2018 Authors and Presenters

Hanna Al-Jibouri

Hanna Al-Jibouri

Teacher / Poetic Justice

Hanna Al-Jibouri teaches elementary school in Tulsa and is a lead facilitator and volunteer coordinator for Poetic Justice, an organization that works with incarcerated women in Oklahoma, the state that leads the country with the highest incarceration rates per capita. Al-Jibouri believes that "the power of words brings about hope and a newfound voice to these women."

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TBA April 1, 2018

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Amy Alkon

Amy Alkon

Non-fiction / Unf*ckology

Amy Alkon is a specialist in "applied behavioral science," translating scientific research into highly practical advice. "The Science Advice Goddess," her award-winning syndicated column, runs in newspapers across the United States and Canada. She also records a weekly science podcast. Author of the books Unf*ckology, Good Manners for Nice People Who Sometimes Say F*ck, and I See Rude People, she has appeared on Good Morning America, The Today Show, NPR, CNN, and MTV. She has written for Psychology Today, the Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles Times Magazine, and the New York Daily News, as well as giving a TED talk. She is the president of the Applied Evolutionary Psychology Society and lives in Venice, California.

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Roger Armbrust

Roger Armbrust

Non-fiction / Pressing Freedom

Roger Armbrust worked as a magazine editor and writing instructor at New York University before returning to Little Rock ten years ago. The author of three poetry titles, Armbrust also edits e-zines. While Pressing Freedom is his first novel, Armbrust's writing has appeared in New York Quarterly, Chelsea, and Icarus.

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Laverne Bell-Tolliver

LaVerne Bell-Tolliver

Non-fiction / The First Twenty Five

LaVerne Bell-Tolliver is an associate professor at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock's School of Social Work and the author of The First Twenty-Five: An Oral History of the Desegregation of Little Rock's Public Junior High Schools. She has more than 40 years of experience as a clinical social worker. Bell-Tolliver is also senior pastor of Bullock Temple CME, Little Rock.

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Carmen Boullosa

Carmen Boullosa

Fiction / Heavens on Earth

Carmen Boullosa is the author of seven volumes of poetry, most recently La patria insomne and Hamartia (o Hacha); eighteen novels, including El libro de Ana; two books of essays; and ten plays. Her novel La otra mano de Lepanto was deemed to be among the top works of literature written in Spanish in the last twenty-five years. Boullosa's other novels include Texas (a PEN America Literary Award finalist), Before, Heavens on Earth, and Cleopatra Dismounts. She also co-authored A Narco History: How the United States and Mexico Jointly Created the "Mexican Drug War" with Mike Wallace.

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Kevin Brockmeier

Kevin Brockmeier

Fiction & Non-Fiction

Kevin Brockmeier is the author of eight books, including, most recently, A Few Seconds of Radiant Filmstrip: A Memoir of Seventh Grade. He lives in Little Rock, where he was raised, and has participated in the Arkansas Literary Festival each year since its inception.

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Molly McCully Brown

Molly McCully Brown

Poetry / The Virginia State Colony for Epileptics and Feebleminded

Molly McCully Brown is the author of The Virginia State Colony for Epileptics and Feebleminded, which won the 2016 Lexi Rudnitsky First Book Prize. She is the Jeff Baskin Writers Fellow at the Oxford American, where she is at work on a collection of essays.

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Julie Cantrell

Julie Cantrell

Fiction / Perennials

Julie Cantrell is an award-winning New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling novelist, speaker, and TEDx presenter. Her work has received special recognition across both faith-based and general audiences, as she aims to build a bridge of communication and understanding between people who are sometimes at odds. Perennials is her fourth novel.

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Joe Barry Carroll

Joe Barry Carroll

Non-fiction / Black American Voices: Shared Culture, Values, and Emotions

Joe Barry Carroll is a former NBA All-Star whose second book, Black American Voices: Shared Culture, Values, and Emotions, shares lyrical and uplifting narratives, photographs, and African art that speak undeniable truths about culture, faith, families, legacy, success, and America's first black president. Carroll, originally from Pine Bluff, is an artist, philanthropist, financial advisor, and photographer.

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Jennifer Case

Jennifer Case

Memoir / Sawbill: A Search for Place

Jennifer Case is the author of Sawbill: A Search for Place. Her essays have appeared in Orion, Fourth River, North American Review, and Arkansas Life. She teaches at the University of Central Arkansas and serves as the assistant nonfiction editor of Terrain.org.

