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Festival Information

The 23rd annual Library of Congress National Book Festival will be held at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C., on Saturday, August 12, from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. (doors open at 8:30 a.m.). The event is free and open to the public. A selection of programs will be livestreamed online and videos of all programs will be available shortly after the Festival. Attendees may expect enhanced safety and security measures when entering the Convention Center.

This virtual attendee guide will help you create your own National Book Festival online experience from a variety of programs and activities before, during and after the Festival.

You Can:

Before the Festival


Get to know the authors and their books on our website. You can order books online from the official bookseller, Politics and Prose.

Plan Your Day

Explore Festival events that are available online by visiting the Festival Events page. In the schedule filter, check the box that says “Livestream Available or Online Only.” Click “Apply.” All events available for online audiences will be displayed. You may also filter the schedule further by selecting genres or event types that interest you.

You can build your own virtual schedule by using the “Add to Calendar” feature to add each event that interests you to your personal calendar. Click the words “Add to Calendar” below the date and time for each event that interests you. Please note that this tool places individual events in your personal calendar and does not constitute a reservation or ticket to the event. (This tool works with Outlook and Apple but does not work with Google.)

Watch Interviews with PBS

Watch interviews with some of the Festival’s featured authors hosted by PBS Books in partnership with PBS stations across the country beginning on July 20, including Claribel A. Ortega, Shelby Van Pelt, Tananarive Due, S.A. Cosby, Luis Alberto Urrea and Beverly Gage.

During the Festival

Share Your Story

The Festival’s theme is “Everyone Has a Story.” Share your story and join in conversations using the hashtag #NatBookFest through Library of Congress social media channels.

Watch the Festival Livestreams

All livestreaming information and links are located on the Watch the Festival page. Starting the night before the festival, watch a gala Opening Ceremony event featuring special presentations by five Festival authors. On the day of the Festival, the Creativity Stage and Inspiration Stage will both be livestreamed. Book TV on C-SPAN2 will also livestream select events from the Insight Stage and exclusive interviews. You can find details for all the livestreamed events by checking the “Livestream Available or Online Only” box in the schedule filter on the Festival Events page. The Creativity Stage livestream will also be available on the Festival’s homepage on the day of the Festival.

Festival Near You

Local libraries and other organizations will be hosting livestream watch parties and live events across the country. Locate an event near you by visiting the Festival Near You page. Contact the organizations directly or visit their sites for more information.

Great Reads from Great Places

The Center For The Book promotes books, reading and literacy with 56 Affiliate Centers for the Book across the country. Each year the local Center for the Book or state library selects a children’s and adult book to represent that state at the Festival in the Great Reads from Great Places list. Videos highlighting the Great Reads from Great Places can be watched during and after the Festival. Many of the books are available for sale from Politics & Prose’s website.

After the Festival

Stay Tuned for Videos

All livestreamed events will continue to be available on the website after the Festival. Video recordings of all Festival events, including those that were not livestreamed, will be released in the weeks following the Festival and will contain closed captioning. Subscribe to the “Bookmarked” blog to be notified when videos of all events become available.

Great Reads from Great Places

A great way to interact and stay connected to the Library and the Festival is to download the Great Reads from Great Places brochure. The brochure contains a reading list of books and authors for each state across the nation and a map that allows you to mark and keep track of your reading. Videos highlighting the Great Reads from Great Places reading list can be watched during and after the Festival. Many of the books are available for sale from Politics & Prose’s website.

Watch Interviews with PBS

Watch more interviews with some of the Festival’s featured authors hosted by PBS Books until Aug. 31, including TJ Klune, Matthew Desmond, Héctor Tobar, Angeline Boulley and Trang Thanh Tran.

Take Our Survey

Your feedback is important! Please take a moment and tell us about your experiences during the National Book Festival by completing our survey by August 31.