Coming to Decatur for the annual AJC-Decatur Book Festival? You and 70,000 other book lovers are going to have a great Labor Day weekend. I am particularly dying to hear Tom Perrotta (love his books) and Karen Russell (Swamplandia is supposed to be amazing.)
That’s just two of the hundreds of authors who’ll be on and around the Old Courthouse Square on September 2nd, 3rd, and 4th.
The entire line-up for the festival looks pretty darn dazzling. You can see the whole thing at the Decatur Book Festival’s official website.
As you stroll from one venue to the next don’t miss spending some time at the Book Market and Street Fair. I have some inside information on the authors, organizations, artists, journals and small presses who are participating. Here are a few of my favorites.
Annette Laing wites funny and brilliant time travel stories aimed at the middle-school reader. (I confess–I’m a sucker for time travel stories.) Dr. Laing is a professional historian and a natural-born storyteller. Her Snipesville Chronicles are hugely entertaining and packed with living, breathing history. From Annette’s website: When you wake up in the year 1851 on a Scottish hillside…or down an English coal mine…or in a field on a Southern plantation, you know you’re in for a lousy day.
You’ll find Annette Laing in the children’s area. Her booth will be mobbed.
Out of Print. Probably not what you’d guess. Out of Print Clothing out of New York has some of the best tee shirts ever if you are a bibliophile, or even if you’re simply a fan of great graphic design. They print cover art from classic editions on comfy shirts–beautiful.
Tell me this doesn’t take you back:
According to their website, they’re also now selling iphone cases with the same images. And by the way, for each shirt they sell, they donate a book to a community in need. Do good, look good.
OK, just one more. I am thrilled to bits that the Foxfire Museum and Heritage Center is joining the book festival as an exhibitor. Many years ago the Foxfire books were as ubiquitous on any hippie’s bookshelf as the Whole Earth Catalogue and the Spider Plant. The terrific series was compiled by high school students in North Georgia. They wrote about the homes, tools, trades, crafts, and lifestyle of the all-but-vanished pioneer culture of the Southern Appalachian mountains. Foxfire students began interviewing their families, friends, and neighbors in 1966. Many times, these folks would give the students some old tools or the finished hand-crafted items they were discussing or documenting. Very quickly, Foxfire was growing an extensive artifact collection. The Foxfire Book soon became a national phenomenon.
So cool! I can’t wait to see what they have on display at the festival.
OK, I promised that was the end but let me squeeze in one more. Karen Syed is an independent publisher and a long-time fried of the Decatur Book Festival. She runs Echelon Press and each year brings four or five of her authors to meet the public and promote their books. Tip: don’t miss our indie publishers! Last year’s National Book Award went to a writer from a small press. This year Karen is bringing Gale Borger, Mary Cunningham, Sam Morton, and more.
Tons, tons, tons more to tell you about. We’ll have food, drinks, music, dancing, art and a whole lot of fun. And, like most of our Decatur events, thanks to our sponsors, patrons and huge corps of volunteers, it’s all free and open to everyone.