Welcome to WeeklyWilson.com, where author/film critic Connie (Corcoran) Wilson avoids totally losing her marbles in semi-retirement by writing about film (see the Chicago Film Festival reviews and SXSW), politics and books----her own books and those of other people. You'll also find her diverging frequently to share humorous (or not-so-humorous) anecdotes and concerns. Try it! You'll like it!

Tag: Glen Ellyn Book Fair

Drury Designs in Glen Ellyn for Book Fair

Drury Design, Glen Ellyn, Illinois

On June 19th, the community of Glen Ellyn had its first book fair. I signed up to participate ($25) and was told (eventually) that my signing spot was the Santa Fe Cafe. I both called and sent literature to Olga Jimenez, the charming owner of the Santa Fe Cafe, a downtown eating establishment that has been written up in “Chicago magazine.

I then set about having myself put on the free “Daily Herald” calendar, saying I would be at the Santa Fe Cafe and I sent some hand-outs to Olga, asking her to post same. She did so on her front door.

Less then a week before the June 19th event, I learned that I was being moved to Drury Designs, a kitchen and bath remodel store on the outskirts of the town. I was to share time/space with a writer of romance novels. I mentioned that Olga and I had already agreed that, since she doesn’t open till 11:00 a.m., I would sign from 11 to 2, rather than 10 to 1, and I was told that I couldn’ t do this because it “wouuldn’t be uniform.”

Actually, many other writers were signing at places around town in connection with the book fair at times other than 10 to 1, including J.A. Konrath, who signed at the downtown pub at night, and John O’Donnell, who had Randy Hundley of the Chicago Cubs come in as a celebrity to help him sell his baseball book.

I also learned that the “keynote” speaker was going to be speaking at a gym, which is not near the downtown, and that tickets were being sold for the speaker. However, none of we less-well-known writers were invited to have a table at the back of this gym while the “keynote” speaker did her thing.

I protested that, having just helped run a book fair in Davenport, Iowa, not having the rank-and-file of writers near the keynote speaker (who is, let’s face it, supposed to be the one who will draw a crowd for the smaller fry) seemed somewhat unfair to those of us stuck in the boonies. And, since I had already made some small efforts to advertise my presence at the Santa Fe Restaurant, moving me at the last minute to a place much further away from the action didn’t seem wise. The response was that the committee wanted to “draw people into the downtown stores.”

I certainly have no argument with drawing people into the downtown stores and I, personally, did my part, buying $80 of dresses for the 17-month old grand daughters, but I do think it (the notice that I must move to a different location than the one I had just told the newspaper) came sort of late in the day, and the reason given (“wouldn’t be uniform”) was bogus.

The romance writer and I saw exactly one woman who was not a committee member, during our 4 hours at the Drury Design, which is a lovely award-winning store. There were 3 other people who came in during the 4 hours, but they had appointments about their kitchen or bathroom remodeling jobs. Jim Drury, the owner of the establishment, was kind enough to buy one thing from each of his 2 authors, which was very nice of him, and I, in turn, said I would post an article about this lovely shop.

I also noted that all 35 to 40 authors could have been fit inside the Drury Design, and the downstairs has a place (separate room) where the keynote speaker could have spoken, although admittedly it is not the size of a school gymnasium. I hope you enjoy the pictures of my set-up inside a kitchen display. The lonely ghost welcomes the readers who did not come to the “Ghostly Tales of Route 66.”

Printers’ Row in Chicago, June 12 and June 13

Printers’ Row for the second day (Sunday, June 13th). For the second day, intermittent rain.

My tablemate (Chris Bell) did yeoman’s work, covering for us this morning from 10 to 2. (Yesterday, we did the A.M. shift). Today, we did the afternoon shift, 2 to 6 p.m. 6 p.m.

Stil more rain forced us into Bar Louie twice during the days, which was a small sacrifice. (Great spinach dip).

The ghost books sold well and my roommate and fellow tablemate expressed the opinion that the large wooden thing that says, “Ghostly Greetings” was a good eye-catching prop. (I use it to proop one book up.) If anyone knows where you can buy a more slanted plastic book holder thing, like bookstores use for signings, let me know where to purchase one.

So, next week (June 19th, Saturday), Glen Ellyn Book Fair. I’ll be at Drury Designs (kitchen remodels) from 10 to 1 and then I’m going over to Santa Fe restaurnat at 1:00 p.m. and (hopfully) signing until 2:00 p.m. if Olga Jimenez will allow me o do so.

See you there!

Book Signing(s) in Chicago for June 12, 13, 19

FixedPicAuthor  to Sign Books in Drury Design  June 19th from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. During First Glen Ellyn Book Fair

Author Connie (Corcoran) Wilson will be signing 6 of her most recent book releases within Drury Design from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. on Saturday, June 19th, as part of the first Glen Ellyn Book Fair. Nearly all of Mrs. Wilson’s books are priced at (approximately) $10, (with the exception of her 80,000 word novel.)  Three  form a trilogy of true ghost stories, including pictures taken during a 2,800 mile journey along Route 66 in November of 2008 that took the author on the Fort El Reno (Oklahoma) Ghost Tour, the last tour of the Fort’s season.

