Why There Are Words Literary Reading Series presents the following readers on the theme After All July 12 at Studio 333 in Sausalito, 7-9pm. $5. Join us as seven authors share stories big and small. It’s why there are words after all!
Lauren Becker is editor of Corium Magazine. Her work has appeared in The Los Angeles Review, Opium, Hobart, Juked and some other nice places. Her collection of short fiction is included in the anthology Shut Up/Look Pretty (Tiny Hardcore Press, 2012). She lives in Oakland, where she hosts the reading series, East Bay on the Brain. She has never been nominated for a Pushcart Prize.
Joe Clifford’s work has appeared in Big Bridge, the Connecticut Review, Drunken Boat, Fringe, Opium, Thuglit, Word Riot, and Underground Voices, among others. A collection of short stories, Choice Cuts, and his noir novel Wake the Undertaker will be published by Snubnose Press this year. He is the producer of Lip Service West, a “gritty, real, raw” reading series in Oakland. He has been to jail but never prison.
Sere Prince Halverson is the author of The Underside of Joy (Dutton, January 2012), translated into fifteen languages. She worked as a copywriter and creative director for 20 years while she wrote fiction and raised kids. She and her husband have four children, and live in Northern California.
Joy Lanzendorfer’s work has appeared in Hotel Amerika, Necessary Fiction, Word Riot, Salon, the San Francisco Chronicle, Entrepreneur, Bust, and others. She completed an MA in Creative Writing at San Francisco State University, where she served on the editorial board for Fourteen Hills. Her chapbook The End of the World as I Know It won runner-up for the Michael Rubin Chapbook Award at SFSU. For the last five years, she has been a judge in the Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards. She just completed her first novel.
Ericka Lutz is the author of the recently published novel The Edge of Maybe. Her seven non-fiction books include On the Go with Baby and The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Stepparenting, and her short fiction and creative non-fiction have appeared in numerous books, anthologies, and journals, including Literary Mama, Because I Love Her, Paris: A Love Story, and Green Mountains Review. She won the Boston Fiction Festival in 2006 with her story “Deer Story,” and was a two-time fellow at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. Her full-length solo show “A Widow’s To-Do List” is in development. She teaches writing at U.C. Berkeley. She is currently writing a second novel based in Oakland about family ties… but this one has ghosts.
Aimee Phan is the author of The Reeducation of Cherry Truong (St. Martin’s Press, March 2012). Her first book, We Should Never Meet, was awarded the Association for Asian American Studies Book Award in Prose, a Notable Book by the Kiryama Prize in fiction, and a finalist for the Asian American Literary Awards. Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, USA Today, and The Oregonian, among others. A 2010 National Endowment of the Arts Creative Writing Fellow, she received her MFA from the University of Iowa, where she won a Maytag Fellowship. She teaches in the MFA Program in Writing and Writing and Literature Program at California College of the Arts.
Eric Sasson’s story collection Margins of Tolerance (Livingston Press, May 2012) was the 2011 Tartt First Fiction Award runner-up. His story “Floating” was a finalist for the Robert Olen Butler prize. Other publication credits include Explosion Proof, BLOOM, Nashville Review, The Puritan, Liquid Imagination, Alligator Juniper, Trans, The Ledge, MARY magazine, and THE2NDHAND, among others. He’s taught fiction writing at the Sackett Street Writers Workshop and lives in Brooklyn.
What do you hunger for? Maybe the same things as our readers. Come find out. August 11, Studio 333, 7 pm. $5 gets you in the door. Bring mad money for authors’ books and drinks.
In 1982, Mehri Dadgar, an idealistic 22-year old, was arrested on a Tehran street for distributing pro-Democratic literature. In her memoir she tells of her narrow escape from execution and her struggle to preserve her sanity under the pressures of torture and isolation. Before immigrating to the United States in 1994, she studied art at the Art University in Tehran. Since living in America, she has exhibited her art in Canada, Sweden, England, and the United States, and received her MFA in art. She teaches at the College of Marin and Book Passage about the peaceful message common in all original scriptures including the Quran.
