Registration is open for the 17th Annual Six Bridges Book Festival

Book lovers from around the state and beyond can register for Central Arkansas Library System’s (CALS) Six Bridges Book Festival held October 8-18. The library system’s annual festival brings thousands of attendees together each year to participate in a variety of book talks, workshops, and live poetry events. The festival is virtual this year with most sessions taking place live via Zoom. WordsWorth Books has partnered with CALS to sell signed copies of books through the festival’s website. Six Bridges Book Festival is free, but registration is required at

“The festival is virtual this year and we have an amazing group of presenters covering everything from faith to rage baking,” said Brad Mooy, coordinator of the Six Bridges Book Festival. “Our lineup features something for everyone to enjoy. We have crafts and a cooking workshop for families with young children and we feature Prince’s last work, discuss the spirituality of Mr. Rogers, and explore the evolution of Eminem.”

More than 50 authors from around the country, including Arkansas, will provide over 50 sessions during the 11-day celebration of the written word. Presenters include:

  • National Book Award winner Tim O’Brien, author of The Things They Carried
  • Rob Hart, author of dystopian thriller The Warehouse
  • Emmy-winning director and award-winning author Jeffrey Blount
  • Afia Atakora, author of historical novel Conjure Women
  • Food Network and NPR personalities Katherine Alford and Kathy Gunst
  • Eric Thomas, humorist, storyteller and LGBTQ+ advocate
  • Young adult author and CNN producer Mayra Cuevas, author of Salty, Bitter, Sweet
  • Dan Piepenbring, co-author with Prince of his posthumously published memoir The Beautiful Ones
  • Eminem biographer and bestselling author Anthony Bozza

Additional activities include a Game Hour, Cento Poetry Contest, and Tasty Reads, the “edible book” contest. Festival favorite Pub or Perish, presented in partnership with the Arkansas Times, will be held at Stickyz on October 10 at 7:00 p.m. The live poetry and spoken word experience is the festival’s only in-person event.

The Junior League of Little Rock has partnered with the Six Bridges Book Festival for Little Readers Rock. In addition to a full lineup of family activities, the Junior League is giving away book kits that include a craft and coloring sheets. Parents can register for a kit here. Little Readers Rock is on October 10 from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., activities include:

  • Animal yoga
  • Crafts and cooking demos
  • Storytime with Garbo Hearne
  • Ashley Franklin, author of picture book Not Quite Snow White
  • Alternate-history pirate adventures with author Barry Wolverton
  • Ernesto Cisneros, author of Efrén Divided, a moving middle-grade novel of family immigration
  • Presentations from Arkansas PBS and the Arkansas Arts Center

Each year, the festival partners with area schools for the Writers in the Schools (WITS) initiative. Participating schools receive a set of the visiting authors’ books courtesy of Wright Lindsey Jennings. Philander Smith College, eStem, Ridge Road Elementary, Robinson High School, Shorter College, Southwest High School, Stephens Elementary, and Sylvan Hills High School are among the schools hosting virtual visits this year. Participating authors include Camille Acker, Anthony Bozza, Ernesto Cisneros, Mayra Cuevas, Ashley Franklin, Daniel Kraus, Linsey Miller, Stephanie Storey, Bonnie Tsui and Barry Wolverton.