Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Eastern Oklahoma AuthorFest

The Tahlequah Daily Press didn't give but a small article on page 7 two days before the Eastern Oklahoma AuthorFest, but they had a long one on Monday after, starting on the front page.

The article is too long to copy here, but I will repeat some of it since my name appears quite often.

Celebrating the pen

Press Special Writer
August 10, 2009 10:12 am

From Tailholt to Tahlequah and beyond, northeastern has produced a bounty of stories, and an abundance of authors with the talent to tell them.

Nearly 30 of these authors gathered Saturday at the Cherokee County Community, bringing books and stories to share. Local residents turned out to meet and visit with the authors, get copies of their books autographed, and perhaps, step a bit closer to their own dreams of becoming a member of the pantheon of published writers.

Marsha Coles of Cherokee County, who has written several books, came up with the idea for the first AuthorFest, which she hopes will become an annual event.

“A fellow author and I wanted to do a double book-signing. I thought, ‘We’re going to do a double signing, why not a triple,’ and then it grew,” she said.

One of her works is a history of the Tailholt community, so a natural question is, how did Tailholt get its name? Coles offers two answers.

“At the store, when it was called Caney Store, they had a little postcard of a little general store that said ‘Tailholt Store.’ Another was that someone had a mule or donkey by the tail,” Coles said.

Among her titles are “The Mystery of Coldstone Manor,” a regency romance mystery, and “Texas Justice,” a romance set south of the Red River. Her “Poetry and Rhythm” collection has a photo of the recently-demolished Caney Bridge on its cover.

Beginning at 10 a.m., authors read from their books and discussed their art.

Vivian Zabel of 4RV Publishing in Edmond brought five of her works, along with other books for young people. She emphasized the importance of thorough editing before submitting a book for publication.

“I don’t mean just editing for grammatical errors, I mean editing to find whether or not it’s well-written,” said Zabel, who retired with 30 years of experience as an English teacher.

She read passages from her books “Prairie Dog Cowboy,” based on her husband’s youthful experiences, and from “Midnight Hours,” a mystery about a detective who uses a scooter to get around. Both depicted suspenseful confrontations.

“Could you see that happening?” she said. “That’s the idea of a good book for the reader, to see it literally as it happens. It’s important when you’re writing action scenes for your sentences to be short, choppy. When it was reading, I kept reading faster and my tongue got tied.” (She had just read a scene in which the main character narrowly escaped death at the hands of an attacker.)

Then later in the article:

Another spectator at AuthorFest is a few years away from reading and isn’t especially verbal with strangers, but he appeared to agree. Jacob Brandon, 2, clutched a $5 bill and pointed at a book on the 4RV table, “Trockle.” The cover depicts a small creature under a bed, and a young girl covered up atop the bed. The back view shows the same characters, from the back. Zabel explained: “This is a story about the little monster under the bed who’s afraid of the big monster on top of the bed.”
And the feeling’s mutual.

Jacob went off with what possibly was his first purchase, and what definitely was his Saturday night bedtime story. The adults with him hope he’ll learn there aren’t really any scary monsters lurking under the bed.

And Zabel’s face beamed with the joy of seeing a youngster learn to love books.

“I want to see this AuthorFest go so they can have it yearly,” she said. “There just aren’t enough opportunities for people to meet authors and for authors to meet the public.”



L. Diane Wolfe said...

Even after the fact is good - more traffic at the event next year!

L. Diane Wolfe “Spunk On A Stick”

Rena said...

That's great!

WillowRaven said...

Hope it brings in more sales.

Holly Jahangiri said...

What a great article by Betty Ridge. And that Jacob Brandon sounds like an adorable child, though I may be slightly biased by the fact that he loved my little monster. I'm sure Jacob realizes that Stephen's a boy, too. ;) Seriously, it sounds like a great event!

Beverly Stowe McClure said...

Wonderful publicity, Vivian. Sounds like you had a great time.



Vivian Zabel said...

Hopefully we can get advance publicity about the Heartland New Day BookFest that will be in Edmond, Oklahoma April 10.

Anyone wanting to know about it can go to http://hndbookfest.com and find all the information.