Alta Ifland grew up in Romania and came to the United States in 1991. She is the author of a bilingual (French-English) book of prose poems, Voice of Ice, which was awarded the 2008 French prize Louis Guillaume, and a collection of short stories, Elegy for a Fabulous World, which was nominated for the 2010 Northern California Book Awards. Her latest book of short stories, Death-in-a-Box, has just been released by Subito Press. In 2010 she was a fellow in fiction at the Wesleyan Writers’ Conference.
Andrew Lam is co-founder and editor of New America Media, an association of over 2000 ethnic media organizations in America. He has also contributed over 60 commentaries to NPR’s All Things Considered. His essays have appeared in dozens of newspapers across the country, including the New York Times, The LA Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, among many others, and in magazines such as Mother Jones, The Nation, Utne Magazine, and more. His short stories are also widely anthologized and taught in many universities and colleges. His book, Perfume Dreams: Reflections on the Vietnamese Diaspora won the 2006 Pen American Beyond the Margins Award, and was short-listed for Asian American Literature Award. He was the first Vietnamese to put together an anthology of Vietnamese American writing in English called Once Upon A Dream: Vietnamese American Experience, in 1995. His 2010 book East Eats West: Writing in Two Hemispheres was listed as a top ten indie book by Shelf Unbound Magazine. His next is a collection of short stories, Birds of Paradise, and is due out in 2012. Born in Vietnam, he came to the US in 1975 when he was 11 years old, earned a Master in Fine Arts from San Francisco State University in creative writing, and a BA degree in biochemistry from UC Berkeley.
Kate Milliken grew up in the Reagan 80s, bouncing between her father’s home in Chicago, Illinois, and her mother’s home in Santa Monica, California. Unwilling to complete high school she wrote a desperate letter of application to a small liberal arts college in Boston and was granted early acceptance. Her belief in the power of the written word then wholly solidified, she has been writing ever since. Having written for television and commercial advertising, in 2006 she completed her Master of Fine Arts in fiction at Bennington College. Her short stories have since appeared in numerous publications, including the Santa Monica Review, Fiction, the New Orleans Review, Meridian, and the Southeast Review, among others. She has received fellowships from the Vermont Studio Center, the Tin House Summer Writing Workshops and Yaddo. Her collection of stories, If I’d Known You Were Coming, has been a finalist for the OV Books Short Story Prize, the Katherine Anne Porter Award, and the Spokane Prize. In January 2011, she received her first Pushcart Prize nomination.
Paul Corman Roberts is the author of three collections of poems and flash fiction, most recently Neocom(muter) (Tainted Coffee Press, 2009) and 19th St. Station (FOC Chapbook Series, 2011.) He is fiction editor for Full of Crow Online, producer of the Bitchez Brew monthly reading series, and writes a monthly column for Red Fez Magazine called Dispatches From Atlantis. His work has recently appeared or is forthcoming in Instant City, The Rumpus, Sparkle and Blink. He is currently looking for a publisher for his first collection of short stories, and he once had coffee and donuts with Eldridge Cleaver. While ranting a poem in the shop, Eldridge got some donut spittle on Paul’s shirt. Contrary to popular belief, Paul did wash the shirt.
Ann Ryles was born in Kentucky and raised in Maryland and California. She was a finalist for the Crazyhorse Fiction Prize in 2009. Her short stories have appeared or are forthcoming in Gargoyle, Konundrum Engine Literary Review, Emprise Review, and Stirring: A Literary Collection. She is a graduate of the MFA in Writing Program at the University of San Francisco and UC Berkeley’s Boalt Hall School of Law. She is currently working on a collection of short stories and in the past year has tried her hand at playwriting. She lives with her husband and two daughters in the East Bay town of Moraga.
Valentine’s Day. Will you be my valentine? Yes or no. The little heart-shaped candies. Why was there never a maybe?
Join us February 10 at Studio 333 when the following authors will read from their work on the theme of Maybe. Doors open at 7 PM. $5.
Lauren Alwan’s fiction has appeared in the Alaska Quarterly Review, StoryQuarterly, the Sycamore Review, and other literary journals, and is included in the forthcoming anthology from Modernist Press, Art From Art. In 2009, a story chosen by Tobias Wolff was a finalist for the Sycamore Review’s Wabash Prize in Fiction and nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She is a regular contributor for The Best Damn Creative Writing Blog and teaches creative writing through Ripe Fruit Writing in San Francisco.
