Yesterday I drove 8 hours–4 to St. Paul, leaving the house at 5:20 a.m., and 4 more to get home. The drive was with good company–Emilee and Karl–and for good cause: exhibiting New Rivers Press books and authors at the 12th annual Rain Taxi Twin Cities Book Festival.
The very first book festival I ever attended was on the Capitol lawn in Austin, Texas, promoted by First Lady Laura Bush. It was one of those life-changing events. I met authors face-to-face, chatted with them as though we were equals, and then realized that, hey!–we are equals! Well, except for the part that they have published books. This might sound odd, but knowing that authors are often just regular folks with the distinction of being disciplined writers who work at their craft somehow opened vistas of possibility.
This year’s Rain Taxi Twin Cities Book Festival was relocated from its normal downtown spot to The Historic Progress Center at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds, my first-ever visit to this place outside my normal beaten path. In fact, there are about 320 acres with historic buildings and new bandstands to see. We got our bearings on Dan Patch Avenue, named for the Minnesota racing horse of world fame. Dan Patch, harnessed to a sulkie, never lost a race, and in 1906 even beat his own record! Check out this MN State Fair Walking Tour Brochure: http://visitmnhistory.org/sites/visitmnhistory.org.statefair/files/2012StateFair_WalkingTourBrochure.pdf
Since I was representing New Rivers Press (it’s where I work), I’ll show you some of our famous authors:
Although I didn’t get home until about 10:40 last night, it was a trip well worth the while. Rain Taxi is already planning on events for 2013, and I plan to be there, too.