2019 literary calendar with 98 holidays, weeks, and months for book lovers

There are so many occasions for celebrating books, reading, literacy, authors, and libraries this year.

You’re certain to find a day, week, or month you can use this year to promote reading and books.

Whether you want to support your local library, honor an important author’s birthday, or promote a literacy campaign, you’ll find something in the 2019 literary calendar.

How to use the calendar

It’s so easy to take advantage of a few (or many!) of these special days, weeks, and months. Here are the basics.

Step 1. Start by reviewing the list below and selecting those that resonate with you. For example, if you loved Beezus and Ramona as a kid or are a children’s book author, one of them might be Beverly Cleary’s birthday. If your book is a memoir, We Love Memoirs Day might speak to you.

Step 2. Add the dates you want to work with to your calendar. Then schedule time before each holiday or occasion to create the materials you’ll use to promote the event. You might want to do this a week or more in advance, or just a day or two before.

The timing depends on what you’ll do to recognize the event, how much time you need, and whether your plan involves collaborating with others. (That always takes more time.)

Step 3. Decide how you’ll recognize the occasion. Here are a few ideas:

  • Reduce the price of your book for a limited time.
  • Write a blog post about why it’s important to you. This can be for your blog, for someone else’s, or on a platform such as Medium.
  • Join a local library committee to plan and execute library-related events.
  • Create an event-related image to share on social media. This image I designed last year for Book Lover’s Day created a lot of fun conversation on the Build Book Buzz Facebook page.
2019 literary calendar 2
The responses to this question on Book Lovers Day in 2018 were fascinating — and gave us more books to add to our “to be read” lists.

Step 4: Execute your plan.

Your 2019 literary calendar

Ready to have some fun? (Look at all that’s coming up in April!) Here’s a month-by-month breakdown.


National Braille Literacy Month

18 – Thesaurus Day

18 – Winnie the Pooh Day (the birthday of author A.A. Milne)

19 – Edgar Allan Poe’s birthday

25 – Burns Supper (celebrates the work of poet Robert Burns)


Love your Library Month

1 – Read Aloud Day

2 – Take Your Child to the Library Day

3-9 – Children’s Authors & Illustrator Week

14 – Library Lover’s Day

26 – Tell a Fairy Tale Day


2 – Read Across America Day

2 – Dr. Seuss Day

3-9 – Return Borrowed Books Week

3-9 – Read an E-book Week

4 – National Grammar Day

5 – World Book Day

16 – Freedom of Information Day


National Poetry Month

Drop Everything and Read (DEAR) Month

2 – International Children’s Book Day

2 – Hans Christian Anderson’s birthday

4 – School Librarian Day

7 – 13 – Library Week

11 – National Library Worker’s Day

12 – Beverly Cleary’s birthday

13 – Scrabble Day

15 – Rubber Eraser Day

16 – National Librarian Day

16 – National Bookmobile Day

18 – Celebrate Teen Literature Day

18 – Newspaper Columnists Day

23 – Shakespeare’s birthday

23 – World Book Day

24 – On this day in 1800, the U.S. Congress approved purchasing books to start the Library of Congress.

27 – Independent Bookstore Day

27 – Tell a Story Day

28 – Great Poetry Reading Day

29-May 5 – Children’s Book Week

30 – Children’s Book Day


Audio Book Appreciation Month

Get Caught Reading Month

2 – Harry Potter Day

4 – Free Comic Book Day – first Saturday in May

9 – Peter Pan Day

12 -18 – Reading is Fun Week

12 – Limerick Day


LGBT Book Month

10 – Ball Point Pen Day

12 – Anne Frank’s birthday (she received her diary on her birthday)

16 – Bloomsday (Leopold Bloom is the fictional protagonist and hero of James Joyce’s Ulysses )

22 – Octavia Butler’s birthday

23 – National Columnists Day

23 – The first typewriter patent was awarded in 1868


Read an Almanac Month

3/4/5/6 – National Tom Sawyer Days

13 – Isaac Babel’s birthday

18 – 23 Hemingway Days

30 – Paperback Book Day (they were first introduced on this day in 1935)


2 – National Coloring Book Day

9 – Book Lover’s Day

10 – Love Your Bookshop Day

18 – Bad Poetry Day

21 – Poet’s Day

31 – We Love Memoirs Day


Library Card Sign Up Month

Be Kind to Editors and Writers Month

4 – Newspaper Carrier Day

6 – Read a Book Day

8 – International Literacy Day

22 – Hobbit Day

22 – Dear Diary Day

22-28 – Banned Books Week

25 – National Comic Book Day


National Book Month

1 – International Coffee Day (because, you know, so many great authors are fueled by coffee)

6 – Mad Hatter Day

11 – Myth and Legends Day

13-19 – Teen Read Week

16 – Dictionary Day

20 – National Day of Writing

20-26 – Friends of Libraries Week

27 – National Tell a Story Day in Scotland and the U.K.