Connie will also be at Table #164 (Quadrant #2) on Saturday, June 12, from 10 to 2, and on Sunday, June 13th, from 2 to 6 p.m., at Printers Row in Chicago, downtown on Dearborn Street.

Wilson is a long-time writer (54 years) of both nonfiction and fiction, with a teaching career spanning 41 years  spent as adjunct faculty at 6 IA/IL colleges. She has published 8 books covering many genres. There’s literally “something for everyone” in her books published by 6  small independent publishers since 2002.

She began writing at age 10 for her hometown (Independence, Iowa) newspaper and continued writing in high school, college and beyond, while studying at Iowa, Berkeley, Northern Illinois University and the University of Chicago..

Connie attended the University of Iowa on a Ferner-Hearst Journalism Scholarship and graduated as an English major with a Journalism minor. She taught writing both to junior high school students and  to college students  in  writing classes at every college in the Illinois/Iowa Quad Cities. She has also interviewed many famous writers for publication, including Kurt Vonnegut,  John Irving, David Morrell, Anne Perry, William F. Nolan, Frederik Pohl and Joe Hill. Recently, she attended the Hawaii Writers’ Conference and she will be at Table 164 at Printers Row on June 12 and June 13. On May 8th she helped head up the First Annual Quad City Book Fair in Davenport, Iowa.

Wilson’s early writing was primarily for 7 newspapers, including 15 years (1970-1985) spent serving as the film and book critic for the Quad City Times (Davenport, IA) while employed full-time as a teacher at Silvis (IL) Junior High School. In 1987 Connie founded the second Sylvan Learning Center in the state of Iowa (Bettendorf, Iowa) and in 1995, she founded a Prometric Testing Center. She served as CEO of both businesses while also writing humor columns for the Moline (Illinois) Dispatch and raising 2 children with her husband of 43 years, Craig.

Today, she writes regularly for 7 blogs, including Associated Content, which named her its Content Producer of the Year for her political coverage during the 2008 presidential campaign (AC is a Top 50 blog and was recently bought by Yahoo). She also has her own blog, www.WeeklyWilson.com. You can find more information about the author at www.ConnieCWilson.com.

Today, Connie continues to  review film and television for www.GetYourGoodNews.com , an online newspaper in the Quad Cities, and she has written for www.blogforiowa.com (archived); www.speakaboutit.com (archived); www.JollyJo.com (second coming stories); and www.helium.com (archived). On March 20th of this year, Connie was named the Writer of the Year by the (Davenport, Iowa) Midwest Writing Center, receiving its David R. Collins Memorial Award.

With the sale of both her businesses in 2002, Connie (Corcoran) Wilson has turned her attention to writing longer works. She has published 6 books since 2002 and 8, total (none of them self-published).

Her most recent release is the third book (Volume III) in a trilogy of true ghost stories set along Route 66, entitled Ghostly Tales of Route 66. (www.GhostlyTalesofRoute66.com). The books are PG-rated, small and amply illustrated, beginning in Chicago with Volume I and moving along the Mother Road as far as Oklahoma. Volume II picks up in Ft. Smith, Arkansas, site of an earlier version of the route, and takes the reader to Arizona. The final volume (Vol. III) goes from Arizona to California and was just released on June 4th.

On May 27th, Connie was at  BookExpo America signing copies of her short story collection Hellfire & Damnation (www.HellfireandDamnationtheBook.com), a collection of short stories with the unifying theme of  the sins punished at each of the 9 circles of Hell in Dante’s Inferno. With an introduction by William F. Nolan, the 15-story collection has been widely praised and is nominated for the Horror Writers’ Association Bram Stoker Award this year.

In 2004, Connie collected her previously published Dispatch humor columns to produce Both Sides Now, a collection of David Sedaris-like humorous essays. In December of 2008 Lachesis Published her first collaborative novel, a romantic sci-fi thriller entitled Out of Time (www.OutofTimetheNovel.com), which was pitched to the producer of the Transformers movies in Burbank, California in June.

By August, ARCs (Advanced Reader Copies) of It Came from the ‘70s: From ‘The Godfather’ to ‘Apocalypse Now’ will be released from a small Rhode Island publisher (The Merry Blacksmith). The book is a 250 page nonfiction compilation of 50 movie reviews Connie wrote for the Quad City Times between 1970 to 1979, with an illustration every 3 pages, major cast, and interactive trivia (“Who did the studio really want to play Rocky in the movie of the same name?” Answers are upside down on the page; no fair cheating.)

As she said of the book, “Each review is like a tiny time capsule; the book could never be written this way today, as the reviews were written when  movie classics like The Godfather, Star Wars, Close Encounters of the Third Kind and Alien were new. It might mention that Sally Field was on Johnny Carson that night, talking about Alien, for instance.”

Stop by Drury Designs and get a signed copy of Connie’s books. The ghost book trilogy, if purchased as a set of 3m receives a $5 discount from the individual price of $9.95. Check the blogs above, as video trailers appear there for  Hellfire & Damnation and Out of Time.

Since 2004, Connie has also been the owner of a condo in the Central Station District of Chicago (Lakeside on the Park), keeping her in touch with her 14-month old twin granddaughters, who live with her son, Scott and his wife, Jessica, in Bridgeport.

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