We welcome authors Joe Sacksteder and Matt Kirkpatrick in support of their latest, Make/Shift: Stories and The Ambrose J. and Vivian T. Seagrave Museum of 20th Century American Art, respectively, as part of our ongoing Fiction at Literati series. A book signing will follow the reading. The event is free and open to the public.
Situated in the absurd and pop-culture, the stories in Make/Shift land athletes, actors, musicians, and grievers at the center of more dire spectacles than they’d anticipated.
A strange museum, an even stranger curator, the deceased artist who haunts him, and the mystery surrounding the museum founders’ daughter, lost at sea as a child . . . The Ambrose J. and Vivian T. Seagrave Museum of 20th Century American Art is by turns a dark comedy, a ghost story, a romance, a whodunit, a family saga, and an exhibition catalog
Joe Sacksteder is a PhD candidate in Creative Writing and Literature at the University of Utah. Fugitive Traces, his album of Werner Herzog audio collages, will be available from Punctum Books. His writing has appeared in Denver Quarterly, Florida Review, The Literary Review, Passages North, Hobart, The Rumpus, and elsewhere. He is currently a visiting instructor at Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan.
Matthew Kirkpatrick is a writer and associate professor of creative writing at Eastern Michigan University.
We welcome the world’s preeminent writer of comics and graphic novels about science back to our store in support of his latest, Hawking. Signing to follow. Free and open to the public.
About the book: From his early days at the St Albans School and Oxford, Stephen Hawking’s brilliance and good humor were obvious to everyone he met. A lively and popular young man, it’s no surprise that he would later rise to celebrity status.
At twenty-one he was diagnosed with ALS, a degenerative neuromuscular disease. Though the disease weakened his muscles and limited his ability to move and speak, it did nothing to limit his mind. He went on to do groundbreaking work in cosmology and theoretical physics for decades after being told he had only a few years to live. He brought his intimate understanding of the universe to the public in his 1988 bestseller, A Brief History of Time. Soon after, he added pop-culture icon to his accomplishments by playing himself on shows like Star Trek, The Simpsons, and The Big Bang Theory, and becoming an outspoken advocate for disability rights.
In Hawking, writer Jim Ottaviani and artist Leland Myrick have crafted an intricate portrait of the great thinker, the public figure, and the man behind both identities.
Jim Ottaviani (Feynman, Primates) is the world’s preeminent writer of comics and graphic novels about science. Notable works include a biography of Niels Bohr and the fast-paced tale of the desperate lives of early paleontologists and T-Minus: The Race to the Moon, from Aladdin books. He has worked as a nuclear engineer and is currently employed as a reference librarian in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
We welcome three authors with recent works published by Wayne State University Press’s Made in Michigan Writers Series! After reading, each author will be available to sign books. The event is free and open to the public.
Lisa Lenzo is the author of Within the Lighted City, chosen by Ann Beattie for the 1997 John Simmons Short Fiction Award, and 2015 Michigan Notable Book Award winner Strange Love (Wayne State University Press). Lenzo’s other awards include a PEN Syndicated Fiction Award, a Hemingway Days Festival Award, and First Prize for Fiction in the 2017 Literature and Medicine Writing Contest. Her stories and essays have appeared in Arts & Letters, Michigan Quarterly Review, Sacred Ground: Stories about Home, Fresh Water: Women Writing on the Great Lakes, and on NPR.
Natalie Ruth Joynton‘s work has appeared in American Poetry Review, Michigan Quarterly, and Poetry International. She is the recipient of the 2010 Scholl/Thompson Poetry Prize from the Academy of American Poets as well as a Quintilian Excellence in Teaching Award from Purdue University, where she earned her MFA in Creative Writing. Natalie lives, writes, and teaches in rural Michigan.
Elizabeth Schmuhl is a multidisciplinary artist whose work appears in Michigan Quarterly Review, The Rumpus, Paper Darts, PANK, Hobart, Pinwheel, and elsewhere. She has worked at various nonprofits, including the John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts, and currently works at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. She is also an RC creative writing alumna!
Once more with music! We’re thrilled to welcome back Richard Retyi in support of The Book of Ann Arbor: An Extremely Serious History Book. Rich has a new, fresh, special presentation in store for the book—one of the inaugural releases from the Ann Arbor District Library’s Fifth Avenue Press. He’s also open to answering questions from the audience, no matter how shockingly personal in nature. Book signing to follow. Free and open to the public.
About The Book of Ann Arbor:
A suicide submarine parade. Ann Arbor’s top 10 astronauts. Shakey Jake, the Embassy Hotel, and train/building collisions. The birth of Iggy Pop. Nazis getting punched. Visits from heads of state, from presidents to a dictator. The Music Mobile, the Naked Mile and around-the-world flight. Plus, a few tales of murder, because it happens here too. These are a few of the stories that make up The Book of Ann Arbor.