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Carina Chocano

Carina Chocano

Essays / You Play the Girl

Carina Chocano lives in Los Angeles and is a contributing writer to the New York Times Magazine. Her work has appeared in New York magazine, Elle, Vogue, Rolling Stone, the New Yorker, and elsewhere. She has been a film and TV critic at the Los Angeles Times, Entertainment Weekly, and Salon.com. You Play the Girl is a collection of her essays.

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Monica Clark-Robinson

Monica Clark-Robinson

Juvenile Fiction / Let the Children March

Monica Clark-Robinson is a writer/actor/librarian who is passionate about stories and how they connect and inspire us. Her debut picture book is Let the Children March, illustrated by Frank Morrison. She lives in a yurt in the country with one husband, too many cats, and just the right number of daughters.

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Lee Conell

Lee Conell

Fiction / Subcortical

Lee Conell wrote the story collection Subcortical. Her fiction appears in Kenyon Review online, Glimmer Train, Guernica, and elsewhere. She has been awarded the grand prize in the Chicago Tribune's Nelson Algren Literary Arts Awards competition as well as an Individual Artist Fellowship from the Tennessee Arts Commission.

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Leesa Cross-Smith

Leesa Cross-Smith

Fiction / Whiskey & Ribbons

Leesa Cross-Smith is the author of the short-story collection Every Kiss a War, which was shortlisted for both the Flannery O'Connor Award for Short Fiction and the Iowa Short Fiction Award, as well as the novel Whiskey & Ribbons. Her work has appeared in the Oxford American and Best Small Fictions.

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MK Czerwiec

MK Czerwiec

Non-fiction / Taking Turns: Stories from HIV/AIDS Care Unit 371

MK Czerwiec is a nurse and cartoonist. Her graphic memoir, Taking Turns: Stories from HIV/AIDS Care Unit 371, is in the "Best of 2017" list in the Journal of the American Medical Association. She is co-author of the Graphic Medicine Manifesto, which maps the new field of graphic medicine.

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Anthony DeCurtis

Anthony DeCurtis

Non-fiction / Lou Reed: A Life

Anthony DeCurtis is a contributing editor for Rolling Stone and a distinguished lecturer in the creative writing program at the University of Pennsylvania. He is the author, most recently, of Lou Reed: A Life and co-author of Clive Davis's autobiography, The Soundtrack of My Life, a New York Times bestseller. DeCurtis is a Grammy Award winner who holds a PhD in American literature.

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Lisa Dordal

Lisa Dordal

Poetry / Mosaic of the Dark

Lisa Dordal is the author of Mosaic of the Dark. She teaches poetry at Vanderbilt University. Her poetry has appeared in Best New Poets, Ninth Letter, the Greensboro Review, Vinyl Poetry, CALYX, and Nasty Women Poets: An Unapologetic Anthology of Subversive Verse.

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Taylor Dugan

Taylor Dugan

Juvenile Fiction / Scales of Justice

Taylor Dugan taught Spanish to elementary school students in the North Little Rock School District using music, stories, and puppets. He is currently a staff attorney at Legal Aid. He has written two children's books: Scales of Justice and Santa Jaws Saves Christmas.

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Anne Fadiman

Anne Fadiman

Memoir / The Wine Lover's Daughter

Anne Fadiman is the author of The Wine Lover's Daughter: A Memoir. The Francis Writer-in-Residence at Yale, she is also the author of The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down, which won the National Book Critics' Circle Award for Nonfiction, and two essay collections: Ex Libris and At Large and At Small.

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Kelly J Ford

Kelly J. Ford

Fiction / Cottonmouths

Kelly J. Ford is the author of Cottonmouths, which was named one of 2017's best books of the year by the Los Angeles Review. Her work has appeared in Black Heart Magazine, Fried Chicken and Coffee, and Knee-Jerk Magazine, and is forthcoming in Post Road Magazine. Arkansas-bred and Boston-based, she is Framingham State University's Miriam Levine Reader for 2018, an instructor for GrubStreet Writing Center, and an IT project manager.

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Jason Gallaher

Jason Gallaher

Juvenile Fiction / Whobert Whoever, Owl Detective

Jason Gallaher is a children's book author who loves to create stories that mix the flamboyantly whacky with the slightly dark. He loves dinosaurs, unicorns, merpeople, and anything magical that takes you to a different world or time—and also Anjelica Huston. His debut picture book is Whobert Whover, Owl Detective.

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David Giffels

David Giffels

Memoir / Furnishing Eternity: A Father, A Son, a Coffin, and a Measure of Life

David Giffels is the author of the memoir Furnishing Eternity: A Father, a Son, a Coffin, and a Measure of Life as well as The Hard Way on Purpose: Essays and Dispatches from the Rust Belt and All the Way Home. His writing has appeared in the New York Times Magazine, the Atlantic, Parade, the Wall Street Journal, Esquire, and Grantland. He was also a writer for Beavis and Butt-Head.

