Last Sunday evening I had the great privilege to be a guest reader at Four Stories Osaka, a spin-off of the Four Stories reading series held in Boston. The whole thing was started (and is continued by) Tracy Slater, an emerging writer who teaches gender studies at a Boston prison. Tracy decides on a theme (this time it was loss and desperation) and invites four published writers to read for fifteen minutes each. I’ve been to three of these events so far, and it’s always a good time. Tracy is enthusiastic and supportive and a boon to the arts in Japan; every writer should have a Tracy!
The event was held at Portugalia Bar & Grill, just down the street from the American consulate. There was lots of food and wine and an attentive, literate audience, including a reporter from the Japan Times. I got to read along with Holly Thompson, author of the wonderful novel Ash, and a contributor to my anthology The Broken Bridge. It was fun to hang out and talk with her, and to have a look at the dummy of her forthcoming picture book. Brit Chris Page read a funny story and a man whose life is going down the drain, and American Jerry Gordon read a heartbreaking tale about a boy’s uneaten last lunch.
All of the readings and some photos from the event are now online. Mine is here. (I was holding a mike in one hand and my pages in the other. If you here a pause, that’s me trying to get tot he next page.) Depending on how fast your computer is, it may take awhile to download the audio portion.