LitQuake has been rough. You’ve been dashing out of work, shoving people away from their cabs to make it to the Chuck Klosterman event and sprinting after buses to catch Karen Russell; you’ve had to make the hard decision between “Kafkaesque” and “Rock Out with your Book Out;” and all the while, you keep thinking Jeffrey Eugenides has just passed you on the street. With LitCrawl coming up Sat/15, things become even more overwhelming and terrific. In the Mission, bars, cafes, and bookstores together host 450 readers in 79 readings, all free and open to the public. One way to navigate the event might be to pick your favorite bar or cafe, find a chair, order a drink and wait for something to happen. Or, you can check these readings out:
I Live Here: SF. How We Got Here, Why We Stay
Not a lot of us can say we were born and raised in San Francisco. Most of us fled here from elsewhere for one reason or another: failed relationships, parents kicked you out, a nervous breakdown, a mid-life crisis, you formed an indie-rock band. Maybe you came for LoveFest and simply forgot whom you were. There are a thousand reasons for arriving and a thousand more for staying. In Clarion Alley, writers and non-writers alike including Mark Bittner and M.C. Mars talk about what brought them here and why they haven’t budged. 6 p.m., Clarion Alley, between Mission and Valencia, and 17th and 18th Sts, SF
BARTab’s Blame it on the a a a a a Alcohol: Tall Tales of Inebriated Adventures
Alcohol and writers have always had a vital, if tumultuous relationship. Hemingway said that when you worked in your head day after grueling day, the only viable remedy was whiskey; that “The only time it isn’t good for you is when you write or when you fight. You have to do that cold.” Luckily, a drunken night can become a source of inspiration, if not the next morning, sometime when you’re “cold.” At this reading, writers like Daphne Gottlieb, Jon Ginoli, Brenda Knight, and the editor of BARtab, Joe Provenzano, read about nights of drunken debauchery. 6 p.m., Martuni’s, 4 Valencia, SF
Come Cheer the Reaper: Readings from the San Francisco Writers’ Grotto
The San Francisco Writers’ Grotto was founded because, dammit, this writing business can be agonizing, but it’s more manageable when others surround you with whom you can collectively suffer. Convening at the Elbo Room for a night of readings tied around death, you might think that collectively suffering wasn’t working out so well for the Grotto. However, tonight is not a night for morbidity and gloom. Nine writers, including Janis Cooke Newman, Marianna Cherry, Gerard Jones, and Chris Colin read work that looks at death with humor and lightheartedness. 7:15 p.m., Elbo Room, 647 Valencia, SF
The Three-Penny Review Presents...
The Three-Penny Review, based out of Berkeley, would naturally host a night of premium writers at LitCrawl. The journal has been hosting the best authors, poets, and critics in its pages since 1980, and it publishes reviews and essays about everything under the sun (their recent issue features 3 great essays about live music). A good way to gauge the journal’s breath is looking at tonight’s lineup at the Summit. Kay Ryan is, of course, the former Poet Laureate of the U.S. and the Pulitzer Prize winner for The Best of It: New and Selected Poems; Walter Murch is a three-time Oscar-winning film and sound editor famous for his work on Apocalypse Now and The English Patient; Louis B. Jones is an author whose most recent novel is Radiance. Others tonight are poet Victoria Chang and the playwright and screenwriter Erik Tarloff. 7:15 p.m., Summit, 760 Valencia, SF
If you’ve taken a look at the West Coast writers and artists magazine Zyzzyva lately, you probably noticed some substantial changes: a new design, a full color art spread, an additional 40 pages of content. The changes are credited to the magazine’s first new editor since its founding in 1985, Laura Cogan. At 29, Cogan has breathed new life into the magazine and given it more presence in the community by doing, among other things, events like this one. Contributors to the fall issue of the magazine W.S. Di Piero and Troy Jollimore are joined by Heather Altfeld, and Malena Watrous. 7:15 p.m., Blue Macaw, 2565 Mission, SF
From Buddha to Batman
If you’re a fan of comic superheroes and also have a costume you’re dying to wear before Halloween, this event is most certainly for you. Gotham Chopra, co-founder of Liquid Comics and co-author of the comic Bullet Proof Monk, discusses our persistent fascination with muscles, spandex, super powers, and sidekicks. If you’re one of the first 20 to arrive to the event in a superhero costume, you get a free drink, while the best three costumes win signed books. 8:30 p.m., Laszlo Bar, 2526 Mission, SF
McSweeny’s and The Believer Present...
McSweeny’s and The Believer need no introduction. They are of what they are, and everyone knows that, together, the publisher and magazine support the very best writing. This event features a handful of those talent writers and personalities: poets Matthew Zapruder and Tess Taylor, columnist Daniel Handler (known by some as Lemony Snicket), and Anthony Myint and Karen Leibowitz, founders of Mission Street Food, and authors of the book Mission Street Food: Recipes and Ideas from an Improbable Restaurant. 8:30 p.m., Latin American Club, 3286 22nd St., SF
The World Cries Out for Revolution
Some, like the protestors defiantly camping outside the Federal Reserve Building for OccupySF, get their voices heard by taking to the streets. Others, like us at the San Francisco Bay Guardian, stir things up with the written word. You can see this every week in the articles written by our own Steven T. Jones (check out his article on the pot club crackdowns in this week’s issue). At Cafe La Boheme, Jones reads in the spirit of dissent with former Black Panther Richard Brown, as well as Larry Everest, the author of Oil Power & Empire: Iraq and the U.S. Global Agenda.
8:30 p.m., Cafe La Boheme, 3318 24th St., SF