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Matt Ginsberg

Matt Ginsberg

Fiction / Factor Man

Matt Ginsberg completed a PhD in astrophysics at Oxford at the age of 24, but he switched to artificial intelligence and taught at Stanford for ten years. A former political columnist and playwright who constructs crosswords for the New York Times, Ginsberg has been featured on the front page of the Times. He has written approximately a hundred technical papers and one novel, Factor Man.
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Emma Glass

Emma Glass

Fiction / Peach

Emma Glass was born in Swansea, Wales. She studied English literature and creative writing at the University of Kent. Deciding to become a nurse, she went back to study pediatric nursing at Swansea University. She lives in northern London and is a research nurse specialist at Evelina London Children's Hospital. Peach is her first book.

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Sean Grigsby

Sean Grigsby

Fiction / Smoke Eaters

Sean Grigsby is a professional firefighter  who writes about lasers, aliens, and guitar battles with the Devil when he is not fighting dragons. His debut novel is Smoke Eaters. Grigsby is also the host of "Cosmic Dragon," a podcast featuring debut science fiction and fantasy authors. You might also see him in Little Rock clubs, spinning the 1s and 2s as a DJ.

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Julia Heaberlin

Julia Heaberlin

Fiction / Paper Ghosts

Julia Heaberlin worked as a journalist for more than twenty years for newspapers such as the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and the Detroit News. She is the author of Paper Ghosts and Black-Eyed Susans.

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Ken Ilgunas

Ken Ilgunas

Non-fiction / This Land Is Our Land

Ken Ilgunas is a backcountry park ranger in Alaska and the author of three books, including This Land Is Our Land. He has written for the New York Times, Time, and Backpacker. His books and tales of his adventures have been featured on The Tonight Show and NPR and in the New Yorker.
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Wanda Jackson

Wanda Jackson

Music / Every Night Is Saturday Night: A Country Girl's Journey To The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

Wanda Lavonne Jackson is a singer, songwriter, pianist and guitarist known as the "Queen of Rockabilly". Her autobiography, Every Night Is Saturday Night: A Country Girl's Journey To The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, details the different stages of her success from her 1950s and 60 rockabilly and rock, her 60s and 70s country music hits, the 80s resurgence, and even "her recent work with rock luminaries Jack White and Joan Jett." Jackson's "deep faith has sustained her over more than seven decades of rocking, shocking, and thrilling audiences around the globe."

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Cherisse Jones-Branch

Cherisse Jones-Branch

Non-fiction / Arkansas Women: Their Lives and Times

Cherisse Jones-Branch teaches courses in U.S., women's, civil rights, rural, and African American history and in Heritage Studies at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro. She is the author of numerous articles on women's civil rights and rural activism. She wrote Crossing the Line: Women and Interracial Activism in South Carolina during and after World War II and co-edited Arkansas Women: Their Lives and Times. She is working on a second monograph: Better Living by Their Own Bootstraps: Rural Black Women's Activism in Arkansas.

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Sebastian Junger

Sebastian Junger

Non-fiction / The Perfect Storm, War, Tribe, Restrepo

Sebastian Junger is the internationally acclaimed bestselling author of WAR; The Perfect Storm; A Death in Belmont; Fire; and Tribe: On Homecoming and Belonging. Junger became a fixture in the international media when, as a first-time author, he commanded the New York Times bestseller list for more than three years with The Perfect Storm, which became a major motion picture starring George Clooney and Mark Wahlberg. His reporting on Afghanistan in 2000, profiling Northern Alliance leader Ahmad Shah Massoud, became the subject of the National Geographic documentary Into the Forbidden Zone. Junger is a native New Englander and a graduate of Wesleyan University, attracted since childhood to, as he puts it, "extreme situations and people at the edges of things."
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Daisy Khan

Daisy Khan

Memoir / Pomegranate Dreams: The Unlikely Journey of an American Muslim Woman

Daisy Khan grew up in a Muslim household in Kashmir. After attending Catholic school, she immigrated to the U.S. to attend high school in a mostly Jewish Long Island suburb. She eventually married an imam and embraced the role of women's advocate. She educated imams about the perils of child marriage and counseled young women to resist the seductive promises of ISIS recruiters. Khan was named one of the "10 Muslim Women Every Person Should Know" by the Huffington Post and was included among Time's 100 Most Influential People. In her memoir, Born with Wings, she shares her inspirational journey to help people understand the Islamic faith and the under-represented voices of Muslim women.

