2022 Festival Schedule

Scroll down to see the full festival schedule of our general programs!

For our free youth programs, click here.

Click here for a printable PDF overview of the schedule grid

Tickets? With the exception of outdoor events, each event listing includes registration or ticket purchase links.
To purchase an in-person wristband, click here. To purchase a virtual wristband, click here.

Books? As you check out, don’t forget to get the authors’ books through Bookshop.org and support our official Partner Bookstores.

Signing? Yes, the authors will be signing! Click here for an alphabetical list of the authors and their book signing times.

Click the buttons below for Youth programs, the full speaker roster, or ticketing information and FAQs.

All times below are Pacific Time.

  • Category

  • Event Format


Saturday, May 7
  • 2022
  • International
  • Literary
  • Women/Gender

Conversation with Jokha Alharthi, International Booker Prize Winner

Jokha Alharthi interviewed by John Freeman

Saturday, May 7

11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Brower Center - Goldman Theater

  • In-Person Only

The first Arab writer to win the International Booker (in 2019 for her novel Celestial Bodies), Jokha Alharthi explores one of the most compelling topics in our time: how radical and breakneck social change plays out within families, and indeed how past and present elide within us. The context of Alharthi’s stories is Oman, which emerged from rural poverty (where slavery was legal until 1970 and few girls attended school) in a single generation to become an urban, oil-rich Gulf state where women are highly educated. Alharthi herself received her Ph.D. in Classical Arabic Literature from the University of Edinburgh.

She writes especially of women’s lives, and her new novel, Bitter Orange Tree, tells of a young Omani woman, Zuhur, studying at a British university but haunted by the memory of the just-deceased woman who raised her and whom Zuhur calls grandmother—a woman scarred by poverty and sacrifice. When home, elders, and the old ways are gone, who are we now? And what is “now” if not the holding of all that’s past?

Alharthi’s prose offers this very experience to the reader, moving smoothly between times and different characters’ minds even within the space of a paragraph—”the way starlight seems to flicker when we gaze at distant and nearer celestial bodies,” as critic James Wood wrote in The New Yorker. Come meet this global literary star.

The bookstore partner for this session is Eastwind Books of Berkeley! Buy the books online at Bookshop.org or purchase them in person at the Festival. More information here.

Book signing information: East Wind Books Tent at the Bookstore Blv (corner of Allston & Milvia in the Outdoor Fair) at 12:15 PM

With the support of Words Without Borders and Peter Wiley

Saturday, May 7
  • 2022
  • Writing & Publishing

Building a Literary Community

Janis Cooke Newman, Grant Faulkner, Roberto Lovato, Rebecca Phelps, moderated by Lise Quintana

Saturday, May 7

11:30 AM - 12:30 PM

Brower Center - Tamalpais Room

  • In-Person Only

Inspired by romantic images of lonely geniuses in secluded garrets, writers might feel compelled to toil away in isolation, but here’s a provocative idea: what if, by connecting with other writers, you could not only support their work but also strengthen your own writing practice? That’s the premise behind this session, in which we’ll explore several different options for practicing good literary citizenship. Grant Faulkner is the executive director of NaNoWriMo, which has grown far beyond a single-month writing challenge to encompass nearly a half million writers challenging themselves via a variety of programs and networking opportunities. Janis Cooke Newman has, for the past ten years, convened Lit Camp, a life-changing writers retreat; she’ll speak about the power of connecting there and at her newest undertaking, the Page Street co-working space in San Francisco. Novelist and blogger Rebecca Phelps will relate her experience of connecting with writers and readers on the social storytelling platform Wattpad. And Roberto Lovato, founder and co-director of the Rooted & Written initiative at the Writers Grotto, which provides community support and mentorship for writers of color. Lise Quintana, the publisher of Zoetic Press, will moderate this discussion of literary generosity and how paying it forward can reap writerly dividends.

The bookstore partner for this session is Eastwind Books of Berkeley! Buy the books online at Bookshop.org or purchase them in person at the Festival. More information here.

