Brian Chilson

Arkansas Literary Festival: Highlights

See for a full schedule of author talks, workshops, special events and children’s activities.



“Goldfinger.” The 1964 James Bond movie, featuring Sean Connery, will be screened. 7 p.m., Ron Robinson Theater. 100 River Market Ave.



“A Reception for Higgins Bond: A Survey of Paintings and Drawings.” Higgins Bond, the first African-American woman to illustrate a stamp for the U.S. Postal Service, is a Little Rock native. Here’s a chance to meet the artist and see her work. 5:30 p.m., Hearne Fine Art, 1001 Wright Ave.



“What’s Inside?” Anita Davis explores art and femininity through handbags, discussing her work at ESSE Purse Museum and her book “What’s Inside? A Century of Women and Handbags, 1900-1999.” 6 p.m. ESSE Purse Museum and Store, 1510 Main St.


“Author! Author!” A party and reception kicks off the Lit Fest in earnest, with libations, light fare and books for sale from presenting authors. 7 p.m., Main Library, 100 S. Rock St.


“The Birth of Loud.” As a nod to presenting author Ian S. Port’s “The Birth of Loud,” a concert features a triumvirate of Little Rock’s finest songwriters: Joshua Asante, Isaac Alexander and Bonnie Montgomery. 10:30 p.m., Four Quarter Bar, 415 Main St., North Little Rock.


“Peace & Prose.” Mark Freeman debunks misconceptions about mental health and discusses his book “You Are Not a Rock: A Step-By-Step Guide to Better Mental Health (for Humans),” with Levi Agee, Mike Mueller and Sister Deborah Troillet. 10 a.m., Ron Robinson Theater, 100 River Market Ave.

Mitchell S. Jackson, Julie Rieger. Acclaimed novelist Jackson (“Survival Math,” “The Residue Years”) pairs with Rieger, head of media at 20th Century Fox and author of “The Ghost Photographer: A Hollywood Executive’s True Story of Discovering the Real World of Make-Believe,” for a talk. 10 a.m., Main Library, Darragh Center.

Maker’s Alley. Meet makers of all kinds in the Lit Fest’s all-day outdoor celebration at Library Square, with performances from DOT (5:30 p.m.) and Dazz & Brie (6 p.m.) and pop-up displays from Electric Ghost, Control, MilkDadd, Bang-Up Betty, Crying Weasel Vintage, Sean Sapp, Matthew Castellano of Gallery 360, Luna Tick Designs and Jack Lloyd of Dower. 11 a.m.-6:30 p.m., Library Square.

Kevin Brockmeier, Kathryn Davis. Little Rock native Brockmeier discusses his forthcoming book “The Ghost Variations,” paired with fellow eight-time author Davis and her latest, “The Silk Road.” 11:30 a.m., UA Little Rock Downtown, 333 President Clinton Ave.

Rick Campbell, Alfred Gough and Miles Millar. “Smallville” creators Gough and Millar share a forum with Campbell, a retired U.S. Navy commander and author of “Treason,” “The Trident Deception,” “Empire Rising” and “Ice Station Nautilus.” 11:30 a.m., Main Library, Darragh Center.

Roman Muradov, Mary Laura Philpott. Muradov, an Azerbaijan-born illustrator and author, explores the benefits of idleness, and is paired with fellow illustrator Philpott (“I Miss You When I Blink,” “Penguins with People Problems”). 11:30 a.m., Roberts Library & Butler Center for Arkansas Studies, 401 President Clinton Ave.

Dorie Greenspan, Elizabeth Minchilli. New York Times magazine columnist and five-time James Beard Award winner Greenspan (“Everyday Dorie”) pairs with blogger/author/food tour guide Minchilli (“The Italian Table: Creating Festive Meals for Friends and Family”). 1 p.m., Ron Robinson Theater, 100 River Market Ave.

Crystal C. Mercer, Randi Romo. Textile artist, actor, activist, poet and author Mercer (“A Love Story Waiting to Happen”) and self-described “Mexican-American, Southerner, former farmworker, organizer/activist, queer, female, parent, grandparent, working class, elder, and survivor” Romo (“Othered”) team for readings. 1 p.m., UA Little Rock downtown, 333 President Clinton Ave.

Patrick McGilligan, André Millard. Film writer Patrick McGilligan (“George Cukor: A Double Life,” “Fritz Lang: The Nature of the Beast,” “Alfred Hitchcock: A Life in Darkness and Light”) joins André Millard (“America on Record: A History of Recorded Sound,” “The Electric Guitar,” “Beatlemania”) for a talk on film, technology and culture. 1 p.m., Main Library, Darragh Center.

Elizabeth Eckford, Euridice Stanley, Grace Stanley. Eckford — one of the Little Rock Nine — joins her co-authors for a discussion of their book “The Worst First Day: Bullied While Desegregating Central High.” 2:30 p.m., Ron Robinson Theater, 100 River Market Ave.

Liana Finck, Charles Forsman, Adam Smith. Cartoonist/memoirist Finck (“Passing for Human,” “A Bintel Brief”) joins comic book artist Smith (“Long Walk to Valhalla”) and Ignatz Award-winning cartoonist Forsman (“Hobo Mom,” “I Am Not Okay With This,” “The End of the F**king World”) for a panel discussion. 2:30 p.m., Main Library, Darragh Center.

Marina Lostetter, Arkady Martine. Lostetter brings her space opera duo “Noumenon” and “Noumenon Infinity” as complement to Byzantine Empire historian/city planner Martine’s speculative fiction. 2:30 p.m., UA Little Rock Downtown.

Rhett Brinkley, Lillian Li, Vaughn Scribner. Essayist and Little Rock native Brinkley (“I Want to Stare at My Phone with You”) joins Li (“Number One Chinese Restaurant”) and UCA history professor Scribner (“Inn Civility: Urban Taverns and Early American Civil Society”) for this talk. 2:30 p.m., Allsopp & Chapple, 311 Main St.

Chigozie Obioma, Maurice Carlos Ruffin, Pitchaya Sudbanathad. Nigerian-born novelist Obioma (“The Fishermen”) teams with New Orleans native author Ruffin (“We Cast A Shadow”) and Sudbanathad (“Bangkok Wakes to Rain”). 4 p.m., Ron Robinson Theater.

Mark Freeman, Esmé Weijun Wang. Wang (“The Collected Schizophrenias”) and Freeman (“You Are Not a Rock: A Step-By-Step Guide to Better Mental Health [for Humans]”), authors who delve into mental health topics, team for this forum. 4 p.m., Main Library, Darragh Center.

Cherisse Jones-Branch, Erin Wood. This talk puts a spotlight on Arkansas women, with readings from Jones-Branch (“Crossing the Line: Women and Interracial Activism in South Carolina during and after World War II,” “Arkansas Women: Their Lives and Times,” co-editor) and Et Alia Press owner Wood (“Women Make Arkansas: Conversations with 50 Creatives”). 4 p.m., Roberts Library and Butler Center for Arkansas Studies, Room 124.

Pub or Perish. This annual event, sponsored by the Arkansas Times, features live readings of poetry, memoir and fiction in the big room at Stickyz Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicken Shack. 7 p.m., Stickyz, 107 River Market Ave.


“Everyday Dorie” Workshop. Cookbook author and New York Times magazine columnist Dorie Greenspan demonstrates how to cook cheese puffs and Ricotta Spoonables. 1:30 p.m., Eggshells Kitchen Co., 5501 Kavanaugh Blvd.