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Brian & Terri Kinder

Brian & Terri Kinder

Music / Live Performance

Brian & Terri Kinder are Arkansas's rollicking, good-time concert and recording artists with eleven CD releases of fun, original songs for kids. The Kinders have been recognized by the American Library Association and School Library Journal and have received the Celebrate Literacy Agency award from the Arkansas Reading Association for their contribution to reading in the state. As Parents' Choice Award winners, the Kinders have been nominated for Best Children's Song, Best Children's CD, and Best Children's Educational CD by Just Plain Folks, the world's largest independent music organization.

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Gilbert King

Gilbert King

Non-fiction / Beneath a Ruthless Sun

Gilbert King was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in nonfiction for Devil in the Grove: Thurgood Marshall, the Groveland Boys, and the Dawn of a New America, which was also a New York Times bestseller and a finalist for the Dayton Literary Peace Prize. A featured contributor to Smithsonian magazine and The Marshall Project, King also writes about justice for the New York Times and the Washington Post. His newest book is Beneath a Ruthless Sun.

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Michelle Kuo

Michelle Kuo

Non-fiction / Reading with Patrick

Michelle Kuo is the daughter of Taiwanese immigrants. She is the author of Reading with Patrick, a memoir of race, literacy, and inequality. She has been a teacher in the Arkansas Delta and a lawyer for undocumented immigrants in Oakland. She teaches at the American University of Paris.

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Charlotte Laws

Charlotte Laws

Non-fiction / Devil in the Basement: White Supremacy, Satanic Ritual and My Family

Charlotte Laws has authored a number of books, including Devil in the Basement: White Supremacy, Satanic Ritual and My Family, and more than one hundred articles in publications such as the Washington Post, Salon, the Los Angeles Daily News, Huffington Post, Gawker, and Newsweek. She starred on the NBC show The Filter with Fred Roggin, and she is currently a political pundit on BBC News. Laws has appeared on CNN, Nightline, Fox News, MSNBC, The Oprah Winfrey Show, The Late Show, and Larry King Live, and she has been the subject of articles in the New York Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, the New York Post, U.S. News & World Report, the Los Angeles Times, the Guardian, the New Yorker, and elsewhere. Laws penned the award-winning memoir Rebel in High Heels and was voted one of the "thirty fiercest women on Buzzfeed." Laws is a well-known anti-revenge-porn activist and animal advocate. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, three rescue dogs, and four rescue chickens.

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Mackenzi Lee

Mackenzi Lee

Non-fiction / Bygone Badass Broads

Mackenzi Lee is the New York Times bestselling author of the historical fantasy novels This Monstrous Thing and The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue (its sequel, The Lady's Guide to Petticoats and Piracy, is forthcoming). She is also the author of Bygone Badass Broads, based on her popular Twitter series of the same name, which is a collection of short biographies of amazing women from history you probably don't know about but definitely should.

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Carmen Maria Machado

Carmen Maria Machado

Fiction / Her Body and Other Parties

Carmen Maria Machado is an artist-in-residence at the University of Pennsylvania. Her fiction and nonfiction have appeared in the New Yorker, Granta, Tin House, Guernica, and Best American Science Fiction & Fantasy. She was awarded the Bard Fiction Prize and was a finalist for the National Book Award, the Kirkus Prize, the Shirley Jackson Award, and the Nebula Award. She lives in Philadelphia with her wife.

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Doug Mack

Doug Mack

Non-fiction / The Not Quite States of America

Doug Mack is the author of The Not-Quite States of America and Europe on Five Wrong Turns a Day. His articles and essays have appeared in the New York Times, Slate, Travel + Leisure, Newsday, and the San Francisco Chronicle.

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Dorothy Marcic

Dorothy Marcic

Non-fiction / With One Shot: Family Murder and a Search for Justice

Dorothy Marcic is the author of Understanding Management; RESPECT: Women and Popular Music; and the new true-crime thriller With One Shot: Family Murder and a Search for Justice. Her plays include SISTAS, which ran Off-Broadway for more than six years and was televised on BET; This One's for the Girls; and Intentions. She is the writer and story creator of two short films: Great Expectations and Spillings. Marcic started her career on Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, and she has appeared on C-SPAN, CMT, and Bravo.

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Bryan Mealer

Bryan Mealer

Non-fiction / The Kings of Big Spring: God, Oil and One Family’s Search for the American Dream

Bryan Mealer is the author of The Kings of Big Spring, Muck City, and All Things Must Fight to Live, which chronicled his time covering the war in the Democratic Republic of Congo for the Associated Press and Harper's. His New York Times bestseller The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind, written with William Kamkwamba, has been translated into more than a dozen languages and will soon be released as a major motion picture. His other work has appeared in Texas Monthly, Esquire, the Guardian, and the New York Times.

