The return of the Louisiana Book Festival to downtown Baton Rouge last week was a welcome development after the festival’s hiatus in 2010 because of state budget cuts.

Now, there’s even more good news. Two other literary festivals will occur in south Louisiana this weekend.

The fourth annual Festival of Words takes place Thursday through Saturday in Grand Couteau, Sunset, Arnaudville and surrounding communities.

For more information on the festival, check out the event’s website,

The 10th annual New Orleans Bookfair takes place Saturday in the French Quarter. For more information, check out the event’s website,

We’re glad these signature events are offering ample opportunities to celebrate Louisiana’s rich literary culture. People everywhere need reminding that Louisiana is not only a great place to eat and party, but also a great place to read books - and to write them.

These events are also a reminder that too many residents of our state lack basic literacy skills.

We have to work harder to expand the community of readers in Louisiana, so more of our neighbors can enjoy the wonder of words.