Festival schedule 2022

From the Lit Walk to Words Onstage, your festival weekend is booked.

Highlights by the day

LIT WALK | Fri evening

Three phases of readings by local and regional writers, hosted at six different venues around the village of Eastsound. Free to the public

ORCAS HIGH | Fri afternoon

Celebrated YA authors Mary Cronk Farrell, Jen Longo, Diana Ma, and Kelly McWilliams in conversation about how stories have changed their lives. Reserved for Orcas Island High School students and faculty; closed to the general public

LIT FEST | Sat daytime

Featuring two tracks of panel discussions, readings, and interviews with acclaimed authors of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and more, held at Orcas Center. Ticketed event: Day Pass or Festival Pass

BOOK FAIR | Sat daytime

Exhibits by literary journals and independent and small-press publishers alongside local merchants and artists, hosted in Orcas Center’s Madrona Room.

WORDS ONSTAGE | Sat night

With readings by our award-winning Featured Artists intertwining live musical performances, this must-see show at Orcas Center will be pure literary magic. Ticketed event: Festival Pass; limited additional seating for purchase (first come, first served)

KIDS’ FEST | Sat morning

A free family event with readings by award-winning children’s and young adult authors, hosted at Orcas Island Public Library. Free to the public

Lit Walk details

PHASE ONE | 5–5:45 p.m.

Matia

123 N Beach Rd.
Eastsound, WA 98245

Mary Cronk Farrell, Jen Longo,
and Susan Slapin

Orcas Island Public Library

500 Rose St., Eastsound, WA

Readings by Orcas youth writers

Tide Pool Coffeehouse

365 N Beach Rd., Eastsound, WA

Heather Durham, Iris Graville,
Kip Robinson Greenthal, and Matthew Sullivan

PHASE TWO | 6–6:45 p.m.

The Barnacle

249 Prune Alley, Eastsound, WA

Readings from the new anthology “Evergreen: Grim Tales & Verses from the Gloomy Northwest,” with Maya Jewell Zeller, Margot Kahn, Laura Read, and Nathaniel Youmans

Darvill’s Bookstore

296 Main St., Eastsound, WA

Andrew Altschul, Tara Conklin, Lyanda Lynn Haupt, and Rosanne Parry
 

Doe Bay Wine Co.

109 N Beach Rd., Eastsound, WA

Wendy Call, Diana Ma, Jennifer Perrine, and Raven Chronicles Press authors Kathleen Alcalá and Phoebe Bosché

PHASE THREE | 7–7:45 p.m.

The Barnacle

249 Prune Alley, Eastsound, WA

Readings, music, and conversation with the cofounders of St. Ōde Press and contributors to “Ōde: Orcas Island,“ with Ayn Carrillo-Gailey, Toby Cooper, Sara Farish, Theresa Marl, and Jill McCabe Johnson


Roots

68 N Beach Rd., Eastsound, WA

Kelly McWilliams, Baird Nuckolls, Abigail Prout, Caleb Tankersley, and Neal Thompson

Lit Fest programming

Visit our Featured Artists and Guest Artists pages to learn more about this luminous lineup at Orcas Center.

MAIN STAGE | 10–10:50 a.m.

Panel

The Survival of Humanity Needs a New Story

Timothy Egan, Thor Hanson, Lyanda Lynn Haupt, Emily Strelow

The American ethos of growth and ambition has reshaped our lands and our lives and led to extraordinary innovation, but the cultural and ecological costs have been high. To avoid collapse, we need a new story and a new set of values. How will we tell that story—and will enough people listen?

BREAK | 12–12:30 p.m.

Enjoy delicious Salvadoran food from Johanna’s Catering, available for purchase on Orcas Center’s outdoor patio.

BLACK BOX | 11–11:25 a.m.

Interview

A Conversation with Danzy Senna

Hosted by Scott Hutchins

BLACK BOX | 11:30–11:55 a.m.

Interview

A Conversation with Timothy Egan

Hosted by Neal Thompson

MAIN STAGE | 11–11:50 a.m.