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Jarret Middleton

Jarret Middleton

Fiction / Darkansas

Jarret Middleton wrote Darkansas and the novella An Dantomine Eerly. He was the founding editor of Dark Coast Press and the classics library Pharos Editions. His fiction, essays, and reviews have appeared in Shelf Awareness, The Quarterly Conversation, The Weeklings, Vol. 1 Brooklyn, The Collagist, SmokeLong Quarterly, HTMLGIANT, The Breadline Anthology, Hotel Angeline: A Novel in 36 Voices, and In Heaven, Everything is Fine: Fiction Inspired by David Lynch.

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Frank Morrison

Frank Morrison

Illustration / Let the Children March

Frank Morrison is an artist whose work has been dubbed a mash-up of urban mannerism, graffiti, and abstract contemporary art. Children's books he has illustrated include Jazzy Miz Mozetta, winner of the Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe Award for New Talent; Little Melba and Her Big Trombone, a Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor book; and Muhammad Ali. His work has been featured at the Art Basel, Scope Miami, and Red Dot art fairs, and it has been shown at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture and at the Mason Fine Art Gallery. His work is also in the William H. and Camille O. Cosby Collection and in the private collections of art patron Peggy Cooper-Cafritz and athlete Derek Jeter. Morrison, who has also toured the world as a break dancer, lives in Atlanta, Georgia, with his wife and five children.
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Erin Nations

Erin Nations

Graphic Novel / Gumballs

Erin Nations is an illustrator and cartoonist living in Portland, Oregon. He is the creator of the comic book series Gumballs and a contributor to the comics newspaper Vision Quest. His work also appears in We're Still Here: An All-Trans Comics Anthology.

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Annie England Noblin

Annie England Noblin

Juvenile Fiction / Pupcakes

Annie England Noblin lives with her son, husband, dogs, cats, and fish in the Missouri Ozarks. She is the author of four novels: Sit! Stay! Speak!; Just Fine With Caroline; Pupcakes: A Christmas Novel; and Hemingways in Love.

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Ijeomo Oluo

Ijeoma Oluo

Non-fiction / So You Want to Talk About Race

Ijeoma Oluo is a Seattle-based writer, speaker, and internet yeller. She is the author of So You Want to Talk about Race and an editor at large at The Establishment. Her writing on race, feminism, and other social issues has been featured in The Guardian, The Stranger, the Washington Post, TIME Magazine, ELLE, and elsewhere.

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Mallory Ortberg

Mallory Ortberg

Fiction / The Merry Spinster

Mallory Ortberg is a "Dear Prudence" columnist, cofounder of The Toast and the author of Texts from Jane Eyre, as well as the short-story collection The Merry Spinster.

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Darcy Pattison

Darcy Pattison

Juvenile Fiction / The Nantucket Sea Monster: A Fake News Story

Darcy Pattison wrote Nefertiti, the Spidernaut; Abayomi, the Brazilian; and Desert Baths—all named NSTA Outstanding Science Trade Books. Pattison's other science-related books include Wisdom, the Midway Albatross; Prairie Storms; and Burn: Michael Faraday's Candle. Her picture books include award-winner The Journey of Oliver K. Woodman; Searching for Oliver K. Woodman; 19 Girls and Me; 11 Ways to Ruin a Photograph: A Military Family Story; and The Nantucket Sea Monster: A Fake News Story.  Pattison also writes middle-grade novels and holds novel revision retreats nationally.

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J. Blake Perkins

Blake Perkins

Non-fiction / Hillbilly Hellraisers

Blake Perkins is an Arkansas native, chair of the Department of History at Williams Baptist College in Walnut Ridge, and author of Hillbilly Hellraisers: Federal Power and Populist Defiance in the Ozarks. His articles, including two prize-winning essays, have appeared in the Arkansas Historical Quarterly, the Missouri Historical Review, History of Education Quarterly, and Big Muddy: A Journal of the Mississippi River Valley. He lives with his wife, Jodie, and their two sons, Maddox and Rylan, in Lynn, where they operate a small family farm.

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Martin Philip

Martin Philip

Non-fiction / Breaking Bread

Martin Philip is the author of Breaking Bread: A Baker's Journey Home in 75 Recipes and head bread baker at King Arthur Flour in Norwich, Vermont. A former member of Team USA, he competed in the SIGEP Golden Cup in Rimini, Italy, and was a finalist for the coveted bread spot on Team USA at the World Cup of baking. He is a sought-after educator who has traveled internationally to bring baking education to under-served populations in rural villages in the Dominican Republic, to ex-convicts at Homeboy Industries in Los Angeles, and to recently landed bakers-in-training at Hot Bread Kitchen in New York City.

