Schedule of Events

The complete 2015 Arkansas Literary Festival schedule will be released April 1. A list of featured sessions were announced Thursday, January 22, along with the complete roster of authors and presenters. Featured sessions are listed below; information subject to change.

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2015 Highlights

A full schedule, including times and locations, will be available April 1. All sessions and presenters subject to change.

John Waters

This Filthy World

John Waters' one-man show/vaudeville act celebrates the film career and obsessive tastes of the man William Burroughs once called "The Pope of Trash." Focusing on Waters' early negative artistic influences and his fascination with true crime, exploitation films, fashion lunacy, and the extremes of sexual politics, this joyously devious and continuously updated monologue is a rally cry against the tyranny of good taste and serves as a call to arms for filth followers everywhere. Tickets are $25 in advance and $40 at the door. Beginning April 1, order tickets online here.

Desha Peacock

The Style You Crave

Learn how to create a sweet space, discover how color affects mood, and engage in hands on activities to guide a personal style for home or office. Plus, learn lifestyle coach Desha Peacock’s best tips for working with any budget, no matter how tiny. Tickets are $20 and may be ordered beginning April 1 online here.

Author! Author!

Author! Author!

Toast the Festival authors at this fete featuring hors d’oeuvres and libations. Festival books will be available for purchase during this party geared for adults. Tickets are $25 in advance and $40 at the door. Beginning April 1, order tickets online here, or purchase at CALS Main Library or River Market Books & Gifts.

Rebecca Wells

Divine Secrets

Rebecca Wells caught lightning in a bottle with Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood. Hear what is next.

Michael Shermer

© Jeremy Danger

The Moral Arc

Michael Shermer, founding publisher of Skeptic magazine, delves into a brief history of rights and explains how abstract reasoning, rationality, empiricism, skepticism – scientific ways of thinking – have profoundly changed the way morality is seen and moved humanity ever closer to a just world.

Issa Rae


With twenty million views and 150,000 YouTube subcribers, Issa Rae’s web series, The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl, is all the rage. She will discuss her new book, the series, and how it began.

Charles D. Morgan

Life and Data

What did it take to found a $1.5 billion company? Former Axciom CEO Charles D. Morgan recounts what Senator David Pryor called "an inspirational story of tenacity, grit, adversity, vision, and blind faith."

E. Lockhart


Author of the top-reviewed 2014 book for young adults, E. Lockhart, chats about We Were Liars.

Rick Bragg


Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Rick Bragg makes a return visit to the Festival to talk about his gripping biography Jerry Lee Lewis: His Own Story.

Bryan Collier

Author / Illustrator

Winner of eight Coretta Scott King Awards and three Caldecott honors, children’s author/illustrator and Bryan Collier (Uptown and Dave the Potter) discusses his work, tours area schools, and displays at a local gallery during the Festival. Sponsored by William J Clinton Foundation, Gibbs Elementary, Rockefeller Elementary, and Pyramid Fine Art, Books & Custom Framing/Hearne Fine Art.

Seph Lawless

© Eric Mull

A Lawless Shoot

Encounter the pseudonymous artivist / activist / photographer / writer / urban explorer / chronicler of ruined dreams, Seph Lawless. With successful exhibits in Munich, Milan, and Paris, and an upcoming show scheduled in New York, the man behind the arresting art featured in Autopsy of America, Black Friday and 13: An American Horror Story makes a rare appearance. Catch his mini exhibit, curated just for the Festival.

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Chicken Little and the Little Hen

Two folktales chock-full of chicken wisdom and important life lessons share a common theme of friendship in this touring play from the Arkansas Arts Center. Henny Penny, Little Red, Ducky Lucky, Goosey Loosey, and Foxy Loxy learn important lessons as they strive to stay fed, keep a level head, set goals, and avoid apocalyptic bombardment. Sponsored by Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau.