Thank you, Kate Layte, owner of PAPERCUTS J.P. Last Friday night was my first public talk, reading, and discussion about my new book Ties That Blind. I shared the stage with Christopher Irvin whose latest novel is Burn Cards. The event was organized by Katie Eelman, the store’s Event Coordinator, and moderated by David Hebb who was very familiar with our work.
When my three books were first published about twenty years ago (now reissued as e-books by Polis Books), I did a ton of speaking engagements, which I thoroughly enjoyed. While I know much more about writing now than I did then, the return to public appearances scared the hell out of me. Especially since I decided that this time around I would actually read from my book, something I had never done in the past. Made for a shaky few days leading up to Friday.
Well, despite my nervousness—especially when actually reading—the evening was a real up. It felt really good to support a new bookstore in my neighborhood. And Chris and I were able to attract a pretty decent audience that asked interesting questions and had insightful comments. Also, Chris and I come at our work from different enough perspectives, so our give-and-take described more than one side of the writing life. That we liked each other and each other’s work didn’t hurt either. Another added value: David’s knowledge about our books and his ability to keep the conversation flowing. All in all a fine do. Anytime PAPERCUTS J.P. would like me to return, I’m there.
(MY NEXT READING WILL BE AT BROOKLINE BOOKSMITH (279 Harvard Street, Brookline, MA) THIS COMING WEDNESDAY, MARCH 15, 7 PM WITH AUTHOR PETER SWANSON. COME ON DOWN!)