Author Spotlight: Julie Saint James

Annie’s Book Stop of Worcester is happy to shine our spotlight on Julie Saint James this Friday! Julie is a 21-year-old trans woman from Connecticut. She recently finished writing her first novel, By Accident Strange and Outlandish, a drug-fueled fantasy full of interdimensional travel. She was also part of our “Creators in the Trans Community” panel that kicked off our Pride Month celebrations with the Rainbow Readers of Massachusetts.

06042018 - Blog Trans Panel

Thank you so much for joining us, Julie! Can you please tell us briefly a little about yourself and your writing? How would you like us to introduce you?

Recently I’ve been writing a lot about drugs. I like it when someone or something ushers me into a new world and it catches me off guard. Drugs can totally do that–even if you’ve played around with a given drug a bunch of times, it can still have a few surprises up its sleeve. I try to reproduce that effect in my writing.

 06222018 - Julie Author Pic

What character did you love or hate the most while writing? And why?

There’s this demoness in By Accident Strange and Outlandish who, as I was writing her, I discovered that she was kind of me…but then I discovered that she was kind of a bitch. That makes me hate her a little. Sometimes, when you’re writing, it’s like looking at yourself in the mirror when you’re really high, and you find things out about yourself that you didn’t really want to know.

 

What was the inspiration for your work?  What were the steps you took to bring it from initial inspiration to the finished book?

By Accident Strange and Outlandish is a fake translation. It’s a fictionalized version of my trip to Colombia a few years ago in which I find a manuscript in a lime green binder and I translate it from Spanish to English. Meanwhile, I’m living in Latin America, so I’m kind of translating myself from English to Spanish, and I’m also trans, so there’s a lot of translation going on. For this, I was inspired by Yoko Tawada’s work. She does this cool thing where she writes in either German or Japanese, then gives it to a translator, who translates it to either Japanese or German. She does a lot of fascinating things in the worlds between languages. I would recommend reading her surreal short story, “The Bath.”

06222018 - Julie cover pic 

What else can we expect from you in the near future?

Fiona and I have talked about doing a collaboration where a girl listens to They Might Be Giants and finds herself in a strange world called Dial-A-Song Land, which is composed of the characters and places of They Might Be Giants. Neither of us have been super serious about it so far, but I hope we do get around to it at some point, because I think it’s a super fun idea that we can do a lot of things with.

 

Where can people find your work? (Besides ABSW ;)–though they should totally check here first!)

I haven’t actually published anything yet, so your best bet if you want to see more of my work is to reach out to me and help me get published :p

 

How can we follow your work, share your awesomeness, or otherwise stalk you in a totally non-creepy way?

Go ahead and add me on Facebook. I’m pretty sure I’m the only Julie Saint James on there.

 

Thank you so much for the great interview, Julie, and for sharing your work with us at the “Creators in the Trans Community” panel. We look forward to seeing more of your work and carrying it in our store in the future!

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The Big Announcement Blog

 

This is it! This is the big announcement we’ve been teasing you with since last week!

Annie’s Book Stop of Worcester at 65 James Street is having…

A SUPER, MASSIVE, FANTASTIC FLASH SALE!!

THIS SATURDAY AND SUNDAY, JUNE 23 & 24!!

 

 

What makes this so SUPER, MASSIVE, and FANTASTIC, you ask?

70% off Cover for All Used Paperback / Soft Cover Stock! (Including Advance Reader and YA Titles!)*

50% off Cover for All NEW Books!**

25% of All Children’s Used Books!

A flat $1.99 for All Used Hardcover books!

and…

50% off ALL VINTAGE PRICES!***

We have never had a sale like this, and it will be a while until we do something like this, again. You see, we’ve received a HUGE amount of donations over the past month—including summer reading, children’s collections, and even more vintage!—and we are running out of space—despite our “bigger on the inside” bookstore. So, we’re giving you this special sale to celebrate!

Oh, and if you’re a Teacher or Educator, you STILL get your usual EXTRA 10% off your purchase!

Mark your calendar for THIS WEEKEND: SATURDAY, JUNE 23 and SUNDAY, JUNE 24!

 

 

 

 

*  Used soft covers & paperbacks discounted 70% off cover to a minimum of $1.49 per book.
** Consignment items not included in new book discounts; authors set those prices.
*** We have NEVER discounted our Vintage collection like this and may NEVER do it again!!

 

 

 

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Events Buzz: June and July Happenings

This blog is a little bit of a tease because we are announcing SOMETHING BIG to our newsletter subscribers first.  If you’ve already subscribed, you already know!  If not… keep an eye on this blog and our social media TOMORROW for a SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT!

(Trust us, you’ll want to mark your calendar for something WICKED COOL!)

Want to be the first to get our awesomen announcements? You can still sign up for our newsletter so you don’t miss out on future early announcements—as well as newsletter-only deals and specials. Interested?

CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP!

