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Tricks and reads

Creative Colloquy reinvents Halloween

Author Marissa Meyer at a recent Creative Colloquy event at B Sharp Coffee House. Photo credit: Poetic Spectre Imaging

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It's hard to say whether kids or adults get more excited about the Day of the Dead. It's the one night of the year when everyone feels entirely comfortable schlepping around suburban neighborhoods dressed in a cosplay outfit. The kids are stuck wearing spectral sheets and plastic masks, but we grown-ups get to party as Imperator Furiosa or Grumpy Cat. (What? Don't look at me like that. I'm considering other costume options.) The down side is when we knock on our neighbors' door and yell, "Trick or treat," our kids get the fun-size candy bars, while we're stuck playing stern dentist and wrestling the Milk Duds from their grubby little cheeks. Where, I ask you, is our holiday swag bag?

Someday, the world will put itself to rights, and we adults will be greeted with JPEGs and Jell-O shots. Until that glorious day, we're obliged to settle for loftier options, like the literary treats presented by the inaugural Creative Colloquy Crawl. Wait, cardiovascular exercise AND alliteration, you say? Sign me up! Indeed we will, Gentle Reader. In fact, we'll throw beer into the mix, so you know we've got your back. October in Tacoma may never be the same.

We Pacific Northwesterners live for our literature. (It mitigates the Seasonal Affective Disorder.) I'm an author myself, so I've seen how it benefits both writers and readers to meet on neutral ground, especially when booze is added to the mix.

Erstwhile Volcano scribes Jackie Fender and Joshua Swainston specialize in bringing artists and audience together. For more than a year now, they and B Sharp Coffee House have been hosting monthly readings of works written locally, then published on  Now they're extending the Creative Colloquy brand to a tour of Tacoma landmarks and watering holes. At each stop along the way, South Sound writers present their own work, free of charge, in hopes of enticing you to search for their products in bookstores or online.

The trek gets underway Oct. 7 at 6 p.m. at Sanford & Son Antiques, where New York Times bestselling author Marissa Meyer serves as master of ceremonies for Jennifer Chushcoff, Kimberly Derting and Jennifer Shaw Wolf. Then it's off to Embellish Multispace Salon, where Alec Clayton, Aaron Flett and William Turbyfill will fondle listeners' funny bones. Cellist Micaela Cooley and poet Michael Haeflinger will perform Allen Ginsberg's mighty "Howl" in honor of its 60th anniversary. Titus Burley, Jonny Eberle, Nicole McCarthy and Nick Stillman, "favorite faces" at past CC events, will assemble to prove they're more than just pretty faces and round out the six o'clock hour.

That brings on a tribute to “Motherhood/Otherhood” at King’s Books, science-fictional efforts at Odd Otter Brewing, including a brand new story by one Christian F. “Third Person” Carvajal, “Drunken Telegraph” tales at Doyle’s Public House, live art from Starheadboy at Harmon Taproom, and on and on till the break of — well, 9 p.m. But then it’s time to start drinking! Hey, it’s good to be a grown-up!

Creative Colloquy Crawl, 6 p.m. Wed., Oct. 7, starting at Sanford & Son Antiques, 743 Broadway, Tacoma, free, 253.298.9417.

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