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Matthew Pitt

Matthew Pitt

Fiction / These are Our Demands

Matthew Pitt is a St. Louis native whose fiction collections are These Are Our Demands and Attention Please Now, winner of the Autumn House Fiction Prize and a Writers' League of Texas Book Award finalist. His stories and nonfiction appear in dozens of publications including the Oxford American, Epoch, the Southern Review, Cincinnati Review, Conjunctions, Smithsonian, and Best New American Voices. They have also been cited in editions of The Best American Short Stories, The Best American Nonrequired Reading, and The Pushcart Prize anthologies. Among his fellowships and awards are honors from the Mississippi Arts Commission, the Bronx Council on the Arts, the New York Times, and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, as well as the Bread Loaf, Sewanee, and Taos Writers' Conferences.

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Jamie Quatro

Jamie Quatro

Fiction / Fire Sermon

Jamie Quatro is the author of the debut collection I Want to Show You More, which is a New York Times Notable Book, NPR Best Book, Indie Next pick, O: The Oprah Magazine summer reading pick, and New York Times Editors' Choice. It was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction, the Georgia Townsend Fiction Prize, and the National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Prize. Quatro's fiction, poetry, and essays have appeared in Tin House, McSweeney's, VICE, the New York Times Book Review, and elsewhere. Quatro teaches in the Sewanee School of Letters MFA program and lives with her husband and four children in Lookout Mountain, Georgia.

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Nathaniel Rich

Nathaniel Rich

Fiction / King Zeno

Nathaniel Rich is the author of three novels: King Zeno, Odds Against Tomorrow, and The Mayor's Tongue. He is a writer-at-large for the New York Times Magazine and a regular contributor to the Atlantic and the New York Review of Books. He lives in New Orleans, Louisiana.

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Trina Robbins

Trina Robbins

Graphic Novel / Last Girl Standing

Trina Robbins is the author of Last Girl Standing. She has been producing comics since 1966, when she was drawing comics for the East Village Other, New York's iconic underground newspaper, as well as designing and selling clothes from her Lower East Side boutique, Broccoli. She produced the first all-woman comic book, It Ain't Me, Babe, and she was one of the founding mothers of Wimmin's Comix, the longest-running women's anthology comic book. She co-wrote Women and the Comics, the first of what would become a series of histories of women cartoonists, and has been responsible for rediscovering previously forgotten early women cartoonists. Robbins was the first woman to draw a Wonder Woman comic book. She was inducted into the Will Eisner Comic Book Hall of Fame and the Wizard World Hall of Legends.  At the San Diego comic convention, she received an Eisner Award for editing the two-volume reprint collection of the complete Wimmin's Comix.

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Anjali Sachdeva

Anjali Sachdeva

Fiction / All the Names They Used for God

Anjali Sachdeva, a graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop, has been published in the Iowa Review, Gulf Coast, Yale Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, the Literary Review, and Best American Nonrequired Reading. She has taught at the University of Iowa, Augustana College, and Carnegie Mellon University. She also worked for six years at the Creative Nonfiction Foundation, where she was director of educational programs. She currently teaches at the University of Pittsburgh. All the Names They Used for God is her first book.

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Salicrow

Salicrow

Memoir / Jump Girl

Salicrow is a natural psychic medium who, for more than twenty-five years, has worked as a seer, divining the future and revisiting the past. She helps people connect with beloved family, friends, and loved ones who have passed away, and she seeks to connect with the guiding spirits who watch over them. She is a reiki master, a sound healer, a druid, a practitioner of Rune Valdr and Seithr, and she is the author of Jump Girl: The Initiation and Art of a Spirit Speaker—A Memoir.

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TBA April 1, 2018

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Debby Schriver

Debby Schriver

Non-fiction / Whispering in the Daylight: The Children of Tony Alamo

Debby Schriver is the author of Whispering in the Daylight: The Children of Tony Alamo Christian Ministries and Their Journey to Freedom. She has spent her career at the University of Tennessee in the departments of student life and employee development. A community advocate for children, she is a volunteer for Girl Scouts, the American Red Cross, YWCA, Rotary, and the foster care review board, and she participates in literacy programs for school children. Her previous books include In the Footsteps of Champions: The University of Tennessee Lady Volunteers, the First Three Decades; To Read My Heart: The Journal of Rachel Van Dyke, 1810–1811 (co-editor); and Ice 'n' Go: Score in Sports and Life (co-author). A native of Chicago, she currently lives in Knoxville, Tennessee.

