Thursday, April 7, 2011

Partnering on Bookstore Events, Part 2--The Sister Spit Tour on Thursday, April 14, 8 pm, with Our Very Special Sponsor, Tool Shed Erotic Boutique.

When I said I was looking all over for partnerships, I wasn't kidding.  Radar Productions came to us looking for a venue for the Sister Spit tour, a multi-artist talk and reading and performance art extravaganza, which is the brainchild of writer/poet/graphic novelist Michelle Tea.  The last time they came through Milwaukee, they worked with Broad Vocabulary bookstore.  Though the physical bookstore is closed, they live on as the cooperative called A Broader Vocabulary.  Here is their Facebook page.

Once you host an author, you feel a bit proprietary, I'm sure.  That said, folks move around all the time.  For example, we hosted mystery-writer-with-a-comic-edge Lisa Lutz when she last came to town, but this time she's going to Mystery One with David Hayward for their new collaboration, Heads You Lose. Lutz is delightful!  The event is Thursday, April 22 at 7 pm.  Tour information here.  Another author who is switching it up is Elizabeth Berg, author of the new novel, Once Upon a Time There was You. Last year we did the launch event in Milwaukee, but this time it's Next Chapter's turn in Mequon.  This is a ticketed event on Monday, April 18, 7 pm.  Details here.

And that said, I am coming to our sexually frank portion of the blog.  If you are a delicate flower, you must close this blog post and come back tomorrow, where I will take a trip to Alverno College and show you the best place to park (and a good place to eat) for the Anne Lamott event on Tuesday, April 12.  Tickets available to Anne Lamott here!

Where was I?  Oh, yes, The Sister Spit tour.  The event is at Boswell on Thursday, April 14, at the slightly more adulty time of 8 pm.  The performance is not adults only, but there will be adult themes and language, and I want to make sure everyone who is in the store knows why they are there.  Here's the rundown of the artists for the show, which is a bit paraphrased, with a little extra info on the books, being that we are a bookstore:

Founder Michelle Tea is the author of four memoirs, two of which, Valencia and Rent Girl, we should have at the event. Rent Girl is currently Tea's most popular book--it's a graphic novel of her years as a prostitute. We'll also have her poetry collection, Beautiful, and the novel Rose of No Man’s Land. She has also edited numerous anthologies.

MariNaomi is the author and illustrator of the graphic memoir Kiss and Tell: A Romantic Resume, 0 to 22, which was just released by HarperPerennial. She's also a visual artist.  Hurray for new releases!  Booklist noted that "this graphic memoir is a fun romp through one woman's personal sexual revolution."

Kirk Read is the author of How I Learned to Snap, a memoir of growing up gay in Virginia, and the upcoming essay collection This is the Thing. Doesn't seem out yet.  The new work is based on a multimedia performance about sex workers.  Here's more information

Myriam Gurba is the author of Dahlia Season, a short story and novella collection which won the Edmund White Award in 2008.  Alas, it's currently out of stock with the publisher. Gurba, whose stories explore gender bending boundaries, and often incorporate her Mexican-American heritage, is profiled here in La Bloga

Ali Liebegott’s books include The Beautifully Worthless, which won a Lambda Literary Award, and The IHOP Papers, which also won a Lambda Literary Award in addition to a Ferro-Grumley Award for LGBT Fiction. The latter is out of stock (it was published by Caroll and Graf, before they ceased publishing) and I'm checking on the former. 

Blake Nelson writes for young adults (you've heard me go on about how sometimes these classifications are a function of which editor acquires the books), two of which we'll have at the event, Recovery Road and Destroy All Cars, which are brand new in hardcover and paperback respectively. The new novel (the first of the two mentioned) is about two teenagers who fall in love in a substance abuse treatment facility.

Amos Mac is a photographer, writer and independent publisher.  He is also the editor in chief of Original Plumbing, a magazine dedicated to the culture of FTM transexuals. We don't stock it, but our partner in this event, Tool Shed, does.

So, Tool Shed!  Formerly in Riverwest, this erotic boutique has been nearby on Murray Avenue for the past few years, guided by Laura Stuart, who also teaches at Northwestern.  Here are some rave reviews.  Stuart also writes the sex column "Ask Laura" and I figured she might be an enthusiastic partner for the event. 

And they were! And now they are our official co-sponsors.  And so I paid a visit to the folks on Murray to drop off some fliers and take a look around. And yes, I had another mission--to get tacos at Mr. Señor's takeout.  It was delicious.  Here's their Facebook page.

It's got a lot of what you'd expect in an erotic boutique, but the space is very comforting. One of my booksellers called it cute, and I think that's a good description. I looked around, trying to find an ok image for the blog, and we decided these corsets were particularly nice and pretty much something you might see in any number of stores or catalogs. Laura is a firm advocate of sex education, so yes, there is a substantial book section including how-to, erotica, queer literature, and social issues.

The Tool Shed is on 2427 N. Murray Avenue, and open Noon to 8 pm, Tuesday to Saturday, and Noon to 5 pm on Sunday.  Their phone is (414) 906-5304.

Our event with Sister Spit is Thursday, April 14, at 8 pm.  It's at Boswell, which as you know is located at 2559 North Downer Ave, just north of Columbia St. Mary's and south of UWM, on the same block at the Downer Theatre...not at the Tool Shed.

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