More than 50 Award-Winning and Best-Selling Writers
Will Gather To Address The Relevancy of Black Literature,
The Dangers of Book Bans, DEI Blowback, and Much More.
(program subject to change)

Roundtable discussions and other events of this four-day public gathering will explore several issues in the world of Black writing and publishing, including the impact of environmental and systemic racism, the impact of social media, and the need for peace and emotional healing.

Come out to hear from and network with award-winning Black writers and scholars across several genres and generations, including recipients of the NAACP Image Award and the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, Nobel Prize winners, Pulitzer Prize winners, MacArthur “Genius” Fellows, New York Times best-sellers, poet laureates, and other distinguished guest and publishing executives.

About This Year's Theme, All That We Carry: This year's theme is inspired by Tiya Miles National Book Award-winning work, All That She Carried, The Journey of Ashley’s Sack, A Black Family Keepsake. Her work illustrates the value of tradition and history and portrays how we move forward when all around us is in disarray. At CBL, we know that our writers and scholars have always caused us to uncover hidden truths and to critically assess and interrogate the books and information that we are exposed to, whether that be on the internet, in the media, at public forums, or in classrooms.

At NBWC2024, we will continue to interrogate! As a gathering of writers, scholars, literary professionals, and literary activists, we will raise questions. We’ll focus on the literature produced by Black writers throughout the African diaspora, explore the value of history and legacy in literature, examine the impact of environmental and systemic racism, assess the impact of social media and the internet, investigate the world of publishing, reflect on the need for peace and emotional healing, and host readings and talkshops.

NOTE: Most of the NBWC2024 events will be in person. Only one event is virtual. Also, an American Sign Language Interpreter will be onsite March 20 (6:30 pm to 8:30 pm); March 21 (6:30 pm to 8:00 pm), and March 22 (7:00 pm to 8:30 pm).

The Official Bookseller of the
National Black Writers Conference.
Authors' Books Will Be Available for Sale On-Site.


The NBWC2024 Marketplace Will Be Open Friday and Saturday!


Pre-Conference Events

Tuesday, March 19
(program subject to change)

Film Presentation and Discussion
Co-Sponsors: African Voices and CBL’s National Black Writers Conference
Edison O. Jackson Auditorium *
6:00 pm to 8:00 pm
This is a FREE Event.
Register online today:

Celebrating its 27th year, Reel Sisters of the Diaspora Film Festival & Lecture Series returns to the National Black Writers Conference to screen another series of thought-provoking films followed by a moderated discussion and audience Q&A.

Art, Play & Joy: A Revolutionary Act of Faith & Healing
Join us for an evening of short films representing the art of finding joy in our lives. From the games we played as young girls to the use of art to heal during challenging times, women hold space for themselves and their community in this selection of girl power films!

Art, Protest, Joy


Ampe: Leap into the Sky, Black Girl


NBWC2024 Poetry Slam
Sponsor: Office of Student Life at Medgar Evers College
Medgar Evers College Welcome Center *
6:00 pm to 8:00 pm

This is a FREE Event. Register online today:

This event is presented in partnership with the Office of Student Life at Medgar Evers College. Get ready for a night of unforgettable performance, good vibes, and endless inspiration at our annual open mic night!

NBWC2024 Day One

Wednesday, March 20
(program subject to change)

Opening Keynote:
All That We Carry, Where Do We Go From Here?
Farah Jasmine Griffin in conversation with Michael Eric Dyson
Emcee: Brenda M. Greene
Founders Auditorium *
6:30 pm to 8:30 pm

This is a FREE Event

Drawing on the theme of the Conference, All That We Carry: Where Do We Go From Here?, Griffin will engage Michael Eric Dyson in a conversation on how we move forward in a public space characterized by environmental racism, social injustice, an attack on the Black body, domestic violence and terrorism, and an absence of empathy and peace.

NBWC2024 Day Two

Thursday, March 21
(program subject to change)

Re-Envisioning Our Lives through Literature (ROLL)
Youth Program

For High School Students
Founders Auditorium *
10:00 am to 12:00 pm
Jennifer Baker
in conversation with Jason Reynolds

For Elementary School Students
AB1 Dining Hall *
10:00 am to 12:00 pm
Renée Watson, Cheryl Hudson, and Wade Hudson

The ROLL events are targeted to participating NYC schools in the ROLL program. For more information, please email Mara Prater, ROLL Program Director, at

Virtual Scholarly Presentations on Conference Theme
Sponsor: African American Studies Committee of the College Language Association
This is a virtual event (online only)
11:00 am to 12:30 pm

This virtual program is a presentation of scholarly papers submitted and accepted in response to a Call for Papers. Topics will examine how the NBWC2024 theme is connected to the Black experience or Black culture and how it is expressed or expanded in the works created by the honorees of the Conference.