Lucy Jane Bledsoe is the author of the 2010 novel, The Big Bang Symphony. Her recent stories, which won both the 2009 Arts & Letters Prize for Fiction and the 2009 Sherwood Anderson Fiction Prize, have been published in Hot Metal Bridge, Shenandoah, Arts & Letters, Terrain, and ZYZZYVA. She is the author of three other novels (Biting the Apple, This Wild Silence, Working Parts), a collection of short fiction (Sweat: Stories and a Novella), and a collection of narrative nonfiction (The Ice Cave: A Woman’s Adventures from the Mojave to the Antarctic). She has traveled to Antarctica three times, as a two-time recipient of the National Science Foundation’s Artists & Writers in Antarctica Fellowship and once as a guest on the Russian ship, the Akademik Sergey Vavilov. Her novels have been translated into Japanese, Spanish, and German, and her stories into Dutch and Chinese.
Katherine Ellison is a Pulitzer-Prize winning investigative journalist, former foreign correspondent, writing consultant, author of four books, and mother of two sons. Her latest book, a new memoir titled Buzz: A Year of Paying Attention (Hyperion Voice), is an account of life with a high-spirited child, combined with a journalist’s overview of the controversies surrounding Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder and how best to manage it. Ellison’s previous books include The Mommy Brain: How Motherhood Makes Us Smarter, and The New Economy of Nature: The Quest to Make Conservation Profitable. Her writing on topics ranging from climate change to neuroscience has appeared in publications including The New York Times, Smithsonian, Time, Fortune, Working Mother, and The Atlantic Monthly.
Frances Lefkowitz is the author of To Have Not, which was named one of five
“Best Memoirs of 2010” by SheKnows.com. It’s a true story of growing up poor in San Francisco in the 1970s, getting a scholarship to an Ivy League college, and discovering what it really means to have and have not. The former Senior Editor of Body+Soul magazine, she is now the book reviewer for Good Housekeeping and a freelance writer, editor, and writing teacher. Her articles, essays, and short stories have appeared in The Sun, Utne Reader, Glimmer Train Stories, Fiction, Poets & Writers, Martha Stewart’s Whole Living, Health, and more. She has been nominated twice for the Pushcart Prize, once for Best American Essays, and was a finalist for a James Beard Foundation food writing award, among other honors. She lives in Petaluma and surfs in Bolinas.
Meg Pokrass is the author of Damn Sure Right, a debut collection of flash fiction stories. She writes flash fiction, prose poetry, makes story animations, serves as Editor-at-Large for BLIP Magazine (formerly Mississippi Review), and runs the Fictionaut Five author interview series. Her work has appeared in over one hundred online and print publications, including Mississippi Review, Wigleaf, The Pedestal, BoundOff, Keyhole, Annalemma, Smokelong Quarterly, elimae, Gigantic, Gargoyle, Prime Number, Women Writers, Istanbul Review, 3AM, Foundling Review, Mud Luscious, Juked, FRIGG, and Wordriot. Her work has been nominated for Dzanc’s Best of the Web, the Pushcart Prize, and Wigleaf’s Top 50 Flash Stories and showcased for Dzanc Book’s Short Story Month. She teaches writing privately and leads flash fiction workshops nationally, and lives in San Francisco with her daughter Molly and husband Doug Bond.
In 1999, Jacqueline Luckett took a creative writing class on a dare,
from herself, and began writing short stories and poetry and never looked back. Over the years, she took writing workshops at the University of California (Berkeley and Los Angeles) extension programs. The Bay Area native loves living in Oakland, but travels frequently to nurture her passion for photography and learning to cook exotic foods. Searching for Tina Turner was released in January, 2010. Her second novel, Passing Love, will be released in January, 2012.
Why There Are Words Literary Reading Series will celebrate its one year anniversary January 13! With Michael Alenyikov, Tamim Ansary, Catherine Brady, Stephen Elliott, Alice LaPlante, Janet Thornburg, and YOU! The theme is “More” — in which we will get a little of that from these “greatest hits” readers 0f 2010. Then we’ll close out the night with an open mic.
