CLICK HERE for quick access to the materials for the 2016-17 Speculative Fiction Genre Study.
The website now features UNRESTRICTED access, including notes from our meetings; however, in order to attend the meetings in person, you must be a member of ARRT. Click here for information about how you can join.


I can come to your library, book club meeting, or conference to talk about how to help your readers find their next good read. Click here for more information.

Recent and Upcoming Presentations [Updated 4.17]

In the spirit of being green, this page will house links to my recent presentations, allowing attendees access without having to print copies for everyone. Presentations will  be up for at least 6 months.  If you have attended one of my presentations and want access to Power Points and handouts that are not posted here, please contact me ( or leave a comment on this page.

UPDATE: As of March 2017 I am currently booking September, November [going fast] and December for 2017. All other months are closed unless you are within 2 hours of Chicago, in that case, there is also limited availability in May, July, and the second half of October [maybe on that one]. For 2018- March is closed to all but local travel [mostly due to PLA] and I already have 1 confirmed April appearance.

  • Chicago Public Library Staff Training
    • Suspense and Psychological Suspense-- SLIDES
    • 1-5 pm September 7, 2016
  • Book Discussions for Book Discussion Leaders for RAILS libraries- A series of 3 events
    • Description: Reader’s Advisor Becky Spratford has been leading  book clubs for over 15 years and has seen it all. In this super-sized program she will share her tips and tricks for success, lead you in a discussion, and help you to connect with your fellow book discussion leaders. We will begin with a shortened version of Becky's popular Re-Charge Your Book Club training and then move into a discussion of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize winning novel, The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen, led by Becky. [Please arrange a copy of the book for your own use]. Finally, Becky will facilitate a question and answer forum where you will be encouraged to share your concerns about your book groups. Together, we can help each other to serve our book discussion groups better.
    • Dates and Times:
      • September 13, 2016, 9-12, Galena Public Library
      • September 15, 2016, 9:30-12:30, Peotone Public Library
      • September 20, 2016, 9:30-12:30, DeKalb Public Library
    • Slides and Handouts
    • Follow up report
  • New Albany-Floyd County Public Library In-Service Day: October 10, 2016
    • 8:30-10:30: RA for All
    • 10:45-12-- Booktalking: Harnessing the Power of Sharing Books with Patrons:
      • SLIDES [Features a BRAND NEW book talk]
    • 1-4:30-- Demystifying Genre: How To Help Every Type of Reader:
      • This program will be “hands-on” so we can work on using NoveList together. It will also cover YS, YA and Adult. Staff will be bringing real life questions and concerns which we will work through together. Staff will be in a computer lab setting. SLIDES- Part 1, Parts 2 and 3
  • Huntsville Madison County [AL] Library In-Service Day: October 17, 2016 
  • ILA Annual Conference: Details and slides here
    • RA Rethink with Amanda Blau [YS] and Heather Booth [YA] and
      I Want to Read a Book for Fun!: Successful Readers’ Advisory Techniques in Academic Libraries with Carolyn Ceisla from Prairie State College. 
  • ARRT Presents: RA Hacks: Tuesday, November 15, 9:30 AM - Noon
    • A fast-paced, interactive workshop focused on the best tips and tricks for stellar readers' advisory, featuring speakers Becky Spratford, and 2016 ARRT & ILA Readers' Advisory Service Award Winners Mike Hominick and Tracy Gossage. 
      • The Glenside Public Library District: 25 E. Fullerton Ave.; Glendale Heights, IL 60139
      • $10 ARRT Members; $15 Nonmembers Continental Breakfast included
      • Register at:
      • Slides
  • Webinar for WI libraries coordinated by Indianhead Federated Library System. 
    • December 1, 2016, 9-10:30 am
    • RA Rethink: Adult Programming and Displays Edition: Becky Spratford brings her popular new RA Rethink Series to your computer with a webinar that focuses on serving your adult populations better. Becky will help you to rethink the library mainstays of programming and displays so that you can work more efficiently and dynamically to increase patron engagement with the library. So let’s take these old concepts out for a spin, air them out, and have some fun.  Sponsored by IFLS, MCLS, NFLS, NWLS, OWLS, SCLS, SEWI, SWLS, Winnefox Library Systems.
    • Slides
  • PLA End of the Year Members Only Webinar on “Best Books”
    • December 7, 2016 1pm eastern
    • Slides
    • Chat transcript from the webinar which is mostly a crowd sourced list of everyone’s best read from 2016.
  • Kokomo-Howard County [IN] Public Library Regional Training and In-Service: December 8-9, 2016
    • December 8, 1-4 PM: Regional Library Staff Book Discussion Leadership Training 
      • Re-Charge Your Book Club
    • December 9, 10:30-Noon Keynote/Training for ALL KHCPL Staff
    • December 9, 1-1:50 Breakout Session #1
    • December 9, 2-2:50 Breakout Session #2
      • Booktalking: Harnessing the Power of Sharing Books with Patrons
      • SLIDES
  • RA for All on Winter Break 12/29-1/8

  • Bradley [IL] Public Library Staff Development Day-- Monday January 23
  • Webinars for FL State Library via PCI-- all time are 10:30-11:30 am Eastern
    • February 7: Recharge Your Book Club-- Slide and Handout Access
    • May 2: RA Guide to Horror: How to Help Your Scariest Patrons
      • June 6: RA Rethink: Merchandising
    • Loudoun County Public Library Teen Services Staff Retreat-- February 17 from 9:15-11 am Eastern
    • Spartanburg County [SC] Public Libraries HQ- February 28, 2017
    • Holston River Regional Library at Walters State Community College- March 9, 2017
      • Full day training program including RA for All, Booktalking Program, and Recharge Your Book Club
      • Details and Slides
    • Chicago Botanic Garden: One Book One Garden Book Discussion-- March 14 from 6:30-8:30pm
    • March 27-31-- RA for All on Spring Break
    • April 14: Cedar Rapids [IA] Public Library Full Day In-Service
    • StokerCon 2017 April 27-30
      • Becky is a Guest of Honor and will be presenting. Details here. Library people are encouraged to attend this event especially on Librarians’ Day.
    • Tampa Bay [FL] Library Consortium- May 31 and June 1
      • Full Day General RA and Half Day Book Discussion Leadership Training
    • ALA Annual- ChicagoJune 22-27, 2017
      • I will be speaking and appearing at the conference.
      • Details when they become available
    • Minooka [IL] Community High School-- August 11, 2017
      • Multi- Library Inservice 9am-1pm
    • Madison [WI] Area Multi-Library Training-- August 16-17, 2017
      • First day PM book discussion leadership training 
      • Second day full day general training
    • Columbus Day- October 9, 2017-- Being held [but not officially booked yet]
    • ILA Annual Conference-- Tinley Park, IL October 10-12
    • October 15-17 tentatively held
    • Chicago Botanic Garden: One Book One Garden Book Discussion-- November 14 from 6:30-8:30pm We will be discussing Lab Girl by Hope Jahren

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