Lit Crawl Seattle’s 5th edition: fiction, memoir, poetry, graphic novels… and podcasts, across Capitol Hill

(Image: Lit Crawl Seattle)

Powered by grants, volunteers, and the written word, Lit Crawl Seattle will again fill Capitol Hill and nearby venues with authors, poets, bloggers, and, yes, even a journalist or two Thursday night.

October 19, 2017: You’re booked.

35+ events. 15+ venues. 1 awesome night.

Follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram for updates.

Lit Crawl Seattle is a series of uncommon literary events — readings, performances, panel discussions, and beyond — that  take place in pubs, museums, cafes, libraries, and a host of other spaces throughout the Capitol Hill and First Hill neighborhoods in Seattle.

The best part: most of the events are FREE.

See the full schedule HERE!

2017 maps will be distributed to participating venues soon.

In the meantime, check out all the confirmed readings on our Facebook page and be sure to Like us for updates.

From the first crawl in 2012, the annual event continues to be marked by an eclectic mix of participants and venues from bars to co-working spaces to technical bookstores to a new eyeglasses store on E Pike. The Seattle Public Library also joins the party — this year, check out Booktoberfest: Library After Dark: Scary Stories in the Stacks at the Capitol Hill branch.

Lit Crawl receives funding from Shunpike and is a grant recipient of King County 4Culture and the City of Seattle Office of Arts and Culture.

With more than 15 venues, it’s a busy night. The Seattle Review of Books is helping out with a few suggested itineraries. Looking for the big crowd? Stop by Neumos sibling The Runaway for a session with Stranger reporters as they record a live edition of their podcast, Trust Issues:

Trust Issues is a podcast about facts gone wrong, hosted by Sydney Brownstone and Heidi Groover. Each week, we go down an online rabbit hole to discover a fake story, conspiracy theory, or alternate history of the galaxy and try to understand why so many people believe it’s true.

For the latest updates and details on the night’s venues, best to check out facebook.com/seattlelitcrawl/

We have also posted the planned schedule for the night on the CHS Calendar:

Lit Crawl Seattle 2017

Half price books: Hugo House offered space in new development below market value

(Image: Weinstein A+U)

(Image: Weinstein A+U)

Hoping to continue their long relationship with the literary-focused nonprofit, property owners of the under-construction, mixed-use development on 11th Ave and E Olive have offered to sell the nonprofit Hugo House a 10,000 square-foot ground floor space for about half of its estimated market value.

Hugo House, which is temporarily located at 1021 Columbia, made its home in the 1902-built former mortuary at 11th Ave and E Olive until its demolition last June.

The nonprofit has intended to move into the new development since plans were announced in 2014, but the below market price offer to sell the space to Hugo House is an unexpected opportunity. Continue reading

Final…ly APRIL will be held in April as Capitol Hill-born small press festival closes book on seven years

By Tim Kukes for CHS

The APRIL Festival and Book Expo is breaking with tradition.  For the first time — and the last time — the uniquely Capitol Hill literary festival will be confining its celebration to one day only — April 1st.

The Authors, Publishers, and Readers of Independent Literature festival, traditionally held in the later part of March to honor National Small Press Month, is coming to the end of its tale after a six-year journey of bringing eclectic reading events and diverse small press publishers to the people of Capitol Hill and Seattle.

APRIL Festival & Book Expo

“We feel like this is a good time to end the festival,” Frances Chiem, acting director, said. “We’ve done a lot with it and the small press community is a lot more vibrant than when we first started.  We feel there are other community voices that will step in and fill the void.”

The story of the festival starts with Pilot Books, once located on Broadway, and Willie Fitzgerald and Tara Atkinson.  The small press bookstore had a reputation as a vibrant community space and hosted a Small Press Festival in 2011 — essentially the first APRIL event and renamed after Pilot Books closed in the summer of 2011. Continue reading

The tale of a new home for Postal Plus, an expansion for Ruckus pot shop, and the exit of a Capitol Hill antiquarian book seller

Postal Plus will, indeed, be moving on from its longtime home on Republican at 15th. Because this is Capitol Hill, Seattle in the year 2017, the move involves both a pot shop expansion and changes for an antiquarian book seller.

Let’s start with the mail. Postmaster Ed Zhang has found a new address to help serve as a contractor for the United States Post Office.

“I feel very much relieved,” Zhang said about finding a new location.

Zhang said the new location, which formerly housed Louis Collins Rare Books, is not only more affordable, but it also has space for parking. Zhang said the lease he signed is for 10 years with the option to renew for another 10. After taking the weekend to move and set up, the shop will reopen at 1211 E Denny Way on April 3. Continue reading

Big act of goodness: New Miller Park little library pops up ‘overnight’

IMG_1541Thanks to Andrew Taylor for this picture of a little good news in the Miller Park neighborhood.

After a February arson destroyed its predecessor, there is a new Little Free Library on 20th Ave near the Miller Community Center. Taylor tells us the new library appeared “overnight.”

Thanks to the unknown little free librarian who created it and restored a community asset. Let us know how we can thank you!

