Jeff VanderMeer’s Endurance Tour: 36 Days, 27 Events, 14 States, 2 Books, 1 Writer, No Breaks (well, ok, one break)

Jeff VanderMeer • October 21st, 2009 @ 1:05 pm • Culture, News

I’m finally able to unveil the full-throttle intensity of my Endurance Tour in support of Booklife and my new novel Finch. Yep, that’s correct–it’s 27 events in 36 days, not including classroom visits, getting a tattoo, gigs like covering the National Book Awards for Omnivoracious, and adventures at meerkat farms. I’ve also arranged to team up with the following writers for selected events, something I’m really looking forward to:

- Cherie Priest and Cat Rambo in Seattle
– Jay Lake, Cat Rambo, and Jeff Johnson in Portland
– Glen Hirshberg in San Bernardino
– S.G. Browne in San Franciso
– Kevin Smokler at MIT
– David Anthony Durham and Paul Tremblay in Boston
– Geoff Manaugh, Jeff Ford, and Ron Hogan in NYC
– Eric Schaller at Plymouth State University
– Sandra Rutton and Brian Lindenmuth in Baltimore
– Ekaterina Sedia in Delaware
– Mur Lafferty and Natania Barron in Chapel Hill
– Will Hindmarch and J.M. McDermott in Atlanta

I’ll be doing readings, signings, workshops, lectures, humorous talks, kaffeeklatsches, spontaneous storytelling, discussions of fantastical cities, debate about noir, and much more—basically, anything short of actual juggling and fire-eating. So come on out and support my drive to utterly exhaust myself. I’ll need your energy, and I hope to see a lot of old friends as well as people I only know through the intertubes. For the events with other writers, we’ll often be hitting a bar across the street after an event with anyone who wants to join us.

The virtual part of the tour will include podcasts for, among others, If You’re Just Joining Us, Starship Sofa, and Mystery Theater, as well as Big Idea blogging for John Scalzi’s Whatever blog, two weeks on the Borders SF/F Blog (second week with Jack O’Connell), a week for Powell’s, a post on musical influences for Large-Hearted Boy, and extensive coverage for Amazon. After the tour, I believe I’ll be writing about the experience for the Washington Post’s book blog. (Full schedule right before I leave for World Fantasy.) During the tour, a twitter feed will be available on this blog so I can report interesting stuff from the road.

You’ll find all of the details below the break. Note that at all events both Finch and Booklife will available, no matter what the emphasis of the particular event. You can also access the information in different, less intensive forms:

—This blog’s events listings (also shows up in the sidebar)
—At Booklifenow (these lack the extended descriptions)

I’ll also post a link to the high-res version of the event posters pictured below very soon.

Such a long and somewhat insane tour doesn’t happen magically. It’s a lot of hard work by a lot of people. I’d like to thank my wife Ann for advice, intel, and travel planning, Matt Staggs for helping get events and promote them, Selena Chambers for getting the information out to all of the national book tour sites, Will Hindmarch for awesomely cool event posters, my publishers, and all the people who provided intel on local venues—you know who you are, and hope I didn’t forget anyone…

Late next week or early the week after, I will have a full roster of Finch-related “artifacts” for readers to deploy as they see fit.

THE ENDURANCE TOUR…

WEST COAST

WORLD FANTASY CONVENTION (San Jose, CA) – Thurs Oct. 29 – Sun Nov. 1
The Fairmont Hotel, 170 South Market Street
Readings/Panel Discussions/Signings, as a Guest of Honor at the convention (Only open to World Fantasy Convention attendees; my schedule and my wife Ann’s—we will be at the autograph session Friday night at 8pm after all.)

UNIVERSITY BOOKSTORE (Seattle, WA) – Wed, Nov. 4, 7pm
4326 University Way N.E.
Finch Reading/Signing, with Cat Rambo and Cherie Priest

WILLAMETTE UNIVERSITY (Salem, OR) – Thurs, Nov. 5, 7pm
900 State Street, Eaton Hall, Room 209
Finch Reading/Signing

THE PRESS CLUB (Portland, OR) – Fri, Nov. 6, 5:30pm
2621 Southeast Clinton
Join Underland Press to celebrate the weird and the wonderful with readings by acclaimed authors Jeff VanderMeer, Jay Lake, Cat Rambo, and Jeff Johnson. With art by Benjamin W. Burch and music by DJ Santo, along with crepes, wine, and beer at the Press Club, we’ll stay and talk fantastic lit ’till the management kicks us out.

