Tag Archives: Printers Row Lit Fest

Keith Ecker at Printers Row Lit Fest

I am incredibly excited, honored and humbled to be so deeply participatory in this year’s amazing Printers Row Lit Fest. If you don’t know what this is, then you probably don’t read books. The Printers Row Lit Fest is one of the largest literary events in the country. The outdoor festival, produced by the Tribune Company, honors the written word with two full days of panel discussions, performances and, what else, books! See below to find out when I will be speaking/performing. I hope if you are in Chicago that you can check me out.

  • Sat. June 9 @ 10 a.m. – Keith will be moderating a panel of Chicago’s live lit heavy hitters for a conversation called Listen Up!: How Chicago’s Live Lit Scene Is Changing the Literary Landscape. Panelists include Ian Belknap (Write Club), Dana Norris (Story Club), Robbie Q. Telfer (The Encyclopedia Show) and Scott Whitehair (This Much Is True, StoryLab Chicago and Do Not Submit).
  • Sat. June 9 @ 3:30 p.m. – Keith will be speaking on a panel as part of a StoryStudio moderated discussion called Just Get Me Started Writing Workshop. He’ll be representing creative non-fiction and live lit.
  • Sat. June 9 @ 6 p.m. – Keith and Alyson will be showcasing a mini Essay Fiesta as part of the festival’s Lit After Dark event. Special guests include Scott Whitehair and the always entertaining Jen Bosworth.

Printers Row Lit Fest Review

The 2011 Printers Row Lit Fest came and went as quickly as a summertime thunderstorm. The reference to a summertime thunderstorm is not just poetic imagery. The festival, as usual, was temporarily dampened by showers on Saturday. Yes, nothing kills a book festival like water. But literature and nerdism persevered, and all of us bibliophiles still had a great time.

The Chicago Story Collective (the performance essayist group I co-founded) had a  great set on the Mash Stage as part of Lit After Dark.
We did a revue called “True Grit,” where we told totally true tales of the seamier side of the city. And because we love an excuse to dress up in costume, we all donned 1920s wear. We had a decent number of spectators show up, and everyone seemed to enjoy the show. Plus, we showcased the new song I wrote. I never thought writing essays would turn me into a rock star (note: I’m not a rock star).

Despite suffering from a minor cold, I patronized the festival on Sunday as well. Performing on Saturday didn’t give me a chance to really check out the booths and talk with my fellow writers, publishers and literati. While exploring the festival, I got to say hello to a lot of my favorite local talents, including the Jon at Knee-Jerk Magazine, Zach at Featherproof Books and Brandon from the Book Cellar. I also bought a really amazing print from a fashion magazine from the 1920s. It was a surprise for my boyfriend, Mario, whose going to school for fashion. It definitely scored me huge boyfriend points.

I also embarked on my first “live tweeting” experiment. For those that don’t know, live tweeting is when you update via Twitter what you are seeing/doing. It requires that you are constantly removed from the action before you, and in this sense, as I said to a friend, it is the exact opposite of meditation. Still, it’s a fun thing to do if you’re somewhere by yourself. I wouldn’t do it if I was with friends. That’d just be rude and antisocial.

By the way, I’ve finally become a fairly active Tweeter. As you can see to the right, I have a Twitter feed on this blog. If you wish to follow me and read my random musings, click the “Follow” button to the right.