It may be a day or two before I get around to adding them to the list on the left sidebar, but there are some new sales outlets for the Essex Coastal Byway Guide. What's cool is that they're all deeply ensconced in the area's maritime heritage. Lowell's Boat Shop in Amesbury isn't technically on the Byway, but close enough that they're in the book. They're the oldest continuously operating boat shop in Americam having been at it since 1793. A few miles down the road is the Essex Shipbuilding Museum, which ecompasses the history of a local trade going back to the 1600s at the site. Across an inlet from the museum is the boatshop of Harold Burnham, who built the Ardelle, which now sails out of Maritime Gloucester, a sort of community learning center on the central harbor in America's oldest seaport. (That's the Ardelle, in skeletal form, in Dylan Metrano's papercut, which appears above and on the book cover.) The book is on sale in all three places, so if you stop in to see 'em, buy a Byway Guide and tell them I sent you.
Great time at the Newburyport Lit Fest today.
Ghlee and I drew a full house at the Art Association, although you
can't tell by the book signing picture below. And I sold some Essex Coastal Byway
Thanks to everyone who made Friday a great night for the Essex Coastal Byway Guide at the Custom House Maritime Museum in Newburyport. Executive director Michael Mroz tells me the turnout of members and would-be members was 110, a First Friday record. And from the podium, at least, it looked like most of them made it into the audience for short talks by myself and Bill Steelman of Essex Heritage. (That's Bill at the podium in the picture, below, and me in the background.)
Everyone learned about the Essex Coastal Scenic Byway from Bill, and I hope a little bit about North Shore history from me. At least there were some laughs. Question of the night: "Which is worse, the Salem witch trials or Fox News?" I managed to dodge that one, and apparently everyone had a good time, because I sold dozens of books, really my best night's sales since the launch party. So thanks to Michael, Bill, and everyone, as well as to museum volunteer Isa Cann for the photos.
As noted below, I'll be joining Bill Steelman of Essex Heritage at the mic for First Friday at the Custom House Maritime Museum in Newburyport on April 5. That's a member event (although you can join that night and still get in on the buffet and drinks). But everyone is invited when I'll be on a panel at the Newburyport Literary Festival on April 27. Ghlee Woodworth and I will talking about Newburyport walking trails, local history, the byway and so forth at 11 a.m. at the Newburyport Art Association. And best of all, it's free! And I'll be the speaker at the Lynn Museum's annual membership meeting in May. In each case I'll be selling and singing signing the Essex Coastal Byway Guide for interested parties. (Although, for a price, I might sing it too.)
Myself and Bill Steelman of Essex Heritage will be talking about the Essex Coastal Scenic Byway at the Custom House Maritime Museum at the regular First Friday gathering for museum members and their guests in Newburyport on April 5 at 6 p.m. If you know someone who's a museum member, you ought to wrangle yourself an invite, because it's an excellent chance to check out the museum while enjoying a snack and a beverage. Bill will update everyone on the progress of promoting the 85-mile byway that runs through 13 towns on the North Shore, and then I'll try to entertain with some anecdotes from along the way as well as the backstory on the Essex Coastal Byway Guide. Oh, and I'll be signing books, too.
Well, it would be if I was having a photo contest. This shot by Brad Kelly was taken yesterday at True Grounds in Ball Square, Somerville. My favorite pic of the Essex Coastal Byway Guide so far, although most people remark on the tabletop, not the cover.
I don't normally cross-pollinate the Essex Coastal Byway Guide and my other writing. But in this case my street cred as a North Shore knowitall is on the line, so ... if you've never been to The Riverside in Ipswich for pizza, you'll want to read my Globe North review. It's a townie kind of place, they only take cash, and all they serve is pizza. But it's worth knowing about, seriously.
It was a snowy, wet, miserable morning last Thursday, but inside the the Smith Barn at Brooksby Farm in Peabody all was dry and friendly for the annual meeting of the Essex National Heritage Commission. About 100 North Shore notables turned out, and a significant percentage of them went home a few bucks lighter but with a copy of the Essex Coastal Byway Guide in hand. Thanks as always to Essex Heritage for having me and for sending along the photo of me and the buckboard. Mmmm, coffeecake.
I drove down to Gloucester last Sunday morning to collect the endorsement of Joey C. and Good Morning Gloucester for the Essex Coastal Byway Guide. Had a hella fun chat with Joey in his office on the dock, though I still can't bear to look at myself on video (see post below). On the way home I stopped in Essex to take this picture of Harold Burnham's schooner the Ardelle, which is pictured in skeletal form on the cover in one of Dylan Metrano's paper cuts:
Thank you all for turning out for the launch party for the ESSEX COASTAL BYWAY GUIDE at Plum Island Coffee Roasters on Friday night. I don't want to say how many people were there, because I don't want to get Bruce in trouble, but we wuz mobbed! Thanks to Bruce and company for hosting, and thanks to Kay Bice for the pic.