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The author will employing various methods of Slow Travel to get from his home to each event, promoting the Slow Book Movement by "walking the talk". Check back here for details.
Sat, Nov. 22nd: The Book House, Stuyvesant Plaza, Albany, NY (3PM)
- The only option to get to this event was a Slow Drive to the plaza, meaning I didn't take the highway, but old Route 20 all the way. Took an hour instead of 45 minutes. Stopped for lots of red lights. Saw some rugged scenery I'm not used to seeing. And, of course, got a bit lost, because I always take the highway to Albany. So had to consult the road map! Arrived in time, and sold 12 books! Onward and upward.
Fri, Nov. 27th: The Bookstore, Lenox, MA (7PM), w/ Bobby Sweet *
- The Berkshire Eagle declared I would be walking to this event. My mother, the weather, and Thanksgiving conspired to prevent this plan. So I devoted the whole day to various SLOW activities: baked bread, made a woodstove fire, walked in the woods, played with my dog, and read a book (Edward Abbey). The night was a success. Bobby's music was beautiful and entertaining as always, and I sold 13 copies of The Farmer, including one to a woman who "never reads novels", but was hooked by the first two pages I read out loud. Works for me!
Thurs, Dec. 3rd: New Lebanon Library, New Lebanon, NY (7PM)
- Today marks the true start of the Slow Book Tour. I knew walking to my local library, with 20 books on my back, would be no problem. It's only 2 miles away. But then my old friend Devin needed help with a fundraising drive for his nature camp. They would be perched on the side of the opposite mountain, about 3 miles away, and a thousand feet up. Kal and I had to stick to the roads due to hunting season. Took the walk SLOW. Stopped for views, and to contemplate old Shaker barns. Stuffed envelopes for a few hours, then shouldered up the pack for the 2 mile stroll down the long dirt road into the town of New Lebanon. The reading at the library was an intimate affair. A success, for sure. Then another 2 miles home late in the evening, with a final climb up the steep Spring Hill Road to get to the house. 22 books are much heavier than I thought! Sold 5 at the library, which cut down on the weight a bit. Either way, today I am sore. Either way, I am now more convinced than ever that WALKING is the foundation of all things SLOW.
Saturday, Dec. 5th: Chatham Bookstore, Chatham, NY (1-3PM)
- Started the day Slow from the start, with a french pressed cup of locally roasted coffee, then set off with Kal for the 2 mile walk into town, took the back roads, lingered in front of Chittenden Farm. In town I picked up the weekend paper (Register Star) being held for me, and read it on the bench. Slowly, of course. Then, after a stop at the post office to mail a x-mas present and a chat with Steve, marched back to the hill, and up to the house. Took the direct route. Packed up the truck and rolled down to Chatham, as Slowly as I could, and still made it there early! Great event, sold 11 books, and met some fine folks. Glad to know The Farmer is now headed to Wyoming!
Thursday, Dec. 10th: Chapters Bookstore, Pittsfield, MA (6:30PM) w/ Jack Waldheim
- Without going into details, my preparation for this event was not very Slow. In fact, running late, I found myself speeding to get into downtown Pittsfield in time! But Chapters was set up beautifully, and a respectable crowd of 17 came out on a dark and cold December night. There were many questions on The Slow Book Movement, and one specifically about whether the Kindle fits into the movement, which really made me think hard. I admitted I have yet to form a definite opinion on whether the Kindle is a good thing for books and writers. Jack took the stage after me and played some great music, told some stories, made people laugh. As if to make up for my less that Slow day, the two hour event was a little oasis of time and space, warm and friendly and, of course, very Slow!
Saturday, Feb. 27th: Spotty Dog Books, Hudson, NY w/ Bobby Sweet and Chatham Brewery Beer Tasting (4 - 6 PM)
- This was quite the event. Great beer, fine tunes, and some passages read from The Farmer. Lots of pictures. Amanda is quite the amateur photographer. Cheers to music, beer and books! Signed up four new members of the Movement.
Friday, March 5th: Books On The Square, Providence, Rhode Island W/ Jack Waldheim (7 - 9 PM)
- Not much to report on this one. Jack was a good sport, as we only had four guests, his friends. A rather uninspired performance on my part. Cities definitely challenge any attempts at feeling SLOW, and I let the lack of an audience get me down. Nice bookstore though in a pleasant part of Providence.
Thursday, March 18th:Malaprops Bookstore, Asheville, North Carolina (7 PM)
- What a great bookstore! After being wooed by the surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains and the wonderful city of Asheville earlier in the day, the event was a joy. Malaprops treated me well, had a good crowd, and read many passages from the The Farmer. All in all a fabulous experience, followed up by tapas that night and an amazing hike the next day up into the Pisgah Forest. I have to admit my travels from Upstate New York to Asheville were far from SLOW - averaged 78 mph on I-81 going down, but tried to stop from time and time and soak in some different environments.
Sunday, March 21st: Big Blue Marble Bookstore, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (2 PM)
- This was the first sunny Sunday afternoon in Philadelphia in months, so I had some heavy competition! Sat upstairs in this cute bookstore in the Mt. Airy neighborhood of Philly. People wandered up for conversation. Did a short reading at one point for three fellow writers. A local professor was very intrigued by the Slow Book Movement. Signed up 3 new members! All in all a nice experience before battling the traffic up I-95 and back home.
Saturday, July 17: Kaaterskill Fine Arts Gallery, Rte 23A, Hunter, NY (Time TBA) - Getting to this event was far from a slow experience, as I took the wrong route from home, and had to rush up into the mountains in order to arrive just on time. Had a nice little crowd of eight people in a beautiful art gallery. This was the last day of an exhibit called ROOTED, with photos and paintings displaying scenes of farming in America. Early on in my talk there was some tension in the audience, as three members were all bickering with each other, and I could hardly get a word in! But things quieted down eventually, I read a few sections and answered some excellent questions about writing and The Slow Book Movement.