the reading at cal state long beach last night was one of the highlights of my life. who could ask for much more: the event was sponsored by the pacific islander association at the university, was held in long beach (which has a large PI population), so many fantastic PI writers, and an energetic audience almost entirely PI (about 70-90 people). and it was good to see some talented and passionate chamorus in the house: keith castro, keith camacho, art medina, aleks munoz. all the readers were fantastic, and it was great to finally meet dan taulapapa mcmullin, who’s also a tinfish writer. and the star of the night, SIA FIGIEL, was amazing. damn. she read the first chapter of her most famous novel: WHERE WE ONCE BELONGED. the coolest thing was that i got to share a table with her as we were both selling books. a dream come true. it was her novel that inspired me to be a writer–and to actually sit next to her and to trade books at the end of the reading was so surreal. had to remind myself to breathe. we had an after party at a restaurant in long beach and i didnt get to bed till 2am–which was bad cuz i had to wake up at 7 to drive to LAX to catch my flight back to oakland. but the weather in berkeley was beautiful today. and a bright full moon tonight.
here are some pics: