Why There Are Words

Why There Are Words: March 13, 2014. Name the Theme.

Posted in Uncategorized by whytherearewords on February 15, 2014

Why There Are Words wants you to name the theme. Join us March 13th when the following readers will read from their works. Listen closely and decide the evening’s theme. Doors open at 7pm; readings begin at 7:15. $10.  Studio 333 in Sausalito.

Kirsten Chen

Kirstin Chen

Kirstin Chen is the author of Soy Sauce for Beginners. A former Steinbeck Fellow in Creative Writing, she holds an MFA from Emerson College and a BA from Stanford University. She has received awards from the Sewanee and Napa Valley Writers Conferences. Her short stories have appeared in Zyzzyva, Hobart, Pank, and others, and have been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and the Best New American Voices anthology. She was born and raised in Singapore and currently lives in San Francisco, where she’s at work on her second novel, set on a tiny island off the coast of southern China in 1958.

Adrianne Harun

Adrianne Harun

Adrianne Haruns prize-winning short fiction, essays, and book reviews have been published in numerous magazines and journals, including Story, the Chicago Tribune, Narrative MagazineOntario Review, The Sun, Willow Springs, and Colorado Review. Her first novel is A Man Came Out of the Door in the Mountain (Penguin Books, February 2014). Her short story collection, The King of Limbo (Houghton Mifflin), was a Sewanee Writing Series selection and a Washington State Book Award finalist. Stories from an upcoming collection have been noted as “Distinguished Stories” in both Best American Mystery Stories (2003) and Best American Short Stories (2009). She is also a member of the core faculty of the Rainier Writing Workshops, an MFA program at Pacific Lutheran University, as well as a faculty member at the Sewanee School of Letters at the University of the South. She lives with her husband in Port Townsend, Washington.

David Haynes

David Haynes

David Haynes is the author of seven novels for adults and five books for younger readers. He is an Associate Professor of English at Southern Methodist University where he directs the creative writing program. He teaches regularly in the Warren Wilson MFA Program for Writers and has taught in the MFA Programs at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, Hamline University, and at the Writer’s Center in Bethesda, MD, and at the Writers’ Garret in Dallas. His teaching interests include gender, class, race, and generational differences – all themes that he explores in great depth in A Star in the Face of the Sky, his most recent novel. He received a fellowship from the Minnesota State Arts Board, and several of his short stories have been recorded for the National Public Radio series “Selected Shorts.” In 1996 Granta magazine named him as one of the best young American novelists. For fifteen years David served as a teacher in urban schools, mostly teaching middle grades in Saint Paul, Minnesota, and was involved in the work of the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, coordinating efforts of the nation’s finest educators to develop standards in the fields of social studies, vocational education, early childhood education and for teachers of students whose first language is not English. He is currently a director of the Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP) and is the Founder and Project Director for Kimbilio.

Maria Hummel

Maria Hummel

Maria Hummel is the author of the poetry collection House and Fire, winner of the 2013 APR/Honickman First Book Prize, and two novels: Motherland (Counterpoint, 2014) and Wilderness Run (St. Martin’s, 2003). Her poetry and prose have appeared in Poetry, New England Review, Narrative, The Sun, and The Believer. Her work was also featured in the 2012 Pushcart Prize anthology and the centenary anthology The Open Door: 100 Poems, 100 Years of Poetry Magazine. A former Stegner Fellow in Poetry, Hummel teaches at Stanford University.

Michael Nava

Michael Nava

Michael Nava, a third-generation Californian of Mexican descent, is the author of an acclaimed series of crime novels featuring Henry Rios, a gay Latino criminal defense lawyer. Published between 1986 and 2000, each new novel was greeted with greater critical acclaim until, about the last novel, Rag and Bone, the New York Times reviewer wrote simply:  “Nava is one of our best.” The series won six Lambda Literary Awards. In 2001, Nava received the Bill Whitehead Award for Lifetime Achievement in gay and lesbian literature. For the last 15 years, Nava has been working on a series of novels loosely inspired by the life and times of silent film star Ramon Novarro, a Mexican national who fled his homeland as a teenager during the Mexican Revolution and became one of the great stars of the silent era, known most memorably for his role in the original Ben Hur. The City of Palaces is the first novel in the series and is set in Mexico City just before and at the beginning of the Revolution of 1910.

