Your Authoritative Source for … Authors!

The author list, to date, for the Library of Congress’ National Book Festival on Sept. 24 and 25 on the National Mall (that’s right – two days this year) is bursting with talent – and we’re not even done filling all the slots yet!

Who’s coming?

Nobel- and Pulitzer Prize-winner Toni Morrison; Pulitzer Prize-winners Siddhartha Mukherjee, Jennifer Egan, Eric Foner and David McCullough; Russell Banks, Dave Eggers, Terry McMillan, Garrison Keillor, and Amy Chua; (sound of a big breath being inhaled … ) and

Edmund Morris, Louis Bayard, Isabel Wilkerson, pianist Leon Fleisher, former Poet Laureate Rita Dove, Hoda Kotb of the “Today” show, Gregory Maguire of “Wicked” fame, National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature Katherine Paterson, television newsman Jim Lehrer, actress/children’s book author Julianne Moore and Esmeralda Santiago … not to mention …

Joel Achenbach, Sherman Alexie, Mary Brigid Barrett, Steve Berry, Harry Bliss, Calef Brown, Cassandra Clare, Susan Cooper, Michael Cunningham, Tomi dePaola, Sarah Dessen, Joshua Foer, Jack Gantos, Margaret George, Adam Goodheart, Mary Gordon, Jessica Harris, Joe Hayes, Terrance Hayes, Maya Jasanoff, William Joyce, Marc Kaufman, Yusef Komunyakaa, Gordon Korman, Uma Krishnaswami, Sam McBratney, Patricia McKissack, John Bemelmans Marciano, Candice Millard, Kristie Miller, Shelia P. Moses, Sylvia Nasar, Kadir Nelson, Sara Paretsky, Linda Pastan, Carla L. Peterson, Allen Say, Gary Schmidt, Elizabeth Hun Schmidt, Brian Selznick, Neal Stephenson, James Swanson, Sarah Vowell, Douglas Waller, Chris Van Dusen, Rita Williams-Garcia, Jonathan Yardley and the delightful artist Jon J Muth, who has designed this year’s National Book Festival poster.

Excited yet?  Tell us with a comment below! And look for updates soon on the National Book Festival website.


  1. Marjorie Corrallo
    May 25, 2011 at 5:37 pm

    Wow, impressive, can’t wait. Dates are on the calander! Thank you for the info… and for the professional work.

  2. Doug O
    May 25, 2011 at 5:47 pm

    Wow what a line up looking forward to it

  3. Gonzalo T. Palacios, Ph.D.
    May 25, 2011 at 8:52 pm

    Is it possible for any author to participate in the Festival?

  4. John Sayers
    May 26, 2011 at 8:07 am

    Gonzalo, everyone is welcome to attend. However potential presenting authors, illustrators and poets must be nominated by their respective publishers. Preferred candidates are popular, nationally known, authors, illustrators and poets who have won book awards at the national level. They also should have published a significant book recently. More than 300 qualified authors, illustrators and poets were nominated to participate in the 2010 festival and 71 individuals selected for presentations in the six author pavilions. The author nomination process for the 2011 Festival ended on March 15, 2011. You may submit nominations for the 2012 Festival via e-mail to

  5. Tim
    June 14, 2011 at 3:54 pm

    There seems to be many more authors listed above, under “Who’s coming,” than on the Web site’s Authors section.

    If all these authors are “coming,” (which indicates that they have committed) then why are so many not listed “officially” on the Authors link?

    Just wondering.


  6. John Sayers
    June 16, 2011 at 8:07 am

    Tim, we don’t add authors to the master list on the website until we have their approved biography in hand and ready to post. But it’s hard for us not to mention them when we have them confirmed (which we do). Hope that answered your question.

  7. Tim
    June 16, 2011 at 4:04 pm

    I certainly can understand. Thank you for the explanation.

  8. Teresa
    June 29, 2011 at 9:38 am

    Is it possible to purchase a copy of the Festival poster online for those who may not be able to attend?

  9. John Sayers
    June 30, 2011 at 8:40 am

    It’s not possible to purchase the poster, Teresa, but you may have one for free. Email with your request, your name and your address, and we’ll send you one.

  10. Wayne
    August 17, 2011 at 3:53 pm

    Best festival in D.C., have been for past six years. Will you post which authors will be on each day in the event one cannot attend both days? Thanks.

  11. Angela White
    August 30, 2011 at 6:52 am

    How do I get my books into the festival?

  12. Dick Templeton
    August 30, 2011 at 8:42 am

    Eagerly looking forward to the festival this year! Has a schedule of author signings been posted yet? If not, when will it be? Thanks.

  13. John Sayers
    September 2, 2011 at 8:04 am

    The schedule is now available:

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