Why There Are Words presents a delectable assortment of delicious readings from the following authors on the theme of “Sweet.” Join us for the lusciousness on December 11, 2014, at Studio 333 in Sausalito. Doors open at 7pm; readings begin at 7:15. $10.
Hugh Behm-Steinberg is the author of Shy Green Fields (No Tell Books) and The Opposite of Work (JackLeg Press). Bird poems have appeared in such places as Spork, Fence, Denver Quarterly and Ping-Pong. He teaches writing at California College of the Arts, where he edits the journal Eleven Eleven.
Brian Komei Dempster‘s debut book of poetry, Topaz, was published by Four Way Books in 2013 and received the 15 Bytes 2014 Book Award in Poetry. He is editor of From Our Side of the Fence: Growing Up in America’s Concentration Camps (Kearny Street Workshop, 2001), which received a 2007 Nisei Voices Award from the National Japanese American Historical Society, and Making Home from War: Stories of Japanese American Exile and Resettlement (Heyday, 2011). He is a professor of rhetoric and language and a faculty member in Asian Pacific American Studies at the University of San Francisco, where he also serves as Director of Administration for the Master of Arts in Asia Pacific Studies.
Cassandra Dunn is the author of The Art of Adapting (Touchstone/Simon & Schuster), which Publishers Weekly called “a lively, engaging, and heartfelt tale of learning how to cope with change.” She received her MFA in creative writing from Mills College. She was a semifinalist for the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award and a finalist for Glimmer Train’s Short Story Award for New Writers. She’s published twelve short stories.
Rita Gardner is the author of the memoir The Coconut Latitudes (She Writes Press, September 2014). She grew up on her expatriate family’s coconut farm in the Dominican Republic during the dictatorship of Rafael Trujillo. Living in a remote coastal village, she was home-schooled and began writing, reading, and painting at an early age. She returned to the U.S. to finish school and later moved to Northern California where she follows her passions—writing, traveling, trail hiking, and photography. Her published essays, articles, poems, and photographs have appeared in literary journals, travel magazines, and newspapers. She has been awarded writing residencies at Hedgebrook and Lit Camp.
Glen David Gold is the author of the novels Carter Beats the Devil and Sunnyside. He has written essays, short stories and journalism for McSweeney’s, Playboy, and Zyzzyva, and comic books for DC and Dark Horse. He’s written episodes of Welcome to Night Vale and The Thrilling Adventure Hour.
Susan Ito is the author The Mouse Room, a SheBooks memoir. She co-edited the literary anthology A Ghost At Heart’s Edge: Stories & Poems of Adoption (North Atlantic Books). She is a creative nonfiction editor at the online literary journal Literary Mama, and her work has appeared in Growing Up Asian American, Choice, Hip Mama, The Bellevue Literary Review, Making More Waves and elsewhere. She has performed her solo show, The Ice Cream Gene, around the United States. She writes and teaches at the San Francisco Writers’ Grotto, at UC Berkeley Extension, and the MFA Program at Bay Path College.
Claudia Long is a highly caffeinated, terminally optimistic married lady who writes about early 1700’s Mexico and modern day and Roaring Twenties California. She practices law as a mediator for employment disputes and business collapses, has two formerly rambunctious–now grown kids, and owns four dogs and a cat. Her first mainstream novel was Josefina’s Sin, published by Simon & Schuster in 2011. Her second, The Duel for Consuelo (Booktrope, 2014) is about the Crypto-Jews of Mexico in 1711 and the last gasps of the power of the Inquisition. She grew up in Mexico City and New York, and now lives in California.
Elizabeth Rosner is a bestselling novelist, poet, and essayist living in Berkeley. Her third novel, Electric City, and her full-length poetry collection, Gravity, were both published in October 2014. Her first novel, The Speed of Light, was translated into nine languages. Short-listed for the Prix Femina, the book won several literary prizes in both the US and Europe, including the Prix France Bleu Gironde; the Great Lakes Colleges Award for New Fiction; and Hadassah Magazine’s Ribalow Prize, judged by Elie Wiesel. The book was optioned by actress Gillian Anderson, who will be making the film her directorial debut. Her second novel, Blue Nude, was named one of the best books of the year by the San Francisco Chronicle. Her essays have appeared in the NY Times Magazine, Elle, the Forward, Hadassah Magazine, and several anthologies. She travels widely to lead intensive writing workshops, to lecture on contemporary literature, and to visit with book groups. Her book reviews appear frequently in the San Francisco Chronicle and the Los Angeles Review of Books.
Robert Thomas’ latest book, Bridge, is a work of fiction published by BOA Editions. His first book, Door to Door, was selected by Yusef Komunyakaa as winner of the Poets Out Loud Prize and published by Fordham University, and his second book, Dragging the Lake, was published by Carnegie Mellon. He has received a poetry fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts and won a Pushcart Prize. Robert lives with his wife in Oakland.
Zarina Zabrisky is the author of two short story collections, Iron and A Cute Tombstone, the novel We, Monsters, and a book of collaborative poetry and art, Green Lions, co-written with Simon Rogghe. Her work has been published in six countries. She is a three-time Pushcart Prize nominee and a recipient of a 2013 Acker Award.
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 into its fifth year.