Seventh Annual
Sonoma Valley Authors Festival

2025 dates will be announced soon

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Author Colm Tóibín

Colm Tóibín's Long Island, named Oprah’s 105th Book Club pick. Learn more

Author Jonathan Eig

Chicago author Jonathan Eig wins Pulitzer for biography King: A Life. Learn more

2024 Authors & Speakers

Doris Kearns Goodwin

Presidential Historian and Pulitzer Prize-winning author

An Unfinished Love Story: A Personal History of the 1960s

David Grann

Award-winning New Yorker writer and bestselling author

Colm Tóibín

Celebrated Irish author of eleven novels

Amy Tan

Bestselling author

A remarkable roster of speakers joined us in person for the 7th Annual Sonoma Valley Authors Festival April 26 - 28, 2024. 

Catch up on your reading with the 2024 Reading list.

Festival Community Impact

In just seven years, we have been thrilled to see the impact the Sonoma Valley Authors Festival has made in the Sonoma Community.

Authors Festival

175+ world class authors and speakers have discussed a variety of topics and various disciplines

2,375 attendees have participated

Students Day

12,500+ students have explored new ideas in person with our award-winning writers and thought leaders

17,515+ books written by the presenting authors have been given to students, all paid for with private funds

Authors on the plaza

4,200+ North Bay Citizens have participated in Authors on the Plaza, our free, family-friendly, community event on the historic Sonoma town square.

3,630+ books have been given free to the attendees


Virtual Festival

6,500+ individuals worldwide have benefitted

17,000+ presentations have been viewed

About The Festival

The Sonoma Valley Authors Festival Brings people together to hear authors from a variety of liter­ary genres and speakers who discuss advances being made in science, technology, and medicine.

Festival Overview

Past Authors and Speakers

Authors On The Plaza

Extending the Festival to Sonoma Valley Residents, Authors on the Plaza is a free, family-friendly special event for the Sonoma community hosted by the Sonoma Valley Authors Festival.

The 2024 speakers:

What Authors Say

We are thrilled to share the exciting roster of speakers who joined us in 2024.
Take a look at past authors and speakers.

Without a doubt one of the best book festivals in the world. I’d go every year if they let me.

—Jonathan Eig
, Pulitzer Prize winning author
Jonathan Eig

The SVAF is a wonderful experience for patrons and guests, and especially for the authors. The tone is set by the hosts, David and Ginny Freeman, founders of the festival, who have a way of infusing the entire event with the warmth and comfort of a family gathering, a weekend retreat that just happens to feature some of the most inspiring writers working today. 

—Wade Davis
Wade Davis

One of the things that sets this festival apart is that it is smaller, it is more intimate. One of the nice things here for the people who attend is that they get to come up and talk to the authors and ask their own questions and talk about what they like about the book and also get to know authors a little bit…it demystifies writing in some sense.

—Jeffrey Brown
Jeffrey Brown

My first time at the Sonoma Valley Authors Festival was a fun and stimulating experience. I got to be with authors I admire, listen to inspiring talks, and be in conversation with my handsome friend Jeffrey Brown in front of an attentive audience. Aside from the intellectual feast and lots of laughter, the setting was perfect in spite of the hot weather: good food and wine, nice staff, and a first-class hotel. I hope I get invited again. (If not, I might just crash the party).

—Isabel Allende
Isabel Allende

Positioned at the intersection of wine and literature, the Sonoma Valley Authors Festival offers eye, heart and mind-opening opportunities, all the while striking just the right blend of seriousness and hilarity.

—Billy Collins
Billy Colins

I loved everything about the Festival. The audience was enthusiastic, the talks were fascinating, the hotel was first class, the hosts and volunteers were beyond gracious, and we even had the unique pleasure of viewing stars with a Nobel Laureate astronomer. Wow! And what fun it was hanging with friends Dave Barry, Isabel Allende and Billy Collins. A perfect weekend!

—Amy Tan
Amy Tan

The breadth of the talent of the authors is truly inspiring. If you look at this year for example, everything from AI to international policy, the inspiration of a woman who beat her trauma and climbed the world’s greatest mountains. There’s a lot to learn, a lot to go away with.

—James Strock
James Strock

It was thrilling to be in the company of readers, writers, and friends. Sonoma Valley Authors Festival was the burst of literary light and warmth we needed.

—Min Jin Lee
Min Jin Lee

I loved everything about the Sonoma Valley Authors Festival. The audiences are attentive and enthusiastic; the setting is beautiful; and there was ample time to hear and interact with other authors. Just a wonderful experience.

—Dave Barry
Dave Barry

The Sonoma Valley Authors Festival was a celebration of writers and readers. Whenever we can gather, magical things happen. Thank you all for making this happen!

—Luis J. Rodriguez
Luis Rodriguez

The Sonoma Valley Authors Festival has already become an important spot on the literary and cultural landscape. With a lineup of speakers that any event would envy, with engaged and intelligent audiences and with its spectacular setting, this is an event to say “yes” to.

—David Brooks
David Brooks

It’s a nice way of getting out. It’s a nice way of communing with like-minded people who love books and who care about keeping book culture alive.

—Jeffrey Brown
Jeffrey Brown

Thank you, Sonoma Valley. The Authors Festival was original, energetic, thoughtfully composed, and generous of spirit. We enjoyed and learned from our time both as speakers and as audience!

—James and Deborah Fallows
James and Deborah Fallows

The Sonoma Valley Authors Festival is a wonderful way for writers and readers to connect. The setting is beautiful; the authors are interesting and accessible; the audiences are smart and attentive. It’s a great weekend, somehow both stimulating and relaxing.

—Dave Barry
Dave Barry

The SVAF is uniquely valuable in that it has an intimacy that Ginny and David Freeman make sure works. It’s so carefully organized so that people get to interact with everybody.

—James Strock
James Strock

For me, I get to sit down with wonderful authors and have a good conversation in front of a really engaged audience. It’s a beautiful setting and extremely well run. So, what’s not to like?

—Jeffrey Brown
Jeffrey Brown

A perfect festival, thanks to its impeccable hosts.   David and Ginny know how to throw a party:  This one combines all-star line-ups and attentive readers, big ideas and intimate touches, humor and style, all in an idyllic setting.  The Sonoma Valley Authors’ Festival is pure joy — and that’s before anyone even produces a corkscrew.

—Stacy Schiff
Stacy Schiff

Highlights From Past Festival Years

View the 2023 Photo Gallery.

Bonnie Garmus
Bonnie Garmus

The Venue – Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa

Amazing View Fairmont Hotel

The historic Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa has a reputation for delivering excellent food and attentive guest service. A five-star hotel, it is ranked among Travel + Leisure’s top 25 spas, offering 40,000 sq. ft. of spa and exercise space. We are excited to bring the Sonoma Valley Authors Festival back to the Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn.

* Festival attendees receive a special rate