Monday, September 19, 2011

5 Bay Area Book Festivals for Fall

Something about a new school year and the change of seasons makes me want to curl up with a bunch of books. Well, okay, when don't I? Here's what's waiting on my bedside table: The Chelsea Whistle (MFA requirement); The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2010 (recent plane purchase--fabulous!); Betsy Was a Junior (nighttime read-aloud classic YA by Maud Hart Lovelace); Postcards (Annie Proulx short stories); & a couple of travel mags (Hemispheres and AFAR). How about you?

But maybe you're aching to get outside into that extended California summer to share your love of the written word with the greater world. Then check out these literary events that'll keep you in the know:

photo credit: David Grenell
Sept. 21-25, Festival Pavilion at Fort Mason Center, SF

Celebrate 50 years of the public library at the largest book sale on the west coast with over half a million books and media! All proceeds support the SF Public Library.
Hardcovers: $3-4, paperbacks: $2, kids' books: $1
All materials on Sunday are $1 or less
Member Preview Sale & Reception: Sept. 20, 4-8 p.m.

Sept. 24, 10-4 p.m., Old Courthouse Square in Santa Rosa, FREE

Line-up includes authors Maxine Hong Kingston, Ann Packer, Belva Davis, Carolyn Cooke, Carol Edgarian, Steven T. Jones, as well as dozens of others. Renowned poets – including Jane Hirshfield, Al Young, Francisco X. Alarcon, Christina Hutchins, Jeanne Wagner and Leo Slominsky – will read.

Five panels include:
• The Sky is High and So Am I: Alternative Subjects
• Books: The Rumors of My Death Have Been Greatly Exaggerated
• Writing Local History with Gaye LeBaron
• Shots Happen: A Mix of Mystery Writers
• Writing for Film and Stage

Megan McDonald, author of the best-selling Judy Moody series, will kick off the kids' activities. In addition, there will be three panel discussions of Young Adult authors, including a panel on “Advice for Teen Writers,” and a Teen Poetry Slam with cash prizes!

Oct. 1-2, 10-4, Civic Center: San Francisco Public Library & Asian Art Museum, FREE

Join the largest gathering of authors of Filipino heritage from around the world to celebrate Philippine culture through literature, visual arts, music and food!

Oct. 7-15, including closing night Lit Crawl; Sausalito's Words on the Waves Oct. 15, 1-5
Don't miss the pre-festival panel, Art Through Story (see below), Thurs. Sept. 29, 7-8:30 p.m.

Surely one of the most extraordinary and eclectic literary events ever! They've got everything from Teen Quake: Not Your Mother's Book Club, to  A Little Off the Top and Over the Top (LGBT readings) in a Castro barbershop turned nightclub! From Re-Write: An Evening of Prose from Writers in Recovery to Writing in California's Prisons (the prisoners will not be present).

Words On The Waves will showcase the writers of the Sausalito houseboats and the North Bay literary sphere, featuring contemporary and historical readings, music and storytelling!
Private Houseboat Pier, Sausalito. Tickets: $30 in advance, $40 at the door

Art Through Story: New Alternatives for Getting Your Work to the World
This panel will discuss the value of and trends in inter-arts publishing; developing and selling your own publications; uses of social media, technology and cross-disciplinary story-telling; and other topics. Facilitated by Cindy Shearer, Program Chair for the MFA programs in Writing & Consciousness, and Creative Inquiry & Interdisciplinary Arts at California Institute of Integral Studies, Rm. 607, 1453 Mission Street, San Francisco.

10th ANNUAL BOOK ARTS JAM: regional celebration of book arts, print arts and paper arts
Oct. 15, 10-4 at Foothill College in Los Altos Hills, CA

Created by Bay Area Book Artists (BABA), a group of independent artists bound together by a passion for the book arts, this celebration offers a behind-the-scenes peek at the creative processes, tools, and techniques used by book artists. Includes galleries of books, artist talks and slideshows, exhibitors and printers.

Check out Foothill College's print and book arts program, which includes professional certificates in book arts, print making and illustration. Oh, if I could do it all over again...

ALSO: Check out this week's events for Banned by the Bay, SF's celebration of Banned Books Week! Look for that post coming soon...

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