POWELL’S BOOKSTORE CEDAR HILLS (Portland, OR) – Sat, Nov. 7, 4pm
3415 SW Cedar Hills Blvd
Finch Reading/Signing

RICHARD HUGO HOUSE (Seattle, WA) – Sun, Nov. 8, 10am to 5pm
1634 11th Avenue
Booklife Masterclass (registration required), EXPLORING YOUR BOOKLIFE: In this new age of social media award-winning writer Jeff VanderMeer, the author of Booklife: Strategies & Survival Tips for 21st Century Writers, shows you how to achieve a sustainable career and sustainable creativity. The workshop touches in holistic fashion on both your Public Booklife and your Private Booklife. From dealing with white noise and “open channels” to multi-tasking your creativity, distinguishing process from habit, and rediscovering passion in your writing, this workshop is all about balance and working smarter.

HUGO HOUSE FANTASTIC FICTION SALON (Seattle, WA) – Mon, Nov. 9, 7pm
1634 11th Avenue
Bookwork for a Booklife: Award-winning writer and editor Jeff VanderMeer shares the inside, often outrageous, details of working on successful, complex book projects, along with sustainable career and creativity advice for this new media age. The world of publishing is changing. How should you change with it, and what will remain the same? Practical, irreverent, idealistic, and brash, VanderMeer will give a talk followed by a discussion with series organizer Leslie Howle and then take questions from the audience.

UNIV. OF CALIFORNIA (San Bernardino, CA) – Tues, Nov. 10, 5pm
5500 University Parkway (English Department events room in the UH Building)
Finch Reading/Signing, with Glen Hirshberg

BOOKSOUP (Los Angeles, CA) – Wed, Nov. 11, 7pm
8818 Sunset Blvd
Finch Reading/Signing

COPPERFIELD’S (Sebastapol, Petaluma, CA) – Fri, Nov. 13, 7pm to 9pm (time tentative)
140 Kentucky St
Bookwork for a Booklife: Talk, Discussion, and Signing. VanderMeer will share often outrageous details of working on successful, complex book projects, along with sustainable career and creativity advice for this new media age. His talk will be followed by a Q&A with the audience and a take-away of exercises and prompts aimed at enhancing your creativity and honing your career focus. He will also talk about his new novel, Finch. Free Finch CD soundtrack by critically acclaimed rock band Murder by Death with purchase of the novel, while supplies last.

SF IN SF AT VARIETY THEATER (San Francisco, CA) – Sat, Nov. 14, 7pm
582 Market Street @ Montgomery (1st floor of The Hobart Bldg)
Reading/Signing and Discussion, with S. G. Browne

CLAYTON BOOKS (Clayton, CA) – Sun, Nov. 15, 3pm
5433 Clayton Road, Suite D
Bookwork for a Booklife: Talk, Discussion, and Signing. VanderMeer will share often outrageous details of working on successful, complex book projects, along with sustainable career and creativity advice for this new media age. His talk will be followed by a Q&A with the audience and a take-away of exercises and prompts aimed at enhancing your creativity and honing your career focus. He will also talk about his new novel, Finch.

EAST COAST

BROOKDALE COMM. COLLEGE (Lincroft, NJ) – Tues, Nov. 17, 11:30am to 1:30pm
765 Newman Springs Road
Talk/Reading/Discussion/Signing, centered around Finch and Booklife

60TH NATIONAL BOOK AWARDS BENEFIT DINNER AND CEREMONY (New York, NY) – Wed, Nov. 18, 8pm to 11pm
Attendee, covering the event for Amazon—not a participant
(Live Twittering from the event, I hope.)

MIT COMPARATIVE MEDIA STUDIES LECTURE SERIES (Boston, MA) – Thurs, Nov. 19, 5pm to 7pm
77 Massachusetts Ave., Room 4-231 (building 4, room 231)
Booklife: The Private and the Public in Transmedia Storytelling and Self-Promotion” Guest Lecture with Q&A with Kevin Smokler, followed by a reception, in conjunction with the Future of Entertainment Conference.

BORDERS BOOKSTORE (Boston, MA) – Fri, Nov. 20, 7pm
511 Boylston Street
Finch Reading/Signing/Discussion, with Paul Tremblay and David Anthony Durham

BORDERS BOOKSTORE (New York, NY) – Sat, Nov. 21, 5pm
10 Columbus Circle (Manhattan)
Cities Real and Unreal: Readings and discussion with World Fantasy Award winners Jeff VanderMeer and Jeffrey Ford, and Building Blog creator Geoff Manaugh, moderated by Beatrice’s Ron Hogan. What do writers take from the real world when creating their fantastical creations? What does the real world take from fantasy? A playful exploration against the backdrop of one of the world’s great cities! VanderMeer’s new noir phantasmagoria, Finch, takes place in a once-prosperous failed city-state and features a detective who must navigate its many ambiguities to solve a double murder. Manaugh’s BLDG BLOG BOOK from Chronicle Books is a biography of the city conveyed through essays and interviews. Ford has written about both historical and fantastical cities in his many critically acclaimed novels and stories. Come out to celebrate the squalor, the possibilities, and the madness of cities. Join the participants for drinks at a local bar afterwards.

