Charleston Literary Festival Launches Ticket Sales for Its Most Ambitious Festival Featuring an International Program of Celebrated Authors

(EZ Newswire)

CHARLESTON, SC -- As the highly anticipated Charleston Literary Festival launches ticket sales today, lovers of books and ideas are invited to celebrate the written word within the backdrop of historic downtown Charleston. Upholding the festival theme of "Embrace the Conversation," this year’s annual event hosts celebrated authors like Adam Gopnik, Simon Schama, Claire Keegan, Rebecca Makkai, A.O. Scott, Safiya Sinclair, and Gary Younge to build connections and open dialogues with festival-goers.

"We are really excited for what promises to be our most ambitious year yet," said Executive Director Sarah Moriarty, "Bringing this prestigious line-up of international and national authors together to explore big ideas with audiences in Charleston is a real privilege for us."

The Program: Session and Panel Highlights Featuring Authors & Celebrated Works

World-Class Literary Fiction

  • Claire Keegan: Celebrated for her unique storytelling and powerful economic use of prose, Keegan, shortlisted for the 2022 Booker Prize, will discuss her novel Small Things Like These, an exploration of community, secrecy, and abuses of power.
  • Lorrie Moore: Esteemed American author and Vanderbilt University Professor Moore will introduce her novel I Am Homeless If This Is Not My Home, a post-modern take on love and death that challenges readers’ perceptions. Her narrative distinctiveness earned her acclaim in the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
  • Paul Harding: Pulitzer Prize-winning Harding offers an engrossing narrative technique in his novel This Other Eden, recounting a forgotten era of American history.
  • Richard Ford: Pulitzer Prize-winning Ford brings Be Mine, the closing chapter to his Frank Bascombe series, to the Festival. The novel, a study on mortality and happiness, is a testament to Ford's ability to convey life's complexities through profound storytelling.

Memoir & Healing

  • Patrick Bringley: A former guard at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Bringley shares his memoir All the Beauty in the World, reflecting on his journey through grief using art as a healing touchstone.
  • Safiya Sinclair: Celebrated Jamaican-born author Sinclair offers How to Say Babylon, a memoir that intertwines personal history and displacement.

Nonfiction Excellence

  • Jonathan Eig: Acclaimed author Eig presents his latest biography, King: A Life, revealing fresh perspectives on Martin Luther King Jr.'s life and pursuit of justice. Offering detailed insights based on newly released FBI documents, the book demonstrates Eig's prowess as a biographer, complementing his 2018 PEN America Literary Award-winning Ali: A Life.
  • LGBTQ+ Histories: Harlan Greene and Jamie Kirchick: Greene and Kirchick reveal uncharted LGBTQ+ histories in Charleston and Washington D.C. through their respective works, The Real Rainbow Row and Secret City. Greene uncovers centuries of suppressed LGBTQ+ contributions to Charleston, while Kirchick navigates Gay Washington's hidden sagas from the New Deal to the Cold War.

Topical Panels & Conversations

The Festival also features sessions focusing on pressing, timely issues—climate change, perceived declines in reading, and artificial intelligence.

Engaging Panels & Discussions

  • Is Charleston in Peril? Panelists Jeff Goodell, Faith Rivers James, Susan Crawford, and Henry Smythe discuss the potential vulnerability of coastal regions like Charleston to climate change consequences. They will explore strategies for a sustainable future for humanity and nature in an era of weather extremities.
  • Artificial Intelligence: Friend or Foe? Panelists André Aciman, James Barrat, and Karl Bakeman delve into the rapid advancements in Artificial Intelligence and its ramifications on authors, translators, and the publishing industry. They examine the exciting yet daunting prospects that AI proposes, from creative opportunities to threats like plagiarism to programming paradoxes.
  • Are We In a Reading Crisis? A.O. Scott, former New York Times film critic turned Critic-at-Large for The New York Times Book Review, discusses the perceived decline in reading. Scott will converse with Wenda Harris Millard, Charleston Literary Festival Board member, highlighting his thoughts on the cultural importance of reading and the factors threatening its existence.

Community Is Everything

The Festival continues its commitment to Charleston's broader arts and culture ecosystem through strategic partnerships and collaborations. The College of Charleston serves again as the Festival’s Official Academic Partner for this year's Festival.

In addition, the Festival will partner with the International African American Museum to host two sessions at the museum this year. The Charleston County Public Library will extend access to a complimentary virtual session featuring acclaimed author Margaret Atwood, accessible to its cardholders.

