Well, tonight I had that little book talk over at Charis Books and it went pretty well. The topic was alternative sexuality and gender in sci-fi and fantasy lit, i.e me doing show and tell over what I've been reading the past 3-4 years.
It was a very small-scale thing, with a total of 9 people (including 3 store employees/volunteers) but actually the small-scale bit of it was nice. Instead of it being just me, sitting there talking to a big group, it was more like a discussion. Within the first couple of minutes I was already getting questions and suggestions about books, discussion of definition of fantasy versus sci fi, etc. Throughout my talk we had all kinds of asides and people commenting, making book recs, etc. At one point I pointed at nevercadabera
(who totally suprised me by showing up, it was like an early birthday present!) and asked him to explain yaoi a bit more since I found myself getting really tongue-tied.
I had hand-outs for everybody left over from the last time I was supposed to do this talk and I think people (esp. this one middle-aged woman with red hair) will find them useful. Also hope they give Charis business, since they seem to stock quite a lot of the authors I mentioned (Storm C., Le Guin, Octavia Butler, Kushner, etc. etc.) and even has a SF/Fantasy section.
My only regret is that I really probably tried to mention too many books and as a result, the thing went long (about 1 3/4 hours) and probably it wasn't as quality as if I'd picked just 5 books and discussed them more at length. I think maybe next time I will do that, hand out a more complete list of my favorites, then answer questions from people. I really do love to pass along book recs, but I think it was a bit much.
Oh, and BTW, for an outline of my talk, here's a PDF
of the MindMap.
P.S. Thanks for those of you who came and are reading this!