As Chicago starts to cool off, the city offers a trove of exciting literary events to get you inside and cozying up with fellow writers and a good book. Alongside weekly live literature events that take place in every crevice of the city, there are plenty of one-time-only events that Chicagoans don’t want to miss out on.
Chicago is full of weekly off-the-beaten-path events. Events ranging from Miss Spoken which features stories told by female-identifying individuals to Paper Machete—a “‘live magazine’ covering pop culture, current events, and American manners—part spoken-word show, part vaudeville review—featuring comedians, journalists, storytellers, and musical guests”—allow for a variety of literary experiences for bibliophiles in the city. A great link for all the weekly events, along with prices, locations, and descriptions can be found at: http://www.literarychicago.com/calendar/.
Along with these weekly events, the month of October also offers some exciting one day events for literature lovers:
October 10th: Young Chicago Authors, a non-profit aiming to “transform the lives of young people by cultivating their voices through writing, publication, and performance education,” is celebrating 25 years with a “BeerRaiser” at Lagunitas Tap Room, 2607 W. 17th St. More info can be found at: http://www.chicagoreader.com/chicago/young-chicago-authors-25th-anniversary-beerraiser/Event?oid=23756166
October 5th - November 12th: Chicago Humanities Festival: There is no easy way to sum up the plethora of events that happen during the CHF, but literature lovers can look forward to events featuring Jonathan Lethem, Tim Wu, Gary Younge (author of Another Day in the Death of America——a chronicle of ten young people shot and killed on a single day), Mary Roach and Dan Savage—and that’s just in October. A complete schedule can be found at: http://tickets.chicagohumanities.org/default.aspx.
October 12th: Literary jack-of-all-trades Hanif Willis-Abdurraqib celebrates the release of his poetry collection The Crown Ain’t Worth Much, at The Silver Room, 1506 E. 53rd St. Willis-Abdurraqib’s work has appeared in Muzzle, Vinyl, PEN American, The FADER, Pitchfork, and The New York Times. He has also been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Find more info here: http://m.chicagoreader.com/chicago/hanif-willis-abdurraqib/Event?oid=23795933
October 14th: Northwestern University Poetry & Poetics: Global & Local Poets in Conversation presents 2016 featured poets TJ Dema from Botswana and Mayda Del Valle a Chicago native, as well as teen poets reading their work developed in workshops put on by the program and other initiatives. More info can be found at: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/programs/events/detail/90796
October 19th: Columbia College’s Creative Writing Reading Series: Chase Joynt and Vivek Shraya: In collaboration with the LGBTQ Culture and Community, and the Asian American Cultural Affairs Departments, the Creative Writing Department features multimedia artists and authors Chase Joynt and Vivek Shraya. Shraya, a prominent LGBTQ figure has won numerous awards for her work, and has been featured in publications such as Buzzfeed, Vice, and the Huffington Post. Her latest work is a picture book titled The Boy & the Bindi. Joynt, a widely-respected and in-demand academic and artist, recently published You Only Live Twice: Sex, Death and Transition, a book that details Joynt’s transition and the story of HIV-positive movie artist Mike Hoolboom.
October 20th: Best-selling author Ann Patchett discusses her new novel Commonwealth with the hosts of Nerdette podcast. Commonwealth centers around two families whose influence spans five decades and according to Patchett’s website, “is a meditation on inspiration, interpretation, and the ownership of stories.” A New York Times review of Commonwealth called it “exquisite,” and an article in The Guardian lauded the book as “outstanding.” The event takes place at First Evangelical Free Church, 5255 N. Ashland. $32. More info can be found at: http://www.annpatchett.com/events/.
October 28th: Broad City star Abbi Jacobson and author/long-time Chicago native Samantha Irby will be talking about Jacobson’s new book Carry This Book. Jacobson and Irby are also working on adapting Irby’s memoir Meaty into a series on FX, which is sure to be a topic of discussion as well. The conversation will be at Senn High School, 5900 N. Glenwood, $30. Find more about this event at: http://www.womenandchildrenfirst.com/event/abbi-jacobson-conversation-samantha-irby.
October 28th: The Puerto Rican Cultural Center and Guild Literary Complex will co-host poet Martin Espada as he celebrates his award-winning collection Zapata’s Disciple. The evening will also include a Q&A session and will take place at Teatro Urbano, 2620 W Division St. More information can be found at: https://guildcomplex.org/the-guild-hosts-a-special-palabra-pura-with-guest-martin-espada/