German October Tour Itinerary

I promised folks I would post dates on my German tour when I had them, and here they are — most of them in any event. I do not have all the details regarding time/cost of event for some of these things, so if you’re in Germany and want to see me and I don’t have all the information here, please contact the venue at which I will be for more details. I’ll also post updates and information when I am in Germany on my Twitter feed.

October 15: Frankfurt: I’ll be doing a reading as part of the Frankfurt Book Fair’s “Open Books” event. Not sure of the time yet; I’ll update when I know. Update: The appearance information is here.

October 16: Frankfurt: I’ll be in the Book Fair itself, likely hanging out at my publisher’s table. If you’ll be attending, swing by the Heyne booth.

October 17: Saarbrücken: I’ll be doing an event at the Deutsch-Americanisches Institut Saarbrücken. Please contact them for the details. I assume it will be in the evening.

October 18: Stuttgart: My event will be at the Deutsch Americkanisches Zentrum, at 19:00. Details are here.

October 19: Tübingen: I’ll be at the Deutsch-Amerikanisches Institut Tübingen, at 20:15. Details are here.

October 20: Freiburg: I’ll be doing something in association with the Carl-Schruz-Haus here. My understanding is that it might be at the local planetarium, which would be interesting. Please contact them for the details.

October 21: Munich: I’ll be at Amerika Haus here, at 19:30. Details here. Admission will be free.

October 22: Munich: I believe there is to be another event on this day, with Conrad Tribble, the head of the US Consulate in Munich. But I don’t know yet if it’s open to the public. Let me find out and update when I have more details.

As to why I am going to these cities and not other cities in Germany, the answer is that my itinerary was chosen by the US State Department and I’m going where they want me to go. This is not to say that I would not be delighted to see other parts of Germany at some point in the future. But for this trip, this is where I’ll be. Hey, take a road trip. Heck, you can get from Hamburg to Munich in seven hours! That’s a snap.

So that’s my itinerary. As noted I will update when I get more information, particularly for Saarbrücken, Freiburg and the second day in Munich.

See you there!

(PS: As of this writing, Der Wilde Planet has been the #1 science fiction book on Amazon.de for a full week. Dear Germany: I totally love you so much. See you soon, folks.)

50 thoughts on “German October Tour Itinerary

  1. Matt:

    The US State Department were the ones who asked me to tour Germany, as it likes to bring American authors over to talk about the writing life in the US. As I understand it, I’m the first SF writer they’ve asked over; I believe they knew that Germany is my biggest market outside the US.

  2. That is totally awesome.

    Are you going to dress up in a tux and introduce yourself as “Scalzi, John Scalzi”?

  3. I hope you’re not too wiped out by the time you reach Munich. I visited that city in 2007 and loved the place. The futuristic / unique architecture alone is worth a drive around the city, and the bier and brezlin halls are excellent. I suggest walking through the famous Hofbrauhaus but actually eating at one of its neighboring competitors. You’ll find better prices, better tables, and friendlier staff (in my experience).

  4. Make sure your handlers know you don’t drink, and also whether or not that extends to alcohol-based sauces. Beer and wine are a staple of German cooking and ice cream sundaes often have a liqueur or two in them. Lots of traps for the unwary. (But you’re still better off than a vegetarian would be. I have literally heard a waiter tell a vegetarian that the roasted potatoes with Speck (sort of like bacon in a vague way) fried in lard didn’t have much meat in it.)

    Also when in Frankfurt, you should make sure to try the Handkäs mit Musik. How can you of all people resist a dish whose name is a fart joke?

  5. More importantly, did the State Department issue you a license to snark?

    International man of mystery?
    no. Mystery authors were last week.

  6. If you get the chance visit the Loreleyblick in St.Goar, it’s gorgeous. My wife and I were there in July, and it was an amazing sunset. They also sell Birkenstock’s in town, at a greatly reduced price in Euros (compared to Canadian funds that is.) Enjoy the trip!

  7. Great! See you in Freiburg! Based on your itinerary you won’t have much time for sight-seeing which is a pity as Freiburg is one of Germany’s most beautiful cities. And yes, I’m biased.

    Love the Carl-Schurz-Haus for being part of your tour. I know why I’m a member. The planetarium would be fun. It’s very central directly at the train-station. The CSH wouldn’t have enough space. Most of their conference rooms don’t hold more than 30-50 people or so.

