Keynote and Auditorium Speaker Series
Opening General Session
Featuring Toni Morrison
Saturday, June 26, 5:30- 7:00 pm
Toni Morrison is a Nobel Prize winning American author, editor and professor. Her contributions to the modern canon are numerous. Some of her acclaimed titles include: The Bluest Eye, Song of Solomon, and Beloved, which won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1988. She won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1993. Her newest books for children are Peeny Butter Fudge and Little Cloud and Lady Wind.
Sponsored by Simon and Schuster
ALA Auditorium Speaker Series
Nancy Pearl with Mary McDonagh Murphy
Saturday, June 26, 8:00 -9:00 am
In celebration of the 50th anniversary of To Kill a Mockingbird, an American classic, Nancy Pearl will interview Mary McDonagh Murphy, Emmy award-winning filmmaker and author of the upcoming book, Scout, Atticus and Boo: A Celebration of Fify Years of To Kill a Mockingbird.
Nancy Pearl speaks about the pleasures of reading to library and community groups throughout the world and comments on books regularly on NPR's Morning Edition. She's the author of Book Crush: For Kids and Teens: Recommended Reading for Every Mood, Moment and Interest; Book Lust: Recommended Reading for Every Mood, Moment and Reason; and More Book Lust: 1,000 New Reading Recommendations for Every Mood, Moment, and Reason, all published by Sasquatch Books. In 2004, she was awarded the Women's National Book Association Award, given to " a living American woman who... has done meritorious work in the world of books beyond the duties or responsibilities of her profession or occupation." In 1998, Library Journal named her Fiction Reviewer of the Year. She is the model for the Librarian Action Figure. On her monthly television show, Book Lust with Nancy Pearl, she has interviewed authors as diverse as E.L. Doctorow, Ann Patchett and Terry Pratchett.
Sponsored by HarperCollins
Sue Monk Kidd and Ann Kidd Taylor
Saturday, June 26, 10:30 -11:30 am
Sue Monk Kidd grew up in the tiny town of Sylvester, GA, a place that deeply influences the writing of her first novel, The Secret Life of Bees. Kidds's first book, God's Joyful Surprise describes the beginnings of her spiritual search. Her second book, When the Heart Waits recounts her vivid spiritual transformation at mid life. Turning her explorations to feminist theology, she published The Dance of the Dissident Daughter, a memoir that had a ground breaking effect within religious circles. Sue's novel, The Mermaid Chair, explores the themes of midlife marriage and self-awakening, and was a #1 New York Times bestseller and winner of the 2005 Quill Award for General Fiction. Her newest book, Traveling with Pomegranates: A Mother-Daughter Story, co-authored with her daughter Ann Kidd Taylor is a dual memoir set against the backdrops of Greece and France, chronicling Sue and Ann's travels together, as they undertake a journey to redefine themselves and rediscover each other.
Ann Kidd Taylor is a graduate of Columbia College in South Carolina. She has published articles and essays in Skirt magazine in Charleston, SC, where she worked for two years after college as an editorial assistant. She left to pursue a career in writing, working on a book about her travels, which evolved into Traveling with Pomegranates, a memoir she co-authored with her mother, Sue Monk Kidd.
Sponsored by Penguin Group USA
Sarah, Duchess of York - CANCELED
Marlo Thomas Sunday, June 27, 8:00 - 9:00 am
Actress, author, and children's advocate Marlo Thomas, often remembered for her 1960s television series That Girl, Thomas is more recently known for her work as National Outreach Director for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.
Thomas's forthcoming memoir about her childhood as the daughter of legendary comedian Danny Thomas is titled Growing Up Laughing and is being published this fall by Hyperion. Thomas is the author of five bestselling books, including "The Right Words at the Right Time" and "Free to Be…You and Me".
Sunday, June 27, 10:30 -11:30 am
Dave Isay is the founder of StoryCorps, a nonprofit oral history project that honors and celebrates the lives of everyday people through listening. In spirit and in scope, StoryCorps models itself after the Works in Progress Administration (WPA) of the 1930s, which recorded oral history interviews across the country. To date, more than 50,000 people have participated in StoryCorps, many of whom have come as a part of special initiatives to reach underrepresented voices. StoryCorps was honored with a rare institutional award at the 66th Annual Peabody Awards in 2007.
Established in 2003 and based in Brooklyn, StoryCorps hopes to build upon that work and break new ground to create a new American oral history archive. StoryCorps interviews air weekly on NPR and can also be heard at the StoryCorps website. Copies of all interviews are placed in the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress. Winner of a MacArthur "Genius" Fellowship, Dave Isay is also the author or editor of four books that grew out of his public radio documentary work, including Listening Is an Act of Love, a New York Times bestseller. His new book, Mom: A Celebration of Mothers from StoryCorps, will be published by Penguin in April 2010.
Sponsored by American Libraries
PLA President's Program
Featuring Will Shortz, Enigmatologist-New York Times Puzzle Master
Sunday, June 27, 1:00 -2:30 pm
What's an enigmatologist? It's Will Shortz, the only academically accredited puzzle master in the world. He designed his own major program at Indiana University, which in 1974 led to his one-of-a-kind degree in enigmatology, the study of puzzles. Shortz has been the puzzle master for NPR's “Weekend Edition Sunday,” since the program's start in 1987, crossword editor of The New York Times, editor of Games magazine for 15 years, and the founder and director of the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament. He sold his first puzzle professionally when he was 14 to Venture, a denominational youth magazine. At 16 he became a regular contributor to Dell puzzle publications. Shortz received a law degree from the University of Virginia. He originally entered law school with the intention of practicing law for 10 years in order to make a lot of money before retiring do what he really wanted -- create puzzles. However, law was not creative enough for him, and following graduation he skipped the bar exam and began his career in puzzles immediately.
