As an on-again-off-again employee of The King's English, I've had the opportunity to attend a LOT of readings over the years. In fact, I attended one last night. Heather Armstrong, aka "Dooce," did a reading at the Framery (next to the store), and she was everything her many fans would have wished for--gorgeous, funny, sassy.
When I was telling a friend (a poet! and a fabulous one!) about the event, she told me how much she does NOT enjoy going to readings, even if she adores the author. And I do have to say that some of the readings I've been to at TKE made me want to seriously sedate myself. Literary short fiction writers tend to be the worst. They drone on in these portentous monotones with occassional (and sometimes suprising) bursts of emphases. Like I remember this one writer who read the word "broccoli" as though it was full of special significance and symbolic heft, which it wasn't. It was just the word that happened to be there when she randomly switched gears from "monotone" to "dramatic."
Anyway. Enough of that. I want to know what you think about readings--as someone in the audience, as someone who's been the reader.
Meanwhile you'll be thrilled to know I ate two cupcakes this afternoon. One of them had orange creme frosting.