SATURDAY, APRIL 14

Immerse yourself in our intimate panels and conversations with authors, actors and poets.
All panels and conversations below take place at Orcas Center, in either the Black Box or on Center Stage. Battle Of The Genres* will take place at historic Odd Fellows Hall. Weekend passes or a Saturday 1-Day Pass is required for all* Saturday Panels & Conversations.

*Please note: The 1-Day pass does NOT get you into the Main Event

Looking for free Family Fest Fun? Check out our Family Fest page. 

Please visit our Author & Artists page to learn more about our panelists.

Please visit our Lunch Bistro located in the Book Fair (Madrona Room) to purchase a lunch or snacks. For coffee & espresso please visit the Black Box where Mountain Wave Roasters will be pouring drinks.

9:30 to 10:40a—Center Stage
THIS IS THE PLACE: WOMEN WRITING ABOUT HOME
Writer/editor Margot Kahn, writers Tara Conklin, Elisabeth Eaves, Jane Wong and Maya Jewell Zeller discuss their highly praised new anthology of powerful, personal essays exploring themes about neighbors, marriage, kids, sentimental objects, homelessness, domestic violence, solitude, immigration, gentrification, geography, and more. Their collection, encompassing a spectrum of races, ethnicities, religions, sexualities, political beliefs and classes, could not be timelier. Moderated by Margot Kahn
 

9:30 to 10:40a—Black Box
EXTERIOR TO INTERIOR LANDSCAPES: WRITING TO EXPLORE
A panel discussion on how writers use their exterior surroundings to explore interior landscapes.  Authors will share how contemporary writers use setting to work with themes involving science, myth, history, politics, or family. The panel will also engage participants with generative exercises relevant to writing about one’s environment. Panelists: Jennifer Bullis, Gail Folkins, Derek Sheffield. Moderated by Allen Braden.
 

11:00a to 12:10p—Center Stage
WRITING HUMOR IS NO JOKE
A panel of published humor writers discuss processes and principles useful in crafting everything from a brief smirk to a guffaw as needed in short stories and novels. Insight will be offered on everything from the practical employment of surprise, pacing, and ‘comic devices,’ to when and how to keep absurd plot and dialogue credible or make credible dialogue and plot absurd.  Panel: Mark J. Ferrari, Shannon Page, Karen G. Berry, Tina Connolly, and Spencer Ellsworth.  Moderated by Mark J. Ferrari & Shannon Page
 

11:00a to 11:45a—Black Box
CONVERSATION WITH PULITZER PRIZE-WINNER GILBERT KING
Moderated by Scott Hutchins
 

12:30 to 1:40p—Center Stage
THE CULTURAL DIVIDE IN FACT & FICTION
Pulitzer Prize-winners Gilbert King and Adam Johnson, along with New York Times Bestseller Tara Conklin passionately discuss their work in the genres of historical fiction and biographies of cultural and historical figures. Moderated by Mia Lipman Irwin
 

12p to 12:20p—Black Box
ON AN ACRE SHY OF ETERNITY/MICRO LANDSCAPES AT THE EDGE—First Showing
Robert Dash's mesmerizing photographs and words from his book, On An Acre Shy Of Eternity... recently won two Nautilus Book Awards, and takes nature exploration to new levels. Using metaphors, a camera, and a scanning electron microscope, Dash features scales of beauty from craters on the moon to grains of pollen one four-hundredths the width of a pinhead.  A 7-minute short film based on his book will be featured on screen in the black box, with two showings. The artist will be present to answer questions and sign books. There is also a chance to view his incredible work at 6:15p to 6:30p in the Black Box

12:45 to 1:15p—Black Box
CONVERSATION WITH NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER JAMI ATTENBERG
Moderated by Jule Treneer
 

2:00 to 3:10p—Center Stage
ON THE RUN
Critically-acclaimed suspense-thriller masters Victor LaValle, Willie Vlautin, Urban Waite, Bruce Holbert, and Samuel W. Gailey contemplate the inspiration behind their popular noir and Grit Lit stories about characters on the run from their past, present, and often times, pure evil.  Moderated by Jule Treneer
 

3:00 to 3:30p—Black Box
CONVERSATION WITH CRITICALLY-ACCLAIMED AUTHOR KIM FU
Moderated by Ayn Gailey & Sara Cunningham Farish
 

3:30 to 4:40p—Center Stage
WRITING THE UNSPEAKABLE
Award-winning poets Rick Barot, Kevin Clark, Jill McCabe Johnson, and Tina Schumann hold a moving discussion on the writer's dilemmas surrounding hot-button topics, such as Mental illness, Sexual Assault, Racism, Personal lives of friends and family, Authorial Appropriation, Balancing Compassion with honesty and transcending our own fears.  Moderated by Kevin Clark.
 

4:00 to 4:30p—Black Box
GRIT-LIT AUTHOR CONVERSATION WITH BRUCE HOLBERT AND URBAN WAITE
Moderated by Samuel W. Gailey
 

5:00 to 6:00p—Black Box
THE WORLD OF LIT JOURNALS & SMALL PRESS PUBLISHING
Editors and publishers discuss the joys and challenges of editing literary journals and small presses, including how they curate and tips on submitting.  Panelists include Christine Holbert from Lost Horse Press, Matt Muth from Pacifica Review, Derek Sheffield from Terrain.org, and Stephanie Barbé Hammer and Lorna Reese from SHARK REEF Literary Magazine. Moderated by Jill McCabe Johnson of Trail to Table Press.
 

5:00 to 6:10p—Center Stage
THE EVOLUTION OF LOVE, IDENTITY AND RELATIONSHIPS IN MODERN FICTION
New York Times bestsellers, Robin Sloan and Jami Attenberg, join award-winning and highly praised authors Scott Hutchins and Kim Fu for a fascinating discussion on everything from gender identity to relationships with sentient and non-sentient identities.  Moderated by Ayn Gailey
 

6:15p to 6:30p—Black Box
ON AN ACRE SHY OF ETERNITY/MICRO LANDSCAPES AT THE EDGE—Second Showing
Robert Dash's mesmerizing photographs and words from his book take nature exploration to new levels. Using metaphors, a camera, and a scanning electron microscope, Dash features scales of beauty from craters on the moon to grains of pollen one four-hundredths the width of a pinhead.  A 7-minute short film based on his book will be featured on screen in the black box, with two showings. The artist will be present to answer questions and sign books.
 

7 to 8:30p—Center Stage
SATURDAY EVENING MAIN EVENT
Pulitzer Prize-winning, NY Times best-selling and critically-acclaimed authors Adam Johnson, Gilbert King, Jami Attenberg, Robin Sloan, Victor LaValle, Willy Vlautin, Kim Fu, join award-winning actress Miranda Otto for featured readings, music, and more on the Center Stage at Orcas Center. Emceed by Jule Treneer
 

9 to 10pOdd Fellows Hall
*BATTLE OF THE GENRES
Emceed by Jill McCabe Johnson & Shannon Borg, this event is destined to be more epic than any of the battles taught in your dusty lit class in college. Battle of the Genres awards the least prestigious prize in literature. Yup, all lit and lit lovers are at the mercy of satire in this half-improv, half-spelling bee event that pits poet against YA writers against Suspense-Thriller writers. Battle of the Genres is a separately ticketed event. Your $10 ticket includes sweet & savory bites provided by renowned chef Christina Orchid from Red Rabbit Farm, Holly B's Bakery and other local food venues.  Drinks will be available for purchase. Let’s raise a glass and our skirts to that sly mistress who has seduced us all: lit.