October is for literary festivals
If you're a jetsetter with a comfortable fortune and lots of free time -- and a love for books -- you're going to have a hard time choosing from the literary festivals taking place in October. There is no way for one person to enjoy them all.
The New Yorker Festival will be Oct. 1-3 at various venues across New York City. The New Yorker Festival features conversations and performances with writers from the magazine and the topics they cover: music, fiction, film, art, media, politics, and so on. The 2009 participants included writers Salman Rushdie, Malcolm Gladwell, Jhumpa Lahiri, T.C. Boyle, Junot Diaz and Hilton Als, as well as Woody Allen, Steve Earle, Chuck Close, Joan Cusack, Ricky Jay and Tilda Swinton. The 2010 lineup, and tickets for the festival, are not yet available.
Starting at the same time is San Francisco's Litquake. The 8-year-old literary festival is Oct. 1-10 at a number of locations around the city. Litquake features writers from San Francisco and across the country; some events are free, but not all. This year's schedule has not yet been announced, but closing night traditionally includes a bar crawl, because, they say, San Franciscans spend twice the nation's average on books and booze.
That overlaps with Wordstock in Portland, Ore., which takes place Oct. 7-10. Tickets for a gala dinner and reception, for a fundraising round of golf and for professional workshops for teachers and writers are already available. There is a two-day book fair at the convention center -- $10 admission for both days, $7 for one -- along with other events. Authors scheduled to appear include Steve Almond, Phillip Margolin, Stephen Elliott, Kristin Hersh, Kevin Sampsell, Cheryl Strayed, Anthony Doerr and Los Angeles' own Aimee Bender, Maile Meloy, Cecil Castellucci, Heidi Durrow and Mona Simpson.
And when that's all over, the massive Miami Book Fair will take place in November.
-- Carolyn Kellogg
Photo: Salman Rushdie, who appeared at last year's New Yorker Festival. Credit: Jennifer S. Altman / For The Times