Thursday, September 24, 2009

My Fellow Americans in Sheffield

It's 20-odd months since Tom Humberstone and I hitched our way through sub-zero temperatures to see prospective Democratic Presidential candidate Senator Barack Obama speak at a rally in the snow-caked fringes of Iowa City. Fuck it was cold that day. Few thought it would be possible on 3 January 2008, the day of the Iowa Caucus, but yesterday President Obama addressed the UN about his vision of a multilateral American future, about leaving the Bush era behind, and everyone nodded. Of course he said that; we knew he was going to say that. It's funny how quickly extraordinary events become normalised. The New Statesman's myopic, Clinton-obsessed US editor decided (from the comfort of his desk, naturally) Obama was finished within a week of the Iowa rally. Ha.

Over a year since we published (and sold out of) the book version of My Fellow Americans, Tom and I have been invited to Sheffield's 'Off The Shelf' literary festival to talk about what it's like to be cornered by deranged Mike Huckabee supporters in San Diego, or to be stalked by minor Presidential candidates in small towns in New Hampshire. In such luminous company as Peter Hook, Vic Reeves, Tony Benn and Hilary Mantel, we're doing two events: an afternoon workshop on DIY reportage for young people, and an illustrated talk about our experiences. Tickets and full details are here:

My Fellow Americans @ The Showroom Cinema: Monday 26 October 2009, 7pm

I'm also going to Budapest to play football for the England Writer's XI against the Hungary Writer's XI next week, so do let me know if you have any Hungarian tips. Please don't mention the International Goulash Festival, which I'm distraught to discover I will be missing by a matter of days.


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