Sep 11, 2018

Charles Stross - third time at the Otherland

A recap of an evening with Charles Stross

by Wolf Tress


Wolf and unimpressed cartoon cat in Otherland
I remember quite well the first time Charlie walked in our Otherland. With a friendly hello he strolled by and entered the english book section. I was thinking: Wow, this guy looks like... and this guy is standing right in front of the books of ... and now he takes one of the books of ... so I walked over and asked: “Are you...” “Yes, I am Charles Stross - do you mind if I sign my books?” Well, yesterday was the third time he came to visit the Otherland and do a reading / Q&A-Session with us.

A friend of mine asked me: “Do you really want to do the reading in the Otherland? There is not enough space.” “Well I said, you know, we are a magic bookshop. Like in Hogwarts, space is a quesion of magic.” Well, being a Science Fiction-guy I should have known my magic is worth sh** - people were standing throughout the Otherland up to the entrance. *awwww* Yes, we know we need a PA, microphones and loudspeakers and stuff. We even made a effort to buy the equipment one time but we didn’t succeed in putting it into practice... not only my magic is patchy. Nevertheless we where lucky Charlie is such a great entertainer with a voice loud enough to be heard more or less in the whole room. He and his wife arrived just in time (their restaurant was slow to serve them) and after a quick introduction by me, Charlie took over. Literally. His speed, charm and easy understandable knowledge-transfer is amazing. And funny. 

Stross, Cthulu figure and Wolf 

He read from his next yet unfinished Laundry Files book for about 20 Minutes and then jumped into Q&A with a joyful enthusiasm that was just beautiful - and while I sometimes get impatient with to much information, listening to Charlie I thought “please don’t stop” while hitting the like-button in my brain. A very enjoyable evening. And while I told Charlie, when he arrived, we have time from 20:00-22:00 and should start signing at 21:30, he looked a little aghast and said “well, I think I will not talk for one and a half hours...”
Well, when I approached the stage at 21:30 and told him I am sorry to interrupt, but it’s time, he checked his watch and was very surprised he talked for one and a half hours straight. Indication he enjoyed the evening, don’t you think? At 22:00 we walked over with a small army of 20 people to the Brauhaus Dolden Mädel at the Mehringdamm, about 10 Minutes away. Boy have these waiters been in a sour mood. “Bitchy” I would say to be precise. Nevertheless it was a perfect chillout-end for a perfect evening with the other reason next to our dear customer we run the Otherland: the authors! Thank you Charles Stross, for your books and this lovely evening!

Wolf sneaking up on Charles Stross!

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