Author and publisher Suzanne Sherman asked me (Laura, the owner of Wordforest) to share a table with her at the Fourth Annual Bay Area Book Festival the week of April 28 and 29, 2018. It’s in Berkeley, Calif., and packed with events and exhibitors.
Here’s some of what’s on the festival’s About page:
“The Bay Area is teeming with readers, writers, creators, and thinkers. We have harnessed the power of this community to create one of the premier literary festivals in the world. The Festival is a two-day event complete with literary sessions presenting top authors from this region, the nation, and the world, along with an outdoor fair with hundreds of literary exhibitors. We also offer art installations, events for kids, and writing contests. We even have a mini film festival — a series of ten films on literature — with BAMPFA. We transform vibrant Downtown Berkeley into a literary utopia where readers of all ages and interests can find kindred spirits.
“The Festival kicked off in 2015 with the mission to create a free, inclusive, world-class literary event in the Bay Area. Since then, the Festival has welcomed more than 800 authors and is approaching 100,000 attendees.”
I haven’t exhibited at this event previously and I’m thinking about how to make the most of it. If you have ideas, please email me at laura [at] word forest [dot] com.
Note: The photo is of me with my sisters, who are central characters in my memoirs, Reversible Skirt and Resilient Ruin. From left to right, we are Laura, Kathy and Mary Ruth. (On the Reversible Skirt book cover, the order is Mary Ruth, Laura and Kathy.)
Charlene Jones of Soul Sciences interviewed Laura for her Blog Talk Radio show.
Here’s the link to the show: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/soul-sciences/2017/06/19/childhood-abuse-not-match-for-love-and-determination
And here’s Charlene’s introductory text:
We believe childhood abuse means a lifetime sentence but Laura McHale Holland proves that belief wrong. Her earliest memories of her beloved mother, dead by the time Laura was two, remain lost in the distant past, but her memories of Wanda, the Wicked Witch of the Western Suburbs, Laura’s nickname for the woman who became her step mother, remain clear. In her memoir “Resilient Ruins” Laura recounts her life under Wanda’s weird command, the ways in which young Laura acted out her loneliness including a suicide attempt, with unflinching honesty. Lacking any sense of frilly sentimentality the memoir punches through our notion that a difficult childhood consigns that person to a life of failure. Instead, award winning author Laura McHale Holland grew into a successful wife, loving mother and to our benefit continues to write about life as a beacon for so many of us.
Many thanks to Folio Books in San Francisco’s Noe Valley for hosting an event Thurs., Jan. 26, during which Laura McHale Holland read from Resilient Ruin, her latest memoir. The book was published by WordForest in November 2016. Bookstore staff members Susan Kroll and Andrew McIntyre welcomed all who attended with spirited grace.
Laura was also joined by two friends at the mic. Storyteller Susan Ford told of when she made inroads as a young woman working in a furniture manufacturer that had previously hired only men. Novelist and poet Olivia Boler read a poem about a friend with whom she formed a lasting sister bond in grammar school.
In addition, Folio is stocking all four books published by Wordforest: Reversible Skirt: A Memoir; Resilient Ruin: A memoir of hopes dashed and reclaimed; and the flash fiction collection The Ice Cream Vendor’s Song—all three penned by Laura McHale Holland—and the anthology, edited by Laura, Sisters Born, Sisters Found: A Diversity of Voices on Sisterhood. The anthology contains the work of 76 writers from across the globe. It won a gold medal in the 2015 Next Generation Indie Book Awards and was a finalist in the IndieFab Book Awards 2015.
It is incredibly supportive of Folio to carry these books. So if you live in the San Francisco Bay Area and want to purchase one or more of them, take a trip to Noe Valley and stop in at Folio, a true community resource. There are some terrific restaurants to check out on 24th Street, as well.
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Laura’s guest post is now up at Kathleen Pooler’s Memoir Writer’s Journey blog!
The title is “One Reason Not To Publish A Memoir.” Intrigued? Hop on over and check it out: http://wp.me/p1vAO5-3kn
Many thanks to Kathleen, who started the blog seven years ago and is the author of the excellent memoir, Ever Faithful to His Lead, which recounts her own journey out of an emotionally abusive relationship.
I met many fine people and sold books, too, at the Rohnert Park Holiday Arts and Crafts Faire on Black Friday and Small Business Saturday this year.
Thanks to all the folks who stopped by the table, as well as to authors Dorothy Rice, Skye Blaine, S.C. Alban and Bob Winters who took shifts sharing the table with me.
If you’re an author, consider testing the arts and crafts faire waters. I plan to do more events like this next year.
University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh, just ordered 27 copies of Reversible Skirt to use in an upcoming English class.
Laura McHale Holland, author of the award-winning memoir (and owner of Wordforest) and her granddaughter, Ava, are over the moon. Well, OK, Laura's a bit more taken with this development than Ava is, but give the tyke time. She might run her own publishing enterprise someday.