Thursday, June 18, 2015

Here Comes Summer: Jack and Appalachian Programs and Travel, Oh My!

It starts tomorrow!

 My first program of the summer reading season is today at 1:00pm at the Williamstown Library in Williamstown, WV. It will also be the first time I've performed at this library. Nervous? A little--a new show always has me worried until I roll it out. Even with practice and planning, I just fret and try to see every detail in advance.

This year my program for the libraries "superheroes" theme is Jack: the Appalachian Superhero! Jack is my man when it comes to stories--I love the mischief, the cleverness and the imagery of the Jack tales. So much fun to tell! The trick is to be sure I have versions for all ages, right down to preschoolers. I work through the stories, finding ways to adapt them and have a variety on hand so that I can adjust according to who is seated in front of me. In most libraries, the audiences tend to be all ages, from the babies to the grandparents and that calls for creative thinking and performance on the part of the storyteller.

I think we're going to have a good time. Jack will be getting into all sorts of situations but I know him--he'll come out of all of them smelling like a rose.

I follow up this first summer reading presentation with two days of Appalachian stories and ballads, first at the West Virginia State Folk Festival and the following evening at Blackwater Falls State Park. A day of rest Sunday to celebrate both my birthday and Father's Day, and then next week a full week of Jack and travel. So I've spent the last few days getting things ready at home--the house clean, laundry done, rugs washed, jam made, peas put up, some food prepared in advance, groceries stocked up, bills paid, paperwork caught up. I also I finalized my stories, finalized my display and packed up my puppets. No booth work this week, but I have them all in pretty good shape, knowing there would be little time to care for them for the next few weeks.

I'm wishing my van was back. Another promise that it should be ready, but I'm not feeling too certain of that. I'm very disappointed in Lee Myles Transmission of Parkersburg--17 days is truly unacceptable and this long wait has only added anxiety to my life that I don't think was entirely necessary. It is, however, one of those things I can't change so all I can do is accept it and move on. A rental car may be in my future this weekend and that just means more expense for this already costly breakdown.

But let it go, right? I have good things to look forward to--lots of attentive faces, lots of smiles and lots of laughter. Life is good.

So come on summer! I think I'm ready. I hope.

Copyright Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.

2 comments:

Mac n' Janet said...


Good luck with the show and with getting the van back.

annie said...

Hope you get it back, and that Jack enjoys all his new adventures!

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