IF YOU love books and literature, you’re in for a treat on Saturday, June 20, when the Cebu Literary Festival takes place in the Ayala Center Cebu.

Conversations with writer Jessica Zafra, Cebuano historian Dr. Resil Mojares and performance artist Carlos Celdran are just a few of the highlights of the whole-day event.

#CebuLitFest will start at 10 a.m. with a panel discussion on teaching literature in Philippine schools, featuring Christine Godinez Ortega, Joseph Tan, and Nancy Toledo, moderated by Hope Sabanpan-Yu.

A free workshop with Tim Tomlinson of the New York Writers Workshop, on the uses of situation and setting in poetry and prose, will follow at 11 a.m.

The festival, which is now on its second year, will then feature a panel on Bisaya literature, “Writing in Tongue”, moderated by Kristee Ann Delfin and featuring the poet Merle Alunan, musician and journalist Insoy Niñal and writer and filmmaker Bambi Beltran.

Throughout the day, titles that aren’t available in local bookstores will also be sold in the book booth, including works by Adonis Durado, Marne Kilates, Rebecca Anonuevo and more.

Afternoon activities will kick off with a panel at 1 p.m. on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender writing, with Ian Casocot, Kristian Cordero, and John Iremil Teodoro, moderated by Niel Kintanar.

This will be followed by “Home and Away”, a discussion with Cebuano poets Larry Ypil, Nikay Paredes, and Jun Dumdum. Tim Tomlinson will moderate.

Zafra will then read from a work-in-progress at 3 p.m. in the segment “Anywhere But Here, Any Time But Now”, followed by an interview with Jude Bacalso. Two books by Zafra, “The Stories So Far” and “Geeks vs Jocks”, will also be launched at the event.

At 4 p.m., the performance artist, tour guide and social activist Carlos Celdran will talk about his Intramuros and Imelda narratives in “The City as a Story.” An interview with Isolde Amante will follow.

Dr. Mojares will then take the stage at 5 p.m. for a conversation with Zafra, followed by a book launch.

A set of pechakucha will start at 6 p.m. A pechakucha is a quick presentation of 20 slides, with each slide displayed for 20 seconds. Presenters include Francis Sollano of Movement for a Livable Cebu, Grace Marie Lopez of the USC Cinema Department, Darwin Dexter Sy of Bomba Press, Boboi Costas of Aloguinsan River Eco-Cultural Tourism, Nancy Cudis of Cebu Book Club, and Mark Deutsch and the Happy Garaje team.

Readings and musical performances in “Folk Fiction x #CebuLitFest” at 7 p.m. will wrap up the day, featuring Ypil, Durado, Paredes, Casocot, Bacalso, Carissa Garcia Codilla, Michelle Varron, Carlo Villarica, Don Frasco, Darliza C. Dar Juan, Patrick Abing, Marc Abuan, David Cua, Johnn Mendoza, Mich Padayhag, Noel Villaflor, Ahmed Cuizon, Shane Carreon, Jona Bering, Manu Rodrigo, Edwin Joseph Castañeda, Therese Villarante and Jerika Teodorico. Chloe Palang will host.

All these conversations, readings and musical performances will be open to the public for free. Please use the hashtag #CebuLitFest to join the fun. For more information, call (0915) 445-3049. (Illustration by Happy Garaje)