About three years ago, I was minding my own business at the C and P Coffee Company in West Seattle. Out of the blue I hear this guy on his cell phone talking about his novel. Those novelists! Always talking to their agents! Harold was on the phone with a potential agent and so I listened in. How could I not? Actually, I think the whole coffeeshop was listening. Harold went on to say he had just won a GAP Award from Artist Trust and was going to use the award to fund research in Thailand. Now I really was interested.
I had just won a GAP Award for a return trip to Bosnia and the idea that Harold and I were meeting days after our grants were announced seemed as good a reason as any to say hello. And besides, he has a black lab. Anyone who takes his dog to a coffeeshop is ok with me and so I said hello. It turned out that the agent Harold was talking to that day ultimately decided not to take him on, but here he is only a few years later with a brand new novel that I was lucky enough to read in manuscript form. It's simply superb.
Here's Harold Taw whose book, Adventures of the Karaoke King launches tonight at Elliott Bay Book Company. I promise this will be a night to remember -- please come!