Bringing together the people who create books with the people who love to read them is at the heart of this two-day event. On Friday, March 20, 2020, an array of lectures and panel discussions will take place during the Writers Festival at the William H. Jervey, Jr. Venice Public Library from 10:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. The festival is a special opportunity to chat with journalists, publishers, and authors, including a Pulitzer Prize-winning author.

Festival Schedule Overview- March 20th 
10:30-11:30 Writing about Family with Alex Marzano-Lesnevich, Writer-in-Residence at the Hermitage Artist Retreat.

1:30-2:30 Raising a Writer: A Conversation with a Pulitzer Prize-winning Journalist and Her Author-Mom. Lane DeGregory, a Pulitzer Prize recipient, and her mother, Clarissa Thomasson, will offer insights on raising readers, kids who write, write well and win awards. Maria Carrillo, Deputy Editor of the Tampa Bay Times, will moderate.

3:00-4:00 How to Turn Your Expertise into a Book, panel discussion moderated by Venice High School teacher, Beth Donofrio. Panel members include Craig Faulkner and Ray Sinibaldi, authors of 61 Motivational Stories for Every Coach of Every Sport, along with Dr. Christopher Cortman, author of Your Mind: An Owner’s Manual for a Better Life.

4:30-5:30 So, You Wanna Write a Book? is a panel discussion on finding and maximizing literary representation, editing, publicizing, marketing, and selling your book. Panel members include Turtle Tales author Kim Cool, Shark Fin Soup author Susan Klaus, literary agent Amanda Leuck, and Venice Books-A-Million store manager Myra Turley. Camille Cline, Literary Spa Editor, will moderate.

Registration is required for the Writers Festival and should be done via the book fair website, A donation of $25 is requested to attend and must be made via the website.

Book Fair- March 21st
The Writers Festival will be followed by a book fair on Saturday, March 21 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Monty Andrews Arboretum in West Blalock Park. The book fair, which is free to the public, will feature more than 50 authors and vendors to satisfy all your literary interests. You will be delighted with the variety of genres from children’s literature to science fiction. Authors of every genre are looking forward to chatting with you and your children.

Take a moment while visiting the many writers and educational vendors to enjoy the arboretum, home to more than 80 species of trees and palms identified with information signs, along with a Florida-friendly native shrub area, butterfly garden, and four life-size animal sculptures. Enjoy lunch in the park from one of the food trucks that will be parked on Nassau Street between Milan and Turin Streets.

Come celebrate the art of the written word at this fun, cultural, community event. All proceeds from the Book Fair and Writers Festival go to Venice Heritage, Inc., the 501c3 fundraising arm of two historic sites in Venice—the Lord-Higel House, currently under restoration, and the Venice Museum and Archives. For more information on this literary event, visit