Dear Friends & Colleagues,
The Book Launch Party for River Road, the sequel to Border Town will be a Sunday Brunch at the Pink Cow ("http://www.thepinkcow.com" www.thepinkcow.com) in Shibuya, Tokyo on Sunday, April 8 from 12 Noon to 4:00 PM. The admission is 3500Yen and includes the full Brunch Buffet + a signed (if desired) copy of River Road.
Border Town (2006) told the story of fictional manga artist Fumie Akahoshi who becomes rich & famous in Japan. In an act of hubris she creates a manga which implicates the Emperor in the WWII “comfort women” scandal. As a result, the Right Wingers hire the Yakuza to assassinate her. At the end of the novel she has disappeared.
River Road tells the story of Fumie’s abandoned daughter Angelica Akahoshi who becomes a famous graphic novelist at a remarkably young age. In her 20s she begins a world-wide search for her lost mother who she strongly believes is still alive. A short, cryptic telepathic message from Fumie spurs her on, following story clues along the “river road”.
Readings will begin at 1:00 PM. Guest readers include Alan Botsford, Frank Spignese, Hans Brinckmann, Jeremiah Dutch, John Gribble, Wally Gagne, Wayne Pounds and Yuri Kageyama. Taylor Mignon will MC. An open mike will begin at 3:00 PM as time allows.
Please RSVP / ASAP so the Pink Cow staff will know how much food to prepare. Feel free to post on Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. and to invite your friends and colleagues. Looking forward to seeing you on April 8
Here is some updates on the Japan Writers Conference, October 9th, 10th, & 11th, 2010 at Nihon University College of Art, Ekoda Campus, Tokyo. It’s getting close! It is time to let people know the details and for you to firm up your plans. First off, Tom Baker has set up a JWC site on Twitter: http://twitter.com/JapanWritersCon. So go Tweet!
Next, about the Pink Cow event on Saturday the 9th. There will be a buffet, drinks included, from 7:00 to 9:00 pm. Traci has promised a feast of approximately twenty dishes, many of them vegetarian, all of them delicious, along with a selection of beverages (beer, wine, soft drinks, etc). The price is 5250 yen per person, payable at the front door. If you plan to attend, please RSVP now with the names of all in your party, so we can tell the restaurant how many to expect. More on the Pink Cow: http://www.thepinkcow.com/
Also on the 9th at the Pink Cow, for the first time the Conference will have an Open Mike. But with a twist.
“In My Secret Life, I’m ____________.”
Fill in the blank. Who or what are you, deep down inside? A brooding Danish prince? A reclusive Amherst spinster poet? A rock star with a memoir? Or do you just want to share a bit of favorite writing/music/whatever from some personal hero or heroine? The only rule here is the work you present has to be that of someone other than yourself. Educate us. Enlighten us. Entertain us. Free Your Inner Ham. If you would like a ten-minute slot in which to perform, sign up now. This should be fun.
Poets, both beginners and experienced, don’t miss the opportunity to take part in David Gilbey’s Poetry Workshop on Sunday morning, October 10th. Have your work receive a careful reading and be the subject of a close discussion. Participants will read each other’s work in advance, so you need to contact David in advance at DGilbey@csu.edu.au to be part of the group.
And Sunday night there’s another feast, this one at a friendly, funky Italian place named “Peace” very near the Conference site. Again, drinks are included. The price is 3500 yen for the two-hour buffet. And again, Please let us know Now if you plan to attend. Don’t go hungry!
If you want to attend the gatherings, but not have the buffets, please feel free. Both places are happy to serve you “pay as you go” drinks and snacks.
Finally, there is a need for some volunteers to help collect money and stamp hands at the two buffets. An hour of one of your evenings would be greatly appreciated. So that’s the current state of affairs for the 4th Japan Writers Conference. We are looking forward to having a good time, and we hope you are, too. Please let us know your plans.
John Gribble, Bern Mulvey, and the other volunteer staff
Japan Writers Conference
Photo: Printed Matter Press table at the 2009 Association of Writers & Writing Programs Conference in Chicago. Some 7000 attendees Feb 11-14. Next year will be in Denver, Colorado--so start planning ahead. jz
"I got dog-tired beyond Macon and woke up Dean to resume. We got out of the car for air and suddenly both of us were stoned with joy to realize that in the darkness all around us was fragrant green grass and the smell of fresh manure and warm waters. "We're in the South!"
– Jack Kerouac, “On the Road”
If there is one shocker on election night in the presidential race, cast your eyes to Georgia. 1,994,990 people voted early in Georgia. 3,301,875 total voted in Georgia's presidential race in 2004.
Motel of Lost Companions
Keep a grip on what passes for reality as you check into this strangely normal fiction story for fall by Hillel Wright
It was a foolish argument . . . the worst kind of argument too, over food. And not even food exactly, but over salad dressing.
She'd left his dinner on the table while she was out shopping for groceries. There was a bowl of yakisoba noodles and a plate of gyoza dumplings to heat up in the microwave. And there was a salad. Not a very fancy salad, just lettuce, tomato wedges, grated carrot, cucumber and slices of hard-boiled egg. The salad was in a medium-size bowl, an individual serving. Next to the salad was a small plastic pitcher of dressing. It looked and smelled like one of her homemade concoctions of olive oil, rice vinegar, garlic, diced tofu and a dollop of Caspian yogurt. It looked like a lot of dressing for one salad, but then again it might not have just been for a single serving.
It presented a classic avoidance-avoidance conflict: avoid her displeasure if he didn't eat everything she so painstakingly prepared for him; avoid her anger if he didn't leave her half the dressing.
So it was a foolish decision that led to the foolish argument.
He'd gone out to the library after dinner and then over to the International Center to use the free 30 minutes of Internet service available there. He could just check his e-mail and leave their home computer free for her to use when she got back from shopping. She liked to search for punk-music performances on YouTube or play violent video games like "Postal" or "Grand Theft Auto." She said they helped her to relax. She was, after all, old enough — at 34 — to be able to distinguish fantasy from reality. He didn't suspect she'd ever actually go on a shooting rampage in Yokohama or Tokyo. For one thing, where would she get a gun?
Read the rest of Hillel Wright's story in the Japan Times