March is NZ Book Month, where all sorts of reading events take place. My writing org SpecFicNZ has several events planned - the first one was last week in Auckland.
The traffic jam that night was the stuff of legends. Notwithstanding this, a good crowd fought their way to the Mangere Bridge library for Words on the Wind. The librarians kindly provided nibbles and drinks, and set us up in an area dedicated to genre fiction.
First author up was Grant Stone, with his story “Better Phones” – which he read from a phone. Following him were Darian Smith with “The Interview” and “Wearing the Star Cloak”, then Elaine King with “Pets”. After that we had a half-time break for more nibbles and a look at the book table. Then came readings from Lila Richards (from the novel “Restitutions of the Blood”) and then me, Grace Bridges (“A Stretch of Time” from the Aquasynthesis anthology). Finally, Jacqui Smith talked about Stella Nova and Novazine which is always looking for stories. I also asked for local manuscripts to be submitted to Waitemata Books and told the audience they really should be members of SpecFicNZ because it does all these awesome things for you.
There was enough time afterwards to mingle a little more before the library had to close. A great time was had by all, and huge thanks and applause to Mary Jones for arranging everything so wonderfully!