submitted by Rich Leffler
Conor Moran, the director of Wisconsin Book Festival, spoke to us today. Conor has been the director of the Festival for the last seven years, since it has been presented by the Madison Public Library and Foundation. He updated us on what has been happening with the Festival since his last appearance before us five years ago. The Festival has become a year-round event, which has made it more prominent among publishers, and they are now eager to participate. As a result, the Festival is able to attract some of the best authors of the most important books in the country, with many from the New York Times Best Sellers list. In addition, C-Span now programs the Festival.
In the last seven years, the Festival has doubled its attendance. As the Festival kicks off its new year, the first program will be Friday, September 13. The speaker will be Christopher Leonard, the author of “Kochland: The Secret History of Koch Industries and Corporate Power in America.” His talk will be at the Central Library. Following on that, on September 19, Bud Selig will speak at the Wisconsin Historical Society Auditorium about his new book, ”For the Good of the Game: The Inside Story of the Surprising and Dramatic Transformation of Major League Baseball.” And then on September 24, Samantha Power will speak at the Central Library about her book “The Education of an Idealist.” Ms. Powers’ appearance is sponsored by Cheryl Weston, who was a member of the Club.
On October 17-20, there will be the annual four-day Wisconsin Book Festival Celebration, which used to be all there was. As should be apparent, Conor has transformed the Festival into a major literary event of national importance.
If you missed our meeting this week, you can watch the video here.