You've got two opportunities this week to mingle with the author of A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius: one free, and one that could run you up to 100 bucks. First, Eggers will appear at Elliott Bay in conjunction with his acclaimed new Hurricane Katrina book, Zeitoun (McSweeney's, $24), about a Syrian-American house painter who rescued people in his canoe after the storm. And, for his trouble, he was arrested and accused of being a member of Al Qaeda. Only in America, right? No advance tickets are required, but get in line early. Elliott Bay Book Co., 101 S. Main St., 624-6600, free, noon, Weds., Oct. 7.
Second, that evening at the Cinerama, Eggers will introduce and conduct a Q&A for the new adaptation of Maurice Sendak's Where the Wild Things Are. The screening is a benefit for the local branch of his 826 reading/educational nonprofit, 826 Seattle. Eggers wrote the screenplay for the film, which opens next Fri., Oct. 16; it's directed by Spike Jonze (Being John Malkovich). The film has been subject to long, costly delays and victim to bad buzz, but they said the same about Titanic, didn't they? Tickets (brownpapertickets.com) are likely to sell out; the top-price ticket gets you into a cocktail reception with Mr. McSweeney's himself. Cinerama, 2100 4th Ave., $30-$100, 7 p.m., Weds., Oct. 7.