A funny thing happened at my sister Bev’s book club

September 20, 2017 • Posted in blindness, Braille, memoir writing, technology for people who are blind, travel by
Link to video of Bev's grandson interviewing Beth.

Bev’s eight-year-old grandson Bryce interviewed me for his Summer Awesomeness youtube show before cocktail hour began.

It all started in Grand Haven, Michigan Tuesday evening. Poolside cocktails (Bev had rented their community clubhouse for the event), dinner inside afterwards, dessert, my short talk, a Q & A, a writing exercise, and then, big finish: I showed them how I manage to read excerpts of Writing Out Loud at book events without being able to see.

”It’s hard for me to read Braille and talk at the same time,” I confessed, wrestling an earpiece into my left ear and plugging into my digital recorder. “Before we left Chicago, my husband Mike recorded a part of the preface onto this little handheld contraption,” I said, explaining that once I turned it on I’d listen to Mike reading inside my ear and repeat what I hear. “Kind of like a TV broadcaster.” I was sailing through my reading when suddenly, the power went off. Which means, of course, that all The lights went out, too.

Not one of Bev’s polite friends interrupted my reading. I kept on, literally and figuratively in the dark. Cue the Twilight Zone music!

Turns out lights were out off all over the neighborhood – a power surge of some sort — but one book club member thought I’d orchestrated the whole thing. “I thought maybe you have them do that at all your presentations!” she laughed.

And you know what? From here on out, Maybe I will!

Marilee On September 20, 2017 at 7:16 pm

Wow! Bev really set the bar high for this year’s book club!! Love it!!!

Beth On September 21, 2017 at 9:46 am

She did. And I only told the half of it. Even cloth napkins at dinner….

Mel Theobald On September 20, 2017 at 7:28 pm

Beth, I hit “overload” with today’s blog. I can’t decide whether Bryce’s priceless Summer Awesome interview or the uncanny timing of you reading in the dark was my favorite. One thing for sure, both are memorable. What a thrill to know you are “officially” famous now. 🙂

Beth On September 21, 2017 at 9:49 am

I assure you, both events –the interview and the blackout — were thrilling!

Cameron Robbins On September 20, 2017 at 9:19 pm

Like the idea of turning out the lights for your presentations!

Great interview!

Bev On September 21, 2017 at 9:39 am

Can’t decide what my favorite part of the evening was…the beginning, the middle or the end. But, what a finish!

Beth On September 21, 2017 at 9:55 am


Beth On September 21, 2017 at 10:00 am

And Cam, while I can’t imagine an audience enjoying an entire presentation in the dark, I just might incorporate it into a part of some of my talks when appropriate.

Beth On September 21, 2017 at 10:02 am

And thanks to all of you who are complimenting the Summer Awesomeness interview. My youtube host Bryce Hodges is hoping for 300 likes on that video, so if you have the energy to link to that show again and hit the like button, he’ll be on his way. So far he has four….!

Janet Sterling On September 28, 2017 at 7:24 pm

Finally able to watch the video! Bryce is awesome! So smart! Beth, you were fine.

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