Emerging Writers Workshop: The Art of Writing What You Know

Thursday September 4, 2014: 7:00 pm to 8:45 pm -- Traverwood Branch: Program Room

This event is intended for grades 6 - adult.

Do you have deep knowledge of and passion for a particular subject? How can you turn that into a nonfiction book that publishers will want? Authors Margaret Yang and Lara Zielin discuss how to turn your expertise into a nonfiction book, with special contributions from a bestselling (and local) nonfiction author.

'Michigan's Drive-In Theaters' Discussed By Author Harry Skrdla With Ann Arbor's 107one host Martin Bandyke

Monday August 18, 2014: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Pittsfield Branch: Program Room

This event will be recorded

Here in Ann Arbor, watching outdoor movies at festivals is a way of life in the summertime. But how did we get here? What is the history of Michigan outdoor film venues? And why are drive-ins so scarce?

Revisit a part of Michigan History as Martin Bandyke, morning host on Ann Arbor's 107one, interviews Harry Skrdla about his new book Michigan's Drive-In Theaters and the history of these Michigan outdoor film venues. "Michigan's Drive-In Theaters" is a nostalgic depiction of the state's outdoor theaters from the pinnacle of their popularity to their downfall, and the subsequent resurgence of interest in the remaining theaters through more than 200 vintage images.

Harry Skrdla is an engineer and a historic-preservation consultant based in Ann Arbor who as contributed to the preservation and restoration of a number of noteworthy structures, including the ornate 1920s movie palace the Fox Theatre in Detroit, one of the last of its kind in America. The initial preservation of the Fox Theatre was overseen by Skrdla and fellow theatre historian, Greg Bellamy.

Books will be for sale at the event and the evening will include a book signing.

Adventure + Spirituality = Steps Out of Time

Several months back, Kate Soper gave me her book with this note tucked inside: "...I'm not sure what you'll think about this book! But my experience on the Camino meant a lot to me and I'd like to share it with you so here goes!" Full disclosure: I am a friend of Kate. That said, I also very much admire her book, Steps Out of Time: One Woman's Journey on the Camino.

Her spirited memoir is an account of a month-long, 500-mile hike across northern Spain to Santiago de Compostela. The narrative sparkles with natural beauty, camaraderie, memorable food, and the author’s personal determination to accomplish something magnificent. When she completed the hike, Kate was a changed woman.

Lots of research was done for this book, allowing Kate to offer practical advice including "12 Essential Tips for Santiago Pilgrims:" 1) Pack only lightweight, quick-drying clothing that you can layer. 2) Take well-fitting, well-used, and well-loved footwear, including good-quality, high-performance socks. 3) Your fully-loaded pack should weigh the lesser of 8 kg (17.6 lbs) or 10 percent of your body weight. (This includes a liter of water and the weight of the pack.). 4) Leave your phone at home. Ditto all other nonessentials. 5) Never leave in the morning without filling your water bottle and always carry food in your pack. 6) Wear a hat; keep your legs and arms covered or use sunscreen. 7) Bring a mechanical pencil and a lightweight journal (tearing off the cover will save a few ounces); write in it every day. 8) Unless you can sleep through noise equivalent to a freight train, bring ear plugs (snorers abound). 9) Be prepared to be humbled. 10) Remain determined to be open-minded. 11) Stop often to look and listen. 12) Try to be present in every moment.

This book is a great read and would well in a book group. Kate is retired and lives in Ann Arbor with her husband. She has worked as a lawyer, language professor, and U-M administator, among other jobs.

Writing Workshop with Sara Ryan, queer author of YA novels and comics!

Monday June 23, 2014: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

This event is intended for Teens in Grades 6-12 and Adults

Sara will lead a few short writing exercises and answer questions about her books, publishing, and being an out queer author. Sara Ryan grew up in Ann Arbor. She's the author of the Lambda Literary Award finalist novel Empress of the World, the Oregon Book Award-winning novel The Rules for Hearts, and most recently of Bad Houses with Carla Speed McNeil, a TIME Magazine and USA Today Top Graphic Novel of 2013. Find her online at sararyan.com or @ryansara on Twitter. Literati Bookstore will be selling Sara's books and Sara will do a book signing.

Midwestern Gothic Reading

Saturday June 14, 2014: 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm -- Downtown Library: 4th Floor Meeting Room

Midwestern Gothic is proud to partner with the Ann Arbor District Library to host a reading of its contributors on Saturday, June 14, 2014.

