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The Reading Life: Cheryl Head, De'Shawn Charles Winslow

Susan Larson talks with Cheryl Head, whose new book is Time’s Undoing and De'Shawn Charles Winslow, whose new book is called Decent People, both will be appearing at the upcoming Tennessee Williams and New Orlean Literary festival and the Saints and Sinners LGBTQ Literary Festival.

Here’s what’s on tap in the literary life this week:

The big event this week is The Tennessee Williams & New Orleans Literary Festival takes place March 22-26, headquartered at the Hotel Monteleone. Guests this year include Morgan Babst, Charles Baxter, Douglas Brinkley, Rien Fertel, Stephanie Grace, Miles Harvey, Cheryl Head, Rebecca Makkai, Cammie McGovern, Michael Paterniti, Tom Piazza, Nathaniel Rich, Maurice Carlos Ruffin, Katy Simpson Smith and many more. Check out for info.

That same weekend, March 24-26 -- also at the Hotel Monteleone is the Saints and Sinners LGBTQ Literary Festival, now celebrating its 20th year. This year’s guests include Chris Belcher, Margaret Douaihy, Cheryl Head, Andrew Holleran, Felice Picano, and De’Shawn Charles Winslow. Check out for that complete line-up.

Both Festivals are headquartered at the Hotel Monteleone.

My top Festival picks for this week:

At 2:30 Saturday at the Historic New Orleans Collection’s Williams Research Center, Oliver Houck moderates a panel on Environmental Writing with Rien Fertel, Emma Lirette, and Rob Verchick.

Saturday at 4 p.m. in the Monteleone Queen Anne Ballroom, Stephanie Grace moderates a panel, “Can Journalists Be Activists? Should They Be?” with Jarvis DeBerry, Quin Hillyer, Pam Radtke, and Katy Reckdahl.

And Sunday at 11:30 a.m. in the Royal Salon at the Monteleone, novelsit Morgan Babst interviews Rebecca Makkai about her new book, “I Have Some Questions for You.”

Elsewhere in the literary world this week:

Eric Thomas discusses and signs “Ignite Your Power, Your Purpose, and your Why,” Saturday, March 25, at 4 p.m. at Baldwin & Co. Bookstore. This is a ticketed event.

Robert Butler reads from and signs “Saint Amant Max: The Cajun Puppy,” Saturday, March 25, at 11 a.m. at Garden District Book Shop.

Nick Tabor appears in conversation with Nathaniel Rich and signs his book, “Africatown: America's Last Slave Ship and the Community It Created,” Monday, March 27, at 6 p.m. at Garden District Book Shop.

The University of New Orleans Creative Writing Workshop will host a reading by writer and poet Dana Gioia on Tuesday, March 28, at 12:30, in MATH 102. His most recent collection is “Meet Me at the Lighthouse.”

Robin Preiss Glasser, illustrator of the beloved Fancy Nancy series, and her sister, children’s book author Jacqueline Preiss Weitzman, sign “Gloria’s Promise: A Ballet Dancer’s First Step,” Tuesday, March 28, at 3 p.m. at Octavia Books.

Emily Morrison signs “Lila Duray: A Collection of Delightfully Delectable Poems,” Tuesday, March 28, at 4 Garden District Book Shop.

CNN Entertainment correspondent Chloe Melas and her mother, Elizabeth Murphy, appear at the National World War II Museum Wednesday, March 29, at 5 p.m. to discuss and sign the memoir by the late Frank Murphy, Luck of the Draw: My Story of the Air War in Europe. St. Martin’s is republishing the book to coincide with the upcoming Spielberg/Hanks/ AppleTV+ series, Masters of the Air, in which Frank is depicted as a character.

And coming up:

The Jefferson Parish Library and the Southern Food and Beverage Museum are calling all cooks, pastry chefs, and other food artists to create present Edible Book Day on April 1, in which participants create books that are exhibited, documented, and then consumed on the same day. Entries – most often a cake or similar dessert - should be edible, and they must in some way relate to a book. They might physically resemble books, or they might refer to an aspect of a story, or they might incorporate text.

The New Orleans Poetry Festival is April 13-16. Check out for complete schedule.

And The Friends of the Jefferson Public Library Book Sale, takes place Friday through Sunday, April 14-16, at the Pontchartrain Center, Williams Blvd. at the Lake, in Kenner. Hours are Friday and Saturday (April 14-15) from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday (April 16) from noon to 5 p.m.

The Reading Life in 2010, Susan Larson was the book editor for The New Orleans Times-Picayune from 1988-2009. She has served on the boards of the Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival and the New Orleans Public Library. She is the founder of the New Orleans chapter of the Women's National Book Association, which presents the annual Diana Pinckley Prizes for Crime Fiction.. In 2007, she received the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities lifetime achievement award for her contributions to the literary community. She is also the author of The Booklover's Guide to New Orleans. If you run into her in a local bookstore or library, she'll be happy to suggest something you should read. She thinks New Orleans is the best literary town in the world, and she reads about a book a day.