PLYMOUTH STATE COLLEGE (Plymouth, NH) – Mon, Nov. 23, 6pm
17 High Street, Library Cafe
Which came first; the story or the illustration? When you think about the illustrated stories that you’ve read, whether they have been in the form of a graphic novel, a picture book, or comic strip–you might ask yourself this question. In an exploration of the collaborative process between an illustrator and author, Plymouth State University presents Illustrating VanderMeer: a glimpse into the collaborative works of Author, Jeff VanderMeer and Illustrator, Eric Schaller, October 15 – November 23 at Lamson Library. Join us on November 23rd from 6pm – 7:30 pm for an event in the Commons Cafe, where you will have the opportunity to meet the author and illustrator and hear VanderMeer talk about, read from, and sign his recently published books Finch and Booklife. The PSU Bookstore will make copies of both books available for sale at this event.

THE BOOK ESCAPE (Baltimore, MD) – Nov. 29, 3:30pm
805 Light Street
Discussion/Finch Reading/Signing…
Sometimes Dead Men Do Talk Back: A discussion of new trends in classic noir and mystery fiction co-featuring Sandra Ruttan, author of the police procedural Lullaby for the Nameless (“[She] writes with utter ferocity.” – Greg Olsen), and Jeff VanderMeer, author of the noir fantasy Finch, the novel that made Ken Bruen exclaim “it blew me to hell and gone” and forced Joe R. Lansdale to admit, “I loved it. In fact, I’m a little jealous.” Moderated by Mystery Bookspot’s Brian Lindenmuth. Reading and signing as well. Free Murder by Death Finch soundtrack CDs with purchase of Finch, while supplies last.

LIBRARY OF CONGRESS (Washington, D.C.) – Tues, Dec. 1, 12pm
Pickford Theater, 3rd floor of the Madison Building, 101 Independence Ave, SE.
Guest lecturer, “What IF” Series. Booklife: The Private and the Public in the Future of Publishing. What are the benefits and dangers of a confusion between the private creativity and the public career elements of a writer’s life caused by new media and a proliferation of “open channels”? What protective measures must a writer take to preserve his or her “self” in this environment?

BETWEEN BOOKS (Claymont, DE) – Tues, Dec. 1, 7pm
2703 Philadelphia Pike
Finch Reading/Signing, with Ekaterina Sedia—Free copy of Murder by Death CD with Finch purchase, while supplies last.

WOFFORD COLLEGE (Spartanburg, SC) – Thurs, Dec. 3, 7:30 p.m.
429 North Church Street, Olin Theater
Finch Reading/Signing, with Booklife discussion

MALAPROPS BOOKSTORE (Asheville, NC) – Sat, Dec. 5, 3pm to 5pm
55 Haywood Street
Booklife kaffeeklatsch and Signing (and then come on over to the beer cafe across the street with the possibly exhausted author)

BARNES & NOBLE (Burlington, NC) – Sun, Dec. 6, 2pm
3125 Waltham Blvd
Finch Reading/Signing

FOUNTAIN BOOKSTORE (Richmond, VA) – Tues, Dec. 8, 6:00pm
1312 E Cary St.
Fountain Bookstore holiday party guest of honor, with Booklife talk, humorous anecdotes, and signing (6:45pm)

CHAPEL HILL COMICS (Chapel Hill, NC) – Thurs, Dec. 10, 7pm to 8:30pm
316 W Franklin St

Some Assembly Required! A night of readings and dangerous spontaneous storytelling with critically acclaimed novelist Jeff VanderMeer, noted writer/podcaster Mur Lafferty, and special guest Natania Barron, creator of the Aldersgate Cycle. Buy Finch and get a free copy of rock band Murder by Death’s soundtrack for the book (while supplies last). Afterwards, join Jeff, Mur, and Natania at the bar across the street for a less spontaneous libation.