National Novel Writing Month

National Memoir Writing Month

Picture Book Month

National Family Literacy Month

1 – National Family Literacy

1 – Author’s Day

2 – Book Lovers Day

6 – National Nonfiction Day

15 – I Love to Write Day

18 – High-Five a Librarian Day


Read a New book Month

1 – Sherlock Holmes Day

10 – Dewey Decimal System Day

16 – Jane Austen’s birthday

21 – Crossword Puzzle Day

21 – Celebrate Short Fiction Day

24 – Jolabokaflod, Iceland’s Yule Book Flood

Update, 2-18-19 — Thanks to helpful reader feedback, we’ve added a couple of holidays to the list. That means the count now exceeds 98 holidays, occasions, and themed weeks and months.

Have we missed anything? If you know of a holiday or occasion that should be on this calendar but isn’t, tell us in a comment. We’ll continually update this as needed. Thanks! 

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  1. Hi Sandra,
    I’d love it if you could include “Celebrate Short Fiction” Day (http://www.nancychristie.com/focusonfiction/celebrate-short-fiction-day/)
    Each December, we mark the first day of winter (also known as the winter solstice)—a day when we have the least amount of daylight. Depressing? Not at all—not when you can use that long winter night to “Celebrate Short Fiction” Day by reading a short story!
    I created the day and it’s included in Chase’s Calendar of Events.

    1. I’m happy to add it Nancy. What exact day do you celebrate it? I didn’t find a date at your link.


  2. This is great! I’m going to share this on my Facebook page and also add some of these celebrations to my marketing plan for this year. Thank you!

    1. Wonderful, Genene! I appreciate the share, and I’m sure the authors who follow you will, too. I’m so glad you’ll be using a few of these.


  3. Sandra someone shared your website with me and I have thoroughly enjoyed reading your blogs and accessing your tips, and resources. I have a suggestion that I would like to make, however since I didn’t linger long over all the calendar entries if this already exists just let me know and I’ll blush later. I would like to see a create a new word for the dictionary day. My husband was telling me a story about someone at work, he’s a born story teller and as we all know verbal story tellers differ greatly from those of us who creatively think as we write. The whole story is quite intriguing but he said as he told the man who was suppose to have ordered the material for their part of the job the week before from the list they had given him. He said when they told him they had given him the order list the week before, that he leaned on the shovel with a “fardazzled” look on his face trying to remember, what he had forgotten. I loved my husband’s new word, and I have seen people with a “fardazzled” look on their face. If you want to read about “Bears and Angels” you can read about a true story on my blog. https://joanjessalyncoxsays.blog/ I hope my sharing my blog is alright if not just take it off. Do you like “fardazzled” for a new dictionary word?

    1. Thanks, Joan. I love your idea for a new special day. When you create it, have a date set for it, and introduce it to the world, please come back with the details and I’ll add it. Everything listed on this calendar is an actual occasion — none of it is a holiday we’d like to see. Each is an actual holiday, occasion, etc.

      And I do like “fardazzled!”


    1. You’re welcome, HL! Thanks for sharing the calendar. I love that you’re helping more authors discover all of these opportunities.


  4. Thanks for the Special Days list. I found it helpful in the possible sale of ‘My Good Morning Sam’ (a memoir about a 24-year relationship between wild mute swans and my husband and me. Have sold 650 books and have another 350 books to sell. Check our website for more information and pictures about this book.

  5. Sandra, November is Memoir Writing Month. We offer a free, month long e-course for anyone wishing to launch a memoir.

    Hooks are great ways, as you point out, to promote a book. People are less interested in the specifics of your book and more prone to be interested in a general topic.

    1. You’re welcome, rae! I’m glad it’s useful. The trick is remembering to add the ones you like to your calendar!


        1. Thanks. I asked because I Googled it a few different ways but didn’t find anything.


  6. Hello-

    I am creating a calender for our library system and found many of these dates fun and unexpected. I wanted to point out that the ALA lists a different set of dates for the National Library week in 2020. Celebrate National Library Week April 19-25, 2020http://www.ala.org/conferencesevents/celebrationweeks/natlibraryweek

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