Atlanta: Decatur Book Festival

The 7th annual Decatur Book Festival kicks off Friday, August 31 at 8 PM at the Schwartz Center for Performing Arts (Emory University) with Atlanta poet and U.S. Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey delivering the keynote address. The largest independent book festival in the nation boasts over 300 best-selling authors at eight different venues in and around Decatur.  Regional and national poets who will participate in this year’s festivities include: Lynn Alexander, David Bottoms, Dustin Brookshire, Jericho Brown, David Caudill, Wyn Cooper, Bruce Covey, C. Cleo Creech, Travis Denton, Mark Doty, Katie Farris, Rupert Fike, Hester L. Furey, Barbara Hamby, Karen Head, Karen Holmes, Jill Jennings, Ilya Kaminsky, David Kirby, David Lehman, Jimmy Lo, Thomas Lux, Chris Martin, Laura Mullen, Gina Myers, Amy Pence, Charlotte Pence, JC Reilly, Jenny Sadre-Orafai, Alan Shapiro, Patricia Smith, Dan Veach, Megan Volpert, Theodore Worozbyt, William Wright, and Kevin Young.

In addition to readings, there will be panel discussions about poetry, including:

Saturday, August 1

Poets on Prose, 10:00-10:45 AM at the Decatur Library (Barbara Hamby, David Kirby, Thomas Lux, and Alan Shapiro)

Best American Poetry 2012, 11:15-12:00 PM at the Decatur Presbyterian Sanctuary Stage (David Lehman, Mark Doty, and Kevin Young)

The Sequence in Prose & Verse, 12:30-1:15 PM at the City Hall Stage (Charlotte Pence, Ilya Kaminsky and Katie Farris)

The Poetics of Song Lyrics, 3:00-3:45 PM at The Old Courthouse (Charlotte Pence, David Kirby, Vynnie Meli, Wyn Cooper, and Megan Sexton)

Sunday, August 2

Poetry Pairing, 1:15-2:00 PM at Eddie’s Attic Stage (David Bottoms and Alan Shapiro)

The Importance of the Small Press, 2:30-3:15 PM at The Old Courthouse (Bruce Covey, Bill Boling, Heather Tosteson, and Charles Brockett)

The Collected Poems of Lucille Clifton, 2:30-3:15 PM at the Decatur Conference Center Ballroom B (Kevin Young, Jericho Brown, Sharan Strange, Dana Greene)

Poetry Pairing II, 3:45-4:30 PM at The Old Courthouse (Patricia Smith and Travis Denton)

Please visit the festival’s website for the complete schedule and for exhibitors (including VOUCHED Books Atlanta).

–Jenny Sadre-Orafai