WINTHROP — Author and educator Joan Dempsey will read from and discuss her debut novel, “This Is How It Begins,” at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 29, at the Bailey Public Library, 39 Bowdoin St.

The event is part of the ongoing Winthrop Lakes Region Forum hosted by the library and sponsored by the Winthrop Public Library Foundation, according to a news release from the library.

Joan Dempsey Photo courtesy of Bailey Public Library

The novel explores themes of hate, fear and intolerance, and issues of free speech and religious freedom in the current era. The book was a finalist for the Sarton Women’s Book Award and the Lamda Literary Award.

Dempsey grew up in New Hampshire, spent 22 years in Boston, and now lives in New Gloucester. She received her Master of Fine Arts degree and teaching certificate in creative writing from Antioch University in Los Angeles.

She was the recipient of a research grant from the Elizabeth George Foundation for her work on “This Is How It Begins,” a grant that took her to Warsaw and Washington, D.C., to study in the archives at the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, according to the release.

Her writing has been published in The Adirondack Review, Alligator Juniper, Obsidian and Plenitude Magazine, and aired on National Public Radio.

She recently was named by Poets & Writers Magazine as one of the “5 more over 50” writers to watch.

The event is free and open to the public.

For more information, call the library at 377-8673.

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