Whenever Elizabeth Peavey shows up for one of her book signings, she almost can’t resist the urge to help out in the kitchen.

“After all my years of restaurant work to support my writing, I keep thinking I need to pick up a tray and start bussing glasses at these things,” she writes in an e-mail.

She will do her best to resist the urge on Thursday, when Thos. Moser Cabinetmakers in Freeport hosts the Portland-based writer and her collaborator, the painter Marguerite Robichaux. They will talk about and sign copies of their latest book, “Glorious Slow Going: Maine Stories of Art, Adventure and Friendship.”

The event will include a reading and signing, as well as a larger exhibition of recent work by Robichaux and many other works of art by Tom Curry, Eric Hopkins, Jill Hoy, Anne Ireland and others.

Peavey and Robichaux share a deep friendship going back to the mid-1990s, when they met through their work at Down East magazine. They travel the back roads of Maine together, sharing common inspiration and tales.

This book brings together paintings and essays from their adventures, many of which first appeared in Down East.

“From the start, we fell into a natural rhythm,” Peavey says. “Marguerite does all the cooking; I do most of the cleaning. She makes things nice. She always brings stemware and flowers for the table. I am just this short of being a pyromaniac, so I tend the fire.”

While the two women complement each other well, they have disparate work habits, Robichaux notes.

“When we travel together, I cart along sketch pads, paints, brushes, perhaps my French easel and always a camera. Liz brings a pencil. During our outings, we seldom discuss the story we will tell. We are just having fun and observing.”

“Glorious Slow Going” provides a record of their travels through Robichaux’s oil paintings, watercolors and sketches, and Peavey’s witty writing.

At Thursday’s event, the women will talk a bit about how they came to work together and what it’s like to collaborate. Then Peavey will read an essay. Robichaux’s work will be on display, and she will talk about her paintings.

“As someone who’s taught public speaking for 20 years, I can attest there’s nothing more deadly than a canned presentation, so we keep changing it up to keep it lively,” Peavey says.

As Robichaux notes, wine helps.

Staff Writer Bob Keyes can be reached at 791-6457 or:


Twitter: pphbkeyes