Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance invites the public to attend Author! Author!, its 35th birthday celebration with Midcoast authors Richard Russo and Paul Doiron and more.

The evening, Thursday, Aug. 12, will begin with a series of Author Dinners. MWPA has partnered with 11 Portland restaurants including Ribollita, Fore Street, The Salt Exchange, Back Bay Grill, 555, Grace, Caiola’s, Evangeline, Hugo’s, Cinque Terra and The Farmer’s Table. Authors Russo, Doiron, Richard Ford, Ann Beattie, Joyce Maynard, Jennifer Finney Boylan, James Hayman, Phillip Hoose, Ann Hood, Lily King and Betsy Sholl each will host a table. This will be a rare chance to have a personal conversation with a writer of national distinction.

Dinner will be followed by a champagne and dessert reception in the newly renovated Portland Public Library. Attendees will bid farewell to director Shonna Humphrey and meet the new director of MWPA. The night will conclude in style with dancing and live music from a 10-piece swing band at SPACE Gallery.

“Our hope is that authors will creep from their introverted selves and dance, dance, dance!” said outgoing executive director Humphrey.

For more information, including times, pricing and registration, visit

VillageSoup Art/Entertainment Editor Dagney Ernest can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by e-mail to