Started in 2010, Midwestern Gothic is an Ann Arbor-based quarterly literary journal dedicated to featuring work about or inspired by the Midwest, by writers who live or have lived here. Midwestern Gothic aims to collect the very best in Midwestern writing in a way that has never been done before, cataloging the oeuvre of an often-overlooked region of the United States ripe with its own mythologies and tall tales—stories and poems that help to paint a portrait of the region. The event will consist of Midwestern Gothic contributors Rob Kenagy (poetry), Cindy Hunter Morgan (poetry), John Rodwan (creative nonfiction/poetry), and Jeff Kass (fiction/poetry) reading their work. The reading will be followed by a short reception.

AADL cardholders can download previous issues of MG from our catalog here.

A Visit From Chillers Author Johnathan Rand

Sunday October 26, 2014: 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

This event is intended for Grades 2 - 5

Johnathan Rand, local author of the popular youth series Michigan Chillers and American Chillers, discusses how he became a writer and how reading and writing are necessary in life. While his books can be spooky, this talk will not be!

There will be books for sale and an author signing after the presentation. This event is geared towards children age 7 and up.

Smell and Tell Series: Cooking with Flavor!

Wednesday June 11, 2014: 6:30 pm to 8:45 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

This event is intended for Teens (grades 6-12) and Adults.

Summer is herb season—just take a look at local markets! Fresh herbs add zest and character to delicious flavor pastes. Their aromatic properties transform plain dishes into multi-sensory experiences that perfume our kitchens and memories.
Flavor and fragrance expert Michelle Krell Kydd will teach you how to make three unforgettable flavor pastes for savory dishes, biscuits and soups. Learn how to create flavor “accords” and how these relate to specific cultures and cooking styles. Michelle blogs at Glass Petal Smoke, an award-winning blog that explores the connections between scent, food and science.

Local Music: Rebel Kind

Thursday June 26, 2014: 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

This event is intended for grades 6 - adult.

AADL is pleased to welcome Rebel Kind, a local pop/rock 'n' roll band with a sound veering from bubblegum to a bit of swagger, from sunshiny-jangle to shadow.

Their most recent album, Today, was recently released. For a preview of their sound, check out their Bandcamp page.

Available for Download through AADL: Books by Local Author Tristan Gregory

All four titles in The Wandering Tale series by local author Tristan Gregory are now available for download from the catalog! Satisfy an appetite for adventure (think swords, knights, and damsels and distress) with these little gems. Tight schedule? No worries - read a novella in one sitting!

If you're looking for something a little meatier, try Gregory's epic fantasy novel Twixt Heaven and Hell, where one wizard who dreams of peace will clash with a power-hungry warlord in control of sorcerers and demons in a battle to save his precious land and people. Full of magic, action, and plenty of atmospheric suspense - fantasy fans won't want to miss this one!

To download a book, click on one of the links below, then click on the book cover image underneath "Download This Item". Easy!! (If you aren't logged into your AADL account, you'll be prompted to do so - still pretty easy).

The Swordsman of Carn Nebeth (Wandering Tale 1)
The Three Fingers of Death (Wandering Tale 2)
The Giant of Tidesmouth (Wandering Tale 3)
The Crown Unconquered (Wandering Tale 4)

Twixt Heaven and Hell

Le Morte d'Arthur (a short story to whet your appetite)

Now Available Through AADL: Downloadable Issues of Midwestern Gothic

Literary journals can be a marvelous way to discover work by writers you might not already be familiar with — a gateway to some of the most interesting new writing. Midwestern Gothic is "a quarterly print literary journal out of Ann Arbor, Michigan, dedicated to featuring work about or inspired by the Midwest, by writers who live or have lived here."

Is this limiting? The breadth of work collected in Midwestern Gothic — issue after issue — proves that it's not.

The journal, now on its twelfth release, "aims to collect the very best in Midwestern fiction writing in a way that has never been done before, cataloging the oeuvre of an often-overlooked region of the United States ripe with its own mythologies and tall tales." An August interview with AnnArbor.com gives more insight into the journal's background and its founders, Robert James Russell and Jeff Pfaller.

We're happy to report that now you can read every issue of Midwestern Gothic by downloading them directly from AADL's website! A dozen issues are currently in our catalog, and new issues will be added upon release.

If you like what you read in Midwestern Gothic, their MG Press imprint will be celebrating the release of the novel Above All Men with an event at Literati Bookstore on Monday, Feb 17 at 7pm.

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