September Virtual Author Talks with The Bedford Free Public Library

September 12, 2023
The Bedford Free Public Library offers free virtual author talks in collaboration with libraries across Massachusetts . Photo Credit: Robert Dorer

What does learning to spot an owl, reducing the growth of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, and the life of Jackie O’s dress designer have in common?   

These are three of the topics covered in books by authors making virtual author visits this month through the Bedford Free Public Library. 

The “Conversations with the Author” series is one of the virtual offerings made possible through a partnership among 50 or more Massachusetts libraries. With the number of libraries collaborating budgets and efforts on virtual programming, patrons of all partnering libraries benefit with an enhanced variety, quality and quantity.

Noreen O’Gara, Assistant Director of the Bedford Free Public Library, said the virtual programming “has been one of the very few gifts of the pandemic.” The “Conversations with the Author” series make hearing from interesting, notable, highly esteemed published authors easily accessible to large numbers of participants. Not only are the readers benefitting, O’Gara cited “The authors love it because they don’t have to travel or if they are traveling they can still meet their readers.” The numbers on the virtual talks are significantly higher than in person talks have been at smaller libraries like the Bedford Library.

Around 600 attendees enjoyed a face to face conversation with novelist Lisa See (New York Times best selling author of “Lady Tan’s Circle of Women”) this summer. Participants primarily from eastern Massachusetts, but also Ohio, California, Nova Scotia, and as far away as Malaysia, heard about See’s writing process, research, relationship with her characters, and favorite parts of books as See spoke comfortably from her beautifully decorated home.

Upcoming virtual programming can be found in the library calendar. O’Gara says “I hope more Bedford residents will give this collaborative virtual programming a try. I think they will find it more enjoyable than they anticipated.”

September “Conversation with the Author” Q&A conversations offered:

  • Wednesday, Sept. 13, at 7 p.m. – Q&A with author Heather Wolf.
    “This one is for our bird and nature lovers! Author Heather Wolf will discuss her new book, “Find More Birds: 111 Surprising Ways to Spot Birds Wherever You Are.” It will be a fascinating conversation about being in the moment and noticing the wonderful and varied birds around us…even in your own backyard!”
    Register at:
  • Monday, Sept. 15 at 7 p.m. – Q&A with author Erica Cirino
    “Erica Cirino, a photojournalist, scientist, and artist, will discuss her book, “Thicker Than Water: The Quest for Solutions to the Plastic Crisis.” Erica will share important facts and immediate action we can take to help our communities and protect our health from plastics.”
    Register at:
  • Wednesday, Sept. 20 at 7 p.m. – Q&A with Historical Fiction and Romance Author Piper Huguley. “Piper Huguley is an author of historical fiction featuring African American characters. She tells the untold stories of people who might have been lost to time. Her most recent book, “By Her Own Design: a novel of Ann Lowe, Fashion Designer to the Social Register,” tells the inspiring story of the Black fashion designer of Jackie Kennedy’s wedding dress. Join us for this very special event!”
    Register at:

Talks are free of charge, completely online (including registration), and in a webinar format that means the chat is on, but audience cameras are off, so enjoy the talk on the couch, while making dinner, or at the ballfield waiting for a rain delay to end!

[Residents can sign up for a library card online if needed at]

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