Dramatic Reading from the Dr. Edith Rock Writing Workshop for Elders
Edison O. Jackson Auditorium *
3:30 pm to 5:00 pm

The program will share our writing elders’ work that aligns with the Conference theme. As people of African descent who have lived through six or more decades, these writers are witnesses to the desecration of the natural world and the Black and Brown people who have lived in harmony with it. Their presentation will focus on the environment as they seek to answer the thematic question: Where Do We Go From Here?

NBWC2024 Poetry Café
Sponsor: Brooklyn Public Library
Brooklyn Public Library (Central Library) *
5:00 pm to 6:30 pm

Poets from Medgar Evers respond to poetry from works by Cave Canem poets. The reading will present a "call and response" rendering of original poems from Cave Canem poets and the counter-response by Medgar Evers student poets.

Tiya Miles in conversation with Brenda M. Greene
Edison O. Jackson Auditorium *
Emcee: Maria DeLongoria

6:30 pm to 8:00 pm

Drawing on award-winning Miles’s historical works, Greene will engage the National Book Award winner in a conversation on the process she uses in her writing, including the work All That She Carried. Greene will also inquire about the challenges of using fiction to recreate history.

NBWC2024 Day Three

Friday, March 22
(program subject to change)

Technology, Social Media, and the Fight for Racial Justice
Confirmed: Marc Lamont Hill, Bettina Love, Wesley Lowery, and Emily Raboteau
Moderator: Christina Greer

Founders Auditorium *
1:00 pm to 2:30 pm

The speakers will focus on how technology, the visual media, a public pandemic, and environmental racism have shifted how we persist, teach, and talk about the impact of race and social justice in our educational institutions, communities, and public spaces.

The Healing Power of Literature
Confirmed: Patricia Spears Jones, Kalisha Buckhanon, Marita Golden, and Kevin Powell
Moderator: Rachel Eliza Griffiths

Founders Auditorium *
3:00 pm to 4:30 pm

This conversation will focus on how literature fosters empathy, provides solace, and inspires resilience. Drawing from their work, writers will discuss how they have used their voices and the lens of the “Beloved Community” to explore how we navigate life’s challenges and fortify ourselves amid obstacles.

Black Writers' Letters to America
Confirmed: Victoria Christopher Murray, Pamela Newkirk, Thabiti Lewis, and Khalil Gibran Muhammad
Moderator: Donna Hill

Founders Auditorium *
5:00 pm to 6:30 pm

Focus: How Black writers’ texts may be viewed as letters that chronicle the history of America from what Toni Morrison calls a Black gaze. These texts provide intimate insight into the monumental changes and pivotal events that have impacted the history, politics, civil rights, achievements, and activism of Blacks in America.

A Conversation with the
2024 National Black Writers Conference Honorees

Paul Coates, Percival Everett, Peniel E. Joseph, and Bernice McFadden

Moderator: Gloria J. Browne-Marshall
Emcee: Wallace L. Ford, II
Founders Auditorium *

7:00 pm to 8:30 pm

Paul Coates

Paul Coates

Percival Everett

Percival Everett

Peniel E. Joseph

Peniel E. Joseph

Bernice McFadden

Bernice McFadden

NBWC2024 Day Four

Saturday, March 23

Wild Seeds Alumni Reunion
10:30 am to 12:30 pm
(This event is reserved for alumni of CBL's Wild Seeds Retreat for Writers of Color.)

11:00 am to 12:30 pm
The talkshops run concurrently.

At the Center for Black Literature, a talkshop is similar to a writing workshop in that they are designed to enhance one’s literary projects by providing strategies and working tools. Unlike a writing workshop, however, attendees are not required to bring or share writing samples. The talkshop leaders share their expertise and professional experience with attendees, helping to create a dynamic, highly engaged space that includes question-and-answer segments.

We proudly present these leading experts, specialists, and distinguished writers to the Conference. Come out to get the inside take and best practices.

