Wednesday night I joined writers, wannabee writers, students, and anyone who came out that night to the Lakeview beer and wine garden bar Sheffield's on 3258 N. Sheffield "because everyone needs a literary hangover". The first Wednesday of every month, in the back room, Sheffield's host the reading series Reading Under the Influence (RUI), developed by Chicago writers Amanda Snyder, Carly Huegelmann, Rob Duffer, Joe Tower and Julia Borcherts. The readings range from original works, snippets from famous authors, music lyrics, or whatever piece is chosen that revolve around a particular theme. The theme this night was 'Truth' and it was hosted by RUI regulars Jesse Jordan and Amy Guth.
(Taken from the RUI website) "Before reading the "famous" work, the reader orders a shot (in truth, it doesn't have to be alcoholic), toasts the audience, downs the shot and then reads." There's also fun trivia questions where whoever among those in the audience are able to answer correctly the most out of five can win a free shot (once again doesn't have to be alcoholic) and a book or whatever small prize RUI has chosen.
I got the priviledge to see local jazz musician and writer Cortez Bryson, This Much is True host Scott Whitehair, Two Cookie Minimum host James Wawrszazek, and Literary Death Match Champion Jill Summers. The atmosphere was relaxed, the guest were engaged, and the readings were entertaining to the point of laughter.
There's a $3 cover (worth every cent) and the waitress and bar host are right there for you to grab a bite to eat or to get a drink of choice.
This is just one example of what Chicago has to offer to those who are interested in the literary community and also one of many many reason to come out and visit the upbeat Lakeview neighborhood.
Other areas to connect with Reading Under the Influence: