Voices Lit Fest

***Thank you to everyone who made Voices of the Middle West a huge success.
We’re looking forward to seeing you next year!***

Created by Midwestern Gothic in partnership with the the University of Michigan’s Residential College, Voices of the Middle West is a festival celebrating writers from all walks of life as well as independent presses and journals that consider the Midwestern United States their home.

The goal of the festival is to bring together students and faculty of the university, as well as writers and presses from all over the Midwest, in order to provide a perspective of this region and to showcase the magnificent work being produced here, the stories that need to be told…the voices that need to be heard. Truly, this is a celebration of the Midwest voice, and it is our aim to create an ideal environment for any and all to come and take an active part, to discover and discuss how rich our literary tradition is.

The festival will be headlined by a special keynote speaker, lifelong Midwesterner Curtis Sittenfeld, author of the bestselling novels Sisterland, American Wife, Prep, and The Man of My Dreams, which have been translated into twenty-five languages. Prep was chosen as one of the Ten Best Books of 2005 by The New York Times, and American Wife was chosen as one of the Ten Best Books of 2008 by Time, People, and Entertainment Weekly; both were nominated for the UK’s Orange Prize. There will be a reception open to the public after the keynote, where Ms. Sittenfeld will be available to sign copies of her books, available to purchase by Literati Bookstore.

Held on the campus of the University of Michigan, Voices of the Middle West will take place on Saturday, March 22, starting at 10 AM with a panel lead by faculty and alumni of the University of Michigan. Following is a panel featuring editors of UM literary student publications. After lunch there will be a publishing panel consisting of experts in the field discussing the state of publishing today, a featured author panel whose topic is the uniqueness of the Midwestern voice in literature, and an Open Mic event where students and community writers are invited to share their work with an audience.

Throughout the day there will be a bookfair held in the atrium (main level) of East Quad with nearby access to all of the day’s events. The bookfair will showcase literary journals and independent presses from all over the Midwest selling their latest issues and books—panelists’ and featured writers’ books will be available as well.

Food is available in East Quad for purchase (for non-students as well), and light refreshments will be served in the afternoon.

There is no cost to attend the festival, and we invite you to stop by and see what we’re all about.

Event Schedule / Directions and Parking


Bookfair Information / Exhibitor List

Facebook Event (RSVP)


Voices of the Middle West is proud to be sponsored by the following generous institutions:



LHSP Logo in jpg