Texas Lit Events

Literary happenings in Austin and ’round the State you won’t want to miss – author sightings, readings, panels, parties . . . a variety of literary events you might enjoy.  

If you are an author, publisher, bookstore, literary organization and have an event happening in Texas that you would like listed to be considered, please send all the pertinent info to: bookfest@texasbookfestival.org

Christmas Classics Story Time @ BookPeople
Dec 23 @ 10:30 am – 11:30 am
Christmas Classics Story Time @ BookPeople | Austin | Texas | United States

Join BookPeople for a reading the Christmas classic, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, and a Christmas craft!

About the Book: No holiday season is complete without the Grinch, Max, Cindy-Lou, and all the residents of Who-ville, in this heartwarming story about the effects of the Christmas spirit on even the smallest and coldest of hearts. Like mistletoe, candy canes, and caroling, the Grinch is a mainstay of the holidays, and his story is the perfect gift for young and old.

About the Author: Theodor Seuss Geisel, also known as Dr. Seuss,—is one of the most beloved children’s book authors of all time. The books he wrote and illustrated under the name Dr. Seuss have been translated into thirty languages. Dr. Seuss’s long list of awards includes Caldecott Honors for McElligot’s Pool, If I Ran the Zoo, and Bartholomew and the Oobleck, the Pulitzer Prize, and eight honorary doctorates. Works based on his original stories have won three Oscars, three Emmys, three Grammys, and a Peabody.

Public Poetry Library Series – January 2015 @ Houston Public Library - Shepard-Acres Home Branch
Jan 3 @ 2:00 pm

Public Poetry presents its winter 2015 season of free Library Series readings.  The January reading is at the Shepard-Acres Homes neighborhood branch of the Houston Public Library, and features poets Jack Brannon, Billie Duncan, Drew Krewer, and Stalina Villarreal.

Expect some excitement!  This is definitely not about sitting through endless, long, boring poems!  Think poetry coming at you from all directions – poems from professors and from performance poets, formal sonnets, spoken word, slam and sestinas – all kinds of good poets and all kinds of good poetry mixed into one all-original event.

Fresh local, state and national poets are featured each month at libraries throughout Houston, changing location every 3 months. This free, year-round poetry series is organized by Public Poetry, a non-profit poetry organization in partnership with Houston Public Library.  Amazingly talented student poets also appear at every event, presented in collaboration with Writers In the Schools/WITS.

All ages welcome.

All Public Poetry events are the first Saturday of the month at 2:00pm.  Doors open 30 minutes before. Post-show social lunch; information on lunch location provided at the venue.

Sarah Bird @ Barnes & Noble Preston Royal Shopping Center
Jan 24 @ 10:00 am

Come and meet novelist and screenwriter and 2014 Texas Book Festival author Sarah Bird on January 24, 2015 at 10 a.m. for a book signing of her novel,  Above the East China SeaAbove the East China Sea tells the entwined stories of two teenaged girls, an American and an Okinawan, whose lives are connected across seventy years by the shared experience of profound loss, the enduring strength of an ancient culture, and the redeeming power of family love.

Sarah Bird -- Photo2014 Texas Writer Award recipient SARAH BIRD has been part of B&N’s Discover Great Writers series, a Dobie-Paisano Fellow; a National Magazine Award and Illumine Award for Excellence in Fiction winner; an inductee into the Texas Literary Hall of Fame; a Moth Radio Hour storyteller; a writer for Oprah’s Magazine, NY Times Sunday Magazine, Real Simple, Mademoiselle, Glamour, Salon, Daily Beast, Ladies Home Journal, Good Housekeeping, Cosmopolitan, Seventeen, MS, and Texas Observer, and a screenwriter for Paramount, CBS, Warner Bros, National Geographic, ABC, TNT, and several independent producers. Her original screenplay, Daughter of a Daughter of a Queen is being developed by Pantheon of Women films. She lives in Austin, in hipster heaven, with hubbo George, son Gabriel, and two ferocious attack Corgis.

