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And They Say People In L.A. Don’t Read

This weekend over 150,000 people will get together on the USC campus to celebrate books.

150,000. For books.

That’s a lot of readers.

The 17th annual Los Angeles Times Festival of Books will be held at the USC campus Saturday and Sunday. It is huge. There are over 200 panels and performances across two days. There are hundreds of authors and exhibitors in attendance.

It is one of, if not THE largest festivals celebrating the written word in the nation.

You should be there. I will.

I’ll be signing copies of CITY OF THE LOST at The Mysterious Galaxy booth in Founder’s Park (booth #372) on Sunday at 2:00pm. They’ll be hosting a bunch of authors over the weekend. Guys like Chuck Wendig, John Scalzi, Richard Kadrey, Lisa Brackmann, Joseph Wambaugh, and lots of others.

For the lineup and links to the authors’ books at MG go here and get a handy schedule (in .PDF form) here.

Up until last year the festival had been held at UCLA, but money and politics got in the way and they moved it to USC. I had reservations about it going there. The Westside is full of yoga moms with disposable cash and people won’t cross La Brea from either direction. Seriously, you’d think it was the Styx for fuck sake.

I was concerned. Not that I’m a fan of yoga moms, but I am a fan of their cash. I like to see it going to booksellers and publishers.

USC is a much more pedestrian friendly campus than UCLA. It’s flat and spread out, not stuck on a bunch of hills. There’s actual room between the booths. People with strollers aren’t slamming them into your ankles as they try to get by. Parking still blows monkey chunks, but there are a lot more public transportation options (free shuttle bus from Union Station if you’re so inclined).

The Festival attracts a lot of people who are there because they love reading. You should be one of them.

  • If the yoga moms don’t dig City of the Lost, you can always send them down to Vernon for some rendered cow fat aroma therapy.

    Dyer Wilk

    April 20, 2012

  • Former yoga mom here. (I switched to pilates when yoga got too plebeian.) We West Side moms love our book clubs. They are primary avenues for both alcohol-imbibing and husband-bashing. We thrive on the intellectual exercise of finding common ground with great literature, drawing metaphorical parallels between our angst over having a preschool “biter” and the plights of poor people in 3rd world countries.

    USC is terrifying, but you have to go there to see the dinosaur bones, and so we mothers brave the wilds of South Central, minivan doors locked and windows up, and miraculously practice pranayama without ever relaxing our bellies.

    The stroller brigade should be well-represented this weekend. Suggest a wine pairing for City of the Lost (as Algonquin does for their books) and you could become a book club hero. Namaste :)


    April 21, 2012

  • And this is why the Westside Yoga moms are an important part of the literature ecosystem. My hat off to you, madame.

    USC IS terrifying. That was one of my biggest fears last year. That that fear would keep the Westsiders away. I was happy to see if unfounded.

    And yes, bring all the strollers! Last year they were out in force and not once did I trip and fall into some poor child’s stroller on accident.

    On purpose… well, that’s a different story altogether.

    Wine for City of The Lost? Scotch, perhaps. Macallan 18, or a nice, peaty Lagavulin. Or, one of my personal favorites, Oban.

    Stephen Blackmoore

    April 21, 2012

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