Why There Are Words

Why There Are Words and Joyland, with Daniel Handler, May 14, 2015

Posted in readings by whytherearewords on April 15, 2015

Why There Are Words presents a collaboration with Joyland, along with special guest Daniel Handler. Join us May, 14 2015, at Studio 333 in Sausalito. Doors open at 7pm; readings begin at 7:15. $10.

Based on the idea that fiction is an international movement supported by local communities Joyland is a literary magazine that selects stories regionally. Editors work with authors connected to locales across North America.

Kara Levy, editor

Kara Levy, editor

Kara Levy has been the San Francisco editor of Joyland for six years. A former Steinbeck fellow at San José State University, she earned her MFA at Columbia University. Her stories have been published in the Alaska Quarterly Review, TriQuarterly, and the Mississippi Review, and she was a winner of Narrative’s 30 Below contest.

Zoe Ferraris

Zoe Ferraris


Zoë Ferraris moved to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, in the aftermath of the first Gulf War. She lived in a conservative Muslim community with her then-husband and his family, a group of Saudi-Palestinians. In 2006, she completed her MFA in Fiction at Columbia University. Her debut novel, Finding Nouf, won the LA Times Book Award. That novel and its follow-upsCity of Veils and Kingdom of Strangers, have been international bestsellers, published in over thirty-five countries. She currently lives in San Francisco.

Ruth Galm

Ruth Galm

Ruth Galm’s debut novel, Into the Valley, will be out from Soho Press in August 2015.  Her writing has also appeared or is forthcoming in the Kenyon ReviewIndiana Review, and Joyland.  She holds an MFA from Columbia University and is a past resident of the Ucross Foundation.  She was born and raised in San José, California, spent time in New York City and Boston, and now lives in San Francisco.

Rachel Khong

Rachel Khong

Rachel Khong is the senior editor of Lucky Peach, and has worked for the publication since its inception in 2011. In addition to Lucky Peach, her writing has appeared or is forthcoming in The Believer, The Rumpus, American Short FictionJoyland, and California Sunday. She is currently at work on a novel. She lives in San Francisco.

Marian Palaia

Marian Palaia

Marian Palaia is the author of The Given World, a Barnes and Noble “Discover Great New Writers” pick for summer 2015, forthcoming in April from Simon and Schuster. Marian has lived in San Francisco, on and off, since 1985, and has also lived in Maryland, Montana, Hong Kong, Ho Chi Minh City, and Nepal, where she was a Peace Corps volunteer. In past lives, she has been a teacher, a truck driver, a bartender, and the littlest logger in Lincoln, Montana.

Maggie Tokuda-Hall

Maggie Tokuda-Hall

Maggie Tokuda-Hall has an MFA in writing and a tendency to spill things. She splits her time between writing for kids and adults, and her debut picture book, And Also an Octopus, is due out next year. You can find her short fiction on JoylandMidnight Breakfast, The Tusk, and Boing Boing, or on her website, prettyokmaggie.com.

Daniel Handler

Daniel Handler

SPECIAL GUEST Daniel Handler is the author of five novels, most recently Why We Broke Up, which won a Michael L. Printz Honor, and the just-published We Are Pirates. As Lemony Snicket, he is responsible for numerous books for children, including the thirteen-volume A Series Of Unfortunate Events, the four-volume All The Wrong Questions, and The Dark, which won the Charlotte Zolotow Award.  He has received commissions from the San Francisco Symphony and the Royal Shakespeare Company, and is collaborating with artist Maira Kalman on a series of books for the Museum of Modern Art in New York, including Girls Standing on Lawns and Hurry Up and Wait.  His regular column for The Believer, “What The Swedes Read,” investigates the Nobel Prize for Literature, and he continues to serve as the adjunct accordionist for the Magnetic Fields, among other musical projects. His books have sold more than 60 million copies and have been translated into 40 languages, and have been adapted for screen and stage, including a Netflix television version of the entirety A Series of Unfortunate Events, currently in development.

