Hello from the tour! Tonight is the final night of the first leg of this book tour, and we’re doing it in style, at the beautiful Jewelbox Theater in Seattle. Please remind your friends that this is a three-for-one show: book reading, slideshow and survival training. Each of those experiences alone might cost hours of your life, but for a limited time we’re able to offer all three in an affordable 45 minute time span! We know times are tough, so come down to the Jewelbox Theater — at the Rendezvous Lounge, in Seattle’s charmingly sketchy Belltown district — and invite these bargains into your life!
One of my many Famous Author duties is to go where the readers are, there to claw desperately at their attention. So it was that I spent Saturday in a bear suit at Portland’s third annual Wordstock Book Festival — specifically, at the trade-show portion of it, held at the oppressively dull Oregon Convention Center.
There, I delivered cheer to a huge trade show of publishers, authors and sponsors, in the form of a Stimulus Package specially crafted by the Portland Lit Offensive to prop up the spiritual economy of this festival. I got to hand out over a hundred of these ‘zines, using the awesome opening line “Can I offer you a billion dollars?” (The Stimulus Package itself can be read online in PDF format, here.)
Many excellent local and visiting authors braved the institutional tedium to read their works throughout the day. The picture above shows my friend Kevin Sampsell, publisher of Future Tense Books and author of Creamy Bullets and numerous other short fictions, who read excerpts from his coming memoir of childhood secrets. To his left (that’s your right) is Barb Klansic, AKA my other friend, director of “Writer’s Block“, an improv event wherein her crack team of comedians completed the unfinished short stories of lazy authors, live on stage. In this shot, Kevin and Barb have just smuggled me into the Guest Author Snack Area. Moments later we feasted on delicious lobster-stuffed prime rib, washed down by a ribald yet poignant ’96 Chateau Nom de Plume.
Later that day I got to see Johnathan Hodgman read from his newest book of meaningless trivia, “More Information Than You Require”. Because Johnathan is a minor TV celebrity, his book sales are guaranteed! Nevertheless, he’s a very good reader and a charming guy.
I turned forty at the Book Release Party on October 19, 2008, while my friend Esther turned 27. And my novel — HELP! A BEAR IS EATING ME! — turned zero! Happy birthday everybody!
These pix document the joyous Birthday Book Release Tour Kickoff And Other Excuses To Drink Party held at Plan B bar by Eraserhead Press on October 19, 2008. Above, Publisher Rose O’Keefe and I prepare to release these baby books into the wild — to be consumed immediately by the large, lit-hungry crowd pictured below!
Egad! Over a hundred people! Guests clad as woodland creatures received free beverages from a mysterious patron known only as “Omnivore”.
Yr. humble self-promoter began with literature, then delved into the natural sciences, and concluded the evening by wrestling a live bear (not shown).
Boatloads of thanks to everybody who came! Drinks for all my friends! I was amazed by the turnout, and by the vigorous book sales! If only I could do this in every town …
Thanks also to Plan B for putting up with us, and to the denizens of Goth Industrial Dance Night for not drinking our blood! And thanks to Rose and Carl for taking pictures! (If you were there and took pictures, tell me where they are and I’ll post them here.) Thanks also to the Portland Mercury for a glowing event listing. Extra-special super-thanks to Trained Bear Danny Norton, who parted the digital equivalent of the Red Sea to overcome technical difficulties and get the !%$%!$ slideshow working.
Yes, self-amusement is the key to joy. Here’s a little promo piece that Danny Norton (of extrasketch fame) shot and edited, featuring the amazing 2-D animation chops of Your Humble Narrator! Isn’t it amazing what today’s doodads can do?