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TBA April 1, 2018

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Christine Schutt

Christine Schutt

Fiction / Pure Hollywood and Other Stories

Christine Schutt is the author of three short-story collections: Nightwork; A Day, a Night, Another Day, Summer; and, most recently, Pure Hollywood. Schutt is also the author of three novels: Prosperous Friends; Florida, a National Book Award finalist; and All Souls, a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize.
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Shanthi Sekaran

Shanthi Sekaran

Fiction / Lucky Boy

Shanthi Sekaran wrote Lucky Boy, named a 2017 Amazon Editor's Pick and an Indie Next Great read. She grew up in Sacramento and lived in Berkeley, Baltimore, Germany, and England before returning to the U.S. eight years ago. Her essays and stories have appeared in the New York Times, Huffington Post, Canteen Magazine, and the Chattahoochee Review.

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TBA April 1, 2018

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Jason Shores-Aguello

Jacob Shores-Arguello

Non-fiction / Paraiso

Jacob Shores-Arguello is a Costa Rican American poet and fiction writer and the author of Paraíso, which was selected for the inaugural CantoMundo Poetry Prize. He is the recipient of a Fulbright Fellowship, the Dzanc Books ILP International Literature Award, the Fine Arts Work Center Fellowship in Provincetown, the Djerassi Resident Artist's Fellowship, and the Amy Clampitt residency in Lenox. He will be a 2017–2018 Hodder fellow at Princeton University. His work appears in the New Yorker, Poetry Magazine, and the Oxford American.

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Bennett Sims

Bennett Sims

Fiction / White Dialogues

Bennett Sims is the author of White Dialogues and A Questionable Shape, which received the Bard Fiction Prize and was a finalist for The Believer Book Award. He is a recipient of a Michener-Copernicus Society Fellowship. His fiction has appeared in A Public Space, Conjunctions, Electric Literature, Tin House, and Zoetrope: All-Story, as well as in the Pushcart Prize Anthology. He has taught at Bard College, Grinnell College, and the Iowa Writers' Workshop.

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TBA April 1, 2018

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Betsy Singleton Snyder

Betsy Singleton Snyder

Memoir / Stepping on Cheerios

Betsy Singleton Snyder is the author of Stepping on Cheerios: Finding God in the Chaos and Clutter of Life and writes "Parent-ish," a monthly column for Little Rock Family Magazine. Her writing has appeared in MTL magazine and on Thrivemoms.com. She blogs often about women's issues, parenthood, and spirituality on her website, WomenadeStand.com. She is a United Methodist pastor and the mom of four boys.

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Brian Sorensen

Brian Sorensen

Non-fiction / Arkansas Beer: An Intoxicating History

Brian Sorensen is a freelance writer based in Fayetteville. His work has appeared in the Fayetteville Flyer, All About Beer magazine, and Southwest Brewing News. The University of Arkansas graduate is also a human resources director for a Fortune 100 company based in northwestern Arkansas. His "gateway beer" was Sierra Nevada Stout, and he learned to brew by way of the Methodist Church (true story). Sorensen, author of Arkansas Beer: An Intoxicating History, enjoys traveling to beer destinations across the world with his wife, Megan.

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TBA April 1, 2018

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Mark Spitzer

Mark Spitzer

Non-fiction / Beautiful Grotesque Fish of the American West

Mark Spitzer is the author of 26 books, including Beautifully Grotesque Fish of the American West. He has been seen on TV and heard on the radio defending fish and amphibians. In addition to his environmental fish books, he has published novels, memoirs, collections of poetry, and literary translations.

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Ellen Stackable

Ellen Stackable

Teacher / Poetic Justice

Ellen Stackable is the founder of Poetic Justice, an Oklahoma nonprofit organization that offers restorative writing workshops to incarcerated women in the state. She is also a high school English teacher at Tulsa School of Arts and Sciences. Stackable was named one of Tulsa's women of the year by the YWCA.

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Kory Stamper

Kory Stamper

Non-fiction / Word by Word

Kory Stamper is a lexicographer at Merriam-Webster, where she also writes, edits, and appears in the "Ask the Editor" video series. She blogs regularly on language and lexicography, and her writing has appeared in the Guardian and the New York Times, and on Slate.com.

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TBA April 1, 2018

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Liz Talley

Liz Talley

Fiction / Come Home to Me

Liz Talley is the author of twenty-five heartwarming stories. A finalist in two RWA competitions (Golden Heart and Rita), she makes her home in Louisiana, where she likes to read, volunteer, and avoid housework. Her newest release, Come Home to Me, is an emotional southern story about the power of forgiveness.