Richard Retyi is the communications and marketing manager at the Ann Arbor District Library and part of the Ann Arbor Stories podcast.
Crazy Wisdom Poetry Series hosted by Joe Kelty, Ed Morin, and David Jibson • Second and Fourth Wednesdays, 7-9 p.m. in the Crazy Wisdom Tea Room • Second Wednesdays are poetry workshop nights. All writers welcome to share and discuss their own poetry and short fiction. Sign up for new participants begins at 6:45 p.m.
Fourth Wednesdays have a featured reader for 50 minutes and then open mic for an hour. All writers welcome to share. Sign up begins at 6:45 p.m. Free. Contact Ed at 668-7523; email@example.com or cwpoetrycircle.tumblr.com.
We welcome Rick Bailey back to the store for a reading from his latest, The Enjoy Agenda. Book signing to follow. Free and open to the public.
About the book: Part memoir, part travelogue, The Enjoy Agenda takes readers from Rick Bailey’s one-stoplight town in Michigan farm country to Stratford, England, to the French Concession in Shanghai, the Adriatic coast of Italy, and to a small village in the Republic of San Marino. With his self-deprecating style, Bailey recalls the traumas of picture day in elementary school and lugging a guitar to the Cotswalds and back. He reflects on food safety in China, relives a dental emergency in Venice, and embarks on a quest for il formaggio del perdono (the cheese of forgiveness) in the hills above the Adriatic.
Bailey, whose voice is a combination of Dave Barry and Rick Steves with just a soupçon of Montaigne, writes with humor and wit about how these experiences reflect the issues and conflicts of contemporary American life: environmental change, life in digital times, and the vicissitudes of arriving at ripe old age. Throughout The Enjoy Agenda Bailey asks, “Where am I and how did I get here?” a question less about geography than the difficulties and gifts of becoming a husband and ultimately a partner changed and improved by a very smart woman and challenged and delighted by a gradual but seismic culture shift.
Rick Bailey is a retired English instructor who taught writing for thirty-eight years at Henry Ford Community College in Michigan. He is the author or editor of several books on writing, including The Creative Writer’s Craft, and is the author of American English, Italian Chocolate: Small Subjects of Great Importance (Nebraska, 2017).
Readings by members of the 2019 Ann Arbor Youth Poetry Slam Team. The program begins with open mike readings.
July 24 • Ian Haight is an author, translator, and editor who graduated from U-M’s Residential College, worked with the UN, was a tenured professor at a Korean university, and now resides in Germany. His book, Celadon, won the First Book Prize in Poetry from Unicorn Press. He communicates an international, spiritually-minded aesthetic. Visit ianhaight.com.
All invited to listen to guild members swap stories or bring their own to tell, at the AASG monthly meeting.
We welcome Ann Arborites Patti F. Smith and Britain Woodman in support of their new book, Vanishing Ann Arbor. Free and open to the public. Signing to follow.
About the book: Ann Arbor has seen many cherished landmarks and institutions come and go—some fondly remembered and others lost to time. When the city was little more than a village in the wilderness, its first school stood on the now busy corner of Main and Ann. Stores like Bach & Abel’s and Dean & Co. served local needs as the village grew into a small town. As the town became a thriving city, Drake’s and Maude’s fed generations of hungry diners, and Fiegel’s clothed father and son alike. Residents passed their time seeing movies at the Majestic or watching parades go down Main Street. Join authors Patti F. Smith and Britain Woodman on a tour of the city’s past.
Patti F. Smith is the author of Downtown Ann Arbor and A History of the People’s Food Co-op Ann Arbor. She has written for CraftBeer.com, West Suburban Living, Concentrate, Mittenbrew, The Ann, AADL’s Pulp blog and the Ann Arbor Observer. A frequent public speaker around town, Patti curated HERsay (an all-woman variety show) and Grown Folks Reading (story time for grownups) and tells stories at Ignite, Nerd Nite, Tellabration and Telling Tales Out of School. She is a commissioner for the Public Art Commission and the Recreation Advisory Commission, a teacher of history for Rec & Ed and a storyteller in the Ann Arbor Storytellers’ Guild.
Britain Woodman lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan. A fascination with how the same brands and concepts fit into different communities led him to document them, first in in photographs and then in long-form writing. This writing led to speaking and, ultimately, to authoring this volume with Ann Arbor’s preeminent living historian, Patti F. Smith. Ideally, he would be out visiting every city’s beloved, vanishing places, but working on this book was cool too.