You really should read: The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fist Fight in Heaven

Alexie is one of the most recognizable names in the Northwest lit scene, and his wry prose finds humor in alcoholics and racism, two topics that are often uncomfortable to smile about. An extra ticket is required to see him, but his wit alone is worth it. Plus, you get a copy of his new book, War Dances. 2 pm Sunday, Oct. 11. Special Events Stage. $18.

What's your personal writing ritual?

No ritual. But, sometimes I go see a movie before I begin writing.

What are your favorite themes to write about or rehash?

Indians, Indians, Indians and Salmon.

The most beautiful word in the English language is: Gonorrhea. Ugly thing; beautiful word.

What authors made you want to pick up a pen in the first place, and why?

Adrian C. Louis, Among the Dog Eaters.

Fight Club time: If you could fight one author (or critic), who would it be and why?

I don't need fist fights, I play one-on-one hoops. So, I'll post up Truman Capote.

Name a book you think is highly overrated. Be honest.

Any of mine.

Dream project:

My memoir about a year on the bench for any professional basketball team.

Most recent nightmare:

Being crushed by a falling bookshelf.

Your cure for writer's block:

Adrian Arleo's sculpture.

Pessimistic question: Will you keep writing even after people stop reading?

Not a pessimistic question; a silly question.

Cautiously optimistic question: Obama? Discuss.

He's just another president. Much better than the last one, but not as good as the next great one, whoever that might be.

Share one thing you've had to change in your every day life thanks to our current recession.

Less eBay.

Please paste a short paragraph from a story you're currently working on:

Poetry first line: "Do you remember when eggs were the perfect food?"