If you love books — well-written books that make you stay up past your bedtime — head to the Safety Harbor Art & Music Center for The Considerate Literate: A Celebration of Readers.
After recently celebrating my own picture book’s release through a small publisher, I know how difficult it can be to connect with potential readers. Unless an author is on all the daytime and late-night talk shows, or has a marketing team from one of the big publishers, they may not find their audience.
We writers all have different motivations behind our stories. For me, I was affected by the events of the past few years. I felt the heaviness of everything that was wrong in the world, but especially in the way humans were treating other humans, not only online and on TV, but in my own town.
It made me want to write. But what came from that was a story for young children about how words can make even big, wonderful people feel small.
I decided to connect with Pinellas County authors whose books, I feel, are worth buying, written well and well presented. But most importantly, books that will connect with readers.
Pat Brooks writes about Miss Marble, a cat whose antics Pat witnesses daily. In Pat’s first book, Miss Marble’s Backyard Critters, the narrator describes the animals in her backyard. Now, Miss Marble is starring in a second chapter book and she will bring young readers on a wild ride through her misadventures.
In Warren Firschein’s The Bean Store, Jules, a ten-year-old introverted and imaginative boy, finds a troll under a gardening bucket while sweeping his family’s bean store. Soon, Jules is drawn into a mystical world hidden deep in the woods behind his home, a world full of unimaginable splendor that sprouted from Jules’s own mind when he was shown a magical three-dimensional holographic map by a council of trolls, gnomes and other mysterious creatures.
Zoey L. is an 11-year-old poet who has created a coloring book of poetry. Her poems are short and poignant – some are light while others will make you contemplate nature, while your colored pencils make the art come to life.
View from the Laundry Chute is a collection of short stories from noted humorist and storyteller Deb Klein, which reveal the humor in everyday events throughout her life while utilizing her sharp eye for detail and absurdity. It will be worth hearing her read as her skill as a performer is almost as good as her writing.
We also have Shannon O’Leary Beck and her recently released novel, Go Away Girl, a story about 22-year-old Catalina Canfield who has an out-of-control drug addiction but wants to get her act together. When she travels to Mexico with two troubled sisters she hardly knows, she finds herself caught up in their secrets and fleeing from police and a mobster bent on revenge. Somewhere between a swanky Acapulco resort and a dusty ranch in the middle of nowhere, Catalina becomes a target herself, and her quest to overcome self-doubt and find inner peace becomes even more complicated when she falls in love with an irresistibly seductive archaeologist. Or is he a grave robber?
Each author will read a short chapter or a few poems or paragraphs from their books. They will also offer a unique raffle prize — something they either made or put together that represents their book.
Children are welcome, and everyone is welcome to attend The Considerate Literate celebration for free. But if you’d like a free book, raffle tickets and the chance to meet the authors, VIP tickets are $25.
Entertainment includes puppeteer Ben Leslie with “Pizza Paul,” storyteller Walt Belcher and poet Ed Derkevics. Opportunities are available for kid and adult writers and poets.
This will be an outdoor event. We ask that you be a considerate literate and wear a mask.
Note: Laura Kepner helped organize this event.