Scott Blackwood @ Zilker Park Clubhouse
Jan 27 @ 6:00 pm

Show your support for the Austin Public Library and join Scott Blackwood on January 27, 2015 at 6:00 p.m. at Zilker Park Clubhouse for the launch of his latest novel See How Small. There will be food, libations, live music, and incredible views of the Austin skyline and Moontower in Zilker. Donations to help support the Austin Public Library will also be accepted at the door, courtesy of the generous and good people at Jack White’s Third Man Records, Book People, and the Texas Book Festival. All proceeds will go toward supporting the Austin Public Library.

Music will include the 2015 Grammy-nominated THE RISE AND FALL OF PARAMOUNT RECORDS, VOL. I, as well as the recent release, THE RISE AND FALL OF PARAMOUNT RECORDS,  VOL. II. Both Jordan Smith, the John Jay Award-winning journalist (formerly of The Austin Chronicle) who covered the still-unsolved “Austin yogurt shop murders” (which inspired the novel), and Rengin Altay, the talented Chicago-based actress who voiced the See How Small audio book, will also be in attendance.


see how smallScott Blackwood’s See How Small is a fictional account of the unsolved murder of teenage girls in Austin, Texas, the scars of which still linger in the city twenty-three years later. It is a tale of the survivors’ family members, witnesses, and suspects enduring tragedy’s aftermath, as well as a tale of elusive justice, dark and sweet memories, and the tenuousness of human connections. With his new novel, Blackwood masterfully compresses calamity and loss into a lyrical and mesmerizing novel that will both amaze and haunt.

Scott Blackwood is the author of two previous books of fiction, In the Shadow of Our House and We Agreed to Meet Just Here, and the recipient of a Whiting Writers’ Award. He’s also the author of The Rise and Fall of Paramount Records, a book of narrative nonfiction. A longtime resident of Austin, Blackwood now lives in Chicago.





Jay Brandon @ Barnes & Noble at the Arboretum
Feb 7 @ 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Jay Brandon @ Barnes & Noble at the Arboretum  | Austin | Texas | United States

Join Jay Brandon to learn more about his newest book, Shadow Knight’s Mate. Talk is to be followed by a signing and a meet-and-greet.

About the Book: Jack Driscoll and a Israeli security specialist Rachel Green partner up with a sexy but mysterious woman in order to prevent an attack on a global economic summit in Europe. Together they must make sure the president of the United States attends the summit while keeping him safe from assassins who would like nothing more than to start the next world war. Readers will discover some of the “real history” of America, including why Lee chose Gettysburg, why Franklin Roosevelt had to run for a third and fourth term in office, and why Tom Hanks’ becoming a movie star was one of secret society’s greatest failures.

About the Author: With a Master’s Degree in writing from Johns Hopkins University and experience as an attorney with the District Attorney’s office in Bexar County and with the Fourth Court of Appeals and a native Texan, Jay Brandon devotes his time to writing and his law practice in San Antonio, where he lives with his wife and children.

Gulf Coast Reading Series: February 2015 @ Rudyard's British Pub
Feb 20 @ 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Gulf Coast is proud to present its 2014-2015 Reading Series, featuring writers from the University of Houston’s nationally-acclaimed graduate program in creative writing, on Friday, February 20.

This is not your parents’ poetry reading! The Gulf Coast Reading Series will dazzle and enchant—or, at the very least, leave you warmly welcomed and entertained by emerging and established poets and writers.

There are no cookie-cutter voices or styles here; we love Houston so much we assemble a new roster of fresh literary talent month after month!

The readings are free and open to the public. They begin at 7 p.m. on Fridays in the upstairs room at Rudyard’s British Pub, 2010 Waugh Dr., Houston, Texas, 77006.

Gulf Coast: A Journal of Literature and Fine Arts is a premiere, student-run journal of literature, art, and critical art writing housed in the English Department at the University of Houston, home to one of the nation’s top-ranked creative writing programs.

