Don’t miss this year’s Natchez Literary and Cinema Celebration events

Published 1:01 am Friday, February 23, 2018

Filled with suspense, intrigue peppered with romanticism and a touch of dark humor, this year’s Natchez Literary and Cinema Celebration has the making for a real Southern Gothic tale — a page-turner not to be missed.

Exploring the theme “Southern Gothic,” organizers have prepared a conference filled with fascinating tales of murder and mystery, the soul-filled sounds of the blues and a slate of presenters that includes one of Mississippi’s creative giants and a New York Times best-selling author.

This morning, celebrated author Richard Grant, who wrote the bestseller “Dispatches from Pluto” will discuss his unique perspective of Mississippi through British eyes.

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This afternoon, Mississippi artist William Dunlap, whose lyrical paintings fill galleries and museums across the country, will present a multi-media presentation about his current book of Southern Gothic tales.

Those looking for an evening of the blues are encouraged to join musician Ray Cashman at the Rolling River Bistro tonight for a free concert. Cashman and folklorist Victor Bouveron will discuss the connection between the Southern Gothic and the blues earlier in the afternoon.

Saturday’s presentation will be equally enjoyable with a morning panel discussion about regional cold case investigations. On the panel will be Concordia Sentinel editor Stanley Nelson, who recently wrote  “Devils Walking: Klan Murders Along the Mississippi in the 1960s.”

Later in the afternoon, author Karen Cox will discuss her recent book about Natchez’s notorious Goat Castle murder.The highlight of the day will be the presentation of the Richard Wright Awards for Literary Excellence, which will go to Mississippi journalist Billy Watkins and University of Mississippi retired professor of Southern Studies Dr. Charles Reagan Wilson.

With so much to do and see, this year’s 29th annual celebration is shaping up to be one of the best and one not to miss.