Literary mayhem: Lit Crawl

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Lit Crawl Austin returns to the Texas Book Festival on Saturday night, Oct. 25. The annual literary pub crawl, a co-production of the Texas Book Festival and Litquake Foundation, features some of America’s most groundbreaking writers onstage at East Austin venues talking about and signing their latest books.

Inspired by San Francisco’s long-running Lit Crawl and produced with their participation, Lit Crawl Austin will feature authors Charles Blow, Edan Lepucki, Austin Kleon, Rob Spillman, Owen Egerton, and Kate Payne, among others. The 2014 edition of Lit Crawl will include Buzzed Trivia, the always-popular YA ghost stories in the Texas State Cemetery, Nerd Jeopardy, Bat City Truth or Dare, Sexist Bingo, and much more.

UntitledOne of the most exciting Lit Crawl sessions is Literary Death Match, which has previously been held during the Festival. Hosted by LDM creator Adrian Todd Zuniga, four authors will go head to head in an epic battle of words, 9:30 p.m. at The North Door. The author contenders are Marlon James (A Brief History of Seven Killings), Marie-Helene Bertino (2 A.M. at The Cat’s Pajamas), Scott Cheshire (High as the Horses’ Bridles), andMira Jacob (The Sleepwalker’s Guide to Dancing). Judges include Jim Magnuson on literary merit, David Yow on performance, and Sloane Crosley on intangibles.

Steph Opitz, literary director, says: “The annual Lit Crawl is a night of wonderment, literary brilliance, and laughs galore. Plus, it’s free. Not to be missed!”

Without further ado, here is the Lit Crawl Austin schedule.

Wright Bros Brew & Brew, 500 San Marcos St. #105

*Books will be available for sale by Malvern Books.

7:30-8:15       Super Fun Party Lit Crawl Extravaganza!

Fun Party is an Austin-based reading series where art, literature, and film connect. Readings from Jericho Brown, Logan Fry, and Tess Taylor.

8:30-9:15       Everything Is Bigger
These readers sling their best, showcasing the so-dang-dynamite combo of the Everything Is Bigger reading series and Malvern Books. Featuring: Fernando Flores, Lisa Olstein, Blake Lee Pate, Taylor Jacob Pate, Sam Sax, Vincent Scarpa, and Laurie Saurborn Young.

9:30-10:15    Dobie Paisano Fellows—Show & Tell

Scorpions, floods, Frank Dobie’s boots. Dobie Paisano fellows will tell all about Texas’ most celebrated literary ranch and read from their work. With Robin Bradford, Manny Martinez, Antonio Ruiz-Camacho, Mary Helen Specht, and Lowell Mick White.

Clayworks Studio/Gallery, 1209 E 6th St.

7:30-8:15       Bat CityTruth or Dare

Authors will read short pieces about “truths told or risks taken” and play Truth or Dare. Brought to you by the literary annual Bat City Review. With Forrest Gander, Margo Rabb, and Tiphanie Yanique.

8:30-9:15       Austin Bat Cave Presents Speak of the Devil

The Story Department is a monthly night of storytelling benefitting Austin Bat Cave, a writing and tutoring center for kids. Each month, storytellers are invited to tell a personal story—without notes, without a script—based on a real-life event and the monthly theme. Featuring: J. R. Helton, Bret Anthony Johnston, Rene Steinke, and Natalia Sylvester.

9:30-10:15    Buzzed Trivia

Enjoy complimentary whiskey from High West between rounds of trivia. Featuring: Mark Bailey, Brock Clarke, Lin Enger, Ed Hemingway, and Bill Roorbach.

The North Door, 502 Brushy St.

*Books will be available for sale from Barnes & Noble.

8:30-9:15       DRIVEL: Deliciously Bad Writing by Your Favorite Authors

Reading a well-established author’s cringe-worthy teenaged diary, or earnest letter to President Nixon, or groaner student poem reminds all of us that writing takes work. That everybody does start somewhere, and often that somewhere is pretty crappy. Featuring: Bill Cotter, Jodi Egerton, Jason Neulander, and Neal Pollack.

9:30-10:15    Literary Death Match

Four authors. Three judges. Two finalists. One really epic finale.Competitors: Marie-Helene Bertino, Scott Cheshire, Mira Jacob, and Marlon James battle it out. Judges include Jim Magnuson on literary merit, David Yow on performance, and Sloane Crosley on intangibles.

The Volstead, 1500 E 6th St.

7:30-8:15       Sexist Bingo

Join VIDA, Tin House, and Buzzfeed Books for Sexist Bingo. Name the authors of wildly offensive sexist quotes, from Mailer to Franzen, to win prizes—beer koozies, T-shirts, magazines, books, and sexist shots. With Isaac Fitzgerald, Courtney Maum, Jenny Offill, Elissa Schappell, Rob Spillman, and Darcey Steinke.

8:30-9:15       The Austin Review IRL

Come hang out with The Austin Review and hear Austin Kleon, Edan Lepucki, Maxwell Neely-Cohen, and Ursula Villarreal-Moura opine about the joys and miseries of the Internet while you enjoy a well-mixed cocktail.

9:30-10:15    Fantagraphics & Foxing Quarterly Present Drink & Draw

Bring your sketchbooks and join Fantagraphics artist Tim Lane for a night of drinking and drawing. Plus, live music and giveaways!

The Texas State Cemetery, 909 Navasota St.

*Books will be available for sale from Barnes & Noble.

7:30-8:15       Survive. Thrive. Plunder. Or End Up 6 Feet Under.

Stories from YA and middle grade stars Adam Gidwitz, Michelle Knudson, and Danya Lorentz. (*This event is for all ages. The cemetery can be dark—bring a flashlight!)

The Liberty, 1618 1/2 E 6th St.

7:30-8:15       One Page Salon

Host Owen Egerton asks a selection of authors a few tantalizing questions. Each author then reads just one page of a work-in-progress. With Manuel Gonzales, Josh Weil, and Deb Olin Unferth.

8:30-9:15       A Big, Big Reading with Gigantic

Join Gigantic, a Brooklyn-based magazine of short prose and art, for a night of very short stories about very big things. Featuring readings from writers Porochista Khakpour, Kelly Luce, Meghan McCarron, Jess Sauer, and Justin Taylor

Wonderland, 1104 E 6th St.

7:30-8:15       American Short Fiction Presents Whose Line Is It, Anyway?

Five authors compete against each other to guess lines from each other’s latest works. Featuring: Jennifer duBois, Maggie Shipstead, Murray Farish, and J.M. Tyree. Emceed by Adam Lefton.

8:30-9:15       Nerd Jeopardy

Modeled after the popular game show, with a big blue board, Daily Doubles, and answers in the form of a question. Authors Charles Blow, Kate Payne, and Jeff VanderMeer compete. Hosted by Paul Morris, PEN American Center.