Inhuman Swill : Readings : Page 3
            

The First Time: First Crime, April 17, 2013, UP Comedy Club
I'll be appearing next week in not one but two of Chicago's most electric reading series—or "live lit," as we call it 'round these parts. They'll be on consecutive nights, no less, so please block out April 16 and 17 on your calendar and be there.

First comes WRITE CLUB on Tuesday, April 16th, at The Hideout. In this bare-knuckle series, three pairs of writers square off with essays on opposing topics. The audience decides who wins, with all proceeds going to charities of the winners' choice. I'll be defending GOD over DEVIL, for the One Tail at a Time dog rescue organization. Tickets are $10 cash at the door. Arrive early!

And the following night, Wednesday, April 17th, I'll be part of CHIRP Radio's THE FIRST TIME at Second City's new UP Comedy Club. This monthly series assembles seven or so writers to reminisce about an important "first" from their lives, backed with specially chosen songs by The First Time Three. For April the topic will be "First Crime." Tickets are $10, and buying in advance is strongly recommended. (And get preferred seating with a dinner reservation!)

To recap...

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20x2: What Changed? Saturday, March 9, 2013
Tonight I'm participating in a long-running SXSW tradition called 20x2. Twenty people are given two minutes apiece to answer the same question any way they like. This year the question is "What Changed?", and if you come out tonight to Elysium (705 Red River St.) you'll be treated to twenty different answers in the form of essays, poems, slideshows, songs, videos, and more.

How will I answer? You'll have to be there to find out. Doors at Elysium open at 6 pm, show starts at 7. Admission is $10, or free with any SXSW badge. I hope to see you there.

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An Evening of Speculative Fiction, Open Books Bookstory, Thursday, February 28, 2013
Just a reminder that I'll be hosting a special evening of speculative fiction readings tonight at Open Books in Chicago. It's the first in the Chicago Writers Conference's new quarterly readings series, and it's free. Arrive early if you want a cupcake. I hope to see you there!

Chicago Writers Conference Presents
An Evening of Speculative Fiction

Date: Thursday, February 28, 2013

Time: 6:30 - 9:00 pm

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An Evening of Speculative Fiction, Open Books Bookstory, Thursday, February 28, 2013
Hey, I'll be hosting a special evening of speculative fiction readings on Thursday, February 28th, at Open Books Bookstore in Chicago! It's the first in the Chicago Writers Conference's new quarterly readings series, and I'm delighted that they asked me to put together this program.

Please share the Facebook invitation with all your Chicagoland friends:

http://www.facebook.com/events/148595008632051/

And here's all the info, straight from the CWC itself:

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oubliette.jpg
Happy New Year! I mostly try to keep all the news about Tuesday Funk, the Chicago reading series I help run, over on its own blog, but today I can't help trumpeting our mention in this morning's Chicago Sun-Times:

Article: Drink it in: Beers paired with the wisdom of Chicago authors

The feature by David Hoekstra in today's Entertainment section introduces four of tonight's five participants, who each discuss the pieces they'll read and suggest the perfect beer from Hopleaf's vast menu to drink as accompaniment.

Check out the accompanying slideshow as well, and if you're in town I hope to see you tonight upstairs at Hopleaf. The free reading starts at 7:30 pm, but you should arrive at 7:00, when the doors open, if you want a seat. You can find all the relevant information here.

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Grand motherfucker

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My apologies if you've already seen this. Months ago—way back in March, as a matter of fact—I conceived of a poem that would incorporate hiphop-style rhymes with science fiction storytelling and would be called (as I knew even then) "Grand Motherfucker." I would write the poem sometime over the spring or summer, then perform it at the September 4th science fiction edition of Tuesday Funk.

I made a few notes, but somehow I managed to not start working on the poem in earnest until late in the morning of, er, September 4th. I worked furiously for the next few hours, finally suturing up the last rhymes at around 5:30 pm. The show began at 7:30.