Book signing information: East Wind Books Tent at the Bookstore Blv (corner of Allston & Milvia in the Outdoor Fair) at in the park, 12:45 PM

Sponsored by Zoetic Press

Saturday, May 7
  • 2022
  • Environment/Nature
  • International
  • Literary

The Fierce Voice of Nature: Three Astonishing New Novels from Around the World

Maja Lunde, Masatsugu Ono, Irene Solà, moderated by Marie Mockett

Saturday, May 7

12:30 PM - 1:30 PM

Brower Center - Goldman Theater

  • In-Person and Live Streamed

From Japan, Norway and Spain come authors whose conjurings of flora and fauna, mountain and sea, shimmer on the page so powerfully that nature is the most powerful character of all–for good or ill. Catalan novelist Irene Solà’s debut, When I Sing, Mountains Dance, has received breathless word-of-mouth from booksellers. It’s about the ghosts of seventeenth-century chanterelle-gathering witches in the Pyrenees, includes lightning bolts and deer as narrators, and is as bizarrely beautiful as it sounds. Masatsugu Ono, one of Japan’s most lauded authors, has written a surreal short novel, At the Edge of the Woods, which The Millions raved about as “an eerie allegory of climate apocalypse and unnatural nature…full of dark laughter, figures that appear and disappear, sounds of violence and gnashing teeth”–one of their “most anticipated novels” of 2022. Maja Lunde, the celebrated Norwegian author, playwright, and screenwriter, reveals the third novel in her Climate Quartet: The Last Wild Horses takes us on an untamed ride from 1881 St. Petersburg to 1992 Mongolia to Norway in 2064 to outrun the extinction of a famed species of horse. Be prepared to get swept away.

The bookstore partner for this session is Eastwind Books of Berkeley! Buy the books online at Bookshop.org or purchase them in person at the Festival. More information here.

Book signing information: East Wind Books Tent at the Bookstore Blv (corner of Allston & Milvia in the Outdoor Fair) at in the park, 1:45 PM

With the support of the Norway House Foundation and NORLA - Norwegian Literature Abroad, co-sponsored by the Center for the Art of Translation

Saturday, May 7
  • 2022
  • Poetry
  • Race/Identity
  • Women/Gender

Let Her Tell It: Black Women Writing on the Body and Mind

Kira Lynne Allen, Natalie Devora, adrienne danyelle oliver, Kelechi Ubozoh, moderated by Jeneé Darden

Saturday, May 7

1:00 PM - 2:00 PM

Brower Center - Tamalpais Room

  • In-Person Only

Many Black women have a complex relationship with their bodies. Historically their bodies have been racialized, hypersexualized, exoticized, abused, exploited for labor and othered. Stressors in their lives affects physical and mental health. But Black women also nurture their bodies, celebrate their bodies, and give themselves permission to enjoy pleasure. These Black women writers will share poetry and stories about their bodies, while showing how physical health affects mental health and vice versa. Whether it’s fighting fibroids or reclaiming their bodies after harm—these writers are telling their stories to disrupt what they’ve been mistaught about their bodies. This panel is inspired by a retreat the writers attended where they created body maps: life-size canvases of their bodies that artistically express their perceptions of and experiences with their bodies.

The bookstore partner for this session is Eastwind Books of Berkeley! Buy the books online at Bookshop.org or purchase them in person at the Festival. More information here.

Book signing information: East Wind Books Tent at the Bookstore Blv (corner of Allston & Milvia in the Outdoor Fair) at 2:15 PM

Saturday, May 7
  • 2022
  • Health, Psychology & Spirituality

Celebrating Cannabis

Melanie Abrams, Monica Lo, Larry Smith, moderated by Dan Karkoska

Saturday, May 7

2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Brower Center - Goldman Theater

  • In-Person and Live Streamed

Cannabis has transcended its outdated “wacky tobaccy” reputation. These days, it can be consumed in everything from gummies to hot cocoa, with uses for everyone from chronic pain sufferers to marathon runners to even pets. In the “approachable, readable, beautifully designed” (Mollie Katzen) The Joy of Cannabis, Melanie Abrams and Larry Smith use science and research to show us 75 ways recreational weed can enhance productivity, creativity, even memory (forget that old “lazy stoner” stereotype!). Zooming in to participate virtually is Monica Lo with her gorgeously candy-colored The Weed Gummies Cookbook, a delicious guide to creating your own edibles. Welcome to the Golden Age of Cannabis: it’s about aiming high, not getting high.