    @ DemetriosX The situation for vegetarians is getting better and lots of restaurants now offer purely vegetarian dishes. And especially down south we have lots of light traditional dishes without alcohol or meat in them. We even prepare our roasted potatoes without bacon. ;-) The best thing is to go where the locals go and not into the tourist places as they have all that very heavy, very stereotypical German food which even most Germans under 40 don’t eat. But I’ve had the same experience with a waiter and this kind of comment.

  8. Addendum:
    According to the CHS-programm you’ll read at the Planetarium Freiburg, Bismarckallee 7G at 8 p.m.
    Entrance-fee is 3 € for the general public and it’s free for members of the CSH.

  9. Thank you! I always wanted to go to the book fair, but as I am actually out of Germany on that weekend I will try to make the Munich event. Anyway, I am glad you will be coming over!

  10. So the consul’s last name is “Tribble” and you just wrote a book entitled “Redshirts.” Coincidence?

  11. @Daniela: I know it’s better in the big cities, but I live in the middle of nowhere so my choices are pretty restricted to Italian, Greek and Hausmannskost. And big city or out in the country, I’ve never seen a Greek restaurant that had a vegetarian dish, which is kind of weird. But I figure John is going to want to try out the local cuisine and up here in the north anyway there’s lots of beer sauces. And Franken has that great white wine soup. Mmmmmm. Plus if he goes out for an ice cream at least half the sundaes have alcohol in them unless he orders off the kiddie menu.

  12. Is that your own graphic? I like the detail of using a German-language map, not least because Frankreich sounds like France’s made-up heavy metal band name.

  13. Is this a taxpayer funded junket?

    If it is, then though you may make a fine ambassador (for, well, something), it would be an easy call for me to cut this line item.

  14. @DemetriosX Huh, I’m also living on the country aka the middle of nowhere and while I’m not vegetarian I often eat that way and most of the restaurants we go to have a selection of meat-free dishes. Although I grant you the Greek restaurants. I think the only option would be the salads. Never thought that there’s such a huge difference between North and South. Or maybe it’s the advantage of being a tourist-region and close to the French border.
    Icecream: I never had a problem picking one without alcohol and those that contain alcohol are usually clearly marked and one word to the waitstaff and they make the sundae without. At least in my experience, but then I seem to be able to talk the waitstaff into making sundaes they don’t even have on the menue.

  15. “If it is, then though you may make a fine ambassador (for, well, something), it would be an easy call for me to cut this line item.”

    Don’t worry, your taxes went towards guns for the troops and a body scan.

  16. I can’t believe that I’m going to be in Germany at the same time as Scalzi (for Essen Spiel) and won’t be able to go see him. Unfair!!

  17. Wow, pezibe, that’s…blunt.

    Please tell us about a) your advanced degrees in International Relations, and/or b) your extensive experience in European diplomacy. Or, of course, any other qualification you may have to judge whether this is worthwhile from a diplomatic standpoint.

    Oh, you have no such qualifications? Then you’re either taking the position that anything you don’t understand is not worthwhile, or that diplomacy overall is not worthwhile.

  18. pezibc:

    It is indeed your (and my) tax dollars at work, and I don’t feel in the least bad about doing it. When your country asks you to participate in a goodwill tour of one its allies in the furtherance of international understanding (and yes, in fact, this was basically how it was pitched to me), then I say it’s an honor and a privilege to do such service. I also happen to think this is the sort of thing I’d commit my tax dollars to, which is another reason I feel entirely comfortable doing this.

    And now, having said that, I’m going to suggest that this particular line of discussion has an excellent chance of wandering off into directions that are not in the least on topic to the thread, so let’s go ahead and snip it off here.

  19. Ah, what a shame you’re not coming to Hamburg. Hopefully you’ll do so one day!

    “Hey, take a road trip. Heck, you can get from Hamburg to Munich in seven hours! That’s a snap.”

    But John, you’re the guy who wrote that great piece about being poor! There are poor people in Germany, too, you know? Quite a lot actually. I can’t afford to travel by any means (plane, train, etc.) and I can’t drive because I’m visually impaired, too.

  20. It’s nice of US State Department to take you on a trip. I hope they also let you do some sightseeing as all these cities are worth it.

    Also, I see you’ve tried two different spellings of Amerikanisches before stumbling onto the right one :P.

  21. Ah, I remember Amerika Haus in München! When I lived there in the 80s I used to go to AH occasionally to use the library. Have fun!

  22. You know what? I bet you could make a nifty game out of the german book covers. Place a book within your bounds (which will depend on how many books you have). Alternate A-B-B-A style until you run out of books. At the end, all ships shoot simultaneously. Score for each shot landed.

