Tumwater Foundation Presents an Afternoon of Local Authors

By Adam McKinney

As autumn rolls along in Washington, the days getting shorter, the air taking on that familiar bite, more folks will be choosing to stay indoors and curl up with a good book.

John Dodge

While readers can surely find many good selections on The New York Times Best Seller List, the question bares: why not turn attention to something more local?

Thurston County is lucky to have an unbelievable well of talented authors in our own neck of the woods – a fact that this year’s inaugural Authors’ Afternoon event aims to celebrate.

The event, held in three historic homes in Tumwater, will feature over a dozen authors from Thurston County, who will be selling and signing their works. The stylistic variety of books on hand – from fiction to history, women’s studies to religion, and humor – will ensure that readers find the right read for them.

Gary Ritchie, Dennis Larsen, Lauren Danner, John Dodge, Drew Crooks, Jennifer Crooks, Deb Ross, David Scherer Water, Maria Mudd Ruth, Ned Hayes, Alec Clayton, Christian Carvajal and Laura Swan are among the authors who will be at the event.

Carvajal, local author and editor for OLY ARTS, will be selling copies of his C is for Collection anthology of stories and giving out free copies of his apocalyptic novel Lightfall. “I used to live in Los Angles, and if you went to writing events there, you might see Elmore Leonard or, in those days, Ray Bradbury,” he says. “So, you’re meeting your idols, and that is incredibly intimidating, and much like being at ComicCon, where there’s such a huge chasm between what they’ve achieved and what you’ve achieved that all you can do is worship at their temple.”

Christian Carvajal

“But,” Carvajal continues, “if you’re a reader, or a book-buyer, or even if you’re someone who’s trying to learn how to be a writer, if you come up and talk to one of us, we are delighted to talk with you. … It’s very often a relief for ourselves to have a one-on-one conversation with someone about books we love.”

In addition to being able to purchase the books of these local authors, and chatting with them about their favorite books, attendees will get to see few selected writers give talks about their works.

Alec Clayton

“I will be discussing the difference between ‘based on a true story’ and ‘inspired by real life people, places and events,’ and I will read a scene from my novel Tupelo,” says Clayton, prolific author and OLY ARTS contributor. “There are a lot of excellent writers around here. I wish there was more interaction between them and more events like this to bring writers and readers together. I can most assuredly guarantee you’ll discover one or more writers who will become your new favorites.”

As Carvajal says, “It’s always a treat to meet somebody in your neighborhood who you admire as much as any writer you’ve read in your life.”

Authors’ Afternoon promises an opportunity for locals to meet their neighbors and fill their reading lists all at once.


Authors’ Afternoon book sale and signing


Sunday, October 20, 2019, 1 to 4 p.m.


Crosby House (702 Deschutes Way SW), Brewmaster’s (Henderson) House (602 Deschutes Way SW), and Schmidt House (330 Schmidt Place SW)


Free, although donations are gratefully accepted. Books will be sold by each author




Skip to content