The annual Decatur Book Festival returns Labor Day weekend, Sept. 3-5, with hundreds of authors and thousands of literature lovers descending on the city for readings, workshops and more.

This year’s keynote speaker is Jonathan Franzen, who will launch his new novel, Freedom, at the festival. Franzen, who won the National Book Award for The Corrections and spurned Oprah’s offer to be part of her book club, will speak at 8p.m. on Sept. 3 at Agnes Scott’s Presser Hall.

Authors of all kinds will be reading and signing books on various stages throughout Decatur, include Diana Gabaldon who returns to the Decatur Presbyterian Church Sanctuary Stage at 3 p.m. Saturday to discuss her latest books, An Echo in the Bone and The Exile: An Outlander Graphic Novel. Pulitzer Prize winner David Finkel; George Dawes Green, founder of The Moth, a not-for-profit storytelling organization; young adult author Cassandra Clare; adult and young adult author Ridley Pearson; and New York Times bestseller Emily Giffin.

Java Monkey Coffee House will once again host the poetry stage featuring some of Atlanta’s best poets reading their verse all weekend long. Atlanta INtown editor Collin Kelley will lead a panel on how writers can use social media on Saturday at 11:15 a.m. at the Decatur Conference Center featuring Jessica Handler, Karen Head, Laurel Snyder and Jef Blocker.

There will also be plenty of activities for children, food and the book market, which will be set up on the courthouse square.

To see a full list of events and authors, visit www.decaturbookfestival.com.

Collin Kelley

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.