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!)

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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!

 

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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.

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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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Events Buzz: June Happenings

06112018 - White Board

We’re having a lovely kick-off for Pride Month and Summer Reading Season so far this June! If you haven’t yet, come in and see what we’ve got for books on LGBQTIA topics by authors who identify as part of the Queer Community. Also, make us your first stop for Summer Reading titles! We have several on our spinners at our discounted prices.

And we’ve also started a Whiteboard Daily Sale! We’ll be changing our sale regularly—so check at the register to see what new savings we’ve got in store for you.

Speaking of special sales, have you signed up for our email newsletter yet? We’ve had a few people come in and take advantage of the special deals just for signing up—as well as the special deals that go out ONLY to our newsletter subscribers. Interested?

CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP!

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

This week, for example, we had FOUR great events!  On Wednesday, we kicked off a new regular event, Game Night, where we broke out some fun old-school board games and socialized. On Thursday, we hosted author and journalist Dan Kennedy for a discussion of The Future of Newspapers. On Saturday, we had authors Karen Stivali and Tamsen Parker for a Pride Event co-hosted with the Rainbow Readers of Massachusetts talking about Queering Up Romance. And on Sunday, we had a panel about LGBTQIA for Youth in Books with authors Jen Petro-Roy and LJ Cohen for another Pride event co-hosted by the Rainbow Readers. A great big THANK YOU to everyone who came out and made these events so much fun!

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!

THIS WEDNESDAY, June 13, 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 SATURDAY, June 16, 6:00 – 8:00 PM, we’re excited to have the Rainbow Readers Discuss Seven Summer Nights by Harper Fox.

It’s 1946, and the dust of World War II has just begun to settle.

Famous archeologist Rufus Denby is used to the most glamorous of excavations, but can’t turn down a job in rural Sussex. It’s a refuge, and the only means left to him of scraping a living. With nothing but his satchel and a mongrel dog, he’s rescued from a bomb site and sets out to investigate an ancient church in the sleepy village of Droyton Parva.

The Reverend Archie Thorne has tasted action too, as a motorcycle-riding army chaplain, and is struggling to readjust to the little world around him. He’s a lonely man, and Rufus’s arrival soon sparks off in him a lifetime of repressed desires.

As Rufus and Archie begin to unfold the archaeological mystery of Droyton, their growing friendship makes Rufus believe he might one day recapture his lost memories of the war and find his way back from the edge of insanity to love.
And for the rest of June…

Monday, June 18, 7:00 PM – Spinning Yarns.

NEW LINK: Wednesday, June 20, 7:00 PM – Game Night.

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

NEW LINK: 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 is a sneak peek at what is going on in July—including some NEW REGULAR EVENTS…

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!

We’re still working on July and August events, so watch for more cool things being added on our Facebook Events Page and our website to plan ahead!

And sign up for our Newsletter to get our news, events—and some new BONUS sales and coupons we’ll be sharing ONLY with our newsletter list—delivered right to 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 June 16.

May your world be filled with wonderful words!

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Author Spotlight: LJ Cohen

A Star in the Void - Cover Art

Annie’s Book Stop of Worcester is happy to welcome back LJ Cohen to our spotlight this Friday and our 65 James Street store THIS SUNDAY, from 1:00 – 3:00 PM, along with Jen Petro-Roy, for our Queer Representation for Younger Readers panel, a Pride Celebration co-hosted with Rainbow Readers of Massachusetts.

LJ Cohen is a novelist, poet, blogger, ceramics artist, and relentless optimist. After almost twenty-five years as a physical therapist, LJ now uses her anatomical knowledge and clinical skills to injure characters in her science fiction and fantasy novels. She lives in the Boston area with her family, two dogs, and the occasional international student. A STAR IN THE VOID (book 5 of the SF/Space Opera series Halcyone Space), is her eighth novel. When not doing battle with a stubborn Jack Russell Terrier mix, she can be found working on the next novel, which often looks a lot like daydreaming. LJ is a member of SFWA, Broad Universe, and the Independent Publishers of New England.