This year sees the Festival’s second annual collaboration with Oakwood University and the City of Charleston Mayor John Tecklenberg to create Charleston READS! The mayor will encourage citizens to read along and then join the Mayor at the Festival for a free-of-charge session with the author. This year’s book is The Original Black Elite: Daniel Murray and the Story of a Forgotten Era by Elizabeth Dowling Taylor, and she will be joined in conversation with Dr. Kim Cliett Long. 

Charleston Literary Festival's Young Writer Awards

This year marks the pilot year for Charleston Literary Festival’s Young Writer Awards. Dedicated to recognizing students with exceptional writing talent while promoting the transformative power of literature and encouraging creative growth, the Young Writer Awards are open to all 10th, 11th, and 12th graders enrolled in a public high school in Charleston County. Awards will be given to six students in two categories: personal essay (nonfiction) and short story (fiction). There will be small cash prizes for the winners and an opportunity to present their work during the Festival. Find more information here

Books with a Bang! Opening Party

The opening party, aptly named "Books with a Bang!" is proudly sponsored by TNT Fireworks, America’s best-selling brand of fireworks. It will take place on Saturday, November 4th, on the picturesque campus of the College of Charleston, the festival's Official Academic Partner. Guests can expect live music from Grammy-winning trombonist Wycliffe Gordon, festive food and drink, and a new poem commissioned by the Festival from Charleston Poet Laureate Asiah Mae.

Get Planning: Kickstart Your Festival Experience Today!

Ticket Sales: Tickets go quickly, so it’s time for Festival-goers to grab their favorite sessions, get the books, tell two friends, and plan!

Ticketing Link:

Program Link:

Plan Your Trip: Start preparing for the Festival by securing your accommodations and making travel arrangements for a smooth, stress-free experience.

  • Book Ends: Catch the festival on both or one of our weekends.
  • Short Story: Dip in for a few sessions or just one.
  • The Full Monty: A limited number of all-access passes are still available for sale. These tickets allow you to immerse yourself in the Festival experience with access to all sessions, including a ticket to the opening night party.

Where to Get Your Books: Buxton Books, the official bookseller of the Charleston Literary Festival, is an independent bookstore in historic downtown Charleston, South Carolina. Known for its creative collaborations and vibrant event schedule, Buxton Books is the go-to destination for preparing for this year's event, offering an extensive collection of Festival books and authors. Festival books are also available on loan from the many branches of the Charleston County Public Library.

Make Reservations: Visit our Charleston Visitor Bureau partner at to begin planning your trip with recommended lodging, dining and nightlife, and local attractions. Donors and sponsors of the Festival are invited to exclusive private dinners and events. To become a sponsor, visit

Location/Venues: Charleston, SC. Live events are presented in notable venues in the historic downtown area, including the historic Dock Street Theatre and Circular Congregational Church. All events are within walking distance of local amenities such as boutique hotels, great shopping, and plentiful restaurants.

  • Circular Congregational Church was established in 1681 and has been inextricably attached to the history of the city around it.  
  • Dock Street Theatre opened in 1736, an iconic landmark with the profound historical significance of being the first structure in America built expressly for theatrical performance.

Website: Visit for more information

About Charleston Literary Festival

Charleston Literary Festival is a boutique literary festival that runs every November for ten days in Charleston, South Carolina. With roots in the Charleston House in the UK—home of the radical writers, artists, and thinkers of the Bloomsbury Group—Charleston Literary Festival is committed to maintaining an international perspective while fostering and empowering the next generation of writers and thinkers in Charleston and South Carolina. Founded in 2017, the Festival specializes in high-quality events that create perspective-altering conversations with world-renowned, prize-winning authors and thinkers. 

The Festival’s programming is carefully curated based on literary and artistic excellence, originality, and critical acclaim. Charleston Literary Festival is committed to offering a diverse program of events regarding speakers and topics, reaching out to all communities, and initiatives that widen access to its programs. An independent 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, previous attendees of the Festival include Brit Bennett, Geraldine Brooks, Tina Brown, Hernan Diaz, Eddie Glaude, Yaa Gyasi, Patrick Radden Keefe, Ian McEwan, Joyce Carol Oates, Imani Perry, George Saunders, Colm Tóibín, and Jeannette Winterson.

For more details about Charleston Literary Festival, please visit the official website.

Media Contact

Sterling Eason
Eason Creative Studio

Photo credit(s): Valerie and Ed Photography, MCG Photography


SOURCE: Charleston Literary Festival

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