Thursday, April 17, 2008

Fox Cities Book Festival & Community Read: Author, author!

"Books are dangerous in the best way"
Alice Hoffman
APL staff with Alice Hoffman

The first ever Fox Cities Book Festival is in full swing, and we've reached the culmination of our community read with the appearance of Alice Hoffman at our library. Alice is hitting three libraries in 22 hours, and earning every penny of her speaker's fee.

This evening we held a reception here for some of the book festival folks, particularly for Alice's visit. Many of the reception attendees were part of the over 200 people in the audience for Alice, others went across town to hear poet Billy Collins, planning on catching Alice tomorrow at the Neenah Public Library. From the many and profuse "thank you" comments our staff got at the end of the evening, I know people here really enjoyed Alice Hoffman, and I'm sure the other venue got a good crowd for Billy Collins. This is what you call your embarrassment of riches.

It's been an exhausting but wonderful ride doing the community read and the book festival. The festival runs two more days, with many things happening at our library and elsewhere on Saturday, but thus far it's a big success. In an interactive information world, I'm glad that we're devoting so much energy to books.

Alice Hoffman, who proved a personable presenter and excellent speaker, touched on this. Though she writes three blogs herself, she wonders if people, especially young people, are spending so much time online that they're spending less time reading. Speaking for myself, books are a slow pleasure -- and work best when you can set time aside for reading. You can't multitask your way through a good read. So this has been a good activity for National Library Week.

Ellen Kort, former Poet Laureate of Wisconsin and Book Festival organizer,
with YA novelist Alex Flinn

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Victoria Houston and Marshall Cook at the Fox Valley Book Festival

Saturday at 10 a.m. at the City Center Plaza Boardroom

Author presentation by Victoria Houston and Marshall Cook...mystery writers and fairly well known.

Please spread the word to anyone you think might be a mystery, whodunnit fan. They are going to be discussing "The history of whodunnit," which is pretty cool. It's perfect for armchair sleuths.

Here's the specific info:

Victoria Houston and Marshall Cook
"The History of Whodunnit"
City Center Plaza Boardroom
10 a.m.
Saturday, April 19

Please join us in welcoming veteran crime writers Victoria Houston and Marshall Cook to the Fox Valley Book Festival as they discuss the history ofthe who-dun-it?, the craft of writing a mystery, and the publishing process.The event will take place Saturday, April 19th at 10:00 AM in the Boardroom in the City Center Plaza (Appleton's Avenue Mall on College Ave.)

Victoria Houston lives in Rhinelander, Wisconsin where she writes her popular Loon Lake mystery series. The ninth book in the series, "Dead HotShot" will be published this July by Bleak House Books of Madison.

Marshall Cook is a professor with the University of Wisconsin-Madison's Department of Continuing Studies. His Monona Quinn mystery series follows the exploits ofa small-town newspaper editor and a part-time sleuth. His fourth book in the series, "Obsessions" will be published this June by Bleak House Books. Additionally, he is the author of over 20 non-fiction books on writing, time management, and baseball.

Both authors have been seen and heard on Oprah and NPR among a host of other media outlets.