 

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

I write both fantasy and science fiction, but across all my work, a reader will find vivid characters overcoming their internal conflicts. Learning to trust – oneself and others  – seems to be a theme that emerges in my stories. Along with blowing up spaceships and unraveling galactic conspiracies and the like. 🙂

06082018 - A Star In The Void ebook Cover rgb -smaller

What was the biggest challenge in writing and putting out [newest release/spotlighted release]?  How did you overcome that challenge?

Drafting A STAR IN THE VOID was so much more difficult than I anticipated. It took me twice as long to draft as I had planned for. Firstly, I think my subconscious was “dragging its feet” because I really didn’t want to say goodbye to these characters. Secondly, I had no idea at the start how hard bringing a five book series to a close would be! All those plot threads needed to be drawn together in a way that was satisfying to the reader and appropriate to the story. I wrote myself into a lot of corners during the process.

Having writer friends to rant at was really helpful! And trusting the process. That’s what I go back to again and again: trust the process.

 

What is/are your passions when you’re not writing? How do you make time for your non-writing hobbies/things you love?

My current passion is ceramics. There’s something meditative and healing about having my hands in clay. Plus I get to give cool gifts to my friends. 🙂 I tend to hang around at the clay studio when my imaginary friends aren’t talking to me. When I’m totally focused on something else, that’s usually when the writing problem fixes itself. Plus, it gets me away from my computer and allows me to hang out with other people, which is good, since writing is such a solitary job.

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What is one thing that most people don’t realize about you?

I have aphantasia – which means I don’t see images in my mind. I never realized this was a neuro-atypicality until I read an article about it from the New York Times a few years ago! I thought that when people talked about their mind’s eye, that they were using it metaphorically. It also explains why in my early writing attempts, people kept telling me I was writing ‘floating heads in black boxes.” I’ve since had to learn to add visual descriptions in my writing.

 

Writers very often have furry or feathered or otherwise non-human companions to “help” them through their work.  Do you? What do you have? How do they “help” (or, “not-help”) with your writing?

I currently have 2 shelter pups. Dustin is a Jack Russel terrier mix and is always getting into trouble. He barks at everything.  Mya is a border collie mix who has discovered that she can distract me when I’m at the computer – she either lays her head on the keyboard, or worse, hits the touch screen with her nose.

But both have beds in my office and are great to talk plot points with. They typically stare at me as if what I’m saying is the wisest thing ever. Of course, it helps if I ply them with dog treats.

 06082018 - DerelictCoverArt-CJH-TITLES

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

My novels can be found in print and ebook in all the usual places. Links are always current on my website, ljcohen.net

 

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

I’m on twitter, FB, and Google plus and you can absolutely follow me on my occasional newsletter. You can find all the links on the contact page on my website: ljcohen.net/contact.html

Thank you again for the great interview, LJ, and we look forward to having you and Jen Petro-Roy THIS SUNDAY at Annie’s Book Stop of Worcester on 65 James Street, from 1:00 – 3:00 PM, to celebrate Pride Month with the Rainbow Readers of Massachusetts with “Queer Representation for Younger Readers.”

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Events Buzz: June and Pride Month

06042018 - Blog Display pic

If you’re just following our blog, you missed this week’s BRAND NEW NEWSLETTER! We are including newsletter-only deals and information for subscribers, so consider signing up by…

CLICKING HERE AND FILLING OUT OUR FORM!

Happy June and Happy Pride Month to all our friends! Come in and see our Pride Display—and check out our coupon for used LGBTQIA books at the bottom of our newsletter!

As a reminder, we’re in our summer hours schedule, so we are open until 6:00 PM or later on Sundays!

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!

We’ve gotten a few Summer Reading Lists and are stocking up. Do you have a summer reading list for your student? Bring it into the store! If we don’t have the book already, we can order it!

Thank you to everyone who came out this past Saturday for our first Pride event, Creating in the Trans Community! We had a packed store for an afternoon of gorgeous art and fantastic fiction from our panel of authors and artists. We still have a few signed books available if you missed the event, so stop in and check out our Pride offerings!

06042018 - Blog Trans Panel

We’ve got a lot happening this week, too!

BRAND NEW REGULAR EVENT: THIS WEDNESDAY, June 6, 7:00 PM –  Game Night! Stop in to socialize and play a few board games, card games, and other cool games!

THIS THURSDAY, June 7, from 7:00 – 9:00 PM, come out for The Future of Newspapers with Dan Kennedy.