Here’s how the open mic will work: Come sign up at the door that evening. Five minute slots will be available on a first come-first served basis. Very important: reading slots are for 5 minutes only. A strict 5 minutes! There will be a bouncer. Please do not sign up if you aren’t able to keep it to 5 minutes or under. Note: as a rough idea 250 words (1 double-spaced page) = 2 minutes.
WTAW will take place, as always, at Studio 333, Sausalito — 333 Caledonia Street at 7 PM. $5 at the door. Bring cash (and checks) for beverages and readers’ books. Authors will be happy to sign them for you.
Michael Alenyikov’s short stories have appeared in Canada’s Descant, The Georgia Review, the James White Review, New York Stories, and Modern Words. They have been anthologized in Best Gay Stories, 2008 and Tartts Four: Incisive Fiction from Emerging Writers. His essays have appeared in the Gay & Lesbian Review. He was a MacDowell Fellow and nominated for a Pushcart Prize. He’s worked as a bookstore clerk, clinical psychologist, cab driver, and interactive media writer. His childhood encompassed the Bronx, Phoenix, Los Angeles, Brooklyn, and Queens. Ivan and Misha is his first book.
Tamim Ansary wrote his own memoir, West of Kabul, East of New York,
someone else’s memoir, The Other Side of the Sky, and the world’s memoir, Destiny Disrupted: A History of the World Through Islamic Eyes. Now, he’s working on Road Trips, another memoir about his experiences as an Afghan American wandering in a shell-shocked daze through the post-sixties American counterculture. He guesses his epitaph will be: he wrote memoir.
Destiny Disrupted: A History of the World Through Islamic Eyes won the Northern California Book Award for Best General Nonfiction of 2009, and has been or is being translated into nine languages including Russian, Dutch, Indonesian, Korean, and Italian. West of Kabul, East of New York was selected as San Francisco’s One City One Book pick for 2008. It has also been selected as common freshman reading by colleges and universities ranging from Carleton, Tulane and Temple to College of Alameda and Houston Community College.
Catherine Brady is the author of three story collections, including Curled in the Bed of Love, winner of the 2002 Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction, and The Mechanics of Falling, winner of the Northern California Book Award in Fiction. Her stories have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies, including Best American Short Stories 2004. She is also the author of a biography of Nobel laureate Elizabeth Blackburn, Elizabeth Blackburn and the Story of Telomeres, and the recently published Story Logic and the Craft of Fiction, which considers craft how-to in relation to flexible principles. She has just finished her first novel.
Diaries which has been described as “genius” by both the San Francisco Chronicle and Vanity Fair. The Adderall Diaries was the best book of the year in Time Out New York, a best of 2009 in Kirkus Reviews, and one of 50 notable books in the San Francisco Chronicle. His novel, Happy Baby, was a finalist for the New York Public Library’s Young Lion Award as well as a best book of the year in Salon.com, Newsday, Chicago New City, the Journal News, and the Village Voice. Elliott’s writing has been featured in Esquire, The New York Times, The Believer, GQ, Best American Non-Required Reading 2005 and 2007, Best American Erotica, and Best Sex Writing 2006. He is the editor of The Rumpus.
Alice LaPlante is an award-winning writer of both fiction and non-fiction. She teaches creative writing at Stanford University, where she was a Wallace Stegner Fellow and Jones Lecturer. She also teaches in the MFA program at San Francisco State University. Her fiction has been widely published in Epoch, Southwestern Review, and other literary journals. She is the author of five books, including the LA Times bestseller Method and Madness: The Making of a Story (W.W. Norton 2009). Her latest book, the novel Turn of Mind, will be published by Grove Atlantic in 2011. She lives with her family in Palo Alto, California.
Janet Thornburg’s short stories have appeared in Carve Magazine, The Distillery, In
The Family, Lumina, The MacGuffin, Phantasmagoria, and Phoebe. Rhubarb Pie, a collection of her short stories, was published by Thunderegg Press in 2005. In addition to writing fiction, she has written and performed seven solo shows, and her poetry has appeared in Womanthology, A Collection of Colorado Women Poets and Most of the Holes are Occupied: A Santa Fe Anthology. She lives with her two children in San Francisco, where she teaches at City College.