Ethel Rohan

Ethel Rohan

Ethel Rohan is the author of two story collections, Goodnight Nobody and Cut Through the Bone, the latter named a 2010 Notable Story Collection by The Story Prize. She is also the author of the chapbook, Hard to Say. Her e-book, a short memoir titled His Heartbeat in my Hand, is forthcoming from Shebooks in 2014. Winner of Ireland’s 2013 Bryan MacMahon Short Story Award, her work has or will appear in The New York TimesWorld Literature TodayPEN America, Tin House Online, BREVITY Magazine, and The Rumpus, among many others. A former book reviewer for New York Journal of Books, she received her MFA in fiction from Mills College. Raised in Dublin, Ireland, she lives in San Francisco where she is a member of The Writers’ Grotto and PEN USA.

Why There Are Words takes place every second Thursday of the month, when people come from San Francisco, the North Bay, the East Bay — everywhere — to crowd the house. The brainchild of Peg Alford Pursell, this literary goodness has been going strong into its fifth year.

Why There Are Words Literary Reading Series rocks Litquake and more!

Posted in Uncategorized by whytherearewords on September 13, 2012

October is Roctober with Litquake! We have readings galore for you this month!

FIRST UP, join us for our regularly scheduled event at Studio 333 in Sausalito, October 11. 7pm. This very special show features writers from the audience who entered their names in the drawings over the months. Studio 333 in Sausalito, 7-9pm. $5. 

Rosaleen Bertolino

Rosaleen Bertolino‘s fiction has appeared in The MacGuffin, Pure Francis, Prick of the Spindle, and Southern California Review, among others. Her awards include a Marin Arts Council Individual Artist Grant.

April Eberhardt

April Eberhardt joined the literary world as head reader for Zoetrope: All-Story, a literary magazine, followed by five years as an agent with two San Francisco-based literary agencies. She holds an MBA from Boston University in Marketing and Finance, a BA from Hamilton (Kirkland) College in Anthropology and French, and a CPLF degree from the University of Paris. She divides her time between SF, New York and Paris.

Audrey Ferber

Audrey Ferber received an MFA in Writing from Mills College. Her short stories have been anthologized in Virtually Now, Eating Our Hearts Out, and An Intricate Weave. Her essays have appeared in the San Francisco ChronicleTravelers’ Tales for Women, and most recently in FRONTIERS: A Journal of Women Studies. She has written book reviews for the San Jose Mercury News and the San Francisco Chronicle.  She is at work on a memoir about aging, marriage, and dance classes.

Charles Kruger

Charles Kruger is “The Storming Bohemian” and creator of the website “Storming Bohemia,” which has been mentioned in the New York Times for its coverage of the San Francisco literary scene. He is also the editor and lead reviewer for TheatreStorm, a regular contributor to LitSeen, and an occasional book reviewer for The Rumpus. He is also a painter, whose work can be seen online.

Alexandria Melton

Beverly Morrison

Alexandria Melton has spent over a decade writing for other folks in the advertising industry. A recent transplant to Sausalito, she has published absolutely nothing and red-lined just about everything. She has a penchant for the flagrant use of em dashes — really, and possesses truly brilliant Sharpie skills. She is tragically poor, looking for the next great hardcover.

Robert Ofsevit

Beverly Morrison has a B.A. in Creative Writing from SF State. She is a truck driver living in Petaluma with her partner of 16 years, two birds, a gecko, and a cat. She is building a collection of flash fiction stories and specializing in haiku.

Robert Ofsevit saves energy for a living, and expends energy improving his writing, sailing and drawing skills. His BA thesis was published in the Undergraduate Journal of Asian Studies, Vol V, 1991, a highpoint in his literary career.