Dan Kennedy’s book, The Return of the Moguls, chronicles the important changes in newspaper ownership, and how it goes beyond affecting the news and into affecting democracy as we know it. Dan will be talking, reading, and signing.

Dan Kennedy is an associate professor in the School of Journalism at Northeastern University in Boston and a panelist on WGBH-TV’s Beat the Press. He was a reporter and media analyst at the Boston Phoenix for eleven years and a featured media columnist for the Guardian for five years. He writes on the news media for WGBHNews.org, the Nieman Journalism Lab, and other publications, as well as the blog Media Nation. He is the author of The Wired City.

And THIS SATURDAY, June 9, from 1:00 – 3:00 PM, we have another PRIDE Event: Queering Up Romance with Authors Tamsen Parker and Karen Stivali.

Karen Stivali and Tamsen Parker talk about writing LGBTQIA romance and the importance of all love—as well as reading and signing.

Karen Stivali is a prolific writer, compulsive baker and chocoholic with a penchant for books, movies and fictional British men. She writes contemporary straight (m/f) and LGBTQ (m/m) romance. She writes sexy, character driven contemporary romance set in both New England and NYC. Her novels are about love…like real life, only hotter.

Tamsen Parker is a stay-at-home mom by day, USA Today bestselling erotic romance writer by naptime. She lives with her family outside of Boston, where she tweets too much, sleeps too little and is always in the middle of a book. Aside from good food, sweet rieslings and gin cocktails, she has a fondness for monograms and subway maps. She should really start drinking coffee.

Also, THIS SUNDAY, June 10, from 1:00 – 3:00 PM, we have another PRIDE Event: LGBTQIA for Youth with authors Jen Petro-Roy and LJ Cohen.

Jen Petro-Roy has been refused school visits for the “controversial” topics of religion and sexuality in her middle grade book, PS. I Miss You. LJ Cohen is a social activist whose diverse YA book series includes several LGBTQIA characters. Both will be speaking, reading, and signing.

Jen Petro-Roy was born, raised, and still lives in Massachusetts, even though she rejects the idea that snow and cold are ever a good thing. She started writing in third grade, when her classroom performed a play she had written. As a kid, numerous pictures of Jen often featured Baby-Sitters Club and Sweet Valley Twins books clutched in her hand, so it was just a matter of time until she started writing her own books for children. Jen has worked as a teacher and a teen and children’s librarian. She loves running, board games, trivia, and swimming, and has a mild obsession with the television show Jeopardy! P.S. I Miss You is her debut novel, and her website is www.jenpetroroy.com.

LJ Cohen is a Boston-area novelist, poet, blogger, ceramics artist, and relentless optimist. After almost twenty-five years as a physical therapist, LJ now uses her anatomical knowledge and myriad clinical skills to injure characters in her science fiction and fantasy novels.. LJ is active in IPNE (The Independent Publishers of New England), SFWA (The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America) and Broad Universe, and she blogs about publishing, general geekery, and other ephemera at http://www.ljcbluemuse.blogspot.com. Contact LJ at lisa@ljcohen.net and http://www.ljcohen.net.

 

And for the rest of June…

Saturday, June 16, 6:00 – 8:00 PM – Rainbow Readers Discuss Seven Summer Nights by Harper Fox.

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

NEW LISTING, NEW REGULAR EVENT: June 22, 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM – Story Time: Dr. Seuss. Pre-registration strongly suggested; space is limited. Children must be accompanied by an adult at all times.

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

 

And here is a sneak peek at what is going on in July—including some NEW REGULAR EVENTS…

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

Wednesday, July 4, 7:00 – 8:00 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 – 8:00 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 – 8:00 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 – 8:00 PM – Game Night.

Friday, July 27, 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM – Story Time: 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!

We’re still working on July events, so watch for more cool things being added on our Facebook Events Page and our website to plan ahead!

And sign up for our Newsletter to get our news, events—and some new BONUS sales and coupons we’ll be sharing ONLY with our newsletter list—delivered right to 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, bring your favorite game or try a new one. Stop by the store to socialize and play!

NEW REGULAR EVENT: Story Time, 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) 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 craftmaster, 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 June 16.

May your world be filled with wonderful words!

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