Fort Collins Book Fest 2023 features CSU alumni and faculty

Fort Collins Book Fest logo

February is Library Lovers’ Month, the perfect time to celebrate libraries and local authors during Fort Collins Book Fest. In its sixth year, the event is spearheaded by the Poudre Libraries, in partnership with Colorado State University Libraries, the CSU Department of English and Old Firehouse Books.

More than 20 free workshops, talks, readings, book clubs and social events are scheduled throughout the month of February. Explore the full schedule here:

The line-up of 30 authors includes three CSU alumni: Maz Bangs, Aby Kaupang (M.F.A., ‘07) and Kelly Weber (M.F.A. ‘19). Two CSU English faculty members, Nina McConigley and Harrison Candelaria Fletcher, are also slated to participate.

“We’re excited to offer a new format for our annual book festival,” said Diane Lapierre, the executive director of Poudre Libraries. “The month-long celebration truly lifts the voices of local and regional authors and provides opportunities for up-close connections among book lovers.”

“Our schedule has something for everyone, with a great variety of topics for children, teens, and adults to explore. It’s a true celebration of books and reading,” she added.

The annual Fort Collins Book Fest was conceived by librarians, writers, book lovers and community members with a simple purpose: to combine the community’s passion for the literary arts and our unique cultural heritage in a celebration of literature, literacy and social conversation.

Book Fest events featuring CSU faculty and alumni

We Are the West

Feb. 11, 2:30-3:30 p.m. at Mythmaker Brewing, Fort Collins

CSU alumna Maz Bangs
CSU alumna Maz Bangs.

“We are the West: A Colorado Anthology” is a collection of more than 40 literary voices representative of the spirit and experience of the Centennial State. Featuring fiction, nonfiction, essays, poetry and visual art, the anthology is an exciting introduction to the next generation of diverse Colorado storytelling.

In this session, featured Fort Collins writers Maz Bangs, Heather Hein and Sarah Reichert will talk about their own Colorado stories and, in doing so, help us reimagine the character and make-up of the modern West.

Featured CSU Alum: Maz Bangs

Dear Anti-Valentine

Feb. 17, 7-8 p.m., location TBD

Kelly Weber
CSU alumna Kelly Weber.

The poem is often thought to be a form bearing love and romance, but Kelly Weber’s collection “We Are Changed to Deer at the Broken Place” is a book obsessed with sound, with the haunting creak of animals breaking through human bodies, canter and flight. Sex is everywhere in her book – and romance, too. And yet the lived experience Weber captures, aromantic and asexual, are attached to the natural world but refusing expected couplings.

Featured CSU Alum: Kelly Weber (M.F.A., ‘19)

On the Edges & In Between: Identity, Displacement and Belonging

Feb. 18, 2:30-3:30 p.m. at Council Tree Library, Fort Collins

Hear from authors Nazlı Koca (“The Applicant”), Harrison Candelaria Fletcher (“Finding Querencia: Essays from In-Between”) and Nina McConigley (“Cowboys and East Indians), who weave stories and essays on finding identity, belonging and reconciliation in displacement.

Featured CSU Faculty: Harrison Candelaria Fletcher, Department of English, and Nina McConigley, Department of English

Harrison Candelaria Fletcher

CSU Associate Professor Harrison Candelaria Fletcher. 

Nina McConigley

CSU English faculty member Nina McConigley. 

Oh God. Modernity, Myths & (Dis)Belief

Feb. 24, 7-8 p.m. at Snowbank Brewing, Fort Collins

Aby Kaupang
CSU alumna Aby Kaupang.

Sharing tender and uneasy fascinations with faith, John Tipton and Aby Kaupang interrogate, in poetry both mystic and linguistically precise, what lies beneath our inner lives, outer exchanges and responsibilities to one another.  Tipton’s “BELIEVERS AND SEVEN SERMONS FROM THE BACCHAE,” is an idiosyncratic offering of Euripides’ Bacchae interlaced with passages from the Gospel of Mark. Kaupang’s “Radiant Tether” braids the war in Afghanistan, a ponderence of God’s cruel mysteries and love between two people trying to stay alive.

Featured CSU Alum: Aby Kaupang (M.F.A., ‘07)