The Jefferson Parish Library is taking part in a local author contest that will accept submissions of adult and young adult fiction, to be recognized as the top independently published eBooks in Louisiana.

Submissions will be accepted through May 31. Authors should submit their work at

Winners in each category will receive $500 as well as:

  • Inclusion in Indie Louisiana, a digital collection of local authors on BiblioBoard Library
  • Honors at the 2020 Public Library Association Conference in Nashville, Tennessee
  • Opportunities to promote the winning title at Louisiana public libraries
  • Inclusion in a full page spread in Library Journal, a trade publication for library news

The creation of the Louisiana Author Project lets librarians engage with a growing group of new literary voices and play an active role in the discovery and promotion of new works.

For authors, the contest is an opportunity to elevate their writing careers. Being recognized by librarians creates credibility and visibility in the growing marketplace of digital content and indie-published books.

Each book that is submitted to the contest must be:

  • Independently published
  • In the category of adult or young adult fiction
  • Written by a Louisiana resident
  • Available in either PDF or ePUB format

IRIS TALK: Paul Pastorek, who was state superintendent of education from 2007-2011 and now is a “sleuth of the swamp,” will discuss Louisiana irises and the loss of their habitat, at 10 a.m. Wednesday, May 1, at the East Bank Regional Library, 4747 W. Napoleon Ave., Metairie.

Pastorek found the elusive I. nelsonii, which bears the common names of Abbeville red iris or Abbeville swamp iris. The plant exhibits large blooms in the spring in shades that include bright red, brownish red and purplish red. Sometimes it also produces a yellow bloom.

Pastorek’s presentation is part of the quarterly meeting of the Friends of the Jefferson Public Library.

GENEALOGY EVENT: Gwen Kelley, a librarian who specializes in genealogy and local history, will lead a seminar that focuses on Ancestry Library Edition at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, May 1, at the East Bank Regional Library, 4747 W. Napoleon Ave., Metairie. She will lead a seminar that focuses on genealogy and Facebook at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, May 8.

WWII DISCUSSION: Marty Morgan will discuss “The Origins of Nazism in Africa” at 7 p.m. Thursday, May 2, at the East Bank Regional Library, 4747 W. Napoleon Ave., Metairie.

Morgan is the former chief historian at the National WWII Museum. He is the author of "Down to Earth: The 507th Parachute Infantry Regiment in Normandy" and "The Americans on D-Day: A Photographic History of the Normandy Invasion."

IRON WILL: David Arata, a collector of antique irons, will present “Very Impressing Irons,” at 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 7, at the East Bank Regional Library, 4747 W. Napoleon Ave., Metairie.

Arata and his wife have been collecting irons for more than 30 years and have amassed a collection of more than 700 irons and iron rests, also known as trivets. The collection ranges from ancient Chinese silk irons, European smoothing stones and boards along with charcoal and slug irons, goffering irons, fluting irons and natural gas and liquid fuel irons from different countries.

SOCIAL SECURITY SEMINAR: Maria Alvarez, public affairs specialist with the Social Security Administration, and Molly Prokop, counselor with the Senior Health Insurance Information Program of the Jefferson Council on Aging, will present Social Security and Medicare information at 2 p.m. Wednesday, May 8, at the West Bank Regional Library, 2751 Manhattan Blvd., Harvey. Alvarez will discuss eligibility, enrollment, optional ages for retirement, how benefits are determined and other topics. Prokop will discuss the basics of Medicare Parts A, B, C and D as well as all choices available, where to find them and what will they cost.