May it not be the last! It’s going to be a reading! Except it’s mostly a social thing,[1] by which I mean that it’s going to be a very short reading. And then, if my very nefarious plan works out, people will stick around, talk to each other, maybe meet some new people, maybe have a nice time. I don’t even really give a fuck if anybody talks about writing or books or anything (I mean: I give a fuck that they appreciate the readers, of course. You’ve always got to give props to the readers).

I’ve been sort of haphazardly "piloting" a writer/lit folks meet up or social thing since January, and this is a step towards creating some kind of formalization around it.[2] I like the idea of keeping the non-reading weeks/months (timeline, schedule, cadence, etc., horrifically TBD) casual, smaller, whatever, but I also want to throw a good, big-tent kind of party. I struggle with this generally, the opposing impulses of bringing people together intentionally (viz who it is that I’m bringing together) and the bringing together of everyone I can find, harangue, meet by accident. This is going to be an attempt at a kind of balance.

We’re doing it at the Banshee[3] because a long time ago I used to work for/run an organization called Write on the DOT[4] and they’d let us do open mics there for free.[5] The Banshee also used to be our "program bar" in grad school, where we would go after workshop.[6] It’s a good place! Not cheap, exactly, but if you know what to drink (Narragansett) you’ll be OK, and the food is pretty good. It’s also partly a thank-you to all the DOT folks who’ve been generous enough to come to my side of the river to hang out these last few months.

We’ve got some great readers — six of them. The deal, also, is that they have to (I mean "get to") read up to two pages (double spaced) of new work. So it’ll be fresh shit. It’ll also be a pretty short reading, because long readings are long and I want it to primarily be about community — you share a little bit, but mostly you ask about how work is going and what TV you’ve been watching.

Anyway, I hope people show up. I’ve emailed some of the local grad programs and the local literary event aggregator and I’m posting this here, and on what little social media I have left, so. But hell: even if it’s just me and the six readers, we’ll have a good time.

(But also: please come. It’ll be fun, I can basically promise.)

1. Which means, for now, it’s at a bar, became I am not creative enough to think of a third place that’s open late that’s not a bar that would let us do a reading for free.
2. I’m sorry if you’re in the area and I haven’t told you about these; I’m doing my best, and also I’m sorry.
3. I say "we" like there is someone other than me to share responsibility for this if it sucks, or if it is good.
4. Which appears to still be going on alright!
5. Fun fact: the photo I "edited" for the "poster" is from one of these open mics. I think this is the one I made Drew do a Gertrude Stein-based exercise with me for, except I don’t think he ended up actually using the prompt I’d come up with. As usual, his shit was excellent in any case. I think mine probably went on a little too long.
6. And definitely not where I would drink whiskey and pout about what that one professor said. Definitely not. Never.