Sunday, March 1, 2020

March into the Midwest: Now I'm Here at Prologue Bookshop

Touring bookstores to promote one's books can be very expensive and time-consuming, which is why I'm happy to announce that I'll be reading from and discussing my sixth novel, Now I'm Here, at Prologue Bookshop in Columbus on March 12. That the novel is set in a small fictional town near Columbus, and that I spent a few years at Ohio State University, makes this event particularly poignant. The store will also have a few copies of my first novel, PINS for sale.

GPC coverage of PINS in 1999
The last time I visited Columbus was in December 1999. I read from my first novel, PINS, to an appreciative audience at the now-closed An Open Book (749 N. High St.), and stopped by Cat's Impetuous Books in Stow, where I studied theatre for two years in nearby Kent.

It's hard to believe it's been twenty years since my last visit to Ohio. But with my family gone and few high school and college friends still there, traveling back there isn't as much of an option.

But when a representative from the Columbus Tourism  invited me on a press trip to write about the city's Short North district and growing LGBT community, of course I offered an enthusiastic 'Yes!' and contacted Prologue Bookshop next, because I saw that they host a monthly LGBT book club.

Book Loft, another great store in the area, ordered a few copies of Now I'm Here, which I'll sign on Friday March 13, at around 2pm.

While it's difficult to not feel a bit envious of authors who get national book tours arranged for them by their big publishers, I do feel a sense of pride that I not only arranged those long-ago events myself, but garnered a few reviews and interviews in several regional Ohio publications, including the now-gone Gay People's Chronicle, which gave my event a generous and knowledgeable two-page spread!

This time, I did get a few bites from local media, including this Q&A in City Scene:
"Being openly gay has never been easy, but some eras were more challenging than others. The AIDS crisis and rampant homophobia of the '80s certainly didn’t help the fight for gay rights. Author Jim Provenzano captures a story of love in this tumultuous time in his 2018 book Now I’m Here.
Prologue Bookshop has scheduled Provenzano to read and sign his book on March 12 at 7 p.m. It will be the first time in 20 years that this OSU alumnus will return to Columbus. Using his experience growing up in Ohio, Provenzano creates incredibly realistic characters in his sixth novel."
Prologue Bookshop
Prizm News, the new statewide LGBT publication, also granted me some coverage, with this Q&A:
"The story is saturated with subtle pieces of Provenzano’s past, including a love for Queen music and a unique experience on a pumpkin farm. The narrative also touches on topics of religious intolerance, abuse, and the heartbreak of AIDS."
For directions, visit Prologue's website. You should also follow their Instagram page for fun book recommendations.

If you're on Facebook, RSVP on the event page. If you can't attend, but are nearby, please order a copy of Now I'm Here from the store.