It has been a wildly busy fall, so I’m behind in my public thank you’s. Which means I’m behind in mea culpas, too. So mea culpa and thank you and thank you and mea culpa. Now on to a thank you disguised as a report:

On October 5, owner of downtown Lewiston’s Quiet City Books Courtney MacMunn Schlachter hosted our penultimate 2018 Local Writers Read event, a program of fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry on the dual theme Fake / Real.

Josh, my organizing partner for these readings, brought the dark, introducing us to, and then swiftly dispatching, a bystander of the ugly political intrigue that weaves through his fantasy novella. I followed with some dark of my own, a reading of my flash “God Save Our Queen” about the fate of Anne Boleyn, published by Atticus Review.

Pemaquid’s Jodi Paloni, author of the story collection They Could Live With Themselves, treated us to the opening of her just completed novel, a birthing scene that glows with the promise of new life even as it unfolds under the low light of betrayed relationships and fraying family connection. Portland Poet Laureate Linda Aldrich completed the first half of our program with an intoxicating set of poems, starting with “The Mime” (page down a bit)–is there a better representative of Fake / Real than a mime?–and finishing with another meditation on representation in art, “Watercolors.”

After intermission, three friends of the reading series returned to present their own take on the dual theme. Lewiston’s Darren Deth read a short story with a protagonist in a life-or-death fight with what is Fake and Real; Bangor’s Sarah Twombly shared a chapter from her autobiographical novel (Fake spiked with Real or Real told more cleanly with a little Fake) that was two parts comedy, three parts heart-breaking; and the indomitable Lisa Mayer of Auburn took over the room, the building, the street, with another of her personal essays delivered in fine Rebbetzin form.

Many thanks to our fab host Courtney and all our guest readers. It was a terrific night.

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