Brooklyn Book Festival Review

14Sep09

Another solid showing for the Brooklyn Book Festival this year. Unlike last year, the weather was not in the 90s, but it still felt hot to me. I think I may’ve gotten my last sunburn of the season. I heard people (aka established writers and editors seated on stages) talking about traffic, plus housing in New York City and Brooklyn, where 1/3 of the population owns where they live, which is like some kind of all-time high but laughable compared to other parts of the country.

I heard some more “people” talking about traveling, and whether it’s better to write about travels through non-fiction narrative or via fictional accounts. The fictional always sounds more expansive, but the non sometimes winds up with stranger tales.

I didn’t get indoors to see any of the “hot” writers. No Lethem for me this year, no Thurston Moore moderated by Toure, who’s always available to comment on Michael Jackson lately. I’d been hoping to see David Cross and Jonathan Ames at 5 on the mainstage, but the hot dog guy was out of hot dogs, he told me, waiting for a new batch to be delivered to his cart, and that’s when I knew it was time to go. Got to drink a Bud with Bonislawski, at least. We snuck back to his apartment for that.

I also got to cruise the “Golden Mile” as I like to call it, where all the booths of interesting presses and journals seemed to be situated. You had your Tin Houses and Melville Houses. It was nice to see them. One of these years, I might try to be less of an observer and talk to more people. But it’s kind of nice just observing everyone at these things.

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