David Joy‘s debut novel Where All the Light Tends to Go hit…
Making plans for the New Year? Be sure to add these Appalachian literary festivals to your bucket list! All are free and open to the public.
Kentucky Women’s Book Festival: March 5, 2016 at the University of Louisville, Louisville, Kentucky. Founded in 2006, the Kentucky Women’s Book Festival is “a celebration of the written word, focusing on Kentucky women writers and their readers.” Featured authors and presenters for 2016 include Crystal Wilkinson, Jan Arnow, Julie Marie Wade, Tania James, Tajuana “TJ” Butler, Paulette Livers, Karon Cotton McDaniel, and Deirdre Scaggs. Festival founder Carridder “Rita” Jones, festival founder and author of “Voices: From Historical African American Communities near Louisville, Kentucky,” will attend this year’s event.
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/UofLKWBF/timeline?ref=page_internal
Dahlonega Literary Festival: March 12-13, 2016 in Dahlonega, Georgia. Taking place in Historic Downtown Dahlonega nestled in the North Georgia Mountains, the Dahlonega Literary Festival features panels, book signings, and presentations by authors in a variety of genres, as well as the opportunity to have lunch at a local restaurant with participating authors. The festival promises to “interest anyone who is a lover of books and reading,” and seeks “to promote interaction between readers and writers in a relaxed, informal environment.” Featured authors for this year’s festival include Karen Abbott, Jacob M. Appel, V.L. Brunskill, Jackie K Cooper, Molly Harper, Delilah S. Dawson, Ann Hite, Joshilyn Jackson, Brian Panowich, M.J. Pullen, and Jaye Wells.
Western Carolina University’s Fourteenth Annual Spring Literary Festival: April 4-7, 2016 in Cullowhee, North Carolina. WCU’s Annual Spring Literary Festival celebrates the rich literary heritage of the region and seeks to promote its national recognition by bringing together local and national writers. This year’s event will feature Lauren K. Alleyne, Darnell Arnoult, Rick Bragg, Robert Gipe, Jane Hicks, Major Jackson, Bret Anthony Johnston, Sarah Kennedy, Brent Martin, Judith Ortiz Cofer, and Lee Smith.
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/WCUSpringLitfest/info/?tab=page_info
Southern Kentucky Book Fest: April 22 and 23, 2016 in Bowling Green, Kentucky. One of Kentucky’s largest literary events, the Southern Kentucky Book Fest aims “to encourage reading and the love of books and to be a positive force in promoting literacy in our region and state.” Drawing thousands of readers of all ages annually, the festival is in its 18th year, and serves as a fundraiser for literacy in the community. In connection with the Book Fest are the Kentucky Writers Conference, Teen Writers Conference, and Children’s Day, to take place that same weekend in April. The 2016 Book Fest will feature YA author David Arnold, poet Tasha Cotter, illustrator Lauren Castillo, and many more.
For updates on the 2016 Southern Kentucky Book Fest panel and presentation schedule, check in with their website: http://sokybookfest.org/
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/SOKYBookFest/
Carolina Mountains Literary Festival: September 2016 in Burnsville, North Carolina. Now in its eleventh year, the Carolina Mountains Literary Festival seeks “to bring together authors, readers of all ages, novice writers, listeners and learners in small, intimate settings.” The Blue Ridge Mountains surrounding the small town of Burnsville set the scene for a variety of literary engagements to unfold, from writing workshops to readings, from film screenings to a banquet with a keynote author. Past featured authors have included Barbara Kingsolver, Ann Patchett, North Carolina Poet Laureate Shelby Stephenson, Sara Gruen, Wiley Cash, Jeremy Jones, and Saro Lynch Thomason. Check in on the CM LitFest website to stay updated on 2016 authors, schedules, and dates: http://cmlitfest.org/
Featured photo by Unsplash/Jamie Dench