The bookstore partner for this session is Eastwind Books of Berkeley! Buy the books online at Bookshop.org or purchase them in person at the Festival. More information here.

Book signing information: East Wind Books Tent at the Bookstore Blv (corner of Allston & Milvia in the Outdoor Fair) at 3:15 PM

Saturday, May 7
  • 2022
  • Literary
  • Race/Identity

Radical Imagination: New Voices, New Visions from San Francisco State University

Matthew Clark Davison, Stacy D. Flood, Shruti Swamy, moderated by Molly Giles

Saturday, May 7

2:30 PM - 3:30 PM

Brower Center - Tamalpais Room

  • In-Person Only

How do we imagine into fictional worlds that, as Anna Deveare Smith says, evoke multiple chords? How do we employ an honest gaze on our fictional people, a gaze that allows in beauty and its opposite, the anarchic details, the true face? And how especially do we do that when working within the context of queered and BIPOC space—when our worlds are too often represented small and false? How do we give the power of the whole and complex and risk what every writer must risk: vulnerability? How do we let the imagination be its organic radical self? Delve into these provocative questions and many others with faculty and alums of SFSU’s Creative Writing Program: Matthew Clark Davison (Doubting Thomas), Stacy D. Flood (The Salt Fields), Shruti Swamy (The Archer), and our host, Molly Giles (Wife with Knife).

The bookstore partner for this session is Eastwind Books of Berkeley! Buy the books online at Bookshop.org or purchase them in person at the Festival. More information here.

Book signing information: East Wind Books Tent at the Bookstore Blv (corner of Allston & Milvia in the Outdoor Fair) at in the park, 3:45 PM

Sponsored by San Francisco State University Department of Creative Writing

Saturday, May 7
  • 2022
  • Comics & Graphics
  • Women/Gender

Picturing a Life: Graphic Memoirs

Maureen Burdock, Rhea Ewing, Laura Gao, L. John Harris, moderated by Tasneem Raja

Saturday, May 7

3:30 PM - 4:45 PM

Brower Center - Goldman Theater

  • In-Person and Live Streamed

Blockbuster works like Fun Home, Maus, and Persepolis have made it clear that graphic memoirs are a game-changer in the world of literature. What makes this literary genre–-blending the disciplines of cinema, writing, and visual art—so gripping? These four memoirists will show us. Berkeley Renaissance man L. John Harris (My Little Plague Journal) and illustrator/author Maureen Burdock (a contributor to COVID Chronicles: A Comics Anthology) chronicle the pandemic with time capsules of words and art; while Rhea Ewing (Fine: a Comic about Gender, praised by Alison Bechdel) and Laura Gao (Messy Roots, about growing up queer in both Wuhan, China and Texas) subversively document self-acceptance, identity, and transformation. Let these multi-talented authors take you on an immersive journey filled with images as stunning and distinctive as their use of language.

The bookstore partner for this session is Eastwind Books of Berkeley! Buy the books online at Bookshop.org or purchase them in person at the Festival. More information here.

Book signing information: East Wind Books Tent at the Bookstore Blv (corner of Allston & Milvia in the Outdoor Fair) at in the park, 5:00 PM

Sunday, May 8
  • 2022
  • Environment/Nature

Birds in Your Backyard

Jack Gedney, Alex Harris, moderated by Marthine Satris

Sunday, May 8

11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Brower Center - Goldman Theater

  • In-Person and Live Streamed

Everyone, from the avian novice to the most avid birder, will learn something new from this delightful conversation about the beauty and magic teeming in our own backyards. In The Private Lives of Public Birds, Jack Gedney, author and co-owner of a wild bird-feeding shop in the Bay, links lyricism with cutting-edge biological science to introduce us to the enchanting singularities of our most “common” feathered friends. And Alex Harris gives us a beautifully illustrated guide to the waterbird denizens of one of our most popular local havens, with Birds of Lake Merritt. This conversation will be a testament to the extraordinariness of our most “ordinary” wildlife, and how backyard birds are assets to both our ecosystems and our sense of wonder.

