After a few blissful months off, I did my first live appearance this weekend (and my 30th since the book launched). Thanks to the Spencertown Academy Arts Center Festival of Books for having me, and thanks to those who joined for our long and impassioned discussion. It was invigorating to once again be chatting with people whose lives are impacted by the shortcomings of our mental healthcare system.
After, a woman spoke with me about her friend's son, tears falling down her face continuously. A couple discussed their son — psychotic, in prison, they said. I had read from the part where Bob becomes a Mormon and is baptized over and over. This appearance felt like I'd been dunked right back into the waters of being this book's author. A bit of a shock but also a thrill.
I'll be doing several more live appearances this fall. If you're in or near any of the following places, I hope you'll come out (and / or tell people who may be interested):
George Mason Fall for the Book Festival - Fairfax, VA (10/12)
University of Iowa The Examined Life Conference - Iowa City, IA (10/25)
Texas Book Festival - Austin, TX (10/26-8)
Miami Book Fair - Miami, FL (week of 11/12)
More TBA. The paperback will publish 1/15/2019. I can't wait to show you all the cover; it's awesome.
I'll have glow-in-the-dark AKOMP guitar picks for anyone who comes to see me live (or you can send your mailing address to mirraculas at gmail dot com and my assistant Alex will mail you one). Visit my Events page for more details and dates as I figure them out.
I've found myself thinking a lot about how Aretha was, in the truest sense, a diva. I've thought a lot about Alexander Chee's The Queen of the Night, the best literary account of a diva I've read.
I've lately been reading Robin DiAngelo's White Fragility. It's a book all white people should read — but especially the sorts of white people who don't think they're racist. I'm looking forward to giving this book to many white people I know. I also enjoyed this episode of Call Your Girlfriend, where Ann Friedman interviewed DiAngelo and the activist, artist and writer Rachel Cargle. "I was not raised to see the humanity of people of color," DiAngelo says during the interview, "I don't think white people are raised to see that."
Finally watched the Mr. Rogers documentary, Won't You Be My Neighbor. Cried a bunch. Highly recommend it. I'll probably never stop thinking about the moment he breaks open the dark soul of a senator and gets PBS $20 million of public funding. #goals