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WORD: Litquake 2011 kicks off with Ellroy, Smiley; Lit Crawl this Saturday, Oct. 15

The 12th annual Litquake festival kicked off on Friday, Oct. 7, beginning a weeklong series of daily events throughout San Francisco. Events will happen throughout the City and beyond through Litquake’s traditional close with the notorious booze-fueled Lit Crawl on Saturday, Oct. 15.

On Monday, even organizers provided an update on how the opening weekend went and outlined how the next week will go.

"Weekend events were astonishing, a great kick-off to the festival. North Beach was a mob scene because of Columbus Day and Fleet Week, but despite the bumper to bumper traffic, both Vesuvio and Tosca were packed to capacity,” Litquake said in a press release.

Litquake reported there were “also great crowds for Jane Smiley and Karen Joy Fowler and James Ellroy, and Chris Adrian turned up to the Buena Vista Park "Great Night" event wearing a dog costume. Tom McGuane told some great Hollywood tales about Warren Oates and Sam Peckinpah…”

Tuesday night highlights must include Karen Russell, bestselling author of Swamplandia!, in conversation with Carolyn Cooke at Z Space, 5:30 pm. Admission is $5 advance or $8 at the door.

At the Swedish American Hall we are proud to host five authors visiting from Ireland, as part of Young Ireland: Emissaries from a New Literary Renaissance. Admission is $10 advance or $12 at the door. The event is sponsored by and featuring Magners Cider.

Another very unique event, Re Write: An Evening of Prose from Writers in Recovery, takes place at 6 pm at the Delancey Street Screening Room, and features top-notch readings from Tim Elhajj, Alan Kaufman, Ali Liebegott, Wendy Merrill, Bucky Sinister, and Cary Tennis.

Litquake Outside the 415

Tuesday evening, Litquake spreads beyond the City limits with three events. Award-winning fiction writer Melanie Rae Thon appears at the Center for Literary Arts in San Jose, starting at 7 pm, admission is free. Iranian author Donia Bijan appears at Kepler’s Books in Menlo Park, at 7 pm, also free admission. And for East Bay lit fans, Lit in the Hills: Scaling The East Bay’s Literary Heights lands at Monaghan’s at 6 pm in the Oakland Hills, with internationally popular authors Sylvia Brownrigg, Carolina De Robertis, Adrienne McDonnell, Peggy Orenstein, and April Sinclair.

Many other events, readings, schmoozers and parties affiliated with Litquake will happen between Tuesday and Saturday, when the 2011 Litquake ends with the Lit Crawl at 6 pm. The literary version of a pub crawl starts on Valencia Street at 19th in San Francisco’s Mission District and hits various locations

For the full Litquake 2011 schedule click here.

About Litquake

Litquake, San Francisco's annual literary festival, was founded by Bay Area writers in order to put on a week-long literary spectacle for book lovers, complete with cutting-edge panels, unique cross-media events, and hundreds of readings since its founding in 1999. Litquake Foundation is a 501c3 nonprofit registered in the state of California. Litquake 2010 takes place from October 1-9, 2010.


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