Today, Shortz relishes his position at the Times because he believes the paper garners the most intelligent, best-educated group of solvers in the country. This allows him to presume a level of culture and solving skill that he couldn't anyplace else.
Upon starting at the Times, Shortz made modest modifications to the crosswords. Constructor bylines were added to the daily puzzles; previously the contributors had labored anonymously. He had the puzzles become increasingly harder each day of the week to provide something for every skill level. Additionally, the cultural references were broadened to include movies, television, and rock music.
Shortz’s puzzle that has elicited the most response appeared on Election Day, 1996. The clue to the middle answer across the grid was "Lead story in tomorrow's newspaper." The answer appeared to be CLINTON ELECTED. Because of intentional ambiguity in the crossing clues, however, the answer could also have been BOB DOLE ELECTED. Either answer fit. Shortz is the founder of the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament, the founder and director of the World Puzzle Championship and the co-founder of the World Puzzle Federation. Shortz was also the riddle writer for Batman Forever.
In addition to editing the weekday and Sunday puzzles for the Times, Shortz is the author or editor of over 200 puzzle books. Recently, Shortz was the subject of the feature documentary film Wordplay in 2006.
Graphic Novel Panel
Monday, June 28, 10:30 -11:30 am
(please check back as more authors are added)
Featuring David Small
David Small was born and raised in Detroit. In school he became known as “the kid who could draw good,” but David never considered a career in art because it was so easy for him. At 21, after many years of writing plays, David took the advice of a friend who informed him that the doodles he made on the telephone pad were better than anything he had ever written. He switched his major to Art and never looked back.
After getting his MFA at the Yale Graduate School of Art, David taught art for many years on the college level, ran a film series and made satirical sketches for campus newspapers. Approaching tenure, he wrote and illustrated a picture book, Eulalie and the Hopping Head, which he took to New York, pounding the pavements and collecting rejections for a month in the dead of winter. Eulalie was published in 1981. Although tenure at the college did not follow, many more picture books did, as well as extensive work for national magazines and newspapers. His drawings appeared regularly in The New Yorker and The New York Times.
A learn-as-you-go illustrator, David’s books have been translated into several languages, made into animated films and musicals, and have won many of the top awards accorded to illustration, including the 1997 Caldecott Honor and The Christopher Medal for The Gardener written by his wife, Sarah Stewart, and the 2001 Caldecott Medal for So, You Want To Be President? by Judith St. George.
“At the Caldecott ceremony in San Francisco,” said David, “facing that veritable sea of smiling faces — of librarians, of friends in publishing, of my family and other well-wishers— I was so overcome that I lost my voice and croaked my way through the speech. Having been turned from a frog into a prince by the American Library Association, before their eyes that night, I turned back into a frog.” To date he has illustrated over 40 picture books. At an average of 40 pages per book, that makes around 1,840 illustrations, though someone ought to check that math. Most recently David wrote the memoir STITCHES which was nominated for a National Book Award.
Sponsored by W.W. Norton & Company, Inc.
Dennis Lehane Monday, June 28, 8:00 – 9:00 a.m.
Dennis Lehane was born and raised in Dorchester, Massachusetts. He is the author of eight novels--including the New York Times bestsellers Gone, Baby, Gone; The Given Day; Mystic River; and Shutter Island--as well as Coronado, a collection of short stories and a play. He lives with his wife and daughter in Boston and West Central Florida. Mystic River was a finalist for the PEN/Winship Award and won both the Anthony Award and the Barry Award for Best Novel as well as the Massachusetts Book Award in Fiction given by the Massachusetts Center for the Book. Before becoming a full-time writer, Mr. Lehane worked as a counselor with mentally handicapped and abused children, waited tables, parked cars, drove limos, worked in bookstores, and loaded tractor-trailers. His one regret is that no one ever gave him a chance to tend bar.
Sponsored by HarperCollins
John Grisham Monday, June 28, 1:30 -2:30 p.m.
John Grisham is the author of 21 novels, one work of nonfiction, and one collection of stories including A Time to Kill, The Firm and The Pelican Brief. His works are translated into 38 languages. Grisham, a number one international bestselling author, will be writing his first-ever children’s books series for Penguin Young Readers Group. The two novels in this series will be aimed at readers ages 8-12, The first book in the series, Theodore Boone: Kid Lawyer is scheduled for publication on May 25, 2010, and will follow the adventures of a 13-year-old, amateur attorney who unwittingly becomes involved in a high-profile murder trial. The second book in the series, also featuring Theo, is due to be published in 2011. Grisham lives in Virginia and Mississippi.
Sponsored by Penguin Young Readers Group
Monday, June 28, 3:00 -4:00 pm
Junot Diaz exploded into the literary scene in 1996 with Drown, a collection of short stories that was one of the first books to illuminate the lives of Dominican-American immigrants. Diaz’s first novel, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, is the winner of the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. Moving from the hardscrabble inner-city neighborhoods of New Jersey to the barrios of Santo Domingo, and from the fear-plagued Trujillo dictatorship to the multicultural campuses of the contemporary United States, Diaz both redefines the immigrant experience and transcends it.
His fiction has been published in The New Yorker and The Paris Review, and four times in The Best American Short Stories. The New Yorker placed him on a list of the 20 top writers for the 21st century. Born in Santo Domingo, the Dominican Republic, and raised there and in New Jersey, Diaz graduated from Rutgers and received an MFA from Cornell. He lives in New York City and Boston, and is a tenured professor at MIT.
Sponsored by Penguin Group