Better late than never! Here's how the poem went over last Tuesday night. Or perhaps how it went down. I hope you like it.

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We had a wonderful, marvelous edition of Tuesday Funk last night. There were five strong readers who engaged and captivated the audience with their words, and there was the regular Poem by Bill feature. I read "Four Road Trips" to kick off the second half of the show, and it went over well enough that I was really excited to put the video online. Unfortunately, Houston, we had a problem.

The way I record these shows is pretty basic, and usually works really well. I mount my iPhone on a little tripod, set the tripod on top of the amp, and point the lens at the microphone. I let the phone record straight through each half of the show, only touching it to adjust for the height of each new reader. Later that night or the next morning, I take the two long video files and chop them up into individual readings.

Well, last night when I downloaded the video files from my phone and opened them up for editing. The first file was fine, but the second...

The second file starts with me stepping to the microphone to introduce the second half of the show and read my poem, all while speaking in a woman's voice. Wait, a woman's voice? Yes, to be specific, in the voice of Lauryn Allison Lewis, the reader who followed me at the mike. Somehow the video file became corrupted and shifted the soundtrack forward by nine minutes and forty-four seconds. The audio of my reading was completely lost. The final 9:44 of the video, during Margie Skelly's reading, is silent.

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Hey, Chicagoans! I just want to give you a quick heads-up that I will be appearing as part of the Essay Fiesta reading series at The Book Cellar in Lincoln Square this coming Monday, December 19th, at 7:00 pm.

It'll be my third time reading at Essay Fiesta, a monthly charitable reading series that benefits 826CHI, a non-profit writing and tutoring program here in Chicago, and I'm very excited to be asked back. Hosts Alyson Lyon and Keith Ecker (both of whom have read for us at Tuesday Funk) do a fantastic job of putting together a great program every month. Also appearing on Monday will be Dana Norris, J.H. Palmer, Jennifer Bosworth, and Eric Bjorlin. I hope you'll turn out and support the whole gang.

The Book Cellar, I should mention, is a wonderful place for a reading. It's a lovely independent bookstore and café, with beer, wine, and coffee available during their events. The reading itself is free, with fun prizes raffled and donation accepted on behalf of 826CHI. Show up early to be sure of a seat.

I look forward to seeing you there!

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My 2012 World Series prediction

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Some of you know I co-produce and co-host a monthly reading series, Tuesday Funk, at a great little bar here in Chicago. At our October event about three weeks ago, I read my story "The Visitors at Wriggly Field," which was written two years ago in support of Chicago's Worldcon bid and concerns a very unusual World Series matchup in 2012.

You can read more here about how it came to be written, but since the text of the story is no longer available online, and since Game 6 of this year's World Series is tonight, I thought it would be a good time to share the video of the reading here. I hope you like it. Go, Cubs!

And catch more videos from Tuesday Funk here.

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A couple of upcoming readings

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Tuesday Funk #38
I have a couple of upcoming events in Chicago I wanted to let you know about.

First, I'll be appearing on Tuesday, October 4th, as part of the Tuesday Funk reading series at Hopleaf Bar (5148 N. Clark St., Chicago, IL). (Sharp-eyed readers will recognize that I also serve as co-host of this series.) The reading takes place in the upstairs lounge. Doors upstairs open at 7:00 pm, and the show starts at 7:30 pm. I'll be reading a short story, "The Visitors at Wriggly Field." Please note that Hopleaf is 21 and over only. More info here:

http://www.tuesdayfunk.org/2011/09/tuesday-funk-38-october-4th.html

Also, I'll be reading a personal essay on Monday, December 19th, as part of the Essay Fiesta reading series at the Book Cellar (4736 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago, IL). I've read for Essay Fiesta a couple of times before, and it's always great fun. For more information about this charitable reading series, see:

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The Accidental Terrorist 30th Anniversary Sale

Signed editions
that even a
missionary
could afford.

Order yours now!

William Shunn

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