Alison Owings

Alison Owings is author of the Indian Voices: Listening to Native Americans (Rutgers 2011), a nearly decade-long labor. It appears in paperback in November. Her previous serious books are Hey, Waitress! The USA from the Other Side of the Tray and Frauen: German Women Recall the Third Reich. Her previous  not-so-serious book is The Wander Woman’s Phrasebook: How to Meet or Avoid People in Three Romance Languages. She lectures and teaches about the subjects of her serious books.

Barbara Solomon

Barbara Solomon is a retired attorney, painter, and community volunteer in Marin. Her current project, a short story collection, may turn into a novel.

Townsend Walker

Townsend Walker is a writer living in San Francisco.  His stories have been published in over fifty literary journals and included in six anthologies. One story won the SLO NightWriters story contest, and two were nominated for the PEN/O.Henry Award. Four were performed at the New Short Fiction Series in Hollywood.

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 NEXT, join us for everyone’s favorite Litquake’s LitcrawlLitcrawl: Why There Are Words Presents. October 13. 7:15. (Phase 2Aldea Home, 890 Valencia Street, SF. 

Pam Houston
photo credit: Adan Karsten

Pam Houston is the award-winning author of Contents May Have Shifted, Cowboys Are My WeaknessWaltzing the CatA Little More About Me, andSight Hound. Her stories have been selected for the Best American Short Stories, the O. Henry Awards, the Pushcart Prize, and the Best American Short Stories of the Century. She teaches in the graduate writing program at University of California, Davis.

Joshua Mohr

Joshua Mohr is the author of the novelsTermite Parade, which was an Editors’ Choice on The New York Times Best Seller List; Some Things that Meant the World to Me, one of O Magazine‘s Top 10 reads of 2009 and a SF Chronicle bestseller; and the brand new Damascus (October 2011).  He has published numerous short stories and essays in publications such asThe New York Times Book Review, 7×7, the Bay GuardianZYZZYVA, andThe Rumpus, among many others.  He lives in San Francisco and teaches in the MFA program at USF.

Michelle Richmond

Michelle Richmond is the author of the New York Times bestseller The Year of Fog, currently under option with Battleplan Productions; the novels No One You Know and Dream of the Blue Room; and the award-winning story collection The Girl in the Fall-Away Dress. In Fall 2012, she held the Catherine Julie Cunningham Chair at Notre Dame de Namur University. She is the founder and publisher of Fiction Attic Press.

Susan Steinberg

Susan Steinberg is the author of the story collections Hydroplane and The End of Free Love, and her third collection, Spectacle, is forthcoming from Graywolf Press. Her stories have appeared in McSweeney’s, Conjunctions, The Gettysburg Review, American Short Fiction, Boulevard, Quarterly West, Denver Quarterly, and The Massachusetts Review, and she has been the recipient of a Pushcart Prize and a National Magazine Award. She was the 2010 United States Artists Ziporyn Fellow in Literature. She has a BFA in Painting from the Maryland Institute College of Art and an MFA in English from The University of Massachusetts, Amherst.  She is Professor of English at the University of San Francisco.

Ryan Van Meter

Ryan Van Meter is the author of the essay collection, If You Knew Then What I Know Now (2011). His work has appeared in The Gettysburg Review, Iowa Review, The Normal School Magazine, Ninth Letter, and Fourth Genre, among others, and has been selected for anthologies including Best American Essays 2009. A recent finalist for the Lambda Literary Award, he has also been awarded residencies by The MacDowell Colony and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts.

~

BUT WAIT, that’s not all! Come out early (you know what they say about early birds) to the Litcrawl (October 13) at  6pm to Four Barrel Coffee, 375 Valencia Street, SF for Tzara’s Hat: Five Writers, Five New Works.

Tristan Tzara knew something about the creative power of community and constraint. During a Dadaist rally in the 1920s, Tzara offered to create a work on the spot by pulling words at random from a hat. The exercise became a well-known surrealism technique, and when applied to flash fiction it works quite effectively by pulling the words from a hat at timed intervals, which must be immediately incorporated into the story being drafted. Come hear the results, at Tzara’s Hat, where five writers will read five new flash fiction works of no more than 750 words.

