Saints and Sinners Day Two

Saturday’s festivities at Saints and Sinners brought a cool,
sunny day—a welcome relief in muggy New Orleans and just right for wandering
the Quarter between sessions. And what sessions they were, indeed. 

We started the day off, naturally, with breakfast at the
carbolicious Clover Grill—and what better to aid digestion than a few laughs?
The first entry in the Reading Series was a total scream, with selections from
Aaron Anson, Josh Aterovis, the marvelous Fay Jacobs, Jeffrey Ricker and Jess
Wells (who has a whole other career ahead of her as a standup comic). We wore
ourselves out and had to go to lunch to revitalize.

The second round of Reading Series authors was also
great—Amy Bryant, ‘Nathan Burgoine, Greg Herren, Elizabeth Lareau, Martha
Miller, Julie Smith and Cecilia Tan all entertained and educated us with their
selections. But the panels also looked interesting—“Poetry: The Silky Words of
Seduction with Jewelle Gomez,” “Creating a World,” and “Out and About: Writing
About the Personal” among others. Late afternoon, however, was taken up by my
first-time moderating gig on the historical fiction panel, “If I Could Turn
Back Time” with Peter Dube, Jess Wells, Felice Picano and Bett Norris.
Wonderful panelists, interesting subject and a great audience made this an
experience I’ll gladly repeat in the future.

Saturday night’s choices were the re:Vision Reception and
the Mojo Word Gumbo program of poets reading at FAB (Fauborg Marigny Art &
Books) hosted by the always hospitable owner, Otis. We opted for a quieter
evening at a Bold Strokes Books event hosted at the home of Lammy award winner,
Jean Redman.

After that, however, things got raucous as we teetered over
to the Phoenix (one of the bear/leather bars) and ran into Jeff Mann, Michael
Thomas Ford, Shawn Syms and Peter Dube. I couldn’t stay late, though, as we
have our panel tomorrow (“Blogging Book Reviews for Fun and Profit … Well, for
Fun Anyway”) as well as our reading at 1 p.m. Then, sadly the closing party and
a day of decompression before returning home.

But that’s for tomorrow’s post. 

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