Wednesday, October 11, 2017

On its birthday: City of Weird, a random photoplay

October 11, 2017, is the official first birthday of City of Weird. And October 12th is the first anniversary of our book launch at Powell's.

I kind of can't believe it. A whole year.

Bear with me. I'm feeling very nostalgic.

I thought I'd pull together a bit of a photoplay on the life of the book. I have far too many pictures and don't want to go on and on, so I'll just choose a smattering, mostly from the many lovely events we did. A couple writers who lived out of state didn't make it to events, so I don't have pictures of everyone, but I'll try to get as many in here as I can.

^When books arrived for the first time.

^Powell's put us up on the marquee!

^Karen Munro talks with Ken Jones, host of KBOO's Between the Covers

^Suzy Vitello on Between the Covers.

^Octopus cupcakes for our book launch at Powell's City of Books, October 12th, 2016.

^Octopus swag on all the chairs.

^A nice, big crowd for the Powell's launch. This is when we had contributors in the audience stand for applause.

^Powell's readers answering questions during the Q&A, left to right: Dan DeWeese, Brigitte Winter, Mark Russell, and Rene Denfeld.

^In the signing line. Left to right, contributors Brian Reid, Brigitte Winter, Mark Russell, Rene Denfeld, Doug Chase, Kirsten Larson, Adam Strong, and Brad Rosen.

^Jonah Barrett and Jonathan Hill.

^On the right, our primary copy editor, Sharon Eldridge.

October 26th was our event at Broadway Books. We encouraged people to come in costume and there was more octopus swag and a City of Weird doughnut cake donated by VooDoo Doughnut.

^With Broadway Books co-owner Sally McPherson.

^My costume was this big hat that I had to take off halfway through because it kept falling off.

^Leslie What in a fabulous giant squid costume.

^Stevan Allred, in the costume of a well-dressed man, reads from "Notes from the Underground City."

^And my favorite costume of the night, contributor / reader Kevin Meyer dressed as a Carebear, along with audience members Colin and Aubrey.

On November 4th, we were part of Wordstock's Lit Crawl®, reading alongside Lauren Kessler at the Oregon Ballet School.

^Jonah Barrett reads from his story "Alder Underground."

^Leni Zumas reads from "Tunnels."

^Sean Davis congratulates fellow contributor Susan DeFreitas on the upcoming publication of her novel Hot Season.

^Kevin Sampsell brought the house down with a hilarious and moving performance of his story "In Transit."

The next day was Wordstock. City of Weird contributors Jonathan Hill, Stevan Allred, and Karen Munro read at a pop-up event but sadly, I didn't get any pictures as I was moderating.

Our event at Annie Bloom's was on November 16th.

^Look at this fabulous window display they put up!

^Doug Chase reads from his story "Squatty and Weasel Boy" as Art Edwards and Suzy Vitello look on.

^Justin Hocking had everyone laughing.

^With Linda Rand and Justin Hocking in the signing line.

^Readers and contributors posed outside in front of the window display. Left to right, Justin Hocking, publisher Laura Stanfill, me, Suzy Vitello in jaunty hat, Doug Chase, Brad Rosen, Linda Rand, and Art Edwards.

On December 6th, we were invited to read on KBOO's Bread and Roses, the country's longest-standing feminist radio show.

^Susan DeFreitas reads from her story "The Mind Body Problem." Behind her head: Don't take equipment! Don't take equipment!

^Goofing off with the microphone. Susan DeFreitas, Leigh Anne Kranz, B. Frayn Masters and me.

On December 7th we were part of the Plonk Reading Series at Corkscrew Wine Bar, with a winter/Christmas themed show. Apologies for the less-than-clear pictures. I took these, and my phone does not take good pictures.

^Nicole Rosevear reads from her story "This Many Lost Things," set in Portland in wintertime.

^Brian Reid, whose story is about a SantaCon gone bad.

^Brad Rosen dressed up as his narrator from the story "Yay" and played the waldteufel, an instrument that has the power to ward off the Krampus.

December 13th we went to Longview, Washington, for Wordfest. As host, I sat behind the authors, and I took a few discrete pictures, but, yeah, they were all from behind. Still, at least I got something.

^Brian Reid.

^Kirsten Larson reads as host Alan Rose looks on.

^B. Frayn Masters, who read and also favored us with a very skilled rooster impersonation.

^Jason Squamata.

^Special guest Stephen O'Donnell read Justin Hocking's story "Vampire."

Our event at Another Read Through was March 11th, 2017. Every reader read from their own story PLUS another favorite story from the collection.

^The whole crew. Left to right: me, Leni Zumas, Art Edwards, Doug Chase, Suzy Vitello, and our host Elise Saphier, owner of Another Read Through.

^Brad Rosen listens to Doug Chase read from his (Brad's) story.

^Portland writers Steve Arndt and Dan Berne.

^Art Edwards, Doug Chase and Suzy Vitello. That little drum-and-stick thing on the table is a waldteufel, which I mentioned before is an instrument that wards off the Krampus and other evil things. The drum is on a string connected to the stick, and you twirl it around to make a sound that, according to Brad's story "Yay," sounds like a thousand and one wet frogs singing.

^I did a demonstration.

^Another Read Through has a cool reading tree, which we gathered around after the reading. That's publisher Laura Stanfill tucked into the hole in the tree.

On March 7th, Mark Russell and I were invited to speak to Willamette Writers.

Our final reading event of the book launch was April 17th at American Legion Post 134, which was the setting for part of Sean Davis' City of Weird story "The Fixer."

^Sean Davis reads from "The Fixer."

^Susan DeFreitas.

^Linda Rand.

^Karen Munro.

^Leigh Anne Kranz.

This event was supposed to be a winter event the year before, but big snows postponed it. I'm glad we ended our readings here, a favorite event space because of its warmth and its connection to the book. But more than that, I'm glad we ended here because our last reader was Adam Strong, whose story is the last story in the book.

^Adam Strong reads from "Always."

^Readers and contributors on hand: Sean Davis, publisher Laura Stanfill, Doug Chase, Linda Rand, Nicole Rosevear, Adam Strong, me, Susan DeFreitas, Leigh Anne Kranz, Karen Munro.

But then the Willamette Radio Workshop took four City of Weird stories and adapted them into radioplays, which they performed on stage!

The first was at the Kiggins Theater in Vancouver, Washington.

^The stories they adapted were "The Fixer" by Sean Davis, "Transformation" by Dan DeWeese, "Letters to the Oregonian in the Year 30,000 BC" by Mark Russell, and "A Code for Everything" by Andrew Stark. The above image is from their performance of "A Code for Everything." I was extra excited that they adapted this story, as Andrew lives out of state and was unable to attend any reading events.

^Another thing I was excited about: they also showed and provided sound effects for "How Do You Say Gentrification in Martian," by Jonathan Hill, our one graphic novelist contributor.

^And lastly, they performed at UFO Fest in McMinnville, at McMenamins Hotel Oregon. What a blast.

^A UFO Fest makes book signing extra fun.

Gosh, that was a lot of pictures even though I really held back. I'm sorry we don't have pics of authors Jeff Johnson, Stefanie Freele, and Andrew Stark. Their contributions to the book are wonderful, but they just happened to be out of state / unavailable during event time.

Anyway, I want to say happy birthday to our little book. I've been thankful for every minute of this year in the life of this collection.

And with all the excitement of readings and performances, one of the sweetest things is just seeing it live in the world.

1 comment:

  1. Wonderful! Well done. Made me a little weepy.... xoxo