MANUEL’S BAR (Atlanta, GA) – Fri, Dec. 11, 8pm
(602 N. Highland Ave, North Avenue Room)
Finch Reading/Signing with Will Hindmarch and special guest J.M. McDermott. First 25 people to buy Finch get a free copy of the MBD CD

21 Responses to “Jeff VanderMeer’s Endurance Tour: 36 Days, 27 Events, 14 States, 2 Books, 1 Writer, No Breaks (well, ok, one break)”

  1. Scott Sigler says:

    Damn, Jeff, this is impressive! I just finished a tour of 20 cities in 24 days, so I know you’ve got your work cut out for you. I hope you have a great time, and I’ll see you when you come to San Francisco.

  2. Jeff VanderMeer says:

    Scott–awesome! It’d be great to buy you a drink. And SF is actually one place I’ll have a little time. (I may pick your brain for survival strategies, too!)

  3. Rob Blake says:

    I guess all the money is on the 2 coasts … I see nothing scheduled for the mid-west.

  4. Jeff VanderMeer says:

    Rob–Scheduling-wise I had to get NYC and the East Coast before Thanksgiving, so there was no way to do the middle. It’s also not economical, and although the publishers are offsetting costs and I’m doing some paid speaking engagements, adding a week or two in the middle of the country would’ve wound up taking it from being slightly in the black afterwards to being in the red. Happy to visit any place that will pay in the middle of the country, next year. :(

  5. Miiru says:

    Ooo… You’re in my neck of the woods for a while. I’d like to get to see you in Asheville, although Burlington and Chapel Hill are closer. Alas, Chapel Hill involves a weeknight, upon which I work, and I just like Asheville better. (There was also mention of a bar, there, and that’s never bad.) (No, never.)

    I hate I can’t make it out to WF. I’d intended to go, but the plans were shot out from under me.

    I hate it. I’d have liked to have seen Tess again.

  6. Aidan Doyle says:

    Sounds great. Have fun.
    But only staying in the one country? I’d hardly call that an endurance tour. :-)

  7. J M McDermott says:

    I can only wonder what your mental state will be in when you hit us in Atlanta. I’ll probably read the same short story at Manuel’s that I read at World Fantasy, and I think it will be interesting to see if you recall any of it when you hear it the second time.

    Perhaps I shouldn’t have said anything…

    ;)

    Have a great tour, and sell many books along the way!

  8. Jeff VanderMeer says:

    I plan on hitting the gym every other day and sleeping every chance I get and not drinking a lot. If I can do those things, and eat healthy, all will be well. If not, it’ll be a train wreck with people betting on whether I make it through.

  9. Paul Tremblay says:

    You’re a machine! I love the posters.

  10. Hellbound Heart says:

    F@#*%?CK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    why do i have to live in the wrong place at the wrong time??????? i’ll gladly disseminate material for you down under if you so wish…….

    peace and love……

  11. Tim Lebbon says:

    Best of luck with this Jeff. It would be good with some juggling, but oh well, can’t have everything.

    Really, I’m in awe. If I’m ever published by a big publisher in the UK, I’d hope to do something similar. But probably a bit shorter.

  12. S.J. Chambers says:

    Ooo…the posters are amazing! Especially the ones with the arabesques.

  13. Jeff VanderMeer says:

    Thanks, Tim. Appreciate it. I’ve got two highly organized US indies supporting me here–it’s the confluence of the two books that makes it possible. Still owe you an email. Sigh.

    Selena–thanks! Will does great work.

  14. Steven H Silver says:

    I’ll be arrivign in New York a few hours after your Saturday evening for the SFWA New York Reception. Too bad you’ll be in New Hampshire when that is happening.

  15. Experiencing Literature Live « MentatJack says:

    [...] I’ve been reading Finch. I’ll be seeing him at Book Soup, November 11th and be sure to check out the full schedule of his endurance tour. [...]

  16. Fabio Fernandes says:

    Have an excellent tour, Jeff! As we say here way down, Boa Sorte! :-)

  17. Little Bits | The Crotchety Old Fan says:

    [...] And speaking of Jeff – the schedule for the Finch tour (otherwise known as the “want to know what a zombie writer looks like? Check Jeff out in a few weeks and you WILL know” tour) has been posted and can be found here [...]

  18. Jeff Vandermeer’s Finch goes on sale says:

    [...] Vandermeer will be touring extensively for the release, although only in the US so far; further details are available from his blog. [...]

  19. George Aston says:

    Hey there!
    My band just made our very own full song!!!

    Have a look, we’ve learnt a lot from your blog! :)
    xxx

  20. Joshua says:

    Any Kansas city shows in the future?

  21. Joshua says:

    Any Kansas city shows in the future? A lot of people look over us but it’s a great music town.

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