to other nominated causes at its discretion.

Q: What types of books will be collected?

A: We will collect new fiction and non-fiction hard cover and paperback titles (written and/or illustrated by PAL members) for children and teens (ages 0-17)  including board books, early readers, picture books, chapter books, middle grade, YA, and graphic novels. Members may donate from 2-6 copies of any one title. The books must have been published within the last 3-4 years.

Q: How do I go about contacting my publishers for ARCs, titles going out of print, and/or those being remaindered?

A: SCBWI members may want to reach out to their individual publishers’ editors and/or marketing staff to inquire re: the best people with whom to contact.

Q: How many books do we anticipate collecting?  

A: The collection period will be over 4 weeks so we’ll see how many books we have at that end of that time. We have donated nearly 3,000 books in the past 2 years. The number of books that will actually go to the recipient(s) will depend on what the needs are and the capacity of the causes or organizations. SCBWI HQ will curate the number and type of books to be distributed and donate any surplus books to other nominated causes at its discretion.

Q: Can I donate self-published/independently published books to the book drive? 

A: Only books written or illustrated by PAL authors and illustrators can be donated.

Q: Do you want the donated books to be signed and personalized? 
A. Autographed books are extra special treats for all readers. If you would also like to include a personal message, please make it a general message about reading or the love of books.

Q: Can I sign up to help at one of the celebration events?

A: We will be asking for volunteers once we finalize the celebration event locations and dates.

Q: What kind of press coverage is being planned for the SCBWI BOOKS FOR READERS Book Drive and its celebration events?  

A: We will be will be reaching out to local and national press (e.g. print, radio, and TV) top publishing industry press vehicles, and using social media to help promote the causes and/or organizations we choose, as well as our authors who participate, their books, and SCBWI. Take a look at this article from Publishers Weekly about  our 2018 donation celebrations in Florida and the Dakotas. 

Q: What else can we do to help the SCBWI BOOKS FOR READERS Book Drive and to spread the word? 

A: You can help spread the news on social media and/or in-person events to encourage fellow SCBWI members to join the book drive! Our hashtag is #SCBWIBFR.