Tuesday, January 22, 2008
Books, Books, and More Books (All that and Big Hair Too!)
Oh, my, where to begin? First, with the tireless Kathy Patrick, author and book festival organizer extraordinaire. She gets authors and book lovers to come to Jefferson, Texas the third weekend of January every year, and I for one am here to say I'll be back any time she invites me (and maybe even when she doesn't!). It's fun, it's illuminating, it's wacky (see photo).
But, what it's most about is BOOKS. Loving books, reading books, finding new authors, reconnecting with old favorites, and spreading the word about the power of BOOKS. So, here goes . . .
New writer friends include Virginia Boyd, author of One Fell Swoop, Janis Owens whose most recent book is The Schooling of Claybird Catts, Darnell Arnoult, and her book Sufficient Grace, Lynn York author of The Sweet Life, Debbie Rodriguez author of the memoir Kabul Beauty School, and Paulina Porizkova and her debut novel A Model Summer.
Each of these books is now competing to be read next and I promise to post my raves about all of them.
I lucked into reconnecting with Ellen Baker (whose book Keeping the House I blogged about last summer) and Cassandra King, bestselling author (most recently of Queen of Broken Hearts) who generously provided this newcomer with a fabulous cover blurb.
These are smart, funny, friendly women. Good writers, too (but that goes without saying). We ate pie (lots of pie. Pie is heavenly. You've got to love a town that has a restaurant called HOUSE OF PIE.), barbecue, and jambalaya. Oh, and I do believe that some wine was also consumed.
The book festival--which was attended en masse by book clubs from all over--included all sorts of author chats and panels. One of the best aspects of it all is how "down home" it is. Readers and writers mingle non-stop (over pie!)--which seems right since readers are also writers and writers are huge readers. The culminating event is the "Ball of Hair"--and I can't even begin to explain it other than to say it's an absolute hoot--that's where the pictures were taken.
Okay, I'm off to read (and probably run to the grocery store).