Like others in our widely scattered clan, my second cousin Aaron Stander is a writer--also an English prof, kayaker and carpenter. He's self-published a couple of mysteries set in northern Michigan, where he moved after spending many years in Detroit. This morning he wrote me:
I've got to tell you about a recent Saturday evening. I was invited to give a talk about my books and writing at a small community library in one of the poorest little towns in the region. The main street is two blocks long, and the only businesses still operating are a bar, a small grocery, and a restaurant. There's also a VFW hall, and one church. There are a few dozen houses in town, most built during the lumbering years.
There was bingo at the VFW, about ten cars at the bar, and about thirty people showed up at the library. Most of them had read one or both of my books. After the talk they had cake and coffee. I had been asked to talk for thirty or forty minutes. They kept me there for more than two hours.
What an amazing experience. In spite of all the doom and gloom about the decline in reading in America, there are still people out there who love to read and talk about writing.