Saturday, March 27, 2010

pacific northwest reader countdown #1

As we head toward the release date of The Pacific Northwest Reader, I thought it would be fun to post a quick taste of some of the essays that will be in the book. The book is part of a really lovely series. [Info on its origins and on the first title in the series, not to mention my own musings on what I would have written had I done a piece for the Great Lakes Reader (because with the whole circus clown thing, heck, I'd have material for nearly the whole country) here.]

The Pacific Northwest Reader covers Oregon, Idaho, Alaska and Washington. For our first taste, here's a snippet from "Washington ID" by David K. Wheeler:

"Between Leavenworth and Wenatchee are stretches of road populated by apple trees with white skin and gnarled branches, the heart of Washington’s apple country. Washington has been leading the country in apple production since the 1920s. Once, while rafting the Wenatchee River, our guide pointed to some irrigation ducts just visible near the peaks of the surrounding hills. “We call that the apple juice pipeline," he said. “You know Tree Top?” The six of us in the raft nodded. I’m sure he meant it was for irrigating the apple orchards, but I couldn’t help but imagine gallons and gallons of apple juice being pumped around the state. Now, every time I pass through the sprawling Wenatchee valley, I think of that—that, and the unassuming chic of agri-tourism."

David K. Wheeler is a former bookseller at Village Books in Bellingham, Washington, as well as a writer. His work has been published in literary journals such as The Wanderlust Review and Jeopardy Magazine. He is currently working on his first novel and contributes to the Burnside Writers Collective at

David also has his own blog. You can check it out here.

More snippets to come.

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