  23. Tuebingen’s a nice town. I spent parts of 1993 and 1994 there on student exchange. Didn’t do much studying, of course.

    There used to be this Turkish sandwich shop down by the main bridge (the one with the island that has a little park on it, between most of town and the Hauptbanhof) that I patronized quite frequently because it was tasty and cheap and the broken German commanded by both the proprietors and myself was sufficient to do business.

    That was the first place I had internet, too.

    (Sorry, I’m too lazy to look up the unicode for the umlauts.)

  24. Thena, html is probably easier. They’re just the letter you want to umlaut followed by ‘uml’. So ä gives ä, ü gives ü,and ö gives ö.

  25. *sigh* Curse me and me having to work, there’s no way I can go down into the South to see you. :(

    It’s kinda cool although I really don’t know why they were ignoring Hamburg – the huge US American embassidy is here. (And it’s the butt of lots of Hamburg’s jokes… come to think off, that might be why.)

  26. How cool! I hear there is some kind of festival or something related to Germany and October….what is it again?…..

  27. I’m a vegetarian and I was quite happy with the state of vegetarian food in Germany when I visited (Munich, Weimar, Berlin). Most restaurants had 1 or 2 vegetarian items (indicated with a “(v)” or coloured green) which were generally pretty tasty. The great tragedy of German food, in my opinion, is the lack of spiciness. All the potatoes, bread and beer accompaniments would go great with a spicy main. Alas, it was not to be. Many so-called “ethnic” restaurants would have hot sauce you could ask for, though one Indian place answered our plea by telling us there was a pepper shaker on the table.

  28. Well poot! It looks like my older brother, who lives in Germany is probably going to get to see you before I do, when I live just the next state over. I would be philosophical about it, but it’s the sort of thing he’ll never let me live down.

  29. Tuebingen is lovely, I hope you like it. And that you’ll get some time to see the countryside. When you get to Munich, though, remember: STEP AWAY from the Weisswurscht. Put. The. Weisswurscht. Down. Seriously.

  30. Susanne, I looked up Weißwurst and it sounds pretty yummy to me. “A traditional Bavarian sausage made from very finely minced veal and fresh pork bacon. It is usually flavoured with parsley, lemon, mace, onions, ginger and cardamom.” What’s not to like ? (if you’re not a vegetarian, that is ;)

  31. Though to be honest, Weißwurst has to be eaten before noon, with some sweet mustard and a freshly baked pretzel. For the ones who drink beer (which actually counts as staple food in Bavaria), a wheat beer is the usual beverage to have when eating Weißwurst. All in all, I love this for breakfast (minus the beer)!
    On another note, I am saddened that my work will not permit me to see you in Munich. I really hope that you will have fun and that your time in Germany will be awesome!

  32. All in all, I love this for breakfast (minus the beer)!

    ::looks confused:: Why would you want to “minus the beer” ? Especially a wheat beer, and especially in Bavaria ?!

    Beer! It’s what’s for breakfast! ;)

  33. David@44: You might not believe it, but I really do not like beer. That may be exceptional, especially in Bavaria. But if it suits you, you can always have mine!

  34. “Fuzzy Nation”? What ever makes a sane person translate that to “Der Wilde Planet” (re-translated probably “The Savage Planet”)?
    But that is one of the things that drive me crazy about english-to-german translated books, movies and sometimes games and other pieces of art or culture: Some of the manageras responsible for its marketing try to rig it in a way they expect it will apply better to what they think is the mind of the typical german readership. If I had to guess I’d expect that manager to be conservative, sixty years of age or above and angry because he has to manage a kind of literature almost as low as *shudder* graphic novels.
    This few-minutes-rant was brought to you by a reader that is happy to welcome you to his generally beloved country.

  35. Welcome to Germany! It’s a fabulous country. (says the British / Canadian expat) I hope you have an awesome time. I liev near Hamburg and it’s between 7-12 hours drive from Hamburg to Munchen (well 7 is you drive really fast and the roads are all without stau and roadworks) but sadly I can’t make it to see you on any of those dates. So, just saying you have fan up North and I hope you have a great time here because it’s a really cool place to be especially the trains. And maybe next time you might make it up to this end of the country as well.
    Cheers
    Fiona

  36. I’m very sad, I noticed your trip to Munichen first on 22th Oct :(

    Currently, I’m reading “Fuzzy Nation” and imho it’s way better than the “Little Fuzzy”. It’s really a great book and it will bekome an equally great x-mas present :)

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