Nature of Writing Speaker Series at Village Books
Join us for a series of free in-person presentations and find your next book for the cozy fall and hygge winter nights ahead! The Nature of Writing Speaker Series hosts authors, poets and artists sharing their new works. Events are in-person at Village Books (1200 11th St, Bellingham) and pre-registration is requested.
Lara Messersmith-Glavin’s Spirit Things
Friday, October 7, 7:00 pm
A collection of essays that evoke an adventurous spirit and the craving for myth, Spirit Things examines the hidden meanings of objects found on a fishing boat, as seen through the eyes of a child. Author Lara Messersmith-Glavin blends memoir, mythology, and science as she relates the uniqueness and flavor of the Alaskan experience through her memories of growing up fishing in the commercial salmon industry off Kodiak Island.
“Spirit things” are those mundane objects that offer new insights into the world on closer consideration—fishing nets, a favorite knife, and the bioluminescent gleam of seawater in a twilight that never truly grows dark. Spirit Things recounts stories of fishing, family, synesthesia, storytelling, gender, violence, and meaning. Each essay takes an object and follows it through histories: personal, material, and scientific, drawing together the delicate lines that link things through their making and use, their genesis and evolution, and the ways they gain significance in an individual’s life.
A contemplative take on everything from childcare to neurodivergence, comfort foods to outlaws, Spirit Things uses experiences from the human world and locates them on the edges of nature.
Syren Nagakyrie’s The Disabled Hiker’s Guide to Western Washington and Oregon
Saturday, October 8, 7:00 pm
The Disabled Hiker’s Guide to Western Washington and Oregon is the first book of its kind to consider the diverse needs of disabled people in the outdoors. This groundbreaking guidebook includes 60 outdoor adventures, including drive-up experiences, verified wheelchair accessible trails, and foot trails suitable for disabled hikers. This guide removes one of the barriers to access – a lack of information – by utilizing a rating system and detailed trail information designed for the disability community. Each trail is personally assessed according to Syren’s skilled and detailed review and established accessibility guidelines.
Molly Hashimoto’s Trees of the West: An Artist’s Guide
Sunday, October 16, 4:00 pm
Artist Hashimoto has appreciated trees all her life – they have shaped her as a hiker, outdoors lover, gardener, traveler, and artist. She pays homage to them through her new book, working in many different media, each revealing different aspects of these stalwart companions. Hashimoto also delves into the process of creating art, discussing the mediums she uses and the reasons she chose them, as well as tips and techniques.
As in her popular Colors of the West and Birds of the West, Hashimoto emphasizes her personal experiences with nature, telling stories about her encounters with trees everywhere from her backyard to national parks and forests throughout the West. She focuses primarily on native trees, rather than cultivars, with a special interest in 45 major species found across the region, ranging from the stately Coast redwoods to the diminutive but distinctive Fishhook Barrel Cactus.
Rooted in place, trees offer endless opportunities for observation, admiration, relaxation, and inspiration. Trees of the West invites us to pause and appreciate these sentinels in all their quiet glory.
Josephine Woolington’s Where We Call Home
Saturday, November 19, 7:00 pm
Reconnect with the natural world through essays that blend science and prose. In her debut work, Josephine Woolington turns back the clock to review the events that have challenged Pacific Northwest wildlife in an effort to provide a deeper sense of place. Only then can we imagine how these imperious effects might be overcome.
Join Woolington as she sheds light on the diverse species whose populations are slowly declining from the lands, seas, and skies of the Pacific Northwest. Only by acknowledging this truth can we understand that our impact on the Earth is deeper and far more significant than we ever imagined. Through interviews with local educators, Indigenous leaders, scientists, and artists from the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde, the Haida Nation, the Yakama Nation, the Makah Tribe, and beyond, we are invited to decenter our singular perspective in favor of a more empathic, collective approach.
The flora and fauna of the Pacific Northwest are resilient. As they adapt to a world far removed from its wonders, we must realize our own interconnectedness to nature and to one another. Woolington colors the rich history of the Pacific Northwest within the eye of its beholder so that society can learn to live intentionally in the land that sustains us all. From the coastal tailed frog to the sandhill crane, the yellow-cedar to the camas flower, these stories reimagine what it means to live mindfully in the colorful region we call home.