All week came the snow and with it a series of bleak dreams that he awoke from each morning in confusion and terror, a night spent scrambling through a blizzarding forest gone black and malevolent, his movement hindered by the substance of the snow that lay everywhere in his path, a substance that clung to him even as it seemed liquid, fluid, like quicksand. He did not know how many hours he labored in those frozen and claustrophobic landscapes but when he awoke at last it would be to the muffled and strangling darkness of a trailer nearly buried, as if the waking world had come to mirror the dream he had fled, the details of which blew away with each gust of the storm outside the trailer’s thin walls, leaving only the sense of it—fear, panic, terror—his body shaking with cold even though the trailer itself was warm, the woodstove’s vents tamped down but the cinders continuing to glow and the propane heater at a low constant hum. And yet he awoke trembling, as if somehow his skeleton had frozen in the night and he woke with cold dry bones everywhere inside of him.
Happened upon Kinky playing “Mas y Mas” on Guitar Center Sessions. Damn I liked it. Alot. Check it out:
But really why I’m writing you all today is to let you know that after a little hiatus, there are some new readings and such up on the Events page here. There’s the big Sac Library benefit coming up, for one. Then there’s a fun mid-week reading in San Francisco with my new friend Panio Gianopoulos. If you’ve not read his novella A Familiar Beast, you must. Order it direct from the publisher here (only $10 hardcopy or $5 for Kindle). Actually, I’ve found that everything Nouvella publishes is worthwhile. I’d suggest just springing for the book bundle @ $21. That’s here and it’s well worth the price. And just so you know, I don’t know these Nouvella people personally at all. Or rather I don’t know them yet.
The big news is twofold. One: SummerWords returns to American River College this year. Last year we brought in Philip Levine as our keynote reader. This year we’re bringing in my friend and former teacher (and always mentor) T.C. Boyle. Bonus round is Anthony Swofford and his wife and fellow memoirist Christa Parravani, and a whole host of other writers. It will be, in a word, badass.
Two: I’ve been invited to teach a bit at the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley, a real honor. Richard Ford is coming this year, which makes me freak out a little, but in a good way. Yeah, I get to hang out with T.C. Boyle and Richard Ford during the same summer. How did I get so lucky as that?
More info on all of this stuff on the EVENTS page. Next thing I have to tell you will need to wait, but it involves Michael Spurgeon’s amazing book Let the Water Hold Me Down, coming soon…
I had the good fortune of being asked by Powell’s to write something for their Indiespensible blog. I took the opportunity to explain something of the genesis of The Infinite Tides. If you’re interested, you can point your browserfinger hereward!
New gig booked (a book gig, not a music gig) in Albuquerque on Aug. 11. Check the EVENTS tab. This one, like all the Rocky Mountain dates, is with my dear pal and mega awesome writer lady Pam Houston (and, likely, one of her giant wolf hounds).