History of the Salem Literary Festival
Now presented by the Salem Athenaeum, the Salem Literary Festival was founded by Beth Simpson in 2008 as an extension of the events she created for the now defunct Cornerstone Bookstore. Since then, the Salem Lit Fest has grown to include hundreds of attendees, scores of volunteers, and dozens of authors. In 2014, the festival joined forces with New York Times bestselling author Brunonia Barry and her organization, Readers and Writers, Inc. The LitFest was held at historic venues in and around Salem that unite authors and book lovers.
In 2016, the baton was passed by Bru to longtime LitFest partner, the Salem Athenaeum, which presented the 2017 festival in June.
The Salem Lit Fest aims to inspire and promote literacy and a love of books and reading through programming featuring both contemporary authors and engagement with classic works of literature.