Why There Are Words

Why There Are Words Reading May 9: New

Posted in readings, Sausalito by whytherearewords on April 17, 2013

There are always new words to be heard, to inspire, amaze, and move you at Why There Are Words, and this event will be no exception. Doors open at 7 pm; readings begin at 7:15. $10. Bring extra cash for books and booze.

Louise Aronson

Louise Aronson

Louise Aronson is the author of A History of the Present Illness, linked stories which take readers into the lives of diverse doctors, patients, and their families, providing an intimate portrait of health and illness in modern life. Her writing has appeared in literary and medical journals and the lay press, including the Bellevue Literary Review, Northwest Review, Fourteen Hills, Annals of Internal Medicine, and the New York Times. She has won the Sonora Review Prize, the New Millennium Short Fiction Award, multiple writer’s residency fellowships, and three Pushcart nominations. A geriatrician, medical educator, and Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF), she is also the founding director of UCSF Medical Humanities and the field of Public Medical Writing, which provides clinicians and scientists with the craft skills to advocate, educate, and bear witness to key experiences and issues in medicine. Find her on twitter @louisearonson.

Cheryl Dumesnil

Cheryl Dumesnil

Winner of the 2008 Agnes Lynch Starrett Poetry Prize, Cheryl Dumesnil is the author of the memoir Love Song for Baby X and the poetry collection In Praise of Falling. She edited Hitched! Wedding Stories from San Francisco City Hall and co-edited, with Kim Addonizio, Dorothy Parker’s Elbow: Tattoos on Writers, Writers on Tattoos. She’s a regular contributor to Huffington Post.

Josh FarrarJosh Farrar is the author of the middle-grade novels, Rules to Rock By and A Song for Bijou. He started writing fiction after spending ten years at companies like LeapFrog and Scholastic, where he designed and produced software that helped kids become better readers. His first love was music, which is probably why music has played such a prominent role in his fiction. (Rules, about the formation of a middle-school rock band, featured an original soundtrack; and Bijou features enough Haitian drumming that it could be sold with a volume knob). He has played in bands, composed music for plays and films, and when he’s not reading or writing, he usually has a stringed instrument in his hands. A graduate of Wesleyan University, he lives with his family in Brooklyn.

Paul Mihas

Paul Mihas

Paul Mihas has taught creative writing in Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina for over ten years, including classes at the continuing education departments of Duke University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is the recipient of the 2008 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize and the 2008 Katherine Anne Porter Prize for Fiction. Mihas is a Greek American and often writes about the blending of cultures in the U.S. His fiction has been published in Prairie Schooner, Best of the West, Nimrod International Journal, Pindeldyboz, Talking River, and Northwoods Anthology.

Brian Sousa

Brian Sousa

Brian Sousa‘s debut collection of stories Almost Gone has been described as “doing for Portuguese immigrants from Southern New England what Stuart Dybek did for the Polish of Chicago,” by Jeff Parker, author of Ovenman. He has published poetry and prose in various journals and anthologies, including Verdad, Newfound, Quiddity, Redivider, and others. His fiction is also featured in the Rutgers University Press anthology of Luso-American Literature, 2011. In 2007, he was awarded a fellowship by the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, and in 2011, he was a finalist for the Dzanc Books International Literary Award, and winner of a scholarship to the Dzanc Books International Literary Program in Portugal. He holds an MFA from Emerson College, is an editor for the music and culture website Mule Variations, and teaches writing at Boston College. He also plays guitar in the indie-rock band Ocean*Transfer.

Melanie Thorne

Melanie Thorne

Melanie Thorne is the author of Hand Me Down, a debut novel in the tradition of Dorothy Allison and Janet Fitch that Publisher’s Weekly deemed “an intriguing first outing by a talented new writer.” A Kirkus Reviews Best Book of 2012 and a 2013 YALSA Alex Award nominee, Hand Me Down has been widely praised by media, including the San Francisco Chronicle and Daily Candy, and received a “compelling” 3.5/4 stars from People. Melanie earned her MA in Creative Writing from the University of CA, Davis, and has been awarded the Alva Englund Fellowship, the Maurice Prize in Fiction, and a residency at the Hedgebrook Writers’ Retreat. She lives in Northern California with her fiancé, and is currently at work on her second novel.

Nancy Zafris

Nancy Zafris

Nancy Zafris is the series editor for the Flannery O’Connor award for short fiction. Before that she was the fiction editor of The Kenyon Review for nine years. This month, April 2013, she has released a new collection of short stories, The Home Jar(Switchgrass Books/NIU Press.) Her first collection of short stories, The People I Know, won the Flannery O’Connor award as well as the Ohioana Library Association award. Her two novels are The Metal Shredders, a New York Times notable book, and Lucky Strike, a BookSense notable. She is the recipient of two National Endowment for the Arts grants and has taught at many universities, including Masaryk University in Brno, Czech Republic as a Fulbright Fellow. Each June she teaches at the Kenyon Review Adult Summer Workshop, where she is also Associate Director.

