June 28, By Jackie Strawbridge
The Queens literary world will converge on the Long Island City waterfront next month for the second annual Queens Lit Fest.
The two-day literature festival will take place 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. on July 16 and 17, and is presented by the Inspired Word and Poetry Teachers NYC in collaboration with the Hunters Point Parks Conservancy and LIC Landing by COFFEED.
Both days are jam packed with wide ranging literary events, showcasing everything from poetry to mystery. Local reading series and collectives including the Queens Writers’ Lab and Oh, Bernice! – which produces regular events at the Astoria Bookshop – will be featured, interspersed with open mics and music.
“I do the best I can to find out who the major players are in the Queens literary scene,” festival founder and the Inspired Word founder Mike Geffner said. “[There will be] some great words from some serious artists.”
The “huge difference” at this year’s event compared to last year is the park space, Geffner said.
“It’s [LIC Landing] an absolutely wondrous spot,” Geffner said. “There’s no age limits, it’s kid friendly, family friendly.”
That means that student groups such as writers from Bard High School Early College will be able to participate. Geffner also said he will have a table where budding and young writers can speak with him about how to become a professional writer.
Like the inaugural Queens Lit Fest, this year’s event presents former Queens Poet Laureate Paolo Javier and current Laureate Maria Lisella as featured writers.
It is free to attend. Donations will be accepted, 100 percent of which go toward the costs of the event and paying all featured artists, according to Geffner.
Geffner said that there were more than 300 attendees at last year’s festival. With the LIC Landing venue this year, he expects between 500 and 1,000.