Southern Author Expo

Southern Author Expo


Sat, Jan 22 • 2p-3:45p • Zoom Event

Each year, the Library System invites submissions from local authors to participate in this special event. With approximately a dozen authors selected each year, the Southern Author Expo offers the chance for local authors to share insights about their work during a virtual event. Featured speakers will share information on topics including fiction and non-fiction writing and getting your work published.

Registration is required to attend this live virtual event. Check back in December to register. 


Author Submissions

Submissions are no longer being accepted for participation in the virtual Southern Author Expo. Featured authors will be notified during November.

If you missed the deadline, don’t worry! If you are a local author interested in submitting your work for a future Southern Author Expo, please check back during fall for submission opening and deadlines.



  • Authors must live in the Southeastern United States or write primarily about the Upstate of South Carolina.
  • Authors must be published (including self-published).
  • Authors must complete the Southern Author Expo application (link to online application form) including the submission of writing samples.
  • Selected authors must be available to participate in this virtual Southern Author Expo on January 22, 2022 from 2p–3:45p (allow 15 minutes before start time to sign on and check for audiovisual issues).
  • Selected authors may sell their book through a link provided during the Southern Author Expo virtual event.

Guidelines & Criteria

  • Books for all ages will be considered (including literature for children and young adult audiences).
  • Preference will be given for books that appeal to a wide general audience including
    • Fiction
    • Poetry
    • Graphic novels
    • History, biographies, travelogues, fine arts, humor, folklore, home & garden, recreation & leisure, cookbooks, and true crime
  • Epublished titles, audiobooks, textbooks, or professional/academic journals will not be considered.
  • Applications will be reviewed by a committee of library staff.
  • Not all applications will be accepted. Space is limited.
  • Selections will reflect a diverse group of genres and writing styles that have the widest appeal to the community at large.

Important to Note

  • Selected authors will not be offered compensation or a speaker’s fee.
  • Library staff will not assist with sales. Direct links to sale sites will not be included in print or digital Library publicity.
  • Selected authors may submit a short sample (if different from the application sample) to be featured on this page of the Library’s website (see examples from 2021 below). Selected authors must include copyright permissions for displayed excerpts.
  • Authors who have participated in previous author events need to re-apply for consideration.

2021 Featured Writers

We were excited to welcome over a dozen local authors to our virtual Expo. Featured writers included Paulette Alden, Ellyn Bache, Evelyn Everest, Paul Michael Garrison, Emily Golus, Colleen Hall, Sally Handley, Emily Martin, Charles Pate, Jr., Jordan Poss, Deb Richardson-Moore, Kimberly Simms, Kathryn Smith, and Susan Zurenda.

Their works span an array of genres including children's literature, young adult, and adult fiction; romance, nonfiction, fantasy, science fiction, poetry, and more. Our community learned about their writing process during this live virtual event.

Southern Fiction
Murder Mystery
YA Fantasy
Cozy Mystery
Historical Fiction
Nonfiction • Fiction
Southern Fiction

Meet the Author Events 2021

Featured authors shared their process, their work, and information about the writing process and getting published.

Mary Adkins • Fiction
Mary Adkins is the author of the novels When You Read This (Indie Next Pick and “Best Book of 2019” by Good Housekeeping) and Privilege (a New York Post Best Book of the Week and's 7 Best Summer Reads). Her third novel, Palm Beach, will be published by Harper in 2021. Her essays and reporting have appeared in the New York Times, The Atlantic, Slate, and more. A graduate of Yale Law School and Duke University, she teaches storytelling for The Moth worldwide and creative writing online. Mary lives in Nashville with her husband and son. For more information about the her writing courses and coaching of Mary Adkins, visit her website.
Gary Jackson • Poetry
Born and raised in Topeka, Kansas, Gary Jackson is the author of the poetry collection Missing You, Metropolis (Graywolf Press), which received the 2009 Cave Canem Poetry Prize. His poems have appeared in numerous journals including Callaloo, The Sun, Los Angeles Review of Books, and Copper Nickel. He’s been published in Shattered: The Asian American Comics Anthology and was featured in the 2013 New American Poetry Series by the Poetry Society of America. He teaches in the MFA program as an associate professor at the College of Charleston.
Deb Richardson-Moore • Mystery
Deb Richardson-Moore is the author of four (4) fiction titles and a memoir, The Weight of Mercy, about her early years as a pastor at the Triune Mercy Center in Greenville, S.C. A former national award-winning reporter for The Greenville News, Deb is a popular speaker at book clubs, universities and churches. She has won numerous awards for community involvement, including the 2017 Leadership Greenville Distinguished Alumni Award and being named one of Greenville's 50 Most Influential People by Greenville Business Magazine in 2013. A graduate of Wake Forest University, Deb and her husband live in Greenville. For more information about the work of Deb Richardson-Moore, visit her website.
Kathryn Smith • Nonfiction • Fiction
Kathryn Smith is an award-winning author of non-fiction biographies and historical mystery books who lives in Anderson, South Carolina. A graduate of Daniel High School in Central and the University of Georgia, she worked as a newspaper journalist and nonprofit executive director before devoting her time to writing. Her nonfiction books have been published by Simon & Schuster and Evening Post Books, while she publishes her mysteries, co-written with Kelly Durham of Clemson, on the platform. Kathryn is a popular public speaker who has given more than 300 talks in the past three years in venues ranging from the FDR Presidential Library and Museum in Hyde Park, New York to the Charleston Library Society to civic clubs, book clubs and senior communities in eight states. She was featured on a panel at the Greenville Library's Book Expo in 2020 discussing her biography Gertie. Kathryn is married to Leo Smith, her college sweetheart. They have two grown children and six grandchildren. For more information about Kathryn Smith’s work, visit her website.
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