The bookstore partner for this session is Eastwind Books of Berkeley! Buy the books online at Bookshop.org or purchase them in person at the Festival. More information here.

Book signing information: East Wind Books Tent at the Bookstore Blv (corner of Allston & Milvia in the Outdoor Fair) at in the park, 12:15 PM

Sunday, May 8
  • 2022
  • Environment/Nature
  • International
  • Literary

The Last Wild Horses: Maja Lunde on Her “Climate Quartet”

Maja Lunde interviewed by Lee Kravetz

Sunday, May 8

11:30 AM - 12:30 PM

Brower Center - Tamalpais Room

  • In-Person Only

Horses hold a special mystique: poetry in motion, wildness and discipline in equal measure, an untamed spirit tempered by sculptural beauty and lightning-bolt speed. What if the most beautiful of the world’s horses were to go extinct? Maja Lunde, one of the most celebrated Norwegian authors of her generation, has penned a hugely bestselling series of novels (more than 4 million copies worldwide) called her “Climate Quartet,” each a global story with elements of history, travel, science, and dystopia. Deeply researched and gorgeously written, The Last Wild Horses is the third in the series (after A History of Bees and The End of the Ocean) and moves between places and centuries as three sets of characters strive to save the fabled Przewalski horse, a wild Mongolian breed. Ride off the beaten path with a work of art Booklist calls “another riveting, thrilling, and powerful installment from internationally renowned Lunde.”

The bookstore partner for this session is Eastwind Books of Berkeley! Buy the books online at Bookshop.org or purchase them in person at the Festival. More information here.

Book signing information: East Wind Books Tent at the Bookstore Blv (corner of Allston & Milvia in the Outdoor Fair) at in the park, 12:45 PM

With the support of the Norway House Foundation and NORLA - Norwegian Literature Abroad

Sunday, May 8
  • 2022
  • Environment/Nature
  • Travel
  • Women/Gender

Women in the Wild

Lauren DeLaunay Miller, Diana Helmuth, Silvia Vasquez-Lavado, moderated by Rue Mapp

Sunday, May 8

12:30 PM - 1:30 PM

Brower Center - Goldman Theater

  • In-Person and Live Streamed

Three intrepid adventurers who have scaled mountains—and, for that matter, moved them—will show us why women belong in the wild. A survivor of severe trauma in childhood, mountaineer Silvia Vasquez-Lavado (The Shadow of the Mountain) grew up to become the first openly gay woman to complete the Seven Summits (the tallest peaks on each continent). Her story is being adapted for a film starring Selena Gomez. Avid climber Lauren DeLaunay Miller (Valley of Giants: Stories from Women at the Heart of Yosemite Climbing), noticing a lack of female representation in climbing literature, reached into the past to tell the stories of her foremothers. With the hilarious How to Suffer Outside, Diana Helmuth, a champion of inclusive hiking, removes barriers for beginners. Our fearless guide for this expedition into the wild is Rue Mapp, CEO of Outdoor Afro and author of the forthcoming Nature Swagger. This far-reaching group of gutsy women will lift us up with their grit, courage, and vision of wild spaces that are open to all.

The bookstore partner for this session is Eastwind Books of Berkeley! Buy the books online at Bookshop.org or purchase them in person at the Festival. More information here.

