Community Speaker Series

Join us in July for these FREE evening talks


The Sun Valley Writers’ Conference is excited to be partnering with our local Community Library to bring you two free lectures in 2024:


Judy Blume  |  July 17

(Registration FULL — join the waitlist or watch via livestream)


John Vaillant  |  July 23

(Registration FULL — join the waitlist or watch via livestream)


This summer, two SVWC speakers will give free talks bookending the 30th Anniversary Conference, happening July 20-22, 2024. We are excited to welcome Judy Blume on Wednesday, July 17 and John Vaillant on Tuesday, July 23. Both talks will be held at 5:30pm in The Community Library Lecture Hall with book signings to follow (books will be available to purchase on-site).


Registration is full for both talks, but you can still join the waitlist or watch via livestream from home! No registration required.


If you are currently registered but unable to attend, please email [email protected] at least 48 hours in advance so we can reach out to those on the waitlist.


5:30pm at The Community Library


“The Radical Honesty of Judy Blume”
There are writers who continue to feel bold and magical and necessary decade after decade. So it is with the legendary Judy Blume, the author of 25 books for young readers and 4 bestselling novels for adults that have sold more than 90 million copies in 40 languages. Her cherished, ground-breaking young adult novel, “Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret,” has captivated and enlightened girls (and their parents) from 1970, the year it was published, right through last year, when the much acclaimed adaptation of that book hit movie screens. In a warm, wide-ranging conversation with Jenny Emery Davidson, Executive Director of The Community Library in Ketchum, Blume will talk about her life and work.


Registration is full, but you can still join the waitlist or livestream the event here:




5:30pm at The Community Library


“Fire Weather”
In May 2016, Fort McMurray, the hub of Canada’s oil industry and America’s biggest foreign supplier, was overrun by wildfire. Through the lens of this apocalyptic conflagration—the wildfire equivalent of Hurricane Katrina—award-winning author John Vaillant warns that this was not a unique event, but a shocking preview of what we must prepare for in a hotter, more flammable world. In his talk—as he did in his book, one of the most critically lauded of the past year—Vaillant will take us on a riveting journey through the intertwined histories of North America’s oil industry and the birth of climate science, to the unprecedented devastation wrought by modern forest fires, and into lives forever changed by these disasters.


Registration is full, but you can still join the waitlist or livestream the event here:


Since 2017, the Sun Valley Writers’ Conference has partnered with The Community Library in Ketchum to host free literary lectures for the local community. In 2021, the partnership expanded to become our year-round Community Speaker Series, featuring multiple free talks throughout the year, with a few speakers “bookending” the Sun Valley Writers’ Conference each July.


These talks, bringing our country’s brightest literary minds directly to the Sun Valley community, are typically held outdoors at Ketchum’s Forest Service Park or at The Community Library. They are free and open to the public (registration required). Past presenters include Javier Zamora, Curtis Sittenfeld, Imbolo Mbue, Erich Schwartzel, Ayad Akhtar, Tobias Wolff, Susan Orlean, and many more.


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