Regular readers will know the dilemma CCLaP goes through whenever trying to hold a live event in Chicago; that since the center's readers are spread evenly across the planet*, it makes attendance at any one physical event in any one physical city pretty dismal, making it a money-losing venture each time for an organization that barely has any money to begin with. But then again, CCLaP did just release its first-ever original book, a story cycle called Repetition Patterns by a local author named Ben Tanzer; and just like with any other book, I've very much wanted to throw a book-release party for it, despite it not actually existing in a paper form that could be sold at such a party. What to do, what to do?
Well, thankfully our old friends at Reading Under the Influence have come to the rescue! You remember RUI, right? Long-time readers will remember that I interviewed them last year for the CCLaP Podcast (unfortunately on my crappy little cellphone, back before my high-end field recorder had arrived); they're basically this fun little literary collective here in the city, who throw extremely high-energy monthly events that are part booze nights, part trivia contest, part punchy literary reading, and packed with hundreds of sexy little drunken nerds nearly every time.
Ben's all set to feature at their next event, in fact, coming this Wednesday, November 5th (their "election-night hangover party," as they're billing it); and so I wrote to the RUI folks and asked if they would mind the night doubling as Repetition Patterns' "official" book-release party as well, and they wrote back saying, "Sure, it sounds like fun!" So anyway, for all you half-dozen Chicago city-dwelling heavily-reading CCLaP fans who have always wanted the chance to meet Ben, me, and the other half-dozen city-dwelling heavily-reading CCLaP fans like yourself, I highly encourage you to come by Sheffield's in the Lakeview neighborhood (3258 N Sheffield, just one block north of the Belmont el stop) next Wednesday at 7 pm and say hi. And hey, what better way to do it than with a chance to meet another hundred fun drunken lit-nerds at the same time, get exposed to a half-dozen new writers, and have a great night out for the low, low cover price of three dollars?
My many thanks to RUI for letting CCLaP "piggyback" to one of their regular events, for the purpose of helping us save money while still giving the center's Chicago readers a chance to meet up socially. I really hope I get a chance to meet some of you locals this coming Wednesday.
*Well, okay, it's not a perfectly even global spread: For those who are curious, of the approximately 35,000 unique visitors CCLaP has had since opening, roughly half of them have been from the US (and with a quarter of those people specifically from the Chicago metro area); with another 1,100 in the continental EU (the largest single country being Germany); 850 in the UK and Ireland; 650 in Australia and New Zealand; 600 in Canada; 400 in Southeast Asia (largest: Singapore); 175 in the Middle East (largest: Egypt/Israel tie, how symbolic); another 175 in South America (largest: Brazil); 100 in the Far East (largest: Japan); and roughly 12,000 from either "somewhere else" or with CCLaP's tracking software not being able to determine their location.