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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, November 2, 2018 - Volume 46 Issue 44
Launching Nick DiMartino's Italian Fairytale - DRAGONWEED
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Launching Nick DiMartino's Italian Fairytale - DRAGONWEED

by Nick Di Martino - Special to the SGN

Good morning, gay book lovers.

On Sunday, November 11, my 72nd birthday, I'll be launching at University Book Store my twentieth and longest novel, the first volume of my Italian Fairytale. This lovely 550-page book, DRAGONWEED, with cover and illustrations by Fazaad Feroze, is a comic gay epic inspired by the Arabian Nights and the Brothers Grimm, the chronicles of Oz and the tales of Boccaccio - by every book I've read and treasured from Bomba the Jungle Boy to Platero and I. DRAGONWEED is the first of three linked novels, with the next two coming out this spring. As a lifelong book addict, I've tried to use everything I've loved to give you all the delights of my reading life in one eight-part story.

I wrote the first draft in 1981. Discouraged from trying to break into the straight publishing world, I defiantly began writing a very personal gay spin on a fairytale for my own amusement. It was not one of those anthropologically intricate inventions like Middle Earth or Dune, but a notch more light-hearted like Narnia or Oz. The result was a series of eight short novels, carrying some characters forward over decades.

I quickly lost faith in all that insanity. I boxed it up. I put the box into storage under the porch. The rain didn't soak that box. The mice didn't chew that box. AIDS changed the world, but it didn't touch that box. When I had to move, I found in my storage a big box labelled The Devil in Love containing eight novels from a happier time. Thirty years later, in 2013, I read my own fairytale. It was funny and exciting and full of surprises. Characters made me laugh. The plot did unexpected things. When one of my favorite characters was killed, I found myself crying over my own book.

I realized that this utterly original fairytale deserved to be polished and shared. It has become the centerpiece of my life's work. I've been revising and improving my Italian Fairytale ever since. It's now consolidated into three volumes, each consisting of several linked novels. It's the best reading experience I will ever create in this lifetime, designed to give new pleasures with every reading, my payback check for a lifetime of reading joy.

Please help me celebrate my 72nd birthday and the launch of DRAGONWEED, the first volume of my Italian Fairytale, on Sunday, November 11, at 3pm at the University Book Store (4326 University Way NE). Free parking in the rear. Hope you can join us!

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Pacific Musicworks' exquisite Monteverdi concert both exciting and sublime
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Mike Daisey's A People's History a riveting reflection on America
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'Beyond the Frame - To Be Native'
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Watch history come alive at the Seattle Public Library's 2018 McLellan/O'Donnell Living History Series Nov. 18
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Launching Nick DiMartino's Italian Fairytale - DRAGONWEED
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Seattle Humane - Pets of the Week
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Harmless Johnny English returns for a third mission
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Well-made Mid90s inauthentic cultural tourism
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McCarthy and Grant shine in eloquently moving Can You Ever Forgive Me?
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Delicately intimate What They Had an emotional powerhouse
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Finding truth in family tragedy
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Watch films by Transgender filmmakers, then try 'speed friending' at the Seattle Public Library Nov. 12
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