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April 12, 2024

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Southern Books Festival to be Virtual this Year

Humanities Tennessee, the organizer of the 33rd annual Southern Festival of Books: A Celebration of the Written Word, announced the festival will take place mostly online and free of charge out of an abundance of caution for public health amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The live event will take place October 9-10, 2021 (plus other online events through the fall).

“With COVID-19 at its worst in Tennessee than at any other point during the pandemic, causing severe stress to the Davidson County healthcare system, we felt it was necessary to transition this year’s festival to an online event to preserve the health and safety of our attendees, participating authors and staff,” said Tim Henderson, Executive Director of Humanities Tennessee.

All festival sessions will be live-streamed through the Humanities Tennessee website and on the Southern Festival of Books Facebook page and YouTube channel. The full schedule of online festival events will be available on Friday, September 10.

The following events that are scheduled in person at private venues with partner organizations are still anticipated to be in person. These events are as follows:

  • Oct. 2: Sharon Cameron and J.T. Ellison at Parnassus Books
  • Oct. 4: Jess Walter at Parnassus Books
  • Oct. 5: Daniel de Visé at the National Museum of African-American Music
  • Oct. 5: Alix Harrow at Parnassus Books

“We are thankful to our event partners and sponsors for their support of the decision to move the festival to a virtual platform,” said Henderson. “The health and safety of our staff, participating authors and attendees is our priority and the pivot to a virtual format allows booklovers from across the country to engage in the festival from the comfort and safety of their own homes.”

For more information on the Festival, please visit

About the Author

Michael Aldrich

Michael Aldrich is Nashville Parent's Managing Editor and a Middle Tennessee arts writer. He and his wife, Alison, are the proud parents of 4-year-old Ezra and baby Norah.