Why There Are Words Literary Reading Series presents the following authors reading selections from their work to the tune of “Heat” — that’s the theme, June 10, 2010, 7 PM. Studio 333, at 333 Caledonia St., Sausalito. $5.
Cara Black is the author of nine novels in the bestselling Aimée Leduc series, all of which are available in paperback from Soho Crime. She lives in San Francisco with her husband and son and visits Paris frequently.
Catherine Brady is the author of three story collections, including Curled in the Bed of Love, winner of the Flannery O’ Connor Award for Short Fiction, and most recently The Mechanics of Falling, winner of the Northern California Book Award for Fiction. Her stories have appeared in numerous literary magazines and anthologies, including Best American Short Stories 2004. Her book on craft, Story Logic and the Craft of Fiction, is forthcoming in October 2010. She teaches in the MFA in Writing Program at the University of San Francisco.
Iranian-American author Elizabeth Eslami is a graduate of Sarah Lawrence College and the Warren Wilson MFA
Program for Writers. She has published work in over a dozen journals, including G.W. Review, Minnesota Review, Crab Orchard Review, Matador Travel, and The Millions. She’s currently a regular contributor at The Nervous Breakdown. Her first novel, Bone Worship (Pegasus), about the complex relationship between an Iranian father and his American daughter, has been called “wildly original” by Joan Silber and “a treasure” by David Haynes, and Janet Peery calls Eslami a writer of “uncommon wit and depth.” She lives in Eugene, OR.
Joe Quirk is a bestselling novelist and science writer, and a popular public speaker. His debut novel, The Ultimate Rush, was a People Magazine Page-Turner Of The Week. His new novel, Exult, has garnered praise from Khaled Hosseini, and is about hang gliders who live out the Icarus myth. His humorous science book It’s Not You. It’s Biology: The Science of Love, Sex, and Relationships has been translated into 17 languages and is a San Francisco Chronicle bestseller. He recently published a science/history book, Call to the Rescue: The Story of the Marine Mammal Center, about how human activity impacts the lives of Bay Area sea lions and seals. Joe Quirk is a humor columnist at H+ Magazine, a publication dedicated to improving the human condition through biotechnology, nanotechnology, and artificial intelligence. His PIXAR-illustrated Powerpoint presentation, Sperm-spreaders vs. Egg-protectors, shows college students how to use biology in their dating lives. He also ghostwrites books under secret names. He is committed to teaching the craft of creative writing to the next generation of storytellers.
Prartho Sereno is author of a book of memoir-essays, Everyday Miracles: An A to Z Guide to the Simple Wonders of Life (Kensington, 1998) and author/illustrator of the prizewinning gift book Causing a Stir: The Secret Lives and Loves of Kitchen Utensils. Her other publications include Garden Sutra, a poetry chapbook, and Call from Paris, an award-winning collection of poems (2007 Word Works Washington Prize). Prartho received a Marin Arts Council Individual Artist Grant in 2003 and a Radio Disney Super Teacher Award in 2005 for her work as a California Poet in the Schools. She is heading to Syracuse University as a teaching fellow in their 3-year MFA program in Poetry this July.
Todd Zuniga is the founding editor of Opium Magazine. He is also the co-creator and host of Opium Magazine’s Literary Death Match, which is reading series that occurs monthly in New York City, San Francisco, London, and other locales. He is also a Pushcart Prize-nominated writer for his short fiction and an award-winning journalist (Best Feature Writing awarded by Ziff-Davis Media), the host and creator of 1UP.com’s Sports Anomaly podcast, and the cartoonist behind EatPizzaInTheShower.com, as well as a contributor to The Nervous Breakdown.
The February 11 Loves, Lusts, and Good Strong Likes was an amazing event.
