Participants of the 2017 East of the River Book Festival (Courtesy of the East of the River Book Festival)
Participants of the 2017 East of the River Book Festival (Courtesy of the East of the River Book Festival)

When self-published author Courtney Davis was denied the opportunity to participate in a book festival, that motivated her to provide a platform for herself and other independent authors.

As a result, the East of the River Book Festival was formed.

The event, now in its fifth year and which features local and national writers, small publishers and independent book shops — bringing independent authors and culturally diverse literature to D.C. — takes place from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 20 at Thurgood Marshall Academy in Southeast.

“Our mission is to create direct access to independent authors and culturally diverse literature to the public,” Davis said. “When readers see themselves reflected in literature or learn about other cultures in books, it promotes literacy and strengthens the vitality of the whole community. It also encourages publishers and books stores to support indie authors, when readers demand more diverse stories.”

Attendees are encouraged to wear a costume of their favorite author or book character for the free, family-friendly event.

Readers looking for culturally diverse books will have a variety to choose from. In addition, the festival will offer story time for children as well as workshops on self-publishing.

Sponsors of this year’s event include The Washington Informer, the American Poetry Museum, Local Initiatives Support Corporation, Cole Chamberlain, Reading Partners – DC, and BlueJay Media.

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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