Why There Are Words celebrated its third year in January 2013, takes place every second Thursday of the month, and is the brainchild of curator Peg Alford Pursell.

Why There Are Words May 10: “Unforgotten”

Posted in readings, Sausalito by whytherearewords on April 19, 2012

Why There Are Words Literary Reading Series presents the following readers on the theme Unforgotten May 10 at Studio 333 in Sausalito, 7-9pm. $5. Join us as these authors create another unforgettable night. That’s Why There Are Words.


Dan Coshnear

Daniel Coshnear is the author of Jobs & Other Preoccupations (Helicon Nine 2001), winner of the Willa Cather Fiction Award. He lives in Guerneville where he works at a group home for men and women with mental illnesses and teaches at various SF Bay Area university extension programs. He hopes to publish a new collection of stories in 2012 with Kelly’s Cove Press.


Rob Davidson

Rob Davidson is the author of The Farther Shore: Stories (Bear Star Press, 2012), The Master and the Dean: The Literary Criticism of Henry James and William Dean Howells, and Field Observations: Stories. He has won the 2009 Camber Press Fiction Award, a Pushcart Prize nomination, and been twice selected as the artist-in-residence at the Byrdcliffe Arts Colony. His work has appeared in Zyzzyva, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Indiana Review, The Normal School, New Delta Review, and elsewhere. Davidson teaches creative writing and American literature at CSU Chico.


Cheryl Dumesnil

Cheryl Dumesnil’s memoir, Love Song for Baby X: How I Stayed (Almost) Sane on the Rocky Road to Parenthood, will be released by Ig Publishing in 2013. Her collection of poems In Praise of Falling won the 2008 Agnes Lynch Starrett Poetry Prize. She is the editor of Hitched! Wedding Stories from San Francisco City Hall and co-editor, with Kim Addonizio, of Dorothy Parker’s Elbow: Tattoos on Writers, Writers on Tattoos. Her poems have appeared in Nimrod, Indiana Review, Calyx, and Many Mountains Moving, among others. Her essays have appeared in Hip Mama, MamaZine, and Literary Mama. She is a regular contributor to Out and Around: Writing From the Crossroads of Suburbia, Parenthood, and Lesbian Life.


Stefanie Freele

Stefanie Freele’s newest book is the story collection Surrounded by Water (Press 53, March 2012). She is also the author of the story collection Feeding Strays. She recently won the Glimmer Train Fiction Open, and her stories are published or forthcoming in Glimmer Train, Sou’wester, Mid-American Review, Western Humanities Review, Quarterly West, The Florida Review, American Literary Review, Night Train, Edge, and Pank. She is the fiction editor of the Los Angeles Review.


Daniel Handler

Daniel Handler is the author of the novel Why We Broke Up, (Little and Brown, December 2011), awarded a Michael L. Printz Honor, as well as The Basic Eight, Watch Your Mouth , and Adverbs. He has scripted two movies, Rick and Kill The Poor, and he is working on a musical with Stephin Merritt commissioned by the Royal Shakespeare Company. As Lemony Snicket, he is the author of many books for children.


Leota Higgins

Leota Higgins has an MFA from the University of San Francisco and is currently at work on her first novel “Still Searching,” the first chapter of which has been published by Achiote Press in their debut story collection Routes.



Julia Flynn Siler

Julia Flynn Siler is the bestselling author of two works of narrative history, Lost Kingdom: Hawaii’s Last Queen, the Sugar Kings, and America’s First Imperial Adventure and The House of Mondavi: The Rise and Fall of an American Wine Dynasty. An award-winning journalist and former foreign correspondent, she was a staff writer for The Wall Street Journal and Business Week and also wrote extensively for the New York Times. Her first book, The House of Mondavi, became a New York Times bestseller and was named a finalist for a 2008 James Beard Foundation award and a 2008 Gerald Loeb Award for Distinguished Business Reporting. Her second book, Lost Kingdom, became a San Francisco Chronicle bestseller shortly after being published in early 2012 and has won critical praise.


Lysley Tenorio

Lysley Tenorio is the author of the brand new debut collection of stories Monstress (Ecco Harper Collins, February 2012). His stories have appeared in The Atlantic, Zoetrope: All-Story, Ploughshares, Manoa, and The Best New American Voices and Pushcart Prize anthologies. A Whiting Writer’s Award winner and a former Stegner Fellow at Stanford University, he has received fellowships from the University of Wisconsin, Phillips Exeter Academy, Yaddo, The MacDowell Colony, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Born in the Philippines, he currently lives in San Francisco, and is an associate professor at Saint Mary’s College of California.

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