Michael Wallis, 2006Watch Wallis Read Wallis Previous Speakers
"It's been an incredible journey down a very crooked road," said Michael Wallis at the 15th annual H. Louise and H.E. "Ed" Cobb Speaker Series.
"That's a good road to be on," he said. "Straight roads are the roads of improvement but crooked roads are the roads of genius."
His genius has become exceedingly difficult to question. Wallis is the author of 10 best selling books including "Route 66: The Mother Road," considered to be the definitive work concerning Route 66 and its culture. Wallis also used his knowledge of the mother road as a consultant and voice talent for the Disney Pixar movie "Cars."
"I gave them my road," he said. "It's my family."
Wallis put his distinct and powerful voice to work for the 170 guests of the Speaker Series. His remarks centered on libraries and the written word. He described the ancient libraries of Alexandria and Greece, as well as the local library of his youth in Rock Hill, Missouri.
"Early in my life, I was fortunate to figure out that I wanted to be a writer. Much of that decision was based on the relationships formed at the public library," he said.
"The library never, ever let me down. No matter where I have lived or traveled, the libraries have been there for me. They are a home, a refuge."
Wallis' remarks were followed by an exclusive reading from the prologue of his new book titled "Billy the Kid: The Endless Ride," scheduled for release in March 2007.
"It is an honor to be with people who celebrate language, style, nuance, magic and the written word," he said of the Friends of the OSU Library during his speech.
Profits from the event's ticket sales and donations totaled $10,000. All of the proceeds from the event go to support the Friends of the OSU Library. Watch the Friends of the OSU Library’s Web site for information concerning next year’s speaker.
Michael Wallis discusses "Cars 2"
Wallis on CSPAN's Book TV: Part 1View the remaining program on Wallis's YouTube channel
Route 66: The Mother RoadRead an excerpt of Route 66 Find Route 66 in BOSS
Pretty Boy: The Life and Times of Charles Arthur Floyd
For more information on giving to the Library contact the Tylerr Ropp, Senior Director of Development, at tropp@OSUgiving.com or 405-385-5664.