Publishing Talkshop
Leader: Tracey Sherrod | Vice President; Executive Editor at Little, Brown
Register HERE

Book Proposals and Finding an Agent Talkshop
Leader: Regina Brooks | Founder and President of Serendipity Literary Agency
Register HERE

Poetry Talkshop
Leader: Darrel Alejandro Holnes | Afro-Panamanian American award-winning author of Stepmotherland and Migrant Psalms
Register HERE

Fiction Talkshop
Leader: Donna Hill
Register HERE

Memoir Talkshop
Leader: Patrick Dougher | Award-winning artist; author of If By Some Impossible Miracle: Coming of Age in Underground New York
Register HERE


The Power of Historical Narratives
Confirmed: W.B. Garvey, Maryemma Graham, and A.J. Verdelle
Moderator: Diane Richards

1:00 pm to 2:30 pm

The discussion amongst these writers will focus on how their work provides a way to expand narratives that have omitted important literary, historical, social, and political events and people who have shaped the experiences of Black, Brown, White, and Indigenous peoples in America.

Black Writers Crossing Boundaries and Borders
Confirmed: Edwidge Danticat, Stéphane Martelly, Kwame Dawes, and Patrick Nganang
Moderator: Jasmine Claude Narcisse

3:00 pm to 4:30 pm

A focus on how African diasporic literature crosses boundaries and borders representing the complexity and intersections of race, culture, history, politics, gender, and the immigrant experience in the shaping and producing of diverse literary texts.

Myth and Reality: The World of Publishing for the Black Writer
Confirmed: Regina Brooks, Karen Hunter, Christopher Jackson, Lisa Lucas, and Jamia Wilson
Moderator: Yahdon Israel

5:00 pm to 6:30 pm

Drawing from the premise of the need for a vibrant book culture and access to a wide range of books and diverse Black voices that contribute to the development of a critically conscious society, speakers on this roundtable will discuss the myths and realities of how Black writers are and can be supported by the mainstream publishing industry.

17th National Black Writers Conference
Awards Ceremony

Saturday, March 23, 2024
7:00 pm to 8:30 pm
Edison O. Jackson Auditorium

NBWC2024 Awardees
Paul Coates
Percival Everett
Peniel E. Joseph
Bernice McFadden

Emcee and Host: Jacqueline Woodson
Opening Remarks: President Patricia Ramsey, Medgar Evers College
Closing Remarks: Brenda M. Greene, Center for Black Literature

Post-Conference Event


A Celebration of Margaret Walker
The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture

The Schomburg Center for Research on Black Culture, in partnership with the National Black Writers Conference, will present a community gathering in honor of the great poet and novelist Margaret Walker, most revered for her seminal collection of poetry For My People (1942) and the groundbreaking novel Jubilee (1978). This event is postponed until further notice. Please contact us for more information at

CBLsymbol_PLEASE NOTE_1280x720
  • The NBWC2024 program schedule is subject to change.
  • After their discussion, authors will be available for book signings on site. Their books will also be available for purchase.


* Medgar Evers College, CUNY, is located in Crown Heights, Central Brooklyn. Get directions HERE.
* The Welcome Center is at 1650 Bedford Avenue, Brooklyn, NY. Get directions HERE.
* The Edison O. Jackson Auditorium and AB1 Building are located at 1638 Bedford Avenue, Brooklyn, NY. Get directions HERE.
* The Founders Auditorium is at 1650 Bedford Avenue, Brooklyn, NY. Get directions HERE.
* The Brooklyn Public Library (Central Library) is at 10 Grand Army Plaza, Brooklyn, NY. Get directions HERE.

Contact the Center for Black Literature

● PUBLIC RELATIONS: April R. Silver (Rosemary Arthur, Executive Assistant) at

> Website:

> CBL Facebook: @CenterForBlackLiterature
> NBWC Facebook: @NationalBlackWritersConference
> Twitter: @Center4BlackLit
> Instagram: @Center4BlackLit
> YouTube: @CenterForBlackLiteratureMedgarEversCollege

Contact Us

Center for Black Literature (CBL)
at Medgar Evers College, CUNY
1534 Bedford Avenue | 2nd Floor
Brooklyn, New York 11216
(Click HERE for the Postal Mailing Address)

Main Phone: (718) 804-8884
Main Office:

Donate to CBL Today!

To carry out our literary programs and special events, we depend on financial support from the public. Donations are welcome year-round. Please click HERE to donate. Thank you!
The Center for Black Literature at Medgar Evers College is supported in part by an American Rescue Plan Act grant from the National Endowment for the Arts to support general operating expenses in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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