IKE | West Coast WordFests
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West Coast WordFests

West Coast WordFests

The West Coast roars into October with two of the hippest gatherings of wordsmiths and their readers: Litquake and Wordstock.

Litquake 2010Litquake runs from October 1st through October 9th in San Francisco. The festival kicks off with cocktails at the 111 Minna Gallery. Marcus Books celebrates its 50th Anniversary with a reading and book-signing by Terry McMillan.

Lawrence Ferlinghetti and City Lights Booksellers are being f&#234ted with
Litquake’s Barbary Coast Award. Tom Waits is the special guest. Patti Smith and guitarist Lenny Kaye pay tribute along with Winona Ryder; Michael McClure; New Yorker cartoonist Eric Drooker; Ishmael Reed; former San Francisco Poet Laureates Jack Hirschman and devorah major; Beth Lisick; Michelle Tea; the Marcus Shelby Quartet and many others.

Other highlights include: Litflicks: Litquake’s Literary Film Festival, the Literary North Beach Walking Tour, a reception for the Center for Literary Arts All-Stars, and Kidquake. There will also be a number of readings and panels throughout the week.

The festival concludes with the infamous, indefatigable Lit Crawl on Saturday, October 9th. It’s so big they had to break it up into three phases:

Lit Crawl – Phase 1
Lit Crawl – Phase 2
Lit Crawl – Phase 3

Wordstock 2010Wordstock is Portland’s Book & Literary Festival. It runs from October 4th through October 10th.

Panels and readings galore. Indie presses such as: Chin Music Press, Copper Canyon Press, McSweeney’s, and Tin House Books. And writers – lots of writers: Aimee Bender, Lan Samantha Chang, Timothy Egan, Stephen Elliott, David Rakoff, Mona Simpson, Joanna Smith Rakoff, Floyd Skloot, and lots more.

From their website:

Wordstock is an annual festival of books, writers, and storytelling in Portland, Oregon. To date it has hosted over 550 writers, who have read and performed for nearly 55,000 people at past festivals. Wordstock features ten author stages, a book fair with over 150 exhibitors, a special children’s area and children’s literature stage, a series of workshops for writers and for K-12 teachers, a special broadcast of Live Wire!, the popular public radio variety show, featuring writers from the festival, and more. Although it only began in 2005, Wordstock is already the largest celebration of literature and literacy in the Pacific Northwest, and is one of the largest festivals of its kind in the nation.

You’ll want to get there early…

By the time we got to Wordstock we were half a [thousand] strong
And everywhere was a song and a celebration…

David Isaacson
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