Why There Are Words takes place every second Thursday of the month, when people come from San Francisco, the North Bay, the East Bay, the South Bay–everywhere–to crowd the house. The brainchild of Peg Alford Pursell, this literary goodness has been going strong for five years.

Why There Are Words Literary Reading Series presents “Underneath”

Posted in readings by whytherearewords on July 15, 2012

Why There Are Words Literary Reading Series presents the following readers on the theme Underneath August 9 at Studio 333 in Sausalito, 7-9pm. $5. Join us for an extraordinary night as seven authors reveal worlds underneath words.

Melissa Cistaro

Melissa Cistaro’s stories have been published in the New Ohio Review, Brevity, Anderbo.com, Sparkle and Blink, the KQED Perspectives series, and in the anthology Cherished: 21 Writers on Animals They Have Loved and Lost.  Her essay “The Undertow” was a semi-finalist in Children’s Hospital & Research Center Oakland’s Notes & Words essay contest.

David Corbett

David Corbett is the author of four novels: The Devil’s Redhead, Done for a Dime (a New York Times Notable Book), Blood of Paradise (nominated for numerous awards, including the Edgar), and Do They Know I’m Running (Spinetingler Award, Best Novel Rising Star Category 2011). His short fiction and poetry have appeared in numerous magazines and anthologies, with two stories selected for Best American Mystery Stories (2009 and 2011). In May 2012, Mysterious Press/Open Road Media re-issued his first two novels plus a story collection in ebook format, and Penguin will publish his textbook on the craft of characterization The Art of Character in January 2013.

Jennifer duBois

Jennifer duBois is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and recently completed a Stegner Fellowship at Stanford University. Her fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in Playboy, The Missouri Review, The Kenyon Review, ZYZZYVA, The Northwest Review, and elsewhere. Her first novel, A Partial History of Lost Causes, was published by The Dial Press in March 2012.

C.J. Hribal is the author of the novel The Company Car, which received the Anne Powers Book Award, and the novel American Beauty.  He’s also the author of the short fiction collections Matty’s Heart and The Clouds in Memphis, which won the AWP Award for Short Fiction, and he edited The Boundaries of Twilight: Czecho-Slovak Writing from the New World. He has held Fellowships from the NEA, the Bush, and from the Guggenheim Foundations, and has twice won the Sternig Award for Short Fiction.  He is the Louise Edna Goeden Professor of English at Marquette University, and is a member of the fiction faculty at the Warren Wilson College MFA Program for Writers.

Kara Levy

Kara Levy’s fiction appears in Alaska Quarterly Review, Mississippi Review Prize Issue 2009, TriQuarterly, Zen Monster, Drunken Boat, the Huffington Post, and Narrative, where she was a winner of the 30Below Prize for writers under 30. A graduate of the MFA program at Columbia University, she was a recent Steinbeck Fellow in Fiction at the Center for Steinbeck Studies in San Jose. She lives in San Francisco.

Wendy Merrill

Wendy Merrill’s memoir, Falling into Manholes: The Memoir of a Bad/Good Girl (Putnam 2008), was sold at the Maui Writers Conference in 2006. Her personal essays also appear in the anthology Single Woman of a Certain Age (Inner Ocean, 2006) and, Single State of the Union (Seal Press, 2007). She is described by Anne Lamott as “a wonderful new voice — smart, funny, and wildly real.” She founded WAM Marketing Group, a unique marketing communications company based in Sausalito, where she currently lives above ground and beyond her means.

Frances Stroh

Frances Stroh is an installation artist turned writer who lived and worked in London for two years on a Fulbright Grant. She is writing a memoir entitled “Fire-Brewed: The Fall of the Stroh’s Beer Family” about her family who made beer in Detroit for a hundred and fifty years. Her work has appeared in Rosebud and on her blog, Irritable Brain Syndrome. She struggles mightily to employ Twitter in creative ways but enjoys the process.


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