I have a spate of speaking engagements coming up this summer and fall. Here is a starter list. I’d love to see any of you if you are somewhere nearby. I’ll also post more specifics as the dates get closer. More may be added. Keep an eye to the “Upcoming Events” box in the lower right corner of my home page for more specifics. And should you be part of any group that would like to have me come and speak with you, or be present at a showing of the film of Neither Wolf nor Dog, get in touch and we can discuss arrangements.
Let’s start with my speaking tour through South Dakota to present on Neither Wolf nor Dog, which was chosen as the “One Book” selection for the entire state. Events like these are hog heaven for me: a rental car, cheap motels, intimate gatherings in mostly small towns, and friendly, face to face encounters.
Tue, June 4 – 7 PM CT – Watertown
Watertown Regional Library, 160 6th St. NE
Wed, June 5 – 7 PM CT – Sisseton
Nicollet Tower Interpretive Center, 45356 SD Hwy. 10 (3.5 miles west
Thu, June 6 – 7 PM CT – Aberdeen
K.O. Lee Aberdeen Public Library, 215 Southeast 4th Ave.
Fri, June 7 – 7 PM MT – Timber Lake
Timber Lake Museum, 800 Main St.
Sat, June 8 – TBA
Sun, June 9 – 2 PM MT – Rapid City
Rapid City Public Library Downtown, 610 Quincy St.
Mon, Jun 10 – 12 PM MT – Custer
Custer County Library, 447 Crook St, Suite 4
10 – 5:30 PM MT – Kyle Oglala Lakota College, Woksape Tipi Library &
Archives, 490 Piya Wiconi Rd.
Tue, Jun 11 – 12 PM CT – Lower Brule
Lower Brule Community College, 111 Little Partisan Ln.
Wed, Jun 12 – 7 PM CT – Pierre
Capitol Lake Visitors Center, 650 E. Capitol Ave.
Thu, Jun 13 – 12 PM CT – Miller
Hand County Library, 402 N. Broadway Ave.
Thu, Jun 13 – 7 PM CT – Brookings
Brookings Public Library, 515 3rd St.
Fri, Jun 14 – 12 PM CT – Sioux Falls
Siouxland Library Downtown Branch, 200 N. Dakota Ave.
Sat, Jun 15 – 2 PM CT – Yankton
Yankton Community Library, 515 Walnut St.
Mon, June 17 —”Brown bag lunch,” audience invited, on South Dakota Public Broadcasting’s “The Moment” in Vermillion. Time TBA.
Sun., Aug 25, University of South Dakota in Vermillion. Specifics forthcoming.
Sat., Sun., Sept 14,15 — “The Mindful Eye” — a workshop for anyone interested in the arts. La Veta, Colorado.
Fri, Sat, Sun, Sept. 20, 21, 22 — Jaipur Literary Festival, Boulder, Co.
Thurs, Friday, Sat, Sun., October 3,4,5,6 — South Dakota Festival of the Books, Deadwood, South Dakota.
Wed, Nov 6 — Loras College, Dubuque, Iowa
Earlier this year, on the cusp between winter and spring, I found myself in my old home stomping grounds of northern Minnesota for some speaking engagements and a showing of the film of Neither Wolf nor Dog. The weather was blustery and the character of the north was on full display. A young woman named Serene Lusano, recently transplanted to the north country from California in a move back to her husband’s home town, was assigned to interview me for the local paper. I just loved her curiosity and insight, and willingness to look at life’s changes as an adventure more than a challenge. She did what I thought was a wonderful interview because she knew how to listen. She did not want information; she wanted understanding. And she knew how to turn an interview into a conversation.
I mention this because we of the passing generation need to raise up the good voices whenever we can. Serene, a stranger in a strange land, a fish out of water struggling to swim in a new environment, was one of those voices that abound, too often unnoticed, in the small towns and forgotten corners of America. As America’s cities metastasize and crumble under the weight of their own growth, it will be the folks in the outlying areas who have the physical and psychological elbow room to think beyond problems and shape the world with dreams. They are the new frontiersmen and women who can reenvision this country. Small towns, reservations, rural enclaves — these are the places where new dreams can form. Watch them, listen to them, learn from them, and raise them up. Listen to them like Serene listened to me, and honor them for the courage they exhibit in leaving the apparent urban mainstream to light out for the territories.
Here is the interview.