Kristen McLean is the founder and CEO of Bookigee, an innovative Miami-based startup that develops ground-breaking products and services to help transform the book publishing industry. Their first product, WriterCube Audience Research launched in June 2012, and their second product, the WriterCube Book Marketing Database launched in April 2013.
From 2005-2010, Kristen was the Executive Director of the Association of Booksellers for Children (ABC), a non-profit trade association founded in 1984 that networks the children’s book industry. Under Kristen’s leadership, ABC merged with its larger sister association, the American Booksellers Association (ABA) in 2011, where its work continues. Find out more at www.bookweb.org.
Before joining ABC in 2005, Kristen spent twelve years in the children’s book and toy industry in various roles including frontline retailing, merchandising, buying, commission sales, and managing marketing for one of Houghton Mifflin's children's imprints.
She is a graduate of Sarah Lawrence College, where she earned a B.A. with a concentration in Design and Social Psychology, and has done work on an M.F.A. in Industrial Design at Massachusetts College of Art.
As part of her role as an industry strategist, Kristen lectures extensively on issues facing the publishing world including the effect of technology and culture on books and reading, the role of bookstores and libraries in the lives of 21st century readers, and emerging models for the Publishing Industry.
She regularly presents at national and international conferences including O'Reilly Tools of Change, Digital Book World, Editech, TOC Bologna, The Digital Publishing Conference of the City College of London, UK, regional and national meetings of The Society of Children's Books Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) Writer's Digest, Muse & the Marketplace, and Book Expo America (BEA).
In 2010, she began to co-author Bowker Pubtrack's deep-dive consumer study of the children's book market, Understanding the Children's Book Consumer in the Digital Age, which now runs bi-annually. In 2012, she became the co-chair for O'Reilly Media's Author (R)evolution Day, a new TOC conference for professional authors and creators looking for new paths to market, which launched in 2013.
Kristen is deeply interested in the confluence of emerging consumer behavior, technology, literacy, and new models of publishing in the 21st Century.