Experience a full day of free writing workshops and panels when Las Positas College's Literary Arts Festival returns this Saturday.
The festival, being held for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic shut down in person gatherings, features internationally-known authors, an Afghan-American memoirist, U.S. Army veteran poet and Hollywood screenwriter in addition to music, food trucks, wine tasting and kids' story times.
Workshops include sessions on screenwriting, memoir, poetry slam writing and graphic novels, while panels include a discussion on food and wine writing, talk with the authors of "Rise: A Pop History of Asian America from the Nineties to Now," publication ceremony for "Havik," the LPC Journal of Arts and Literature and dialogue with the LPC Poetry Slam.
"This event is truly special as it allows Las Positas College to showcase the incredible programs we have here while bringing world-class authors and speakers to our festival," said LPC English professor Martin Nash, one of the founders of the LPC Literary Arts Festival. "This is just the beginning of what we believe will become a successful literary festival for years to come."
Tamim Ansary, an Afghan-American writer of fiction, memoir and history serves as the event's keynote speaker. Ansary is the author of a viral post-9/11 email condemning the Taliban and warning of the dangers of a war in Afghanistan. His work has been awarded the 2010 Northern California Book Award, been selected for San Francisco's One City One Book read and broadcast on NPR.
Additionally, Ansary spent over 20 years facilitating the SF Writers Workshop and he edited and published a group of essays by young Afghans, "Snapshots: The Afghan American Life."
Other speakers include Brian Turner, an Iraq War veteran, award-winning poet and author of "Here, Bullet," "Phantom Noise" and "My Life as a Foreign Country," best-selling novelist and memoirist Reyna Grande who will be discussing her new book, "A Ballad of Love and Glory" and "Liar, Liar," "The Little Rascals" and "Heartbreakers" screenwriter Paul Guay.
The festival closes with LPC's 19th annual poetry slam hosted by poets Bri and Tri, giving poets the opportunity to read their original works for prizes totaling $200.
The Las Positas College Mertes Center for the Arts is at 3000 Campus Hill Drive Building 4000 in Livermore. The event is free and open to the public from 9:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday (May 7); reservations are required. For the special presentation schedule, COVID-19 rules and other information, visit laspositascollege.edu.