Book Briefs for Sept. 14-24

Princess for Hire author slated to speak to writers group

Lindsey Leavitt, author of the Princess for Hire series and "Sean Griswold’s Head," is scheduled to speak on writing and publishing for the young adult audience during a meeting of the Las Vegas Writers Group at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Tap House, 5589 W. Charleston Blvd. The meeting fee is $5. For more information, visit meetup.com/Las-Vegas-Writers.

BMI fall season schedule to include medical ethics discussion and more

The Black Mountain Institute plans an open house and discussion on medical ethics with Harriet Washington, David Ewing Duncan and Jacob Appel at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday in the University of Nevada, Las Vegas’ student union, 4505 S. Maryland Parkway.

Additional BMI presentations include James Longenbach at 3:30 p.m. Oct. 18 at the Flamingo, 3555 Las Vegas Blvd. South; Jennifer Egan, in cooperation with the Vegas Valley Book Festival, at 3:30 p.m. Nov. 3 at the Historic Fifth Street School, 401 S. Fourth St.; Wole Soyinka at 7 p.m. Feb. 12 in the student union; A Nevada Emerging Writers Series featuring Leslie Jamison at 7 p.m. Feb. 19 in the Greenspun Hall auditorium, 4505 S. Maryland Parkway; Mustapha Marrouchi at 7 p.m. March 6 in the student union; and a conversation with BMI Fellows Criselda Yabes and Oksana Marafioti, moderated by Richard Wiley, at 7 p.m. April 10 in the student union.

For more information, visit black mountaininstitute.org.

Local author Series to feature Jeff Lee

The READ Local Author Series is scheduled to feature Jeff Lee, author of the novels "Hair of the Dog" and "The Ladies Temperance Club’s Farewell Tour," from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. Monday at the Paseo Verde Library, 280 S. Green Valley Parkway. The fourth Monday of each month the series features local authors meeting with readers in the library’s lobby. For more information, visit mypubliclibrary.org or call 492-6580.

Mob museum to launch Inside Stories fall speaker series

The National Museum of Organized Crime & Law Enforcement, The Mob Museum, 300 Stewart Ave., is scheduled to launch an Inside Stories fall speaker series with a talk by Joaquin "Jack" Garcia, regarded as one of the most successful agents in FBI history, from 6 to 9 p.m. Wednesday . Tickets are $35.

Upcoming events are set to feature security expert Mark Galeotti, set to speak at 6 p.m. Oct. 17, and crime-fighting lawyer G. Robert Blakey, set to speak at 6 p.m. Nov. 13. Presentations include a cocktail reception and hors d’oeuvres. Visit themobmuseum.org for details.

Obert Skye, Colleen Houck to visit

Obert Skye, author of the Leven Thumps series and author/illustrator of the new Creature from My Closet series, is scheduled to make an appearance at 5 p.m. Thursday at the 2191 N. Rainbow Blvd. Barnes & Noble. For more information on the author, visit abituneven.com.

The store is also scheduled to welcome Colleen Houck, who will be signing copies of "Tiger’s Destiny," book four in her Tiger’s Curse series, at 7 p.m. Thursday. For more on the author, visit tigerscursebook.com.

Urban crime novelist plans visit

Q.B. Wells, author of the uban crime novel "Doughboy," is scheduled to sign books at 1 p.m. Saturday at the 2191 N. Rainbow Barnes & Noble. For more information on the author, visit artofficialmedia.com.

Cheryl Strayed to participate in Book Festival preview event

Maile Chapman is scheduled to interview Cheryl Strayed, the New York Times bestselling author of "Wild," "Tiny Beautiful Things" and "Torch," during a Vegas Valley Book Festival preview event scheduled for 7 p.m. Sept. 26 at the Clark County Library, 1401 E. Flamingo Road.

Oprah Winfrey selected "Wild" as the first book for her Oprah’s Book Club 2.0, and the memoir has been optioned for film by Reese Witherspoon’s production company.

Chapman is the author of the novel "Your Presence Is Requested at Suvanto."

A book signing for both authors and a reception is scheduled to follow the interview.

For more information, visit vegasvalley bookfestival.org or lvccld.org. For more on Strayed, visit cherylstrayed.com.

