Oh my, what a day!
After cramming our heads with learning yesterday, we decided it was time to enjoy the artsier side of the Festival, so we went to a few sessions of the Saints and Sinners Reading Series to hear some of our fellow authors read from their work. We heard some amazing things by (among others) David-Matthew Barnes, who read from his forthcoming YA novel, Mesmerized, the charming Peter Dube, whose Subtle Bodies will be reviewed for Out in Print shortly, the hilarious Fay Jacobs from Rehoboth Beach, Shawn Syms, who appeared with me in I Like It Like That: True Tales of Gay Male Desire and the incredible Chavisa Woods, whose “Queer Manifesto” was transfixing. She is definitely a poet to watch out for.
Then the rains came, a deluge of Biblical proportions that cleansed Bourbon Street of both litter and tourists. We were trapped—trapped I tell you—in the Chartres House Café. What was there do to except eat and drink to excess? But not too excessively, mind you. Today was our day to read.
And read we did when we returned. Dale Chase read an erotic ghost story from her forthcoming Lethe Press collection, If the Spirit Moves You, William Holden read from “Words to Die By,” a story which won him a finalist spot in the Saints and Sinners Short Fiction contest, Ron Suresha told some centuries-old Turkish folk tales, Fiona Zedde read from one of her many e-books and yours truly read a section of his story “Spider Strands,” from the forthcoming Queer Mojo collection Got Nothin’ Better to Do: Hot Tales of Rude Boys and Gutter Spunks.
But we weren’t finished performing. After a long walk in the warm rain, we arrived soaked at the Auld Sweet Olive, the B&B I stay in, for our Bears in the Wild reading. Ron, Dale, that scrumptious country-daddy Jeff Mann and I all read to a packed house. Many books were sold and signed and Steve Berman, the publisher, smiled and rubbed his hands with glee at every single ka-ching.
Then it was on to Mr. B’s Seafood Bistro for blackened tuna, barbecue shrimp and pecan pie with Ron, Jeff, Jeff’s partner John and Steve. The best part for me wasn’t the food, though. It was sitting on Jeff Mann’s lap in the cab.
Ah, the simple things in life …
One more day of coverage and then a wrap-up. Ya gotta love this town!