Adam Voith | Lit Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

Adam Voith 

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When Adam Voith sat down to start his second book, the first bit he wrote was a comedy routine called "The Diet," wherein Ernie Baxter, a wannabe stand-up comedian, details his insatiable appetite for calorie-and-carb-laden value meals and bucketfuls of Dr Pepper. This is a diet Voith knows all too well. "He's got a lot of energy for a guy who eats nothing but fast food," says his friend and fellow micropress author Jim Munroe. Voith, who's also a booking agent for bands like Songs: Ohia and the Danielson Famile, founded the Seattle-based TNI Books in 1999 after moving west from Bloomington, Indiana; the press's first release was his own story collection, Bridges With Spirit. TNI's since published a small list of diverse work, including a kids' story called A Guitar for Janie, which comes with a seven-inch by emo band Pedro the Lion, a collection by rock writer Camden Joy, and three issues of the literary magazine Little Engines, which features fiction alongside interviews with indie music acts (and in which this writer was once published). In his new book, Stand Up, Ernie Baxter: You're Dead, Voith turns from rock 'n' roll to the equally freewheeling world of stand-up comedy to tell a love story with a twist: the book opens with Ernie's obituary. Voith is "celebrating his death" this April with a two-week tour of the midwest and east coast, on which he'll adopt Baxter's persona during readings sandwiched between sets by musicians Damien Jurado and Dave Fischoff. Voith will read at 7 on Tuesday, April 8, at Quimby's, 1854 W. North, 773-342-0910, along with local writers Todd Dills and Jeb Gleason-Allured. Voith, Jurado, and Fischoff perform at 9 the same evening at Schubas, 3159 N. Southport, 773-525-2508. Tickets are $10.

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