Folks, Do We Have a Tease for You
If you were at Wordplay 2019, you know that, when it comes to bringing in standout authors, the Loft doesn't mess around. This year is no exception. We're thrilled to announce one nonfiction, fiction, poetry, and kid lit author coming to you live May 9 at Wordplay 2020.
Nonfiction: Samantha Irby
If her previous books, We Are Never Meeting in Real Life and Meaty, are anything to go by, it's a given her new book, Wow, No Thank You (March 31, 2020, Penguin Random House), will be hilarious. (If you've yet to dive into her work, just take a look at her blog to see what I mean.) Covering such topics as inspirational Instagram infographics, TV executives slash amateur astrologers, and Mason jar salads (a Hallmark Channel dream!), she proves that fame hasn't changed her one bit. (At least, not really.) Take it from someone who's seen her live before: the wit on the pages isn't an act. If you're looking for stand-up comedy without the cringe factor, this might just be your event.
Fiction: Jeff Vandermeer
Coming from an author dubbed "the weird Thoreau," it's no wonder Vandermeer's newest novel, Dead Astronauts, not only delivers a haunting new world but deep insight into capital-S Society. Besides gaining fame as a writer, Vandermeer has been a regular lecturer (frequenting such plebeian entities as Yale, MIT, Brown, and the Library of Congress, she says while adjusting her monocle) and codirects Shared Worlds, a youth SFF writing camp, so his knowledge of how to not only write but earn his keep as a writer is pronounced. Mining that insight alone is worth the cost of the wristband (available in March).
Poetry: Natalie Diaz
The title Postcolonial Love Poem may feel oxymoronic, especially coming from a Mojave author, but Natalie Diaz's superpower is exploring the gradations of historical wounds. In writing about indigenous bodies (of skin and of land), Diaz doesn't shy away from the political or the sacred, ultimately navigating back to what's beloved. Eloquently put by her (local!) publisher, Graywolf Press, "Postcolonial Love Poem unravels notions of American goodness and creates something more powerful than hope—a future is built, future being a matrix of the choices we make now, and in these poems, Diaz chooses love." I think in this day and age, we could all use a little schooling on how to regularly choose love.
Kid lit: Kate DiCamillo
If you're anything like me (too bookish for her own good (just kidding, there's no such thing)), you a) were unapologetically obsessed with Because of Winn-Dixie and, because of that, b) have obsessively kept up with Kate DiCamillo's career. And therefore know that her two latest books, Louisiana's Way Home and Beverly, Right Here, are just as instrumental to middle schoolers and young adults today as our beloved grocery pup was to us. Let's be real: writing for kids is hard. As adults, it takes a very specific ability to tap into a pubescent brain. And DiCamillo has it—in leaps and bounds. She's a kid-lit tour de force, and learning how she manages to be both relevant and timeless will be a treat.
And to think, these are only our teaser authors—we have a hundred more coming your way. If you're a member, be on the lookout for an invite to our exclusive lineup announcement party on February 11 (and if you're not a member, consider joining for this perk). We can't wait to see you on May 9 for Wordplay 2020! In the meantime, stay bookish.