Ten top talents of UntitledTown 2020 revealed

Note: This press release originated Dec. 18, 2019, from UntitledTown Book and Author Festival.
Green Bay, WI – A beloved children’s writer, a science podcaster, bestselling novelists, award-winning slam poets, and the Festival’s youngest-ever author will headline UntitledTown Book and Author Festival in Green Bay, Wisconsin on April 23-26, 2020.

Several headliners will debut new books at the Festival. Two events are sponsored in part by a 2019 Packers Foundation Impact Grant.

Festival Theme
The 2020 Festival theme of “Community” raises questions of identity, art, citizenship, caretaking, and craft-making for readers and writers in Northeastern Wisconsin. Programming includes stories of adoptive families, domestic violence survivors, and immigrant experiences. The Festival’s popular youth events will include writing workshops for Spanish-speaking youth.

Headliners will address such questions as:

  • What does “community” mean in the United States in 2020?
  • How are communities formed?
  • Who sets community standards?
  • How can we overcome forces of isolation and exile?
  • How can reading and writing serve our communities?

Top Ten Headliners of 2020
– For Young Readers

Rosemary Wells: illustrator and writer creator of “Max & Ruby” series about quarrelsome sibling bunnies published 120 children’s books over 40 years

Jonah Larson: seventh grader from La Crosse, Wisconsincrochet prodigy • author of Hello, Crochet Friends!: Making Art, Being Mindful, Giving Back: Do What Makes You Happyappearances on “The Today Show,” NPR youngest-ever UntitledTown Festival headliner

-Adult Nonfiction
Lulu Miller: science journalist co-founder Invisibilia, an NPR program about unseen forces of human behavior founding producer of Radiolab podcast first book, Why Fish Don’t Exist—about nature, science, history, and Miller’s experiences— debuts in April 2020

Donna Hylton: author, A Little Piece of Light: A Memoir of Hope, Prison, and a Life Unbound advocate for incarcerated women and girls and the impact of prison on communities featured speaker at 2017 Women’s March

Adult Fiction
Tayari Jones: novelist, author of An American Marriage, which was selected for Barack Obama’s 2018 year-end reading list and Oprah’s Book Club, and won the international 2019 Women’s Prize for Fiction

Laila Lalami: novelist, author of The Other Americans, a 2019 finalist for the National Book Award forthcomingnonfiction exploration of immigrant and American identity, Conditional Citizens, debuts in April 2020

Lisa Wingate: author, historical fiction novel about black-market adoption, Before We Were Yours, sold over 2 million copies and spent 54 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list next novel, The Book of Lost Friends, debuts in April 2020

Peter Geye: novelist, author of Minnesota-set family epics novel, Wintering, won the Minnesota Book Award and the Midwest Booksellers Choice Award • final book in Lake Superior trilogy, Northernmost, debuts in April 2020

Poetry/Spoken-Word Performance
Dasha Kelly Hamilton: Poet Laureate of Milwaukee Arts Envoy for the US Embassy performed on HBO’s Def Poetry Jam commissioned production, Makin’ Cake, is making a national tour author of four books of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry

José Olivarez: debut collection, Citizen Illegal, was a finalist for the PEN/ Jean Stein Award, winner of the 2018 Chicago Review of Books Poetry Prize, and selected by the New York Public Library and National Public Radio as a best book of 2018 • next book, BreakBeat Poets: Latinext, re-mixes the soundtrack of the Latinx diaspora in poetry, and debuts in April 2020

About UntitledTown 2020
UntitledTown’s fourth Festival takes place on April 23-26, 2020 in the city of Green Bay. For updates on the full schedule, see www.untitledtown.org.

About the Festival
Born in a local coffee shop, UntitledTown Book and Author Festival debuted in 2016 to promote book and storytelling culture through writing workshops, publishing panels, and readings by local and world-renowned authors like Margaret Atwood, R.L. Stine, Roxane Gay, and Walter Mosley. Now an annual “People’s Festival,” the event draws thousands of word-makers of all ages and expertise to Green Bay for a four-day weekend. Nearly all of the 100+ Festival events are free and open to the public.



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