Book signing information: East Wind Books Tent at the Bookstore Blv (corner of Allston & Milvia in the Outdoor Fair) at in the park, 1:45 PM

Sunday, May 8
  • 2022
  • Poetry

The Poetry of Exile

Victoria Chang, Shangyang Fang, Achy Obejas, Brian Tierney, moderated by Forrest Gander

Sunday, May 8

1:00 PM - 2:00 PM

Brower Center - Tamalpais Room

  • In-Person Only

From Dante to Liu Tsung-yuan to Pablo Neruda, the subject of exile has been fertile ground for poetry. Four contemporary luminaries put their own singular spins on this timeless theme. New York Times Magazine poetry editor Victoria Chang draws from the mysteries in her own lineage: the granddaughter of Chinese refugees to Taiwan, and the daughter of Tawinese immigrants to Michigan, she asks, in her collection Dear Memory, “What form can express the loss of something you never knew but knew existed?” For Shangyang Fang (Burying the Mountain), the music of ancient Chinese poetry is a conduit for exploring exile and erasure. Achy Obejas, in Boomerang/Bumerán, discovers inventive ways to release her poems from the binary confines of linguistic gender in a bilingual collection that contends with immigration and displacement, love and loss. And Brian Tierney’s Rise and Float, which Pultizer winner Tracy K. Smith calls “resonant with the desire for rapture and the never-easing reality of loss,” is a tender and allusive testament to grief and the lifeforce, in equal measure. Get gloriously lost with these wandering works of uprooting and transcendence.

The bookstore partner for this session is Eastwind Books of Berkeley! Buy the books online at Bookshop.org or purchase them in person at the Festival. More information here.

Book signing information: East Wind Books Tent at the Bookstore Blv (corner of Allston & Milvia in the Outdoor Fair) at in the park, 2:15 PM

Sunday, May 8
  • 2022
  • International
  • Literary

Short Stories: In Search of Belonging

Colin Barrett, Ethel Rohan, moderated by Jane Ciabattari

Sunday, May 8

2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Brower Center - Goldman Theater

  • In-Person and Live Streamed

What makes short stories so special (and so hard to write)? They deliver a gut-punch emotional payoff in the fewest possible words. What is this literary magic? A virtuoso of the genre will shed light on this, and so much more. Short-story maestro Colin Barrett has become a New Yorker staple with his razor-sharp, emotionally exacting tales. With Homesickness, the followup to his internationally award-sweeping debut Young Skins, Barrett, a Torontonian by way of Ireland, tells stories of County Mayo seekers who are lost and losing in equal measure, but groping for meaning and solid ground. With In the Event of Contact, celebrated author Ethel Rohan, a San Franciscan also by way of Ireland, tells short stories largely set in Dublin, her home city, that continue her fixation on fracture, displacement, and hauntology, and center characters infected in various ways who are intent on recovery. They’ll be interviewed by short story writer and critic Jane Ciabattari, author of the collection Stealing the Fire.

The bookstore partner for this session is Eastwind Books of Berkeley! Buy the books online at Bookshop.org or purchase them in person at the Festival. More information here.

Book signing information: East Wind Books Tent at the Bookstore Blv (corner of Allston & Milvia in the Outdoor Fair) at in the park, 3:15 PM

With the support of Culture Ireland

Sunday, May 8
  • 2022
  • International
  • Literary

Writer to Translator: Chilean Poet

Megan McDowell in conversation with Alejandro Zambra

Sunday, May 8

2:30 PM - 3:30 PM

Brower Center - Tamalpais Room

  • In-Person Only

Next to the writer/editor relationship, the writer/translator relationship is the most intimate and significant creative pairing there is. Transcending oceans and cultures, it can’t exist without trust, understanding, and a bond that is both intuitive and intellectual. Megan McDowell has translated into English many of the most important Latin American writers working today, and her translated works have four times been nominated for the International Booker Prize. She began translating the work of Chilean author Alejandro Zambra (“a writer of startling talent,” says The New York Times Book Review) when she was still a student. The most recent project in translation they worked on together is Zambra’s fifth novel Chilean Poet, which Sheila Heti called “a very funny, warm, and beautiful novel.“ McDowell’s translation was praised for its fealty to Zambra’s sensibility and singular prose style: “a remarkable achievement,” says PopMatters. Come see how these two literary alchemists achieve a unique creative symbiosis.

The bookstore partner for this session is Eastwind Books of Berkeley! Buy the books online at Bookshop.org or purchase them in person at the Festival. More information here.

Book signing information: East Wind Books Tent at the Bookstore Blv (corner of Allston & Milvia in the Outdoor Fair) at in the park, 3:45 PM

Sponsored by the Center for the Art of Translation