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Saturday, March 17, 2007

Department of Book Reports: The Virtual Trade Show

Wednesday, the Day Before: We're so Proud!!!
In preparing for our trip to the up-coming tradeshow, we've been perusing the schedules. And here on page 12, the intro bios for Friday Author Breakfast leads off with:

“When we think of Nancy Pearl, we remember a remark made by the teen-aged son of Seattle booksellers, who, at the time, was uninterested in a rather long-winded author speaking at a PNBA show. "Who does he think he is?" the kid asked. "Nancy f#$&ing Pearl?"

Oh yeah. That's our boy! Quoted in the Official Show Program. We are so getting Nancy to sign one for him! BTW, I'll be the stand-up Mystery expert for Nancy's Librarian-in-Training: U-Dub Campus, sometime this Spring, TBA. Should be fun.

Thursday, Day One: Educational Seminars of a top secret nature. As Booksellers we are sworn to secrecy about today’s proceedings. Lunch has Michael Powell being interviewed by John Moe.
More top secret meetings and a light dinner provided by Komenar Publishing and The Habitual Reader. Drinks in the bar with John Moe author of Conservatize Me! How I tried to Become a Righty withn the Help of Richard Nixon, Sean Hannitty, Toby Keith, and Beef Jerky, and the usual suspects among the booksellers. Of course we close the bar.

Friday, Day Two: Author Breakfast at 8 am. Yes, we are there, bright eyed and bushy tailed. Seattle Mystery favorite, Michael Buckley talks of his YA “Sisters Grimm” series, Robert Michael Pyle’s love letter to rural Southwestern Washington, Sky Time Gray’s River: Living for Keeps in a Forgotten Past, Arthur Phillips reads from his 3rd novel, Angelica. And then Nancy Pearl is introduced. Our Librarian Goddess, tells us of children’s literature in Book Crush. The phrase on everyone’s lips this week end was “Nancy f#$&ing Pearl”.
Today the trade show floor is open with displays from publishers, book wholesalers and vendors. So, after being on our feet all day, We retire to to the bar. There’s the big award winner: Jess Walter! Bridget Kinsella! Neil McMahon! Then duck out to the autographing tables for Kathleen Alcala, Michael Burke, Anosh Irani and others.
Dinner is actually pretty good banquet Salmon. We are at Jess’ table for his award, and I sneak to the hostess a rumor about Jess and Sherman Alexie’s basketball rivalry. But first the other honorees: Ivan Doig gets his 6th award, David Biespiel for poetry, Iain Lawrence for Gemini Summer.

And the most moving stories are from Greg Mortenson and David Oliver Relin, authors of Three Cups of Tea: One Man’s Mission to Promote Peace…One School at a Time, While hiking in Pakistan, Mortenson was rescued by the locals, and learned the meaning of the tea in the title: The first cup, you are a guest, the second cup, you are a friend, but with the third cup, you are family. And to that end, he has been building schools, 55 now, to promote literacy and end ignorance in this corner of the world.
David James Duncan, has written Brothers K and The River Why. Now, in God Laughs and Plays, he explains why the “Christian Right” is wrong in their stranglehold on our country. His Adventist upbringing gave him a high tolerance for fundamentalism, but little tolerance for what he sees as their flawed take on religion. His essay, When Compassion Becomes Dissent is truly one of the most heart breaking and yet challenging speeches I’ve ever heard.
The evening ends with Jess’ acceptance speech about being at Ground Zero five days after 9/11. Jess talked about ghost-writing Bernard Kerlick’s “Autobiography”, while the boss was off bonking his publisher in the apartment that had been donated for police and firefighter’s rest breaks. That publisher was also Jess’, the now disgraced Judith Regan.

Saturday, Day Three. Author Breakfast with Patrick Carman, Ellen Curry-Wilson, Susan and Phil Ershler and Robert J. Wiersema (the Canadian Content that puts the ‘eh!’ in PNBA!)
Check out and then the long slog homeward. Our favorite roadside lunch: burgers at Bill and Bea’s in Centralia.

Now, I buy you a virtual ice cold BridgePort IPA and ask you to explore the links here. If you click on an author, you’ll go to their home page. If you click on a book title, you’ll go to the publisher’s editorial page.

We lost democommie™™™™®© somewhere on I-5, so he wasn’t able to embarrass us in front of our publishing friends.

These books are or will be available at Jackson Street Books, Seattle Mystery Bookshop, or fine Independent Bookstores everywhere.


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