Peg Alford Pursell‘s fiction has appeared in the Los Angeles Review, Staccato Fiction, Annalemma, Emprise Review & others. She’s an editor & lit reading series curator.

Daniel Levin Becker is reviews editor of The Believer and the youngest member of the Paris-based Oulipo collective.

Ethel Rohan is the author of Hard to Say and Cut Through the Bone. She has published in World Literature TodayTin House Online, The Rumpus, & elsewhere.

Janey Smith is the writer of The Snow Poems (forthcoming, NAP) and Animals (Plain Wrap Press). Her writing may be found all over the internet.

Olga Zilberbourg writes fiction set in San Francisco, St. Petersburg, Russia, and places between. Her work’s appeared in Narrative MagazineSanta Monica Review, HTMLGiant, and others.

~LAST, Bonus! Join us for Litquake’s Barely Published Authors: October 6 at 7pm $5 at the door, when Nancy Au reads, as selected by Why There Are Words & North Bay Writers.

 

//

May 13 Reading, Complications

Posted in Uncategorized by whytherearewords on April 16, 2010

May 13, 7 PM at Studio 333. $5 gets you in. The theme is Complications. You know what those are. So do the authors who’ll be reading. Come and hear theirs.

Daniel Handler

Daniel Handler is the author of the novels The Basic Eight, Watch Your Mouth, and Adverbs, and far too many books as Lemony Snicket, including the forthcoming 13 Words, a collaboration with Maira Kalman.  He lives in San Francisco with his wife and child.

Tony DuShane

Tony DuShane is the author of Confessions of a Teenage Jesus Jerk, a novel loosely based on his life growing up a Jehovah’s Witness. Vanity Fair picked it as a Hot Type title for March 2010. He lives in San Francisco’s Tenderloin and writes for lots of publications including the San Francisco Chronicle, The Believer, Mother Jones, and SFGate.com. He hosts the radio show Drinks with Tony and DJs at bars and clubs around San Francisco. He uses Wild Hair Moustache Wax and is obsessed with the World’s Strongest Man Competition.

Lori Ostlund

Lori Ostlund’s first collection of stories, The Bigness of the World, received the 2008 Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction and was published by the University of Georgia Press in October 2009.  She was one of six emerging women writers chosen to receive a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award in 2009.  Her stories have appeared in New England Review, The Georgia Review, and The Kenyon Review, among other journals.  She teaches developmental English and story writing at The Art Institute of California-San Francisco and is currently at work on a novel and a second story collection.

Christina Sunley

Christina Sunley was born in New York City, raised on Long Island, and has lived for the past twenty years in the San Francisco Bay Area. She attended Wesleyan University, got a BFA in Film from New York University, and received her Masters in English/Creative Writing from San Francisco State University. Christina’s short fiction has appeared in a variety of literary journals. She was a writer-in-residence at Klaustrið (The Monastery), a stone farmhouse in a remote area, near where her grandfather had lived. The Tricking of Freya is her first novel, about which Publishers Weekly (starred review) said “”This grand coming-of-age-novel boasts a dynamic set of characters and a rich bank of cultural and personal lore, making this dark, cold family tale a surprisingly lush experience.”  Christina also works full-time in the nonprofit sector.

Bora Reed

Bora Reed was born in Seoul, Korea, and grew up in Southern California. In 2002, she left her job in campus ministry, went to writing school, and started working on a novel set in the Korean War. In 2006, she was privileged to travel to North Korea with her father, who left Pyongyang in 1950 as a war refugee. North Korea, then and now, remains one of her enduring interests. To support her writing habit, Bora now works as an editor at the Goldman School of Public Policy at UC Berkeley. She holds a MFA from Warren Wilson College and a MA in Theology from the Graduate Theological Union.

Ethel Rohan

Born and raised in Dublin, Ireland, Ethel Rohan now lives in San Francisco. She received her MFA in fiction from Mills College, CA. While there, she was awarded both a Dean’s Undergraduate Merit Scholarship and an Alumni Graduate Merit Scholarship. Her work has or will appear in Storyglossia, Keyhole 9, The Emerson Review, Los Angeles Review, and Potomac Review, among many others. She blogs at her website.

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