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Fall for the Book Literary Festival, 10/3-10/6

September 6, 2002
Contact: Press & Media Relations Coordinator (703-993-8794)

For general information about tickets, seating, parking, etc., for performances and events happening at the Center for the Arts, please contact the ticket office directly at 703-993-2787.

Literary Festival
George Mason University
Fairfax, VA 22030-4444

Hot Topics, Award-Winning Authors!
Nearly 60 Events, 100+ authors Converge on George Mason’s Fairfax Campus for
4th Annual Fall for the Book Festival
October 3-6, 2002

Fairfax, Virginia, September 5, 2002—"It's all about the reader," explains Fall for the Book Festival Director and George Mason University professor Bill Miller, in introducing this year’s premier book and author event in Northern Virginia. For the 4th Annual Fall for the Book Festival, top-of-the-news issues, like "Civil Rights & the Power of the Presidency", "Welfare to Work", "Urban Legends", and "Growing Up Girl", take center stage October 3 through 6 on the Fairfax campus of George Mason University. This free event is presented by the Washington Post and co-sponsored by the Fairfax County Public Library, Associated Writing Programs, George Mason University and the George Mason University campus bookstore. In addition to presentations and panel discussions by more than 50 writers, a full day of children's programming is scheduled for Saturday, October 5, featuring actors, authors, musicians, magicians, puppeteers and other performers. The complete schedule of events will be available online at Some of today’s most sought-after authors appear in person during this year’s festival, including E. Lynn Harris, Esmeralda Santiago, Matthew Klam, Jill McCorkle, Liam Callanan and Pablo Medina.

History and politics buffs discover presentations focusing on both the distant and not-so-distant past. Civil Rights under Truman are explored, as are FDR’s Fireside Chats -- providing a glimpse into America’s innocent past. Another presentation dramatically exposes the story behind the captivity and coming home of the longest held Vietnam POW, and the cheeky "Not Your Average Civil War Panel" takes a look at a surprising group of Civil War Vets.

Concerns for family and child are addressed in several sessions including an uplifting look at women who’ve escaped violence in In Their Own Words, pre-teen advice from Dr. M (Harriet S. Mosatche), and Unfinished Business, a crossfire between a broadcast pundit and MIT economist – both outspoken females – on the top issues facing women today.

Young people are attracted to the Festival’s open mic poetry events, new interpretations of recent acclaimed films (including "Iris" and "The Bourne Identity"); blood, gore and paranoia in a session devoted to the unending cycle of "Urban Legends," and Abby Wilner’s on-the-money report on disillusioned twenty-somethings, Quarterlife Crisis.

Authors and writers of color as well as many topics centered on cultural diversity comprise an important part of the Festival offerings. In addition to the bestselling E. Lynn Harris, other events include Brown Poetry II – a celebration of young, Hispanic poets; an appearance by Sandra Guzman – the former editor of Latina magazine, and When I Was Puerto Rican author Esmeralda Santiago.

The modern immigrant experience is chronicled in a session featuring Anna Mohamadi and Meriwether Beatty called "The Refugee Experience."

Judy Shepard, mother of the late Matthew Shepard and co-founder of the Matthew Shepard Foundation (for gay and lesbian equality and the prevention of hate crimes) speaks on campus on Friday, October 4 in an event sponsored by the Mason Women’s Studies Research and Resource Center, Office of Housing and Residence Life, Graduate School of Education, Office of Diversity Programs and Services, Sexual Assault Services, Greek Life, Men’s Ally Group and other campus organizations.

The festival also offers an opening reception, free movies, live music and a used book sale at the Fairfax City Regional Library.
In conclusion, Bill Miller comments on the broad variation in topics, events, workshops and writers coming to Fairfax, "The Festival offers a topic or a literary genre to engage almost everybody, from poets to policy wonks."

For more information about Fall for the Book call (703) 993-3986.
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