LOVE YOUR LIBRARY? TELL A FRIEND

September is Library Card Sign-Up Month, and the Las Vegas-Clark County Library District and CSI: The Experience at the MGM Grand have teamed up to present Love your Library? Tell a Friend! The sign-up campaign continues through Sept. 30.

Just sign up for a free library card during the month of September, or, if you already have a library card, "like" the library district on Facebook and be automatically entered for a chance to win a grand prize that includes a family pack of tickets to CSI: The Experience and CSI: The Experience official merchandise.

Existing library cardholders will receive a 50 percent discount off general admission to the CSI feature through Nov. 30 (cannot be combined with other offers or discounts). Simply show your Las Vegas-Clark County Library card at the box office at the MGM Grand to receive the discount.

Getting a free library card is easy. Just stop in at any library to fill out an application or visit lvccld.org.

Writers of Southern Nevada plan freelance writing conference

Making Cent$ of a Writing Career, a Writers of Southern Nevada freelance writing conference, is scheduled from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 13 at the Gold Coast, 4000 W. Flamingo Road.

Slated speakers include Steve Friess, Andrew Kiraly, Heidi Kyser, Becky A. Johnson, Steve Blust, Geoff Schumacher and Rick Lax. Topic discussions are to include marketing, avoiding common editing mistakes, reaching out to national markets and handling rejection.

Admission is $149.

Continental breakfast is included, as is lunch with industry experts leading table discussions. For more information, visit nevadawriters.org.

Organizers are gearing up for Vegas Valley Book Festival

Planning is in high gear for the Vegas Valley Book Festival, scheduled Nov. 1-3. The festival is expected to feature more than 100 authors participating in panel discussions, readings, book signings, workshops and exhibitions.

Festival organizers are seeking community groups and individuals to volunteer at the festival’s Nov. 3 events. To sign up as a volunteer, call Bobbie Ann Howell at 895-1878.

The festival is also soliciting nominations for the Crystal Bookmark Award, an honor bestowed on a local individual and an organization for advancing the cause of literature in the Las Vegas Valley. The submission deadline is 5 p.m. Sept. 21.

Headlining festival speakers include 2011 Pulitzer Prize winner Jennifer Egan and Charlaine Harris, whose Sookie Stackhouse urban fantasy series is the basis for the HBO series "True Blood."

The Vegas Valley Children’s Book Festival, scheduled from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Nov. 2, is set to feature David Shannon, Jon Agee, Patrick Carmen, Monica Brown, Charlotte Blake Alston, Susan Katz, Alex Raffi and more.

The Valley Comic Book Festival, scheduled from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Nov. 2, is scheduled to feature panel discussions, speakers, film screenings, an artist jam and portfolio reviews. Participating talent is set to include Gene Ha, Aaron Alexovich, Dan Parson and Tommy Kovac.

Landis Bahe has been selected to create three pieces of artwork for the event’s official posters, one each for the main festival, the Vegas Valley Children’s Book Festival and the Vegas Valley Comic Book Festival.

For more on the festival, visit vegas valleybookfestival.org or call 229-5431.

Henderson Writers Group meets Mondays

The Henderson Writers Group meets from 6:30 to 8:45 p.m. Mondays at The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf at 4550 S. Maryland Parkway on the second and fourth Mondays and at Saxbys Coffee Lounge, 72 W. Horizon Ridge Parkway in Henderson, on the first, third and occasional fifth Mondays. Meetings are typically canceled on holidays.

Visit hendersonwritersgroup.com for more information. Meetings are open to the public.

Barnes & Noble to host writing group

The 2191 N. Rainbow Blvd. Barnes & Noble hosts a writing critique group the fourth Monday of each month. The group is limited to the first 20 participants per meeting. Sign up at www.meetup.com/las-vegas-creative-writing-class.

Las Vegas Romance writers to welcome Amber Scott

Amber Scott, author of "Soul Search" and "Love Soul Deep" plans to direct a discussion titled "Your Brain on Writing" at 10:30 a.m. Oct. 20 during a Las Vegas Romance Writers meeting set to begin at 10 a.m. Saturday in the Wengert Conference Room at the NV Energy Building, 6226 W. Sahara Ave. Visit lasvegasrwa.org for details. For more on the author, visit amberscottbooks.com.

