Nationally renowned authors include Margaret Atwood, Taye Diggs, Nick Flynn, Linda Gray, Daniel Handler (Lemony Snicket), Gary Hart, Luis Alberto Urrea, Margo Jefferson, Attica Locke, Marie Lu, Chuck Palahniuk, Tavi Gevinson, and Adrian Tomine.
Other headlining authors include Sandra Cisneros, Steve Inskeep, Azar Nafisi, Leonard Pitts, Jr., Mary Helen Specht, Jonathan Lethem, Lauren Groff, John Sununu, Scott Simon, and Robert Christgau. You can see the full author list here.
Celebrating the Festival’s 20th anniversary and her third year as Festival literary director, Steph Opitz says it’s all been “an incredibly gratifying experience.”
“Over the years we’ve had fabulous big name-authors and we’ve had ‘trust-us-this-person/book-is going-to-be-huge’ overnight sensations. This year it’s going to be all that and some,” Opitz says. “If I wasn’t working this thing, I’d be sprinting from session to session trying to get at least a taste of all the magic happening in our Capitol that weekend.”
Standout themes this year include several books about music, poetry, graphic novels including several by women authors, and a strong showing of children’s and young adult authors.
More than 40,000 people are expected to attend the 20th Anniversary Texas Book Festival Oct. 17 and 18. The weekend kicks off with the First Edition Literary Gala, featuring Festival authors Margaret Atwood, Taye Diggs, and Scott Simon. The Gala is held at the Four Seasons, and only a few tickets are remaining. An after-party will also be held at the Four Seasons, to give more people the opportunity to mingle with authors and be part of the Gala festivities. Tickets to the after-party are $75 and are available for purchase here.
One of the nation’s premier literary events and longest-running book festivals in the country, the Festival continues to be free and open to the public thanks to sponsors and volunteers. In addition to the record number of authors, the Festival brings 40,000 attendees, live music, kids’ activities, food trucks, book signings and sales, and 100 exhibitors all in and around the State Capitol over two full days.