Though only in its fifth year, Wordstock is already a (kindergarten) juggernaut. It's the biggest literary convention in the Pacific Northwest and one of the largest in the country. It's neither a trade show in disguise, nor a book sale dressed up for a special occasion, but rather an exaltation of storytelling, writing, and literacy. Check out these word-loving events all over town (in addition to a plethora of readings and admittedly trade show-y events at the Oregon Convention Center.)
Thursday, October 8
2ND STORY—What promises by all accounts to be an indescribable night of storytelling—which means we can't tell you exactly what's going to happen. Chicago theater/storytelling troupe 2nd Story's performances are widely billed as gripping, urgent, and hilarious. With adjectives like those, who needs nouns?
Bagdad Theater, 3702 SE Hawthorne, 8 pm, $20, 21+
Saturday, October 10
TEXT BALL—For people who generally prefer to stay home and play Scrabble, the Independent Publishing Resource Center's annual Text Ball is the best night of the year. You get to dress up like a book (text-based costumes strongly encouraged—prizes awarded!), dance to live music, ingest text-based hors d'oeuvres, and partake in word games like a giant crossword, "Speech-e-oke," and yes, Scrabble.
galleryHOMELAND, 2505 SE 11th, 7 pm, $8-15
LIVE WIRE!—This live-broadcast show, a fixture of Wordstock since 2005, is the variety hour (or two) portion of the proceedings. Comedy, music, and conversation with some of Wordstock's marquee names (Sherman Alexie, James Ellroy, et al.) are sent straight from the Aladdin Theater into the OPB-o-sphere for mass enjoyment. Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie, 8 pm, $25-35
Sunday, October 11
STRANGERS TOGETHER—Ten poems by the late Poet Laureate William Stafford set to music by Sarah Dougher and performed by the TBA-spawned Flash Choir. To give you an idea: "Traveling through the dark I found a deer/dead on the edge of the Wilson River road/It is usually best to roll them into the canyon."
Mississippi Studios, 3939 N Mississippi, 3 pm, $10
PHOTO BOOTH/AUDIO BOOTH—At the NW Documentary booth, on-site apparatuses will be set up to take photo strips of you and yours, and record one of your personal stories or, if you're feeling amnesic, an interview with a NW Documentarian.
Oregon Convention Center, 777 NE MLK, noon-4 pm, FREE
SISTER SPIT—See My, What a Busy Week!, this page.
For full listings see wordstockfestival.com