9. 4/3 Omnivore, SF This is the food book hub of SF so I was honored to read here. It’s a crowded space for a reading so I probably shouldn’t encourage you to go see Kurt Timmermeister there on March 7, but I’ll be there (in the audience listening, not reading). Authors get a free half dozen eggs from the owners chickens! Definitely the most food-obsessed crowd I read to.
10. 4/11 Green Fest, SF I don’t know if this was a bad reading because of the torrential downpour outside, because I tried to tailor my reading to environmentalists and made it really depressing, because I scheduled this during Laurie’s birthday weekend and felt really guilty, or because I’m not sure I could be heard over the didgeridoo from the next booth. I was supposed to sign books afterwards, but the featured speaker (who got to speak in a drum-circle proof auditorium) had a line that passed in front of my seat so I just went home instead.
11. 4/17 Day of the Goat, Ferry Building, SF Reading outside during a farmers market is no fun. Still it was an awesome event complete with goats, goat cheese makers, and Maggie Foard who makes goat fudge (which we now carry. Perfect for Valentine’s Day) Loud like the Green Fest, but a lot more fun.
12. 4/23 Gallery Bookshop, Mendocino It was a long drive and I was wondering whether it would be worth it, but this turned out to be of the best readings I did. The local grocery store (Harvest Market) provided and set up the cheese, dairy farmers who I didn’t know showed up, and everyone was super friendly. I had always stopped in when I was in town, but now I really love this place!
13. 5/7 Micro Gallery, Santa Rosa My buddy Spring set this up and it was great. I gave my whole talk while sitting on a table that used to belong to Ronald Reagan. My butt, your face Ronnie!
14. 5/16 Seattle Cheese Fest Seattle, WA Man, no one wanted to talk to me about a book after they waited 45 minutes in line to eat cheese. I guess I sold a book or two. This was a humbled-behind-a-table event for sure. “No, there aren’t any cheese pictures. No, I do not have any cheese to feed you.” I decided I would take a proof copy of the book next time, cut it up, and give out sentences saying, “Free Samples”. Do you think it’d work?
And look how nice my display was!
15. 5/16 Elliott Bay Book Co., Seattle, WA I love Seattle and I love this bookstore. Truly the antidote to earlier in the day. They had just moved into the new location and it still smelled like fresh paint. Some of my oldest and best friends were there. My agent was there. My friend’s son asked for a specific piece to be read as an encore and I ended up incorporating that piece into every reading. The eight-year-old was right!
Look at the local Seattle cheese folks!
16. 5/17 Village Books, Bellingham, WA It was a surprisingly packed house (I found out later that the local college creative writing students got credit to attend) and I met some in-law relatives for the first time. Great set-up for a reading too. Unfortunately the hard rain soaked my car trunk ruining a few books. Boo hoo. Oh, in the hotel room I read my mention in the Washington Post so I will always have fond memories of that Super 8 even if I mostly used it to dry out my remaining copies..
17. 5/18 Olympia Food Co-op, Olympia, WA Because of a timing mix up I only had an hour but Michelle Noel and I tried to and try to sell books and Gothberg Farms goat cheese in a busy, crowded store. Saw a bunch of ex-Rainbow customers.
18. 5/18 Orca Books, OLYMPIA, WA I got all sentimental on the drive from Bellingham while listening to J Church and teared up as I read the Reagan section of my book and dedicated it to Lance Hahn. The punx in the audience nodded and gave encouragement but most folks were nonplussed. My most maudlin reading. I actually gave a few people a whole bucket of cheese as a consolation because the time had been posted wrong in one email and they arrived as I was taking my last question.
Here’s Lance on the back stairs of our apartment, sometime in 1993. RIP Lance.
19. 5/19 Square Deal Wine and Cheese PORTLAND, OR (With Tami Parr) Sasha Davies set this up but then the store went out of business a couple of months after I read. I hope it was nothing I did. Too bad it went under; it was a really nice place! Great inquisitive crowd.
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