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TBA April 1, 2018

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Stephanie Vanderslice

Stephanie Vanderslice

Non-fiction / The Geek's Guide to the Writing Life

Stephanie Vanderslice is professor of creative writing and director of the Arkansas Writer's MFA Workshop at the University of Central Arkansas, and she is the chairperson of the Creative Writing Studies Organization. Her column "The Geek's Guide to the Writing Life" appears regularly in the Huffington Post, and she just published a book by the same name. She publishes fiction, nonfiction, and creative writing criticism; titles include Can Creative Writing Really Be Taught?: Resisting Lore in Creative Writing Pedagogy and Teaching Creative Writing to Undergraduates: A Guide and Sourcebook Rethinking Creative Writing.

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Grace Vest

Grace Vest

Non-fiction / Home Sweet Home: Arkansas Rescue Dogs & Their Stories

Grace Vest is the author of Home Sweet Home: Arkansas Rescue Dogs & Their Stories. She loves spending time with her husband and their young son. Vest and her family currently own three rescue animals: a lab, a beagle, and a three-legged cat. When she isn't out trying to save an animal, she is organizing marketing projects and facilitating communication across the departments at Team SI, a digital marketing firm in Little Rock. Her motto is "Adopt don't shop!"

Appearing…

TBA April 1, 2018

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Wayne Wiegand

Wayne Wiegand

Non-fiction / The Desegregation of Public Libraries in the Jim Crow South: Civil Rights and Local Activism

Wayne Wiegand is the co-author of The Desegregation of Public Libraries in the Jim Crow South: Civil Rights and Local Activism. Wiegand is the F. William Summers Professor Emeritus of Library and Information Studies at Florida State University.

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Julia Whicker

Julia Whicker

Fiction / Wonderblood

Julia Whicker won both the prestigious Capote Fellowship and the Teaching-Writing Fellowship at the Iowa Writers' Workshop. Her poetry and essays have been published in the Iowa Review, Word Riot, and The Millions, and she has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. A version of the first chapter of her novel Wonderblood was published in the literary journal Unstuck.

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Bill Worthen

Bill Worthen

Non-fiction / A Sure Defense: The Bowie Knife in America

Bill Worthen is the co-author of A Sure Defense: The Bowie Knife in America. Worthen spent his career studying, saving, and presenting the frontier history of Arkansas as director of the Historic Arkansas Museum. The bowie knife, or "Arkansas toothpick," is one of the most interesting relics of the state's and the nation's frontier history.

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Mark Zalesky

Mark Zalesky

Non-fiction / A Sure Defense: The Bowie Knife in America

Mark Zalesky is a lifelong knife enthusiast and expert. Publisher of KNIFE magazine, he has penned hundreds of articles and has served as an appraiser and as a museum consultant. He is the author of A Sure Defense: The Bowie Knife in America.

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Ibi Zoboi

Ibi Zoboi

YA Fiction / American Street

Ibi Zoboi's debut YA novel, American Street, was a National Book Award Finalist. Her award-winning writing has been published in the New York Times Book Review, the Horn Book Magazine, the Rumpus, and elsewhere. Pride, her second YA novel, will be released this fall.

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TBA April 1, 2018

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Contribute

We couldn't present so many great authors every year, most of them appearing free to the public, without the sustained effort and support of people like you. All forms of support are welcome and truly appreciated.

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Volunteers

Volunteers are necessary to help with pre-festival marketing and planning, as well as festival coordination and operations management. If you'd like to volunteer your time and skill, please contact Chris Beaumont, CALS Volunteer Coordinator, by email or by phone at 918-3085.

Mail Your Donation

Contributions are always welcome in any form. If you would like to send a check with your donation, please mail it to:

Arkansas Literary Festival
100 Rock St.
Little Rock, AR 72201

You may also make a secure online donation here (be sure to designate your gift for the Arkansas Literary Festival). This form is hosted on the Central Arkansas Library System's (CALS) primary website; the Arkansas Literary Festival is a project of CALS.

About Us

The Arkansas Literary Festival is a project of the Central Arkansas Library System. The Festival's mission is to encourage the development of a more literate populace.

A group of dedicated volunteers assists Festival Coordinator Brad Mooy with planning the Festival. Committee chairs include Susan Santa Cruz, Cathy Spivey, and Melissa Woods, Festival Guides; Amy Bradley-Hole, Moderators; and Jennifer White, WITS.



Festival Coordinator: Brad Mooy



Central Arkansas Library System

The Arkansas Literary Festival is a program of the Central Arkansas Library System
100 Rock St.   Little Rock, AR   72201