February 19, 2020

Libraries partner to bring author Margaret Atwood to Columbus on Sept. 13

Author of The Handmaid’s Tale to be joined in conversation by WOSU’s Ann Fisher

COLUMBUS—Columbus Metropolitan Library (CML) is joining with eight other central Ohio library systems to present A Conversation with Margaret Atwood at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 13 at the Palace Theatre in downtown Columbus. WOSU’s Ann Fisher will lead the conversation.

This marks the second year of the library partnership, which includes Bexley Public Library, Grandview Heights Public Library, London Public Library, Plain City Public Library, Southwest Public Libraries, Upper Arlington Public Library, Westerville Public Library and Worthington Libraries. Last year, this partnership presented author and TV host Rick Steves at the Southern Theatre.

Atwood has long been a literary titan, but “current events have polished the oracular sheen of her reputation” (The New Yorker). With her 1985 novel The Handmaid’s Tale adapted into an 11-time Emmy Aw­­­­­­­ard-winning television series, and its sequel, The Testaments, winning the 2019 Booker Prize, Atwood’s sharp eye is more crucial – and prescient – than ever.

Tickets start at $25 and go on sale at the CAPA box office and capa.com beginning at 10 a.m. on Monday, June 15. The event will include a presentation and an opportunity for audience members to submit questions. A book signing will follow the program, with the opportunity to purchase books from Gramercy Books.

Atwood is the winner of many international literary awards, including the prestigious Booker Prize, Arthur C. Clarke Award, Governor General’s Award, the PEN Pinter Prize, the Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Book Critics Circle and a Guggenheim Fellowship. In October 2019, she was presented with the Companion of Honor award – given for achievements in the arts, literature, science and politics – by Queen Elizabeth, making Atwood only the third Canadian to receive the honor.

She is the author of more than 50 volumes of poetry, children’s literature, fiction and nonfiction. Atwood perhaps is best known for her novels, which include The Edible Woman, The Robber Bride, The Blind Assassin, Oryx and Crake and The Year of the Flood. Her nonfiction book, Payback: Debt and the Shadow Side of Wealth, part of the Massey Lecture series, was adapted into a documentary. The Oryx and Crake trilogy is being adapted into an HBO TV series by filmmaker Darren Aronofsky. Atwood’s work has been published in more than 40 languages. She co-invented the LongPen, a remote signing device that allows someone to write in ink anywhere in the world via tablet PC and the internet. She is a founder of the Writers’ Trust of Canada and a founding trustee of the Griffin Poetry Prize. She is also a popular personality on Twitter, with over 1 million followers.

Columbus Metropolitan Library has served the people of Franklin County, Ohio since 1873. With its Main Library and 22 branches, CML is well known for signature services and programs like Homework Help Centers, Reading Buddies, Summer Reading Challenge and Ready for Kindergarten. The library’s Strategic Plan supports the vision of “a thriving community where wisdom prevails,” which positions CML to respond to areas of urgent need: kids unprepared for kindergarten, third grade reading proficiency, high school graduation, college and career readiness and employment resources.

CML was named a 2011 National Medal Winner by the Institute for Museum and Library Services for work in community service, the highest honor for libraries and museums. CML was also named 2010 Library of the Year by Library Journal.