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.
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 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’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’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 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 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 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 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.
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.
Join us December 9 at 7:00 PM for the last Why There Are Words reading event of the year. It’s been a wonderful year that we’ll end in style with work from emerging and widely-published fiction writers, some prose poetry, and an excerpt and discussion of a graphic novel. Wild Card — Anything Goes is the theme. Don’t miss it.
Andrew Sean Greer is the bestselling author of four works of fiction, most recently The Story of a Marriage. He’s the recipient of the PEN/O’Henry Prize for Short Fiction, the Northern California Book Award, the California Book Award, the New York Public Library Young Lions Award, and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the New York Public Library.
Daphne Kalotay is the author of the newly published novel Russian Winter (HarperCollins 2010), which was a finalist for the James Jones First Novel Fellowship. Her fiction collection Calamity and Other Stories (KnopfDoubleday 2005) was a Poets & Writers “Notable Book” and short-listed for the 2005 Story Prize.
A recipient of fellowships from the Christopher Isherwood Foundation, the MacDowell Colony, and Yaddo, she lives in Brookline, Massachusetts.
Caitlin Myer‘s short stories have been published in charming, short-lived literary magazines, online journals and the occasional anthology. Her one-woman play about Simone de Beauvoir attracted sold-out crowds in Seattle, Salt Lake City, and Provo, Utah. Yes, she was raised Mormon. No, she doesn’t practice. If you buy her a drink, she’ll be happy to tell you all about it. Her first novel, Hoodoo, flirts with publishers, but fears commitment. She is the Founder of Portuguese Artists Colony, a collection of disreputable characters who write and stage monthly readings at Fivepoints Arthouse in San Francisco. She is not Portuguese.
Erich Origen is an artist living in San Francisco, and the author of The
Adventures of Unemployed Man. His previous book, Goodnight Bush, was a New York Times bestseller and has sold more than 120,000 copies. He and co-author Gan Golan have appeared on CNN, Time, Huffington Post and others to discuss the book.
Peter Orner is the author of the novel, The Second Coming of Mavala Shikongo, finalist for the Los Angles Times Book Prize, and Esther Stories, Winner of the Rome Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. His work has appeared in the Atlantic Monthly, Granta, Best American Stories, and twice received the Pushcart Prize. A 2006 Guggenheim Fellow, Orner is also the editor of the oral history, Underground America, and co-editor (with Annie Holmes) of Hope Deferred: Narratives of Zimbabwean Lives just out from McSweeney’s. A new novel, Love and Shame and Love, will be published by Little Brown in fall, 2011. He teaches at San Francisco State.
Robert Thomas’ first book, Door to Door, was selected by Yusef Komunyakaa as winner of the Poets Out Loud Prize and published by Fordham University Press in 2002, and his second book, Dragging the Lake, was published by Carnegie Mellon University Press in 2006. He has received a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts and a Pushcart Prize. He lives in Oakland, California.