Thursday, May 10, 2012

Reading Aloud

Tomorrow afternoon I'll be reading from a yet-to-be-published novel at the CCS Penny Reading at the Blue Agave in Santa Barbara. There will be writers representing the current student body (not me) and alumni (me). The event begins at 4.

I can't decide which chapter to read, but I'm thinking about the last:

On the afternoon of Frank and Cathy’s wedding, everything went wrong. Adrienne opened the refrigerator and the loose shelf on the door finally fell off. Three bottles crashed on the tile floor, leaving amber, red, and purple puddles of maple syrup, crème de cassis, and ketchup. She shooed Sam away from helping and the dog from lapping up the syrup, then picked up the glass, sopped up some of the sticky mess with paper towels and had begun to mop when they heard a shriek from upstairs.

Or maybe something else.

I find it strange to read my work aloud. I've never been theatrically inclined (except when I find myself overcome with appreciation for my brand of humor), so I greet any sort of stage performance with some inward show of trepidation. Always hoping the trepidation doesn't leak out too much.

The last time I read (from a yet-to-be-finished novel, also in Santa Barbara), a young woman approached me afterward and remarked that I had seemed nervous. I said I had been, a little. If she had been reading, she said, she would have acted like she owned it. I should do that next time, she said.

It was good advice, and like most good advice, much easier to offer than to follow.


  1. Good luck! You'll be perfect. Wish I could be there!