New York, Sucker Lake, Michigan
Timing is everything. After months of working on the new book, I’m psyched to be hitting the road again for W2W, especially since the road is taking me to NY, Michigan, and my adopted hometown of Sucker Lake (which in a way, I guess, isn't really the road. But you know what I mean.)
As April begins, I’ll be taking part in the butt-kicking Animal Farm Reading Series, which is held monthly at Public Assembly in Brooklyn. The reading organizers like to point out that all reading series are created equal, but some are more equal than others. In any case, I’m thrilled to have been invited. On April 3, I’ll be reading with Bernice L. McFadden and Eliza Factor.
Gathering of Waters by Bernice L. McFadden & The Mercury Fountain by Eliza Factor.
A couple weeks later, I get to do the first W2W event in Lake Oswego, Oregon, which I sometimes call Sucker Lake to honor the lake’s original name. (It was named after the fish, not for the people who fell for the advertising slogan “Live Where You Play” and built their mansions on its edge.)
I’ve lived in Lake O for twenty years, wrote most of W2W in the tree house here, and yet am best known for being the father of Zane Sparling, former prodigy/humor columnist for the Lake Oswego Review. (True story: A couple weeks ago I was mailing off a copy of W2W at the Lake Oswego post office, or the LOPO as some of us call it, when a stranger saw the book and asked if I was Scott Sparling. I was getting set to autograph her hoody when she told me how much she liked Zane’s writing.) In any case, I’ll be at the LO Public Library on April 17. Maybe I can convince Zane to come.
A few nights later, on April 20, I’ll join fellow Tin House writer Alexis Smith along with Jean Auel, Emily Chenoweth, Loren Christensen, Ted Coonfield, Kim Cooper Findling, April Henry, Bart King and Barbara Roberts at HomeWord Bound 2012, a fundraiser for Community Partners for Affordable Housing at the Tualatin Country Club in Tualatin, Oregon.
Glaciers by Alexis Smith
Then, Michigan. On April 28, I’ll be in Lansing at the official Library of Michigan for an event that means a lot to me: Notable Nights, the Michigan book awards ceremony honoring the top Michigan books of 2011. It’s an amazing thrill to be on the list along with Jim Harrison, Bonnie Jo Campbell, Michael Moore, Susan Whitall, Keith Taylor, Laura Kasischke, and more.
As part of the Notable Books program, I’ve been invited to read at the Shiawassee District Library in Owosso, Michigan, about an hour north of my biological hometown. I’ll be there on April 30. Seger fans, stop by and we’ll talk music, freight hopping, glue sniffing and anything else that’s on your mind.
Later in June, I’ll be back in Michigan again, including Detroit and a short tour of the Upper Peninsula. Can’t wait for that either.
And to get ready for all this travel: the annual trip to SXSW in Austin later this week with the incomparable Ears Two, well known to Segerfile fans. I’m looking forward to four days of Jon Dee Graham, Chuck Prophet, Alejandro Escovedo, the Black Angels, Justin Townes Earle and dozens of other bands. I’ve already made Jon Dee Graham’s “Laredo” the unofficial theme song of the next book (currently called AUX IN):
I drove home from Laredo, I had the fireflies in my head
They were lighting up a small, dark something.
They were circling round a small, dark something
They were looking for a small, dark something.
-- Jon Dee Graham
If you’re in Brooklyn, Sucker Lake, Seger Nation or Austin, shoot me a tweet or an email, or come out and say hi. It’ll be great to see you the road.