Confess

I’ve been a busy book lover lately, but there was no way I was going to miss Revolver‘s “Confess” event last Saturday, May 11, 2013.  Not after their launch party at Uppercut Boxing Gym last fall, which has achieved near-legendary status as far as literary events go.  In some ways, that “book-nerd-turned-featherweight” spectacular set the bar pretty high for the folks at Revolver.  Luckily, they’re a creative bunch. Continue reading

Revolver’s “Oblivions” Launch Party

One thing I’ve noticed about the literary scene in Minneapolis is this tendency to constantly place itself in relation to other artistic hubs, mostly New York. So often people seem to need to proclaim that we are also hip, that this is a place where creative ventures can take flight, and that the work being done in this snowy tundra is important, too. Revolver is, of course, further evidence that those concerns are false insecurities. The literati are still buzzing about their September launch at Uppercut Boxing Gym, which drew a crowd of 600 (!). They have received glowing praise from the writing community at-large, and—most importantly—the work they have published online has been excellent. Continue reading

Twin Cities Book Festival: The Long Version

The twelfth annual Twin Cities Book Festival took place on Saturday, October 13, 2012, as more than 5,000 Twin Citizens already know. What we might not know is that the festivities actually began a few days before that, on Thursday the 11th, with a little kick-off gathering in the Walker Arts Center‘s 8th floor Garden Terrace room.  This event marked my foray into the world of literary festivals, and oh what a world it is! Continue reading

Revolver Launch Party

The newest arts and cultural magazine to hit the Twin Cities lived up to its reputation for “rowdy reading” on Saturday, September 8, 2012. Revolver held its launch party at an unorthodox venue, Uppercut Boxing Gym in Northeast Minneapolis, with an equally unorthodox main event: boxing matches between four hip litsters.

Unorthodox, unschmorthodox. Uppercut was the right call for the evening. It would have been easy for a crowd of 300 people to seem small given the gym’s high ceilings and open space, but rumor has it the place reached capacity at 600 party-goers. From when I arrived around 10PM until I left at midnight, the party did seem perfectly plump with readers ready for a good time and a good fight. I slipped past the Polaroid booth, but caught glimpses of a bunch of the exposures and coordinating stories strung across the tables scattered throughout the space. Sadly, I only heard the tail end of the first match between the Architect of Destruction aka Chris Baker and The Polish Hammer aka Tony D’Aloia, but I was definitely there for the fight between The Killswitch aka Courtney Algeo and Bo Bo The Mutilator aka Sarah Moeding.

Now this wasn’t fake fighting or dance fighting, but train-for-it-at-Uppercut fighting. At one point, I said, “This is so weird,” and then continued to smile and cheer for @IceCrmSocialite aka The Killswitch, who did indeed kill it (without hurting anyone). It was probably the signs and shouts of the Paper Darts ladies that pushed her to glory. The reigning champ of the second half of the literary boxing match joined us later on the dance floor to bust a move to beats spun by DJ Shannon Blowtorch. It was like a middle school, high school, and college dance party all rolled into one, and there was definitely some sweating by the time the lights came up.

Bin Wine Bar kept the spirits flowing all night–we might be art hounds, but we can also be booze hounds, and Chef Shack provided the grub. I didn’t get the chance to snack at all, but people seemed pretty satisfied all around. There were also mirrors to dance in front of and ladies painted with words from the magazine’s first issue, but the best part of the evening was that more than the “usual suspects” came out to celebrate. Multiple attendees, many of whom are regulars on the TC literary circuit commented that they didn’t know most of the people there. This party accomplished what many launches, readings, panels, discussions, and shows fall just short of: literally bringing arts communities together.

Remember, Revolver is the online only (as of right now) baby of founding editors Alexander Helmke, Ben Barnhart, Esther Porter, Luke Finsaas, Marcus Anthony Downs, Ross Nervig, and Thorwal Esbensen. Read up–there’s great stuff from Alex Lemon and Laird Hunt among many others, and then check out photos from the launch on its Facebook page.

–SS

Were you There? Have something to add, or a different take on this event?  Chime in on the comments below, or send us an email at LitSeen.Mpls@gmail.com! Be sure to check the schedule to the right and the Twin Cities Literary Calendar and be at the next LitSeen attended event. See you around!