VOTM: What’s the most unusual experience you’ve had at a reading?
BRACKMANN: I had teamed up with author Dana Fredsti for a series of book events. Our last event together was at a bookstore that I absolutely adore, a beloved independent that has done so much for the community and offers an amazing selection of books. But, I’d done an event there for my first book release, and it hadn’t gone so well. Not the bookstore’s fault, just a bizarre confluence of events involving street construction, a basketball playoff game, and a parade. So I was nervous about this one.
We got to the store early, because I like to be early for these things. My book was displayed all over the place, which felt really good. But the event coordinator thought that the event was an hour earlier than we did. He wasn’t wrong and neither were we. It was just one of those things. Not surprisingly, hardly anyone showed up. This combination is the kind of situation that triggers my not so latent social anxiety, big-time. I felt terrible. Not so much for the time confusion; that wasn’t my fault. But that I couldn’t get many people out to this event.
We soldiered on. I read a short selection from my latest novel, Getaway. Then it was Dana’s turn. Her novel, Plague Town, has been described as Buffy the Vampire Slayer Meets Walking Dead. It’s a lot of fun, and the section she read has some great humor in it. Just as she opened her book to read, a man wandered in off the street and sat down in the back. He wore tattered, rainbow-colored clothes, a towel for a cape, and a turban with various Tarot cards stuck in it. And he thought that everything Dana said was hilarious. Every. Single. Line. Also, that everything she said was utterly perfect, and that she deserved a diamond-studded genie bottle, which he would be happy to provide, because his mother was Barbara Eden. I lost it. I dissolved into helpless giggles, covered my eyes with my hand and did my best not to peak at Barbara Eden’s turban-clad son.
Lisa Brackmann is the author of the critically acclaimed Ellie McEnroe series set in today’s China (Rock Paper Tiger, Hour of the Rat and the upcoming Dragon Day), and the thriller Getaway (an ALA summer reading pick and SCIBA finalist). She is a California native and a former film industry professional who has lived and traveled extensively in China. Lisa once was an issues researcher in a presidential campaign and was the singer/songwriter/bassist in an LA rock band. She just bought a bass ukulele.
Come see Lisa read at MCASD in downtown San Diego on Friday, February 6 at 12pm.