Lit News: SF Reading in Montpelier; Lehmann-Haupt at League of Vermont Writers | Live Culture

Lit News: SF Reading in Montpelier; Lehmann-Haupt at League of Vermont Writers


  • Courtesy of Geek Mountain State

What better time to read — or write — than during winter doldrums? Two events planned for the end of January could inspire you to get your butt off the couch and come meet likeminded literary folks.

The pulp-style poster (right) for the latest installment of the Vermont Speculative Fiction Writer's Series certainly gets the blood pumping. This reading series is a great way for SF and fantasy fans to meet local published writers in their genres — such as Brian Staveley, whose latest epic fantasy The Providence of Fire is just out from Tor. Kirkus compared him to George R.R. Martin in a starred review.

The next reading, called "Vermont Stories of Imagination!" happens on Saturday, January 24, at noon at the Vermont History Museum in Montpelier, and features writers with track records in publishing short (and long) speculative fiction: Sean-Patrick Burke, F. Brett Cox, Kane Gilmour, Mike Luoma, Aimee Picchi and Ginger Weil. More details here.

Organizer Andrew Liptak of Geek Mountain State says the readings will henceforth be held monthly rather than bimonthly, with upcoming events at the Center for Cartoon Studies in White River Junction and Quarterstaff Games and the Fletcher Free Library in Burlington. (Full disclosure: I read at one of GMS' events last fall.)

Readers of a certain age will remember the byline of Christopher Lehmann-Haupt — the New York Times' senior daily book reviewer from 1969 to 1995, and a prolific writer of articles and obituaries until his retirement from the paper in 2006. (Obits appear under his byline to this day.)

Lehmann-Haupt will keynote this year's annual meeting of the League of Vermont Writers, on Saturday, January 31, with a provocatively titled speech: "Have You Seen Any Good Books Lately?" Here's the nutshell description from the LVW's press release:

Lehmann-Haupt says that, in the last century or so, our culture has shifted away from print and towards cinematics. A number of first-rate TV shows have been created from books, he says, some of them arguably equal or superior to the original. Superseding this visual age is the new digital one, which has introduced new ways of combining print and images. Lehmann-Haupt will enlighten writers, describe what they’re facing in today’s multimedia age, discuss how to keep up with and engage with these new media and formats, and ultimately, address how to redefine their role as ‘writer’ in the 21st century.

The LVW's daylong meeting at the DoubleTree by Hilton in South Burlington is open to the public, but registration is required: $48 for members and $55 for nonmembers (more info here). For that price, participants will also get two morning presentations by Burlington-based writer Stephen Kiernan (Authentic Patriotism, The Curiosity), who will talk about breaking into publishing and lead a workshop on "The Almost Right Word." Lehmann-Haupt will speak at 1 p.m.

Whether you're "seeing" good books or reading them, they certainly help January go faster.

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