2019 BIO Conference

BIO at Ten: What’s Next?

BIO welcomes biographers, editors, agents, publishers, and publicity professionals from across the nation and around the world to the Tenth Annual Biographers International Conference (#BIONYC2019), May 17-19, in New York City. BIO is honored to partner with the Leon Levy Center for Biography for this year’s conference, which will be held at the Graduate Center, City University of New York, 365 Fifth Avenue, between 34th and 35th streets. During the conference weekend, biographers have the opportunity to network, compare notes with fellow biographers, and deepen their knowledge of and commitment to the craft of biography.

Through February 28, the registration fee is $199 for BIO members and $280 for nonmembers. Starting on March 1. the fee increases to $250 and $340, respectively.


On Friday, May 17, BIO will offer tours of some of New York City’s most prominent research institutions: the New York Public Library, the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, the New-York Historical Society Museum and Library, and the Museum of the City of New York. More information on these tours and optional, unguided museum visits is available on the Agenda page of the conference registration form.
In the late afternoon, the roster of conference events will also feature our highly anticipated three-minute readings by biographers of their new work. The readings and the Friday evening’s opening reception will be held in the magnificent library of the Fabbri Mansion at 7 East 95th Street, New York, NY 10128. The library was originally housed in a fifteenth-century Italian castle and was brought to America and installed in the Mansion during the first World War. The evening’s events there will include the presentation of the Robert and Ina Caro Research/Travel Fellowships.
On Saturday, May 18, the conference kicks off with a plenary session featuring New Yorker editor David Remnick in conversation with fellow biographers Stacy Schiff and Judith Thurman. The day continues with lively panels and round tables featuring such moderators and panelists as Levy Center executive director Kai Bird, Ruth Franklin, Caroline Fraser, Megan Marshall, Tom Reiss, and Elaine Showalter. Topics presented include: Adventures in the Archives, Feminist Biography, Funding Research, and International Identities. Books by conference participants will be available for purchase throughout the day.
At lunch, participants will have the chance to take part in round table discussion on a variety of topics, hosted by leading biographers. See the Agenda page on the conference registration form for more details. After lunch, BIO will present the Hazel Rowley Prize, given for the best book proposal by a first-time biographer, and the Plutarch Award for the best biography of 2018, as chosen by BIO members. Then, 2019 BIO Award winner James McGrath Morris will deliver the keynote address. Saturday’s events conclude with a reception.
On Sunday morning, May 19, attendees can choose from three optional workshops on various aspects of the biographer’s craft; the Agenda page on the conference registration form has details.

Why Attend? A BIO Member Explains

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Complete Program

Coaching Program

Biographies of Participants

Buying Participants’ Books

Lodging Information