Panel

Women Who Confound Expectations

Sonora Jha, Kristen Millares Young, Laura Read, Alexandra Teague

The patriarchy has defined womanhood and literature for millennia. This panel of fierce, award-winning women writers will give brief readings and engage in an intersectional conversation that invites the audience to think about how writing can confound expectations and resist patriarchal pressures.

MAIN STAGE | 12:30–1:20 p.m.

Panel

What’s Love Got to Do with It: Telling Stories About Relationships

Liz Asch, Frances Badalamenti, Danielle Frandina, Emily Kendal Frey, Dao Strom

Our lives are occupied with relationships, from the ecstatic to the devastating. How do we express that intimacy in writing? In this panel, authors of prose and poetry come together to explore the ever-shifting nature of love in their work.

BLACK BOX | 12:30–1:20 p.m.

Panel

Joys of Reading and Writing Nonhuman Animals

Kiik Araki-Kawaguchi, Jessica Gigot, Margot Kahn, Becky Mandelbaum, Caitlin Scarano

In the face of climate change and biodiversity loss, how do we better understand and share space with nonhuman animals? This panel of Washington authors will share why they write about nonhuman animals and how these animals have shaped their creative identities and development.

MAIN STAGE | 1:30–2:20 p.m.

Panel

Writing Is a Political Act

Andrew Altschul, Jennifer Haupt, Kristen Millares Young, Octavio Solis

In what ways does the solitary act of creation speak to the larger fate of our world? Four writers from varied backgrounds will discuss the interplay between their work and the larger political context. Expect a lively conversation on the responsibility—and irresponsibility—of the artist.

BLACK BOX | 1:30–2:20 p.m.

Panel

Inheriting the Earth: West Coast Poets on What Gets Handed Down

Bill Carty, Teresa K. Miller, Amanda Moore, Michael Schmeltzer

Within families, communities, and ecosystems, what gets passed down can be a gift or a burden—or both. In their new collections, these poets examine crises and triumphs that echo across generations. Together they’ll explore how they work with their inheritances, from heirlooms to trauma.

MAIN STAGE | 2:30–3:20 p.m.

Panel

Hiding in History: Uncovering Women’s Untold Stories

Kelli Estes, Nicola Griffith, Mia Lipman Irwin, Ashley Sweeney, Vauhini Vara

Historical fiction toes a unique line between truth-telling and storytelling. When you hold someone else’s era in your hands, how do you carry it responsibly? These novelists will shine a light on how the lives of women from bygone days inspired their work—and why their stories deserve to be told now.

BLACK BOX | 2:30–3:20 p.m.

Panel

Sing in Me, Muse: How Songwriters Craft Their Stories

Olivia Awbrey, Kíque Lopez, and Mandy Troxel

From the earliest ballads to Pulitzer-winning hip-hop, songwriting in America has centered on voices telling stories. Four accomplished singer-songwriters will reflect on translating their personal experiences into music, and the resonant truths that a killer song can reveal.

MAIN STAGE | 3:30–4:20 p.m.

Panel

Where You’re Coming From: An Exploration of Family, Heritage & Place

Tara Conklin, Anne Liu Kellor, Donna Miscolta, Caitlin Scarano, Danzy Senna

How do writers reclaim their own pasts as they build worlds and the people in them? These authors of memoir, fiction, and poetry will talk about obstacles they’ve faced, how their families and roots play into their work, and how they gave themselves permission to tell stories that have historically been silenced.

BREAK | 5:30–7:30 p.m.

Stroll through the village of Eastsound to see what catches your eye, or book a table in advance at one of the island's renowned restaurants.

BLACK BOX | 4–4:25 p.m.

Interview

A Conversation with Nicola Griffith

Hosted by Jule Treneer

WORDS ONSTAGE | 7:30 p.m.

Performance

Join authors Timothy Egan, Nicola Griffith, Danzy Senna, Octavio Solis, and Vauhini Vara, plus singer-songwriters Olivia Awbrey, Kíque Lopez, Gus Reeves, and Mandy Troxel, for an unforgettable night of literature and music.

MAIN STAGE | 4:30–5:30 p.m.

Performance

“Retablos”: A Staged Reading of Octavio Solis’s Memoir in Fragments

Directed by Bruce Langford