Hello again, Nashville book lovers. October is a doozy of a month for local literary events in Nashville. It’s almost scary. Let’s get to it.
The biggest splash will be made by the 2015 Southern Festival of Books, running from Friday morning, October 9 to Sunday evening, October 11. If you’d like to meet, listen to, or get your copy of your favorite books signed by big time authors, here is your chance. It’s also a great opportunity to spend time with other book lover from throughout the region. Check out the schedule now to map out your plan of attack on the Downtown Nashville Public Library and the Legislative Plaza. Pressed to point out some highlights, the biggies include Rick Bragg, Geraldine Brooks, Pat Conroy, David Maraniss, Paul Theroux, Rebecca Wells, Scott Westerfeld, Michael Sims, Kwame Alexander, Karima Bennoune and David Maraniss. There is also an entire pop-out program focusing on young adult fiction and another on Understanding Islam. Rather than depend on me an the places and people I’m excited to check out, visit the site to create your own list.
As part of the Southern Festival of Books, the popular Literary Death Match will return to War Memorial Auditorium on Saturday, October 10 at 8:00 p.m. You can preorder your tickets now to see Erica Wright, Harrison Scott Key, Alex Sheshunoff and Tiana Clark battle it out cordially to see who is the winner of the night. Hosted by Literary Death Match creator Adrian Todd Zuniga.
Our good friend Chet Weise has been putting together some very interesting events over at Third Man Books. On October 3, they will be hosting a book launch, reading, and fundraiser for their new release, Acknowledge: An Anthology of Selected Poems from The Contributor. Also on Third Man Books’ schedule of awesome, October 13 is the publishing date of PAIN: The Board Game by Sampson Starkweather.
Three other locals who you should take notice of, and who I have mentioned a time or three on this blog, are Rita Bullwinkel, Matt Johnstone, and Rashad thaPoet. Rita will be a part of two special events. First, she will be reading at the Regenerates Reading Series curated by The Porch Writers’ Collective at The Stone Fox on Saturday, October 12 at 7 p.m. Second, she will be hosting another Band of Poets on Tuesday, October 27 at 9 p.m., at Bobby’s Idle Hour. In Matt’s case, he is hosting the first E t A l. reading of the season on Saturday, October 3 at 8 p.m. at Sauvage (a new event space for art and literary events in the Wedgewood/Houston neighborhood – 1114 3rd Avenue South). Right in the middle of the monthly art crawl, Matt will be hosting readings by poets Hannah Gamble, Adam Day, and Nashville’s own TJ Jarrett. Nashville’s own Rashad thaPoet — one of the most amazing wordsmiths around — will be opening for the legendary Saul Williams in an evening of spoken word at Exit/In on Sunday, October 4 at 8 p.m. Make plans to visit all of the above.
Now for the rest of the things you shouldn’t miss. The Porch Writers’ Collective is hosting several events. On Saturday, October 3 from 2-5 p.m, they have gathered yoga goddess Rachel Mathenia and the coolest poet and teacher in town, Leslie LeChance, for Yoga for Writers, a workshop to help everyone that signs up explore how the practice of yoga can help sustain a healthy writing practice. Secondly, The Porch is hosting a literary costume party called LiterScary on Friday, October 30. Located at their central office at The Skillery (1323 6th Avenue North), there will be costume contests, scary stories, beer, and more starting at 7 p.m. Don’t be scared to show up.
Don’t be scared thinking that is the end of this month’s blog either. We still have more frightfully fun events to attend. First, with a new location (Zanies) and line-up, the always fabulous Melanie Vare has scheduled another That Time of the Month show. The funny female storytelling series is always packed with talent and good people on and off stage. The next show, Tuesday, October 27, will focus on the theme of fear.
But don’t forget the monthly staples of Poetry in the Brew with Ciona Rouse, and East Side Story. Poetry in the Brew always takes place on the second Saturday of each month at Portland Brew East. On Saturday, October 10 at 6pm, the event will feature guest host Rouse and C Ra McGuirt. Rouse will also be hosting two additional events this month. Writing’s On the Wall will be at Atmalogy (2320 West End Ave) on Thursday, October 15 at 6 p.m. The Third-Thursday event rounds up some of the best poetry in town and allows everyone to become a participant. On Friday, October 30 at 7 p.m. at Barnes & Noble Vanderbilt, Rouse will lead another Lyrical Brew. This month’s event features Bob Beasley, Dana Malone and Lucas Powers.
Last, but certainly not least, I’ll leave you with the reminder that I will be hosting two more outstanding East Side Storytellin’ shows this coming month (as I have done each month for nearly 3 years and counting). The 68th edition of East Side Storytellin’ will feature poet Christine Hall and musician Aaron Lee Tasjan at The Post (1701 Fatherland Street) on Tuesday, October 6. The 69th edition, also at the Post East, will feature author W.S. Lyon and musician Andrew Leahey on Tuesday, October 20th. Every East Side Storytellin’ is free to attend and begins promptly at 7 p.m. sharp.
Thank you for spending time with me again, and I hope you get a chance to visit and experience a few, if not all, of the events mentioned above. Also, please remember to be nice to one another out there. I can’t say that enough. And if you are near East Side Story, drop by and say hello.
For a comprehensive list of upcoming literary events, be sure to check the Books and Poetry section at NowPlayingNashville.com.