WIT: Words, Ideas, and Thinkers Festival
September 22-25, 2022
Shakespeare & Company
Lenox, MA

The Authors Guild Foundation is excited to host our inaugural WIT: Words, Ideas, and Thinkers Festival this September in Lenox, Massachusetts, the heart of the Berkshires. WIT means to expand our understanding of critical issues, celebrate America’s literary culture, and amplify new voices and perspectives. It is free and open to the public so everyone can participate in the dialogue without barriers. If you would like to make a tax-deductible donation in support of the Authors Guild Foundation and the WIT Festival, click here.

For our inaugural event, we will explore the theme Reimagining America through a series of thought-provoking conversations, presentations, panels, and speeches. Authors, novelists, playwrights, and journalists will discuss topics such as identity and belonging, reexamining history, climate change, the U.S. Supreme Court, and visions for our future. Festival attendees will have the opportunity to interact with speakers in Q&A sessions, book signings, and receptions. Dinners with speakers and additional special guests will be available for ticketed purchase.

By registering, you will let us know you are interested in attending the WIT Festival. Later this summer, we will ask you to select the sessions you plan to attend to secure your seat. Due to high demand, we cannot guarantee all registrants will be able to attend all sessions.

Session selection and tickets for hosted dinners is now open for Giving Society members and will open on Monday, August 15 for non-members. Click here to learn more about the Giving Society and how you can become a member.

Please contact Lynn Boulger, Executive Director of the Authors Guild Foundation, at lboulger@authorsguildfoundation.org, or Nikki Maniscalco at nmaniscalco@authorsguildfoundation.org with any questions.

 Click here to download the session schedule. While the WIT Festival will not be streamed live, some sessions will be recorded and available after the Festival.

WIT Festival Main Sessions

When Religion Meets Science with Dan Brown
America and China: Comes the Moment with Simon Winchester and Admiral Harry Harris, U.S. Navy (Retired)
America Through Fiction with Geraldine Brooks and Roxana Robinson
Reexamining American History with David Blight and Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
On Climate Change with Elizabeth Kolbert and Douglas Preston
Does the Supreme Court Have a Future? with Linda Greenhouse and Nikolas Bowie
Identity and Belonging with Ayad Akhtar and Susan Choi; Moderated by Marie Arana

Pop-Up Events

Reading: Letty Cottin Pogrebin reading from her memoir, Shanda: A Memoir of Shame and Secrecy, at The Bookstore in Lenox, MA - Registration not required, but space at The Bookstore is limited.
Performance: Wild Symphony: A Musical Performance and Reading with Dan Brown
Authors Guild Foundation Fundraising Event: A Play, A Pint, and A Picnic
Featuring a performance of Community Service, a comedic play written by Laura Pedersen and performed by Paula Ewin and David Rockefeller.

The WIT Festival will be following the Shakespeare & Company COVID-19 policy. Click here for more information.

Plan your weekend at the WIT Festival!

Special thanks to our WIT Festival partners and sponsors!

Epic Sponsor


Biography Sponsors

Joanne Leonhardt Cassullo
Hans & Kate Morris
Hunter K. Runnette and Mark P. VandenBosch

Memoir Sponsors

Patrick Atkinson
Harper's Magazine
Lapham's Quarterly
Oaklins DeSilva & Phillips LLC
October Mountain Financial Advisors
Laura Pedersen
Mary Ann & Bruno Quinson
Roxana & Hamilton Robinson
Diana Rowan Rockefeller

For more information about sponsorship opportunities, click here or contact Lynn Boulger, Executive Director of the Authors Guild Foundation, at lboulger@authorsguildfoundation.org.