FREE STORYCORPS TOOLKIT HELPS COLLECT MEMORIES

The national StoryCorps’ Memory Loss Initiative encourages people with memory loss to share their stories with loved ones and future generations. To make that task easier, a free step-by-step toolkit is available to download at storycorps.org/mli.

The Commemorate toolkit offers an individual reminiscence program that family members can initiate or memory loss care facilities can add to activities.

The initiative has collected more than 1,800 interviews with 180 partner organizations.

For more information, visit storycorps.org or call 646-723-7027.

ACCESS RECORDED BOOK PROGRAMS ONLINE

Too busy to get out to book programs? The Las Vegas-Clark County Library District has started posting videocasts and podcasts of many of its programs online. Selections available so far include: "An Afternoon with Tony Curtis," John L. Smith’s presentation "Amelia’s Long Journey: The Challenge of Writing What You Know," "Batman" movie producer Michael Uslan’s presentation at the 2009 Vegas Valley Comic Book Festival, Jami Carpenter’s "ABCs of Editing" workshop and Brian Rouff’s "Getting Published: A Long Strange Trip." To access the programs, visit lvccld.org, select "Books, Movies & More" and then "Video and Podcasts."

The Black Mountain Institute has offered recordings of its programming since 2006. To access recordings of a gamut of writers from E.L. Doctorow to Alissa Nutting, visit blackmountain institute.org and select "multimedia."

S.P. Grogan’s ‘bin Laden’s Revenge’ is now available in its entirety

Local author S.P. Grogan’s "bin Laden’s Revenge," first released as a serial e-book, is now available in its completed form. The book tracks a bounty hunter reality show on its quest to capture Osama bin Laden. When the U.S. Navy beats them to it, the TV stars uncover an al-Qaeda plot against the United States. For more on the book, visit spgrogan.com.

Teen Writing Club plans meetings

A Teen Writing Club for writers ages 12 to 17 meets from 4 to 5 p.m. the third Tuesday of most months at the Green Valley Library, 2797 N. Green Valley Parkway. Twice a year the club hosts a Coffee House open mic event. For more information, call 207-4260.

FREE READ TO ME PROGRAM OFFERS STORIES ONLINE AND BY PHONE

Celebrity storytellers Oscar Goodman, Rita Rudner, Clint Holmes, Terry Fator, Carrot Top, The Scintas and others have donated their talents to the Clark County Education Association Community Foundation’s Read To Me program. Children can view more than 15 videos of celebrities reading books on the website at readtomelv.com. Stories also can be accessed by calling 240-2665.

Both databases are frequently updated with fresh stories. Parents and teachers can download lesson plans for each book on the website.

SHARE POEMS AT HUMAN EXPERIENCE

Polish up a poem or two and try them out at Human Experience, a free spoken word event, from 7 to 9 p.m. Mondays in The Beat Coffeehouse inside Emergency Arts, 520 Fremont St. For details, visit lasvegaspoets.org.

DOWNLOAD BOOKS and MORE FROM YOUR PUBLIC LIBRARY

Virtual Branch websites make it easy to browse, check out and download digital books and more to a home computer for free. All patrons need is a valid library card and an Internet-connected PC.

Virtual Branch download websites feature a digital catalog of downloadable audio books, e-books, music and video titles.

Each site is meant to look and feel like the library’s main site, and it has many easy-to-use features similar to an online store.

Digital book downloads are borrowed just like print materials. Once patrons select the title or author they want, they follow the steps to check out and then download the title to their home computer.

Patrons can transfer most titles to portable media players, such as MP3 players, PDAs, Kindles or smart phones.

Each title that is downloaded has a designated lending period. When the title expires, it is automatically returned to the Virtual Branch, so there are no late fees.

For more information, visit search.overdrive.com.

ZINE LIBRARY OPEN IN EMERGENCY ARTS

Grab a cup of coffee and check out the independently crafted magazines at the Las Vegas Zine Library inside The Beat Coffeehouse in Emergency Arts, 520 Fremont St.

The library is more of a collection on display for reference and on-site reading than a checkout repository. Contributions of zines are appreciated. For more information, visit lvzinelibrary.blogspot.com.

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