How you can help Hugo House return to Capitol Hill

Hugo House, these days, operates in exile on First Hill as construction continues on the six-story, mixed-use apartment building on the corner the writing center is slated to return to when the project opens in 2018. But state money lined up to help Hugo House return to Capitol Hill and pay for its new home is still a question mark, is an unfinished story er, might go to some other worthy project… here, let’s let somebody better with words handle this. Here is a call for support from Hugo House director Tree Swenson:

Please help Hugo House realize a long-held dream to have a permanent facility of our own! We have been recommended for a grant from Washington State through the Building for the Arts program. This funding is critical. However, the State has many funding needs this year, and this grant is far from assured. As a friend to Hugo House, we know you understand that the arts matter. You can make a big difference by contacting your State legislators to let them know why you think it’s important to have public support for a new and permanent home for Hugo House. Below is an example of a note to legislators with a brief statement about why Hugo House matters. Your own words are even more important, but any contact helps. Please take a minute right now to call or email. Time is short; the budget is in progress. You can find your State legislators and their contact information here.

For those of you in the 43rd, you’ll want to fire up your email machine for jamie.pedersen@leg.wa.gov, frank.chopp@leg.wa.gov, and nicole.macri@leg.wa.gov.

Here is somebody else good with them words at the Seattle Review of Books to help inspire you:

You can find a sample email and a link to a site that will tell you who represents you in the state legislator right here. If you’ve bemoaned the loss of important institutions during the Seattle real estate boom, this is your chance to speak out, to ensure that one piece of Seattle that’s been around for decades continues to have a new life in the decades to come. Go make yourself heard.

In 2018, Hugo House is slated to return to Capitol Hill in a new 10,000 square-foot writing center on the ground floor of the six-story apartment building under construction at the site of its longtime home at 11th and E Olive St. The new new center will include six classrooms, offices, two performance spaces, and space for writers to, um, write.

The interim Hugo House is located at 1021 Columbia. You can learn more at hugohouse.org.

Puny act of evil: Little Free Library burns outside Miller Community Center

Someone’s weekend shenanigans included a destructive act of puny evil on 20th Ave E. The Miller Community Center’s Little Free Library went up in flames — likely sometime Saturday night, one neighbor tells CHS.

"RIP" :( Thanks to Andrew Taylor for the picture

“RIP” :( Thanks to Andrew Taylor for the picture

CHS wrote here about the book donation box’s World Book Night 2013 debut. “I think it’s a great way to connect the community and promote literacy and a love of reading,” a community center rep told CHS at the time. In the years since, the Little Free Library movement has taken off and you now find book boxes on many blocks across Seattle — and the world.

There aren’t many details on the fire that destroyed the box just north of the community center. From Seattle Fire records, it doesn’t appear than anybody saw the fire in time to call the department in. We’ll check with SPD to see if there were any calls to police. We’ve also asked Seattle Parks if there are any plans yet for their center to rebuild the small but popular community resource and how people might be able to help.

UPDATE: We get the feeling this crime might not ever be solved. SPD tells CHS the fire was reported well after the incident Sunday morning around 10 AM. Police didn’t find much to go on besides a lighter found near the scene. It was checked for fingerprints but nothing useful turned up.

UPDATE 2/14/2017: The parks department is taking a hands-off approach, it sounds like. The library was “a community-led initiative,” a spokesperson tells CHS. “We didn’t take the lead on building the box and don’t have information on how the community can replace the box.” Your move, community.

Ada’s Technical Books adding event space and cocktail bar The Lab to 15th Ave E

Three years ago Ada’s Technical Books and Cafe moved to 15th Ave E. One year after that it added The Office, a space for coworking. In a few weeks, owners Danielle and David Hulton will open their newest addition to the busy commercial village — The Lab at Ada’s, an events, party, meeting and learning space.

“If we get the idea to do something, it’s hard not to do it,” Danielle said.

Danielle said they plan to put on workshops and learning events and make the space available for rent to private groups. The space also gives Ada’s the option to have two events at the same time — one in The Lab and one in the cafe. The Hultons have been working on possible events and have a launch series planned for January.

Continue reading

CHS Pics | The Boss on Capitol Hill

In New York City, Bruce Springsteen did his book event at a Barnes and Noble. New Jersey, too. In Seattle, the American rocker came to the basement of Capitol Hill’s indie bookseller the Elliott Bay Book Co. for his “selfie” tour where fans got a chance to pose with The Boss and some were lucky enough for a kiss. Tickets for the event which included a pre-autographed copy of Springsteen’s new autobiography, Born to Run, were snapped up as soon as they were made available online weeks ago. Some paid hundreds of dollars for their place in line. Some paid $37.50. Springsteen didn’t perform or read at the event but he did draw quite a crowd with lines wrapping around the block. Continue reading

Novel Laddy Groove based on days as a mod kid on Capitol Hill

"Dive into the world of new kid on the block Trevor, king of the mods Andy, and goth princess Lucy, for a wild ride through the Seattle youth scene on the tip of the grunge explosion."

“Dive into the world of new kid on the block Trevor, king of the mods Andy, and goth princess Lucy, for a wild ride through the Seattle youth scene on the tip of the grunge explosion.”

Scooters, parties and music made up the Seattle mod scene in the ’80s and ’90s.

Jerry Boak lived it — much of it on Capitol Hill — and wrote about it in his new novel, Laddy Groove.

“I have some great memories of that time and some really incredible friends,” Boak told CHS.

The narrator of the book is the principal character’s younger brother, who shares stories his brother, Trevor, told him.

Readers follow Trevor, who recently moved to North Seattle from Los Angeles with his recently divorced father. He hates the rain and suburbia, but digs a smart, back-talking, goth girl named Lucy. Trevor meets up with Lucy at a party, who takes off with Andy, king of the mod crowd with his suit, scooter, and flock of followers. The coming of age story follows Trevor as he joins Andy and the mods and the escapades that ensue, which include a stolen car and Swedish mobsters. Continue reading