For years, people have been saying “the book is dead.” If that’s so, why are there so many books about vampires and zombies these days? Perhaps the book is undead — a relentless, immortal beast, only interested in only one thing: brains.
Unlikely, yes. But just look at how Portland’s Wordstock Festival (Oct. 11-14) has not only survived, but thrived, in recent years. Founded in 2005, it’s grown into the biggest celebration of literature in the Pacific Northwest, and one of the largest annual book events in the country. Attracting writers, editors, agents and publishers — not to mention readers — the four-day gathering takes over the Oregon Convention Center (and other venues around town), with events like readings, panel discussions, happy hour mixers and a special literary Live Wire radio show.
This year’s full schedule comes out Sept. 11, but headliners will include Erin Morgenstern, author of the acclaimed The Night Circus, (which has drawn comparisons to Twilight, but is not a vampire book) and Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist co-author David Levithan, whose “Every Day” is kind of about body-snatching, but with a twist.
Wordstock has so much to offer, there’s no saying what you’ll value most. It could be a workshop on writing graphic novels, or rubbing elbows with your favorite wordsmiths. But one thing’s for certain: With this bookish crowd, you’ll never see a better collection of brains. … Brains!