Wednesday, March 17, 2010

St. Patrick's (Rothfuss) Day

I'm about as runned-down as I have been in years. However, when Patrick Rothfuss comes to town, you've just got to "man up." There was seating for 125 and it was packed. As a result, Pat was limited in his flexibility to take pictures with people. I got some pictures, most of which came out terribly, damn it.

In terms of format, it was as loose as possible with so many people. Pat spent a lot of time fielding questions from the crowd. He talked about his experiences vis-a-vis Jim Butcher, which was funny to hear him tell. Pat also spoke about precisely how much work writing really is. Specifically, how writing his story can be credited to backside-to-chair time, as opposed to the beneficence of a mystical muse.

In between questions, he read three different things he had written. One was a recounting of what St. Patrick's Day meant to him as a child, a very moving story. It revolved around being a summer birthday child during the school year. Specifically, how children brought treats to school on their birthday and were "cool," for at least that day. Having a summertime birthday, however, seemed to quash that opportunity for the young Rothfuss. At least until his mother made green covered sugar cookies for him to take to class on St. Patrick's Day. The second reading was from an advise column he used to write. Hey, what do you expect from an advice column anyway? The article in particular discussed, albeit with a metric ton of pun and innuendo, the unnecessary circumsion of male infants. "It" (the new Rothfuss euphemism for a distinctly male appendage) was downright hilarious. In fact, the whole evening was either deeply interesting, as one saw the reflections Rothfuss experienced surface before them, or brutally comical, with the intelligence and eloquence that was sheer Rothfuss.

Before signing, he capped it off with a brief excerpt from the prologue to The Wise Man's Fear. I'd describe it to you, You'll just have to wait. Wish you were there.

The funniest moment of the evening, in my opinion, was seeing the shirt Pat was wearing. It had been especially designed and had the words "Reavers ate my first child" on the front. He then presented Baby Oot and Sarah. Baby Oot had an identical t-shirt on that read "Reavers ate my older brother."


Seak (Bryce L.) said...

Sounds awesome, glad you made it there. Hang in there and get some rest and you'll be good as new. :) That is if the little guy will let you. I'm soon to find out how that is.

PeterWilliam said...

Yeah, no kidding. I did get Rothfuss to sign, "To PeterWilliam and DominicWilliam," on the title page of the book. It's tough to see from my photo, but I wanted to get it as something I could later hand to the boy.

Alec said...

Any pics of him without the facial hair? And why in Gods name would you gloss over the expert he read?! Can we seriously not get a recap?

Tyson said...

Great gift for the little one when he grows up. Sounds like the event was well publicized which is also good news.
Hope you were able to hook me up with a signed copy.

PeterWilliam said...

@ Alec - Actually, the excerpt he read was from the prologue to The Wise Man's Fear. If you've read The Name of the Wind, it sounds familiar. The material wasn't any of the "guts" of the story I'm sure fans are pining for. The experience was profound in that, as in childhood, I closed my eyes while having someone read aloud to me (incidentally, Rothfuss has the perfect voice, reading rhythm and inflection for it). When I opened my eyes, the fact that the prologue to The Wise Man's Fear was read, by no less that they guy who wrote it. Great stuff.

PeterWilliam said...

ETA [above should have read]: no less than the guy who wrote it, left an echoing chamber of 125+ people silent, save for the ambient noise. For legitimate reasons, there was no video allowed, but damn if that wouldn't have been perfect to have.

PeterWilliam said...

I'm on my way out the door, as I type, to the post office. Reason: I'm mailing an item, via media mail rate, to Lakewood, Washington. I took a picture of your title page and will email it out to you.

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