Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Wordcraft – Summer literary events, flip-flops optional

Summer is coming up fast in Texas, and the season’s literary events are blossoming like wildflowers. Here’s a selection, starting this week with:

May 21: AuthorCon. Nearly 30 North Texas authors will gather from noon-4 p.m. in the Sachse Public Library, 3815 Sachse Rd., Building C., Sachse, TX. Representative genres include fiction for children, young adult and adult readers, and adult nonfiction. Hang out with your favorite authors and see what they have for sale in books and e-books. All purchases cash or check only. Check here for a complete list of authors and genres.

June 1-July 27: Rejebian Summer Series. Now in its 59th year, this series of talks by book reviewers, authors, and entertainers was made possible by a gift from Vahram and Ermance Rejebian. Presentations run each Wednesday through June and July at 7 p.m. in Wesley Hall of Highland Park United Methodist Church, 3300 Mockingbird Lane, Dallas. Check here for a schedule of programs. They’re free, or add a 5:30 p.m. dinner reservation for $12 by calling 214-523-2240.

June 4-August 8: Dallas Mayor’s Summer Reading Club. This summer program helps keep kids’ reading skills sharp over the summer, but it’s also open to adults. Weekly prizes are available to young readers up to age 18, who report regular reading schedules. Adults over 18 can also participate in weekly prize drawings in any of three ways. An opening day party is scheduled for June 4 from 11 a.m. – 1p.m. at the Fretz Park Branch, 6990 Beltline Road, Dallas. Click here for details.

June 10-11: Robert E. Howard Days 2016, Cross Plains, Texas. Fans of Howard, creator of Conan and more, gather annually in the small West Texas town where the Texas author spent most of his all too brief life. Fans don’t need to register to visit Howard’s family home, now a museum, at the junction of J Street and Texas Highway 36 in Cross Plains or to swap and reminisce in the pavilion adjacent to the Howard home. However, a $15 registration fee assures visitors a place at the June 10 banquet and silent auction whose proceeds help maintain Howard’s family home. To register and view a complete list of activities, see the REH Days site.

June 24-26: Writers’ League of Texas 2016 Agents & Editors Conference. This is one of the major literary events in the state, at the Hyatt Regency, 208 Barton Springs Road in Austin. So far, more than 20 agents and editors are schedule to attend, staff numerous workshops and panels and be available for consultations. Registration is $489 through May 23. For details, including lists of agents and editors, and how to schedule conferences, see the WLT site. 

July 22-24: LexiCon Writers Convention, Hilton Garden Inn, 3110 Colorado Boulevard, Denton, TX. It’s the fifth and final year for this interactive writers’ conference whose classes and workshops include experts in a variety of fields. Cost is $100 for returning attendees, $150 for newcomers. Additional costs for the Friday night meet and greet dinner. See the site  or email info@LexiConWritersConvention.com for details.

July 22-24: Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference is the only major conference in North Texas devoted solely to nonfiction. Its home is the Hilton DFW Lakes Executive Conference Center, 1800 State Highway 26, in Grapevine. Dozens of featured speakers, three agents specializing in nonfiction, panels and workshops. Registration is $425. The Mayborn also hosts writing contests in three categories: personal essay, reported narrative and book manuscript. Applications are due June 1. See the site for details, or contact writing contest coordinator Jo Ann Livingston at maybornconferenceinfo@unt.edu.  

July 29-31: ArmadilloCon, Omni Southpark Hotel, 4140 Governor’s Row, Austin. This science fiction/fantasy literary convention includes a writers’ workshop taught by a panel of professionals. Deadline for registration and story submission to the writers’ workshop is June 15. The workshop is $85 (which includes a three-day convention membership). A three-day adult membership without the workshop is $55, with special rates for children and students, and one or two day memberships. Check here for details and online registration.

(Next Tuesday: more about summer writing contests)

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