You can see a few photos here (facebook album). Better, Evan Karp’s got video. People are saying many good things about the reading series, and it’s been packed both events now. But I’m especially touched by what Evan writes about the Feb. 11 reading:
i won’t comment much except to say i have high expectations for this series in a different way than the myriad others i frequent. it’s like going to a classier restaurant than you would usually go to (if you went to restaurants) and expecting the quality to be exponentially better than you’re used to, and, fearing your own disappointment, you’re taken aback by the neat and well-mannered and timely and even sincere waitress and the food surpasses everything and the ambiance is like, i don’t know, coming from inside of you or something it’s so in tune, or you are, or there just isn’t a difference (and why should there be?). There shouldn’t! If you haven’t been to Studio 333, understand: this gallery is an ideal place for an epicenter of N Bay culture, and WTAW really seems to be laying the foundation for a much-desired community series.
Well-attended again (packed, actually), the room was full of people from all sides of the bay, but predominantly, I think, N Bay’ers. Amy Tan and Bombo even made it out—talk about a good crowd! As you may have already seen, readers were Lauren Becker, James Warner, Tanya Egan Gibson, Judy French, Joan Frank, and Stephen Elliott.
Get a jump on your Valentine’s Day weekend by coming out Thursday night, February 11, to Why There Are Words’ Loves, Lusts, and Good Strong Likes reading. Studio 333 in Sausalito, 7 PM, $5 donation at the door. (Bring cash and checks for authors’ books, which they’ll gladly sign for you, and for drinks — water, beer, wine.) Here’s the line-up.
Stephen Elliott is the author of seven books including The Adderall Diaries, which has been described as “genius” by both the San Francisco Chronicle and Vanity Fair. Elliott’s writing has been featured in Esquire, The New York Times, The Believer, GQ, Best American Non-Required Reading 2005 and 2007, Best American Erotica, and Best Sex Writing 2006. He is the editor of The Rumpus.
Joan Frank is the author of four books of fiction: her most recent, the story collection In Envy Country, won the 2010 Richard Sullivan Prize in Fiction, and is available right here, right now for your reading pleasure at her website.
Joan’s first novel, Miss Kansas City, won the 2006 Michigan Literary Fiction Award, and was nominated for a Northern California Book Award in Fiction. Her second novel, The Great Far Away, was also an NCBA nominee. Her first story collection, Boys Keep Being Born, was a finalist for both the Bay Area Book Reviewers’ Fiction Award and the Paterson Fiction Award.
Joan took her MFA in Fiction from the Warren Wilson College MFA Program for Writers. She is a MacDowell Colony Fellow, Pushcart Prize nominee, winner of the Dana Award, Emrys Fiction Award and Iowa Writing Award; in 2008 the San Francisco Public Library named Joan a Literary Laureate. She lives and works in Santa Rosa.
Tanya Egan Gibson is the author of How to Buy a Love of Reading (May 2009 – Dutton), a novel about nouveau riche parents who try to cure their teenage daughter’s hatred of books by commissioning a custom-written novel for her and dubbing themselves the Medicis of Long Island. Hailed as “a fresh and funny new voice in the world of fiction” by Mark Childress (Crazy in Alabama and One Mississippi), Tanya is an alumna of Squaw Valley Community of Writers. She lives in Marin County with her husband and two children.
Lauren Becker writes and edits, ostensibly for money and definitely for joy,though she preferred the government relations and attorney paychecks. She is the editor of a brand new literary journal, Corium Magazine, which will debut online in March, and writes for The Nervous Breakdown. She runs a quarterly reading series called East Bay on the Brain and her fiction has appeared or will in places including Annalemma, Opium Magazine, Pindeldyboz, Storyglossia, and Wigleaf.
Judy French is a fiction writer and poet living in Walnut Creek. Her work has appeared in the Colorado Review as well as other literary journals, and her play Little Statues was staged in New York. She holds a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from Warren Wilson College and graduated with honors from Santa Clara University with a degree in Theater. She currently teaches creative writing at a private school in the Bay Area.
James Warner‘s stories have appeared most recently in Electric Literature’s The Outlet, Storyglossia, Ninth Letter, Dublin Quarterly, Agni Online, etc. He blogs for Identity Theory at Everything Unfinished. He helps organize the world’s largest literary pub crawl, the Lit Crawl, for San Francisco’s annual Litquake festival. James organizes the reading series InsideStoryTime.