Windy City News

"Postscripts" briefly changes locale this week from Austin to Chicago, where the Book Expo America recently took place, and where Texas Book Festival director Cyndi Hughes took it upon herself to assemble as many of the nation's other book festival directors as possible to discuss the state of book festivals. Galyn Glick Martin, the director of Nashville's Southern Festival of Books, and Alina Interian, executive director of Miami Book Fair International, joined Hughes and MEM/Hubble's Jennifer Hill for dinner, which is where the real work of this annual publishing and bookselling convention happens. Author selection, sponsorship arrangements, and attendance tracking were the issues at hand - but what would a dinner with these directors be without the exchange of war stories? War stories are best left to the soldiers, though. Isn't that how they retain their power?... During the Expo former ABA president Barbara Thomas stepped down from that position but not before taking a Pannell Award from the Women's National Book Association for her children's bookstore, Toad Hall; the Pannell is given annually to a children's bookstore in recognition of excellence in the area of events and community involvement... Cyrus Cassells, the poet taking Southwest Texas State's Mitte-endowed chair in creative writing this fall, was in town last week direct from Chicago, where he won the Lambda Literary Award (having passed the muster of 70 judges) for his book of poetry, Beautiful Signor. He was in town meeting with SWT professors and checking out housing options. He's being perspicacious - everyone he's told about coming to Austin gushes about how wonderful it is and he's wondering what's in the water that has everyone on such a high. Let's hope he hasn't read "The Lottery."

Wedding Lady & Other Events

Margaret Bigger has been collecting and printing anecdotes of too-awful-to-be-believed wedding stories for a decade. Her most recent book is titled You've Got to Have a Sense of Humor to Have a Wedding, and she'll be signing it on Saturday, June 13, 2pm, at Barnes & Noble Arboretum. Bigger welcomes wedding tales at the bookstore event or by writing her at: Bigger c/o A. Borough Books, PO Box 15391, Charlotte, NC 28211. She's such an expert on the topic that she's appeared on the Jerry Springer Show with one Austin couple who saw the roof of their church blow away in a storm just as the bride walked down the aisle... James Joyce's Ulysses takes place in Dublin, June 16, 1904; this Tuesday, June 16, Fadó Irish Pub (214 West Fourth) hosts "an evening of Irish literature, laughter, and fun" celebrating Ulysses from 6-8:30pm; there will be an open mike reading... Also on June 16 Santa Fe poet Penny Harter will read from Lizard Light: Poems From the Earth at 7pm at Book People, where Don Walser's Pure Texas band fiddler and Advanced Micro Devices author Howard Kalish will unveil his book The AMD-K6 3D Processor: Revolutionary Multimedia Performance on Saturday, June 13, 3pm. A demonstration of the technology will be presented... And don't forget about the Austin Book Workers' Swap Meet Saturday, June 13, 10am-1pm at BookLab, 1606 Headway Circle, off Rutherford Lane. The public is invited to buy, sell, donate, and bid on items that will be sold in a silent auction whose proceeds will benefit Austin Book Workers. Items not part of the silent auction are priced and sold by the seller. It's basically a big garage sale for readers. Call 419-0681 for more information or directions.

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More Postscripts
The last time we heard about Karla Faye Tucker, she was being executed; now, almost four years later, there's a new novel about her. Or about someone very like her. And Beverly Lowry's classic Crossed Over, a memoir about getting to know Karla Faye Tucker, gets a reissue.

Clay Smith, Jan. 18, 2002

Not one day back from vacation and the growing list of noble souls who need to be congratulated is making Books Editor Clay Smith uneasy.

Clay Smith, Jan. 11, 2002

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