Saints and Sinners Fest turns 10 this weekend

The 10th Anniversary Saints and Sinners Festival takes place this weekend, drawing a host of LGTB writers, publishers, and readers to New Orleans from May 23 – 26. The festival began as a way to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS and, over the last 10 years, has grown into its current incarnation as a widely acclaimed literary event.

This year’s festival kicks off with a book launch for its anthology Saints and Sinners 2013: New Fiction from the Festival, proceeds from which benefit both the festival and the NO/AIDS Task Force.

The weekend continues with master classes taught by headliners Justin Torres and Dorothy Allison. Torres’ first novel, We the Animals, debuted to acclaim from the New York Times and many other publications. Read an interview with him at the Los Angeles Review of Books. Allison is the author of Bastard Out of Carolina, a finalist for the 1992 National Book Award, and Cavedweller, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. She has been called “The Roseanne of Literature.” Other speakers include Elana Dykewomon, Felice Picano, Bernard Cooper, Ellen Hart, and Andrew Holleran.

The festival also aims to provide its visitors with perspective and opportunities that extend into the business side of the writing life. Editors from the LGTB literary world will be available to hear pitches and answer questions about how best to prepare short fiction for anthology submission. Guests can also mingle freely with authors and speakers at the Fest’s “Glitter with the Literari” party.

Other fun things to do include the Saints and Sinners walking tour, New Orleans’ first LGTB literary tour, and the New Orleans leg of the Stories and Queer reading series. Festival events will take place at Faubourg Marigny Art and Books, Gallery Orange, the Herman-Grimma House, and Hotel Monteleone.

See more coverage of the festival at Lambda Literary.