Our email newsletter will also keep you in the know with details about our upcoming events!

For now, here’s a look at some of the cool events coming up!

THIS WEDNESDAY, June 20, 7:00 PM, Game Night returns as a regular weekly event every Wednesday we don’t have an author event. Bring your favorite game or check out our collection—and play!

THIS THURSDAY, June 21, 7:00 PM – Doctor Who Discussion Night, “Hot Spots”.

ABSW has a sizable representation of Doctor Who merchandise, and owner Patty Cryan is a long-time fan of the series—the world’s longest running science fiction serial! This month we are discussing literal “hot spots” the Doctor and friends have visited, from volcanoes (like Pompeii) to the sun! Get summer started with this hot topic!

THIS FRIDAY: June 22, 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM – Storytime: Dr. Seuss. Pre-registration strongly suggested; space is limited. Children must be accompanied by an adult at all times.

Monday, June 25, 7:00 PM – Spinning Yarns.

June 27, 6:00 – 8:00 PM – Meredith Goldstein and Chemistry Lessons, a YA Novel.

 

And here’s a look at July…

Monday, July 2, 7:00 – 9:00 PM – Spinning Yarns.

Wednesday, July 4, 7:00 – 9:00 PM – Game Night.

Saturday, July 7, 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM – How To: Find Crafts for Kids with Selina Lovett. Pre-registration strongly suggested; space is limited.

Monday, July 9, 7:00 – 9:00 PM – Spinning Yarns.

Wednesday, July 11, 7:00 – 9:00 PM – Game Night.

DATE CHANGE: Thursday, July 12, 7:00 – 8:00 PM – Doctor Who Discussion Night.

Monday, July 16, 7:00 – 9:00 PM – Spinning Yarns.

Wednesday, July 18, 7:00 – 9:00 PM – Game Night.

Saturday, July 21, 6:00 – 8:00 PM – Rainbow Readers Discusses Outside the Lines by Anna Zabo.

Monday, July 23, 7:00 – 9:00 PM – Spinning Yarns.

Wednesday, July 25, 7:00 – 9:00 PM – Game Night.

Friday, July 27, 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM – Storytime: Wild Things. Pre-registration strongly suggested; space is limited. Children must be accompanied by an adult at all times.

Saturday, July 28, 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM – Winnie the Pooh Day.

Monday, July 30, 7:00 – 9:00 PM – Free People’s Artists Workshop.

Tuesday, July 31, All Day – Happy Birthday Harry Potter!

Have you enjoyed our events or the time you’ve spent in our little store? Consider leaving us a review on TripAdvisor or leaving us a review on Yelp. You can also review us on Facebook!

And if you are planning your summer vacation trips already, do keep an eye on our Facebook Events Page and our website for some great family and children’s programming we’re putting together for you! Or sign up for our newsletter, and get that information right in your inbox!

As a reminder, here are our regular events…

Spinning Yarns Craft and Audiobook Social, every Monday 7:00 PM (except for when the Free People’s Artists Workshop meets the fourth Monday of the month). Bring a craft and enjoy an audiobook or audio drama with other crafty booklovers!

NEW REGULAR EVENT: Game Night, every Wednesday (unless there is an author event) at 7:00 PM. Bring your favorite game or try a new one. Stop by the store to socialize and play!

NEW REGULAR EVENT: Storytime, last Friday of each month (except for June) at 11:00 AM. Come in for an hour of read aloud time for children ages 3-8. This June, we’ll be reading from Dr. Seuss! Pre-registration strongly suggested; space is limited. Children must be accompanied by an adult at all times. Next meeting June 22.

NEW REGULAR EVENT, starting July: How To…, second Saturday of each month (except July, unless there is an author event) at 11:00 AM. Join us for a quick talk and demo about how to do… something new! July’s topic is brought to you by our crafting queen, Selina, and she’ll be talking about How to Find Crafts for Kids. Pre-registration strongly suggested; space is limited. Next Meeting July 7.

The Free People’s Artists Workshop, the fourth Monday of each month from 7:00-9:00 PM. Networking and feedback from other artists and creators of all types. Co-sponsored by the Worcester County Poetry Association. Next meeting June 25.

Doctor Who Discussion Nights, the third Thursday of every month from 7:00 – 8:00 PM. Join us for a discussion of our favorite science fiction series. Next meeting is June 21.

The Rainbow Readers of Massachusetts is an LGBTQIA book club that will meet once a month, usually on the third Saturdays, from 6:00-8:00 PM. Next meeting July 21.

May your world be filled with wonderful words!

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Pssst… That Big Announcement…

Have you signed up for our newsletter so you can be one of the first to get it? (Otherwise, you’ll have to wait until Tuesday!)

Because this is BIG… and you don’t want to miss out!

(We’ve never done anything like this before… and we may not ever do it again!)

pile of covered books

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

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Announcement Coming Monday!

