Frequently Asked Questions

Following are some of the questions we most often receive regarding the South Carolina Book Festival. Please peruse the topics for the information you seek; you may click on the question below to go directly to the topic or scroll down to skim the information.

Should your question not be answered here, please submit a query using our contact form. Thanks for your interest!

Who’s behind the festival?

The SCBook Festival is a program of the The Humanities CouncilSC, a not-for-profit organization and the state program of the National Endowment for the Humanities: inspiring, engaging, and enriching South Carolinians with literature, history, culture and heritage. The Humanities CouncilSC is one of 56 other state humanities councils across the nation in each state and territory. THCSC serves the state of South Carolina with programs, grants, and interesting festivals focusing on the humanities. ( The SCBook Festival is also supported and funded by numerous state agencies including the SC State Library and the SC Arts Commission, literary-minded groups, media outlets, businesses, foundations, institutes of higher learning, and individuals. Please see our sponsors page for a complete list of supporters or to find out how you may contribute.

When and where does the festival take place?

The Book Festival will begin Friday, May 15, 2015, with our Opening Night Reception and featured Writing Workshops. The free events will be held on Saturday, May 16 and Sunday, May 17, 2015 at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center located at 1101 Lincoln Street, Columbia, SC . Please refer to our schedule page for more details.

Is there a charge to attend?

No. Admission is FREE. SCBook Festival Saturday and Sunday events are free and open to the public. (Parking arrangements are free at the CMCC parking lot, but be prepared to pay about $5 in overflow parking). There is a charge to participate in our Writing Workshops (registration required, see link on our site and upcoming announcements) and to attend the Opening Night Reception, both of which take place on Friday during the festival weekend. For information on the Writing Workshops registration or tickets for the Opening Night Reception, please see our schedule page.

How can I participate as an author?

Author appearances at the festival are by invitation only. The submission of materials does not guarantee selection. Please consider that an invitation one year does not guarantee that an author will be invited back every year.

If you would like to be considered, please send the following to Author Selection – South Carolina Book Festival, P.O. Box 5287, Columbia, SC 29250 — a copy of your work(s), press kit, bio, publisher information, letter of introduction (email versions of these materials will not be accepted). While early submission does not guarantee a spot on the festival roster, it does help. Details about Author Submission Guidelines are posted on the website.

How can I participate as an exhibitor?

To become a festival exhibitor, please contact us about receiving forms or download them from our Exhibitor Information. Exhibitor space is offered on a first-come-first-served basis. If there are any problems regarding your reservation, we will contact you right away, and if we cannot help you with suitable alternative arrangements, we will refund your deposit.

Can I volunteer?

Sure! We rely on an army of volunteers to make our festival run as smoothly as possible, and we can always use another interested, hard-working book lover. To sign up, please read this information. And thank you in advance.

How do I get to the festival locations?

Check out Travel & Lodging for a map with pinpointed festival venues and their addresses.

I’m coming from out of town. Where should I stay?

Downtown Columbia hotels and motels include:

How can I pay for reception tickets, vendor space, or simply make a donation?

Please send your check, payable to “SCBook Festival,” to SCBook Festival, Reception Tickets, P.O. Box 5287, Columbia, SC 29250. Be sure to note why you’re sending the check, quantities (if applicable), and contact info in case of a problem. We also accept payment online from major credit cards: Visa, MasterCard, and American Express. To pay online for reception tickets, vendor space, or donations, go to the appropriate part of the Web site and click on the credit card logos.

How do I register for the Writing Workshops?

Information about Writing Workshops will be announced at a later date. Stay tuned to the website for updates.

Remember, classes are subject to change or to reach capacity, so check back frequently.

How can I find out when my favorite authors will be appearing?

Please refer to our schedule page, and be sure to check back often for updates and changes.

How can I get more information on the authors?

A bibliography for each writer is located on our authors page. Additional information can be found using your favorite search engine or using one of our provided links on the authors page.

When will the authors sign their books?

Authors will sign books in the Exhibit Hall during the hour immediately following their presentations. Please see the schedule on this Web site and consult the programs given out at the event. Also, please note that several authors will be signing at additional times besides after their presentations throughout the weekend as well.

Is there a limit on the number of books I can get signed?

No. However, readers waiting to have more than three books signed by a single author will be asked to move to the end of the line. We ask that you respect others in line with you and limit each time to the front to 3 copies. You are welcome to go back to the end of the line and wait for another chance for the author to sign.

Can I bring books from home to be signed?

Yes, but we encourage you to take a look at what our many booksellers have to offer, too.

How can I get a festival program?

Printed programs will be available at the festival, and we will be handing them out as soon as you enter the festival. For a complete list of events, which is updated regularly, please refer to our schedule page, and feel free to print it out.

How can I get a festival poster?

Since 2012, posters for the festival have been used primarily for promotional purposes. Contact the office to learn about how to receive a poster to display in your business or community. We will also be glad to give you information about purchasing one of our art posters from previous festival years.

Which exhibitors will be at the festival?

The festival features antiquarian book dealers, new booksellers, publishers, literary groups, self-published authors, private presses, and literary magazines. For a more complete list, check out our exhibitors page.

Will there be food at the festival?

Yes. The Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center operates a concession stand in the Exhibit Hall. The Convention Center is located in the Congaree Vista (or just simply in the Vista) where several locally owned restaurants are located within walking distance.

Is there plenty of parking at the festival?

Yes. Parking for the SCBook Festival is located in the parking lots all around the Convention Center, including remote lots at the Riverfront Parking lot off of Huger Street. Be prepared to pay about $5.00 for parking lots or at meters throughout the Vista Area, but we hope you can find a free one!

Will there be activities for children?

Yes! Visit our schedule page for more information. In addition to programming for children, we will have a panel discussion for adults by authors who are writing and publishing children’s books.

I’ve seen details elsewhere that conflict with the information here. Who’s right?

With such a dizzying array of facts and details associated with the festival, wires sometimes get crossed and incorrect information is distributed. The most up-to-date information and corrections can be found on this site.

I am a writer, and I’d like to talk to my favorite authors about my work. Will they be available for private chats or to evaluate manuscripts?

No. For information on festival programming geared toward writers, please check out the list of Writing Workshops on our schedule page.