2015 Austin Book Fest @ Hyatt Regency Austin
Mar 7 @ 12:00 pm – 4:00 pm

This is an event signing with 50 bestselling authors, hosted by Vilma’s Book Blog. Books will be available for sale from Barnes and Noble; however, attendees can also bring their own books to sign. Each attendee will receive a tote bag.

Each ticket gives you guaranteed entrance for that time slot.

For more information, visit www.facebook.com/austinbookfest/

2014/2015 Inprint Margarett Root Brown Reading Series: Kazuo Ishiguro @ Wortham Theater Center, Cullen Theater
Mar 23 @ 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm

The 2014/2015 Inprint Margarett Root Brown Reading Series presents an evening with award-winning authorKazuo Ishiguro.  Monday, March 23, 2015 at 7:30 pm (doors open at 6:45 pm). LOCATION: Cullen Theater, Wortham Center.

KAZUO inprint_-_kazuo_ishiguro_categoryISHIGURO “is a master storyteller, in a class of his own making,” declares The Independent, and The New York Times calls him “an original and remarkable genius.”

Born in Japan and raised in England, Ishiguro is one of the most celebrated writers of our time. He has been nominated for the Man Booker Prize four times and won it in 1989 for his international bestseller The Remains of the Day, which Newsweek praised as “brilliant and quietly devastating” and The New York Review of Booksdescribed as “a virtuoso performance … put on with dazzling daring and aplomb.”

The author of six novels, his other major works include The Artist of the Floating World and Never Let Me Go. Both The Remains of the Day and Never Let Me Go were made into feature films. Ishiguro has received an OBE award from the British government and the prestigious Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres from France.

In 2005, Time magazine included Never Let Me Go on its list of 100 greatest English language novels since the magazine’s inception in 1923, and in 2008 The Times named Ishiguro in its list of the 50 greatest British writers since 1948.

He will read from his highly anticipated new novel The Buried Giant, coming out in March 2015.

This is the 34th season of the Inprint Margarett Root Brown Reading Series in Houston, Texas. The 2014/2015 season features 11 of the world’s great authors of creative writing. The season runs from September to May and consists of eight evenings, each beginning with a reading by one or two writers, followed by an on-stage interview conducted by a local writer or scholar, and concluding with a book sale and signing, where audience members can meet the authors. All readings begin at 7:30 pm.

Photo credit: Phil Weedon

Austin International Poetry Festival
Apr 9 – Apr 12 all-day

The world’s largest non juried poetry festival has opened world wide registration for its annual Anthology and four-day festival slated for April 9–12, 2015. Hosted in the heart of Texas, the Festival utilizes more than 20 unique Austin venues. The annual four-day poetry celebration includes a wide array of events such as open mic readings, appearances by international and national headlining poets, workshops, live music, a Haiku Death Match, plus youth and adult poetry slams. By registering for the Austin International Poetry Festival, any poet of any age can read their work before an engaged and interested audience, and have a chance to be published. Registration for the April 9–12, 2015 Festival ranges from $35 to $55 per person, and INCLUDES the entry of three poems into the annual juried Anthology. Although full participation in the Festival is encouraged, poets who wish to participate but can not attend may do so by registering and submitting their works for the Anthology. The deadline for registration, which includes submissions to the Anthology, is January 1, 2015. To register for the Austin International Poetry Festival, or for more details, visit www.aipf.org.

San Antonio Book Festival @ Central Library and Southwest School of Art
Apr 11 all-day

On Saturday, April 11th, 2015, the Library Foundation presents its third annual San Antonio Book Festival. This all-day, free event is held downtown at the Central Library, Southwest School of Art and the Empire Theater, where book lovers of all ages and interests have a chance to get up close to their favorite authors at engaging readings, panel discussions, sales and signings. There are topics for everyone, from politics and fiction to poetry and cookbooks. The lineup of nearly 90 authors showcases acclaimed national and regional writers who reflect the best books that American publishers are currently offering, while local talent adds a unique sense of place and reflects South Texas’ rich cultural heritage.

For more information on the Festival, please click here.