By Karen Daly
Photos by John Lee
Variety and originality were on tap at Tuesday’s IAW&A salon at Bar Thalia. Host Sarah Fearon warmed up the crowd with her comedic riffs and smoothly led an evening that was a perfect mix of fiction, memoir, music, and laughter.
We welcomed Eamon Loingsigh who read from his forthcoming historical novel set in the Irish controlled Brooklyn waterfront of the early 20th century, Light of the Diddicoy.Although the book is not slated for publication until St. Patrick’s Day, 2014, Three Rooms Press has scheduled some pre-publication readings, due to early interest in Eamon’s work. If you saw Eamon at the salon, you’d know why. Beautifully written, sensitively delivered. Visit Eamon’s blog for Light of the Diddicoyat: http://artofneed.wordpress.com and the Facebook page: http://facebook.com/artofneed.
At earlier salons, Karen Daly has presented work about her family and about New York Irish history. Tonight’s reading was a little more personal. Years ago while going through a tough time, she surprisingly took up bicycling. Karen shared what she’s learned and what’s she gained during these years, and hopes the title says it all: “Miles: How One Broken Heart Led to Two Broken Arms, A Colorful Lycra Wardrobe, Great Friends and Adventures, and Maybe Even God.” Karen tweets @KDaly321about what she loves beyond cycling: books, music, Irish Americana, New York.
Tim O’Mara did not read from either of his two well-reviewed mystery novels, SacrificeFly and Crooked Numbers. Instead, he did a killer comedy routine that paid homage to the telephone bits that comedian Bob Newhart used to do. Tim thought that a teacher calling Jesus Christ’s home for his contact and family information would be a neat way to do it. Says Tim “I hope to God I was right!” OMG, he was! Visit timomara.net.
A member of Mystery Writers of America NY, Gary Cahill has been entertaining us with his expert short crime fiction. In “On A Two-Way Street” a bagman with a big gun and a bag of diamonds is saved, rather than sacrificed, by a very different sort of femme fatale. The tough-guy is tenderized by the newfound, and lost, love of his life. Gary’s work can be found at Plan B Magazine and Short Story Me Genre Fiction —http://www.plan-b-magazine.com/the-way-to-a-mans-heart-by-gary-cahill/, http://www.plan-b-magazine.com/ninety-miles-a-million-miles-by-gary-cahill/, and http://www.short-story.me/crime-stories/194-corner-of-river-and-rain.html.
It’s hard to resist the charm of author and singer-songwriter Michael Sheahan. Michael performed his original songs “The Roof Top Hop” and “Jingle Jangle Jingle All Night Long” from his three-time award winning production of Mr. Holidays Presents the Roof Top Hop Book, CD and DVD. If there are children on your shopping list, find it at www.MrHolidaysPresents.com.\
Salon regular and inventive talent Guenevere Donohue shared a brand new folk song that she wrote about the man who ran the carousel in Coney Island. “The Carny Song” isa gospel-influenced poem about a life on the edge of other peoples’ dreams. With her soulful voice and cheese grater in hand (yes, percussion), Guen’s performance brought to mind the ocean waves crashing, and gave us a fantastic moment in another person’s skin.
Kathy Callahan told a personal story about visiting her grandfather in Hudson County, New Jersey a few days after returning from Dallas after the assassination of John F. Kennedy. Her grandfather, a fierce admirer of JFK, would say, “He’s alive in spirit, Kathy. He is dreaming us all the way to the moon! No one can take the dream or him away from us.” Her grandfather’s stories continue to shape Kathy’s life and inspire her imagination. Author Susan Casey visiting from Venice, CA, called Kathy “ a masterful and thoroughly entertaining story teller…. Kathy Callahan’s story left me wanting to hear the rest of the story and more…” Malachy McCourt roared, “Kathy, you’ve got it all.”
Then Malachy McCourt roared some more, bringing the salon to a rollicking close. What’s on Malachy’s mind? Conspiracies; eloquent, imaginative curses; work (“not his thing”); original sin (Well, all Malachy’s sins are original). He sang “Will Ye Go, Lassie, Go” and we reluctantly went — ended another one-of-a-kind salon.
Don’t forget the next salon, Tuesday, December 17 at The Cell, where there will be special Christmas presentations!