Vintage Books Better

Hey, everyone!  Just a reminder… if you want to be the first to hear SOMETHING SPECIAL that we’re announcing THIS MONDAY

SIGN UP FOR OUR NEWSLETTER!

Newsletter recipients get FIRST NOTICE of this WICKED COOL THING that you don’t want to miss, coming soon!

 

party

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Author Spotlight: Meredith Goldstein

06272018 - Chemistry-Lessons_Goldstein

Annie’s Book Stop of Worcester is happy to shine our Friday spotlight on author, advice columnist, and features reporter for The Boston Globe, Meredith Goldstein! Meredith will be in our 65 James Street store signing her YA novel, Chemistry Lessons on Wednesday, June 27, from 6:00 – 8:00 PM.

Meredith Goldstein has been writing her column, Love Letters — a daily dispatch of wisdom for the lovelorn — since 2009. In 2018, she releases two books: Can’t Help Myself: Lessons & Confessions from a Modern Advice Columnist, a memoir; and Chemistry Lessons, a young adult novel about a teen who tries to use science to manipulate her love life. Meredith is visiting ABSW for Chemistry Lessons, a book very much inspired by her day job helping the brokenhearted. The novel was also inspired by a story Meredith did in 2008 about how genetics can affect our mate choices. Meredith was born in New Jersey, raised in Maryland, and lives in Boston.

Thank you for joining us for an interview, Meredith! For readers unfamiliar with your work, how would you describe what you write?  What can readers expect from your books?

I have two very different books out this year – a memoir about my life as an advice columnist, and a young adult fiction novel about an 18-year-old who uses science to manipulate her love life. They’re different genres, but in many ways, both books are exactly what I’m about. Even with Chemistry Lessons, my YA novel, it’s all about how we love, how we cope with loss and rejection, and how we build community. I like to say they’re companion books, but Chemistry Lessons is written by my “id,” as opposed to Can’t Help Myself, which probably comes from my ego (if were talking Freud here).

 

What kind of research went into writing this book?  What is your favorite research story? What cool facts and findings didn’t make it into the book, but you loved discovering?

The most important part of my research involved shadowing a lab at MIT so I could write about that kind of environment. I’d always thought that labs were be emotionally cold, and that scientists were too absorbed in their work to socialize, but the lab I shadowed was the opposite. People were fun, friendly, supportive, and made each other laugh all day. I loved the camaraderie. As for the science itself, I read a lot of studies about pheromones and genetics, and asked a few experts to check my work. The science in my book isn’t real, but it’s based on genuine research, so I wanted it to seem as authentic as possible. …  As for the subplot about a Shakespeare production, I sought the council of the Commonwealth Shakespeare Company. It was a big help.

06152018 - Meredith author pic

What character did you love or hate the most while writing? And why?

My main character, Maya, has a best friend named Bryan, who’s an incredible talent (a theater star) – and also the book’s voice of reason. The character Bryan was based on my own real-life friend Bryan – who’s from Worcester! – and everyone tells me that the Bryan scenes were the funniest and their favorites. Bryan is hilarious (as is the real Bryan) and keeps all of the other characters together. … I spent a lot of time focusing on Bryan and Maya because I wanted to show how difficult it can be to leave a best friend when you’re going away to college. Maya spends the book coping with the loss of a relationship and a parent, but she’s also preparing for Bryan to leave town for the first time. I wanted to write him as the kind of character that no one wants to let go. When the book was finished, I missed him.

 

How important has the New England setting been to your writing?

With this particular book, Cambridge, Mass., specifically, was such an important setting. I’ve seen so many movies about Boston, and they’re all about the same places. Southie. Harvard Square. Fenway. Etc. Ever since I moved to Boston in 2002, I’ve been obsessed with the area around MIT, which looks like the future. Maya’s version of Massachusetts is filled with modern buildings, labs, and my favorite building, MIT’s Simmons Hall, which looks like a concrete sponge. If you’re taking a Chemistry Lessons-inspired tour of the area, make sure to visit the Miracle of Science bar, which displays its menu as a periodic table of elements. Maya and her friends dine there frequently in the book.

 

Where can people find your work? (Besides ABSW ;)–though they should totally check here first!)

Anywhere you get your books, and on boston.com and BostonGlobe.com.

 

How can we follow your work, share your awesomeness, or otherwise stalk you in a totally non-creepy way?

MeredithGoldstein.com, Twitter: @meredithgoldste, Instagram: @meredithgoldstein, boston.com/loveletters.

 

Thank you again for the great interview, Meredith! We’re excitd to have you at our 65 James Street store on Wednesday, June  27, from 6:00 – 8:00 PM!

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Big Announcement Teaser!

Hey friends of Annie’s Book Stop of Worcester,

We have some AWESOME news that we’re going to drop next week! And if you’re part of our Mailing List, YOU GET TO HEAR FIRST!

Not part of our mailing list?  CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP!

And also keep an eye on our Facebook, website, and here on our blog for regular updates and more teasers.

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