My beloved publisher and publicist commissioned these beautiful Praying Drunk shot glasses as a way to promote the book, and yesterday Carolyn Kellogg at the Los Angeles Times wrote a piece about them titled “How to make sure a book has a shot at getting noticed“:
Minor’s work has been widely published — in “Best American Nonrequired Reading 2013,” The Southern Review, “Best American Mystery Stories 2008,” “Twentysomething Essays by Twentysomething Writers,” and Forty Stories: New Voices from Harper Perennial” — and he’s received a number of prizes and accolades. But it’s hard for someone who writes mostly short fiction to break through — perhaps “Praying Drunk,” his second collection, will reach a wider audience.”
I hope she’s right! It took ten years to write the book. I hope readers do find and enjoy it.
UPDATE: Because of the unexpected demand for the shot glasses, Sarabande is now selling them on their website: http://www.sarabandebooks.org/?page_id=10604
January 23, Seattle, WA
January 30-31, Elizabethtown, PA, Elizabethtown College
February 7, 2014, Provo, UT, Brigham Young University.
February 13-14, 2014, Huntsville, TX, Sam Houston State University
February 20, 2014, Myrtle Beach, SC, Coastal Carolina University
February 26 – March 1, 2014, Seattle, WA, AWP Conference, Washington State Convention Center & Sheraton Seattle Hotel
March 6, 2014, Manchester, NH, New Hampshire Institute of Art
March 10, 2014, Brooklyn, NY, Franklin Park Reading Series: Fifth Anniversary Bash
March 11, 2014, Brooklyn, NY, Community Bookstore, OFFICIAL New York City Book Launch for Praying Drunk
March 15, 2014, Los Angeles, CA, Skylight Books
March 16, 2014, San Diego, CA
March 17, 2014, Portland, OR, Powell’s City of Books
March 18, 2014, Portland, OR
March 20, 2014, Chicago, IL, Roosevelt University
March 25, 2014, Louisville, KY, Carmichael’s
March 27, 2014, Arlington, TX, University of Texas-Arlington
April 3, 2014, Iowa City, IA, Prairie Lights
April 4, 2014, Madison WI, Madison Public Library, Night Light Friday
April 10-11, 2014, Washington, DC/Fairfax County, VA, George Mason University
April 17, Toledo, OH, Toledo Public Library
Praying Drunk isn’t out until February 2014, but the first review is already in, from Publishers Weekly, which calls it a “dazzling, emotional, funny, captivating puzzle.” I’m happy with that!
An excerpt: “Similar to a great magic trick, the 13 stories in Minor’s (In the Devil’s Territory) latest lure reader investment with strong visuals while simultaneously pulling the rug out from underfoot with clever, literary sleights–of-hand. Though not necessarily linked in the traditional sense, there is a sequential order to the collection—ideas, locations, incidents, and characters echo as the volume chugs forward—and the result is an often dazzling, emotional, funny, captivating puzzle.”
Louisville Public Media invited me to read my story “The Question of Where We Begin” for the inaugural season of Unbound: Fiction on the Radio, produced by Erin Keane. The episode, titled “Alternate Histories,” debuted on June 21. It also includes a story by Tania James and music by Will Oldham (Bonnie Prince Billy) and Telephobia. It is now streaming live on the Unbound page at WFPL.org.
Worldwide hero Kristen Radtke sent this picture from my Mission Creek Music Festival reading at the Clinton Street Social Club in Iowa City last Friday night, which was sponsored by Jim Beam, believe it or not. Maybe the free-flowing whiskey had something to do with the warm reception from a sweet-natured crowd I’d happily take with me to every reading in every city in the country if I could.
I also won the fun times lottery when the poet Henry Finch invited me to join the Fig Wellingtons, a collective of writer-musicians hailing from New York, Iowa City, Mumbai, and all points in-between. The lineup the evening this picture was taken: (clockwise from lower left) Kyle Minor (guitar & vocals), Devika Rege (drums & percussion), Ben Shattuck (banjo), Henry Finch (upright bass & vocals), Thessaly La Force (viola), Daniel Cesca (guitar & vocals), Wells Tower (guitar & vocals), Anna Noyes (guitar, spoons, & vocals), and Kiley McLaughlin (mandolin).
You can only see the side of my face in the lower left-hand corner of this photograph, but if you’re like me, you’d rather see all those other handsome faces, anyway. I left feeling fondly toward everyone, and wanting to make more music.
It was difficult to choose from among ten or so beautiful cover designs by Kristen Radtke and Kirby Gann, so I let the publisher decide. I’m happy with the choice. In a couple of months, Advanced Reader’s Copies will be mailed to book reviewers and booksellers, and the book will be available everywhere you might buy books in February 2014.