American Writers Festival on May 15, 2022 at the Chicago Cultural Center & American Writers Museum in downtown Chicago

American Writers Festival Recap

On May 15, 2022 we hosted the first ever American Writers Festival at the American Writers Museum and Chicago Cultural Center. We had a blast! It was so much fun welcoming writers and readers from across the country for this one-day event to celebrate American writing together.

  • 75+ writers representing a variety of genres
  • 37 author events
  • 5 stages at the Chicago Cultural Center and American Writers Museum
  • 1 day to remember!

The American Writers Festival brought audiences together with writers of fiction, plays, history, poetry, children’s literature, science fiction, biographies, satire, and more. This free event was presented by the AWM in partnership with the Poetry Foundation, the Chicago Public Library, the Newberry Library, the National Museum of Mexican Art, the DuSable Museum of African American History, the Chicago History Museum, the American Library Association, the Chicago Humanities Festival, the National Student Poets Program, and Poems While You Wait. Books were sold at the Festival by our bookstore partner, Seminary Co-op.

Read what Festival attendees had to say!

“I loved this event so much. Books have been such a comfort throughout my life, but especially during the pandemic. The opportunity to hear from so many authors who I admire, in person, truly filled my soul with hope and joy.” —Donna R.

“What a compelling lineup of interesting presentations! I also like that so many writers of color were represented and that a number of different genres were included.” —Susan W.

“I got to see some of my literary heroes talk about their processes and journeys.” —Libby M.

“I loved the opportunity to hear from so many different authors speak about their lives and their passion for writing and their books.” —Bethany N.

In case you missed the Festival or had to choose between two great programs, fear not! We recorded each program and plan to make them available to view or listen to in the coming months. Full program videos will be uploaded to our YouTube channel, so be sure to subscribe so you are notified when they are ready to view. We will also release condensed versions of each program as episodes of our AWM Author Talks podcast. You can subscribe to that podcast, as well as our others, wherever you listen to podcasts!

Thank you to everyone who helped make the inaugural American Writers Festival a success. From the visiting writers and presenters, to all of the attendees, and especially to the volunteers who sacrificed their Sunday. We truly could not have done it without you!

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