Tuesday, March 4, 2014

A Bit of an Evening with a Fellow Writer

We have lived here for going on 8 years now and we recently visited a great, local bookstore for the first time. The Colonel and I can't explain this. How did we miss this gem for so long?

The Colonel heard about Copperfish Books and its location from someone who sits on an educational board along with him. He came home from the board meeting and said we had to check it out.

We did check it out. The owners of the bookstore are two friendly ladies. Their bookstore carries used, new and antiquarian books as well as greeting cards and gifts.

While there we saw a flyer about an upcoming discussion about Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings' memoir, Cross Creek. Rawlings wrote The Yearling as well as other books. I purchased the memoir and signed up for the discussion group.

The discussion was attended by about a dozen women. It was nice to drink coffee and talk about the book. It was also nice to meet new people...strangers are just friends we haven't met yet. I am on Copperfish's email list. I want to attend more of these discussion groups and attend some of their other book related activities.

Last evening I did attend another Copperfish Books activity. The bookstore was filled to capacity and I barely found an empty seat in which to sit (and I thought I had arrived early) before Author Lynn Waddell arrived and began reading from and talking about her new book, Fringe Florida: Travels Among Mud Boggers, Furries, Ufologists, Nudists, and Other Lovers of Unconventional Lifestyles.

Lynn Waddell is a freelance writer whose work has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, the Daily Beast, Budget Travel, the Christian Science Monitor, and the New York Times. She has appeared on MSNBC and the Oxygen Network's true crime series "Snapped" and been a guest on radio and talk shows throughout the United States.

Lynn Waddell's book tells of 10 aspects of Florida's titillating underbelly that few tourists ever see. Beyond the theme parks and the beaches lies a periphery some residents (not me or The Colonel) know about but prefer not to discuss. Waddell explores the exotic, sensational and sometimes illicit worlds of the oddest state (next to California of course) in the nation.

Lynn talked to us about her experiences as she researched her new book.  She visited an all-nude strip club in Tampa where the dancers perform nude lap dances (I felt the need to bathe or at least wash my hands after reading that chapter...no offense Lynn...just proves your excellent writing ability). She also visited a nudist colony (she remained clothed) and discovered that there is a lot of eye-contact at a nudist colony.

Florida's sub-tropical weather gives many the idea that it is a great place to have exotics as pets. Lynn Waddell devotes a chapter in her book about Animal Amnesty Day outside of Busch Gardens where exotic reptile owners can give up their no-longer-manageable pets and others who want them can take home the cast-off critters. Have you ever been to a zoo's herpetarium? Pee-eww!

After Lynn had a little Q&A session she signed books. Several people purchased her book that evening. I had purchased mine after the Cross Creek book discussion group. I wanted to read a bit of Lynn's book before I would met her (I'm still in the process of reading it...as well as two other books concurrently...The Yearling being one of them). Lynn's writing style makes her book an easy and interesting read. I didn't know there were so many "Fringy Floridians".

When it was time for Lynn to sign my book I told her I wrote a blog. She said she would like to have a blog too, but does not have the time currently. She was curious about mine and asked what is was about and for the web address. I wrote it down for her. Lynn said she would check it out and I hope she will.

"Good luck with the blog. Dare to enjoy the fringe. Best, Lynn Waddell"

1 comment:

  1. The bookstore sounds like a place I would enjoy. It's on my list to visit next time I'm in FL. Jenn