Why There Are Words Crosses Bridges: October Readings

In honor of Litquake, Why There Are Words presents  two literary events this October. The first, on Thursday, October 13, at Studio 333 in Sausalito, features selected writers from the North Bay Writers Groups. 7pm, $5. Nancy Au, Erik Cederblom, Dianne Copans, Stephanie Fuelling, Jim Lammers, Jean Mansen, Kalpana Mohan, Michèle Praeger, Rochelle Sherbert, Sandra Westin. (Bios below.)

On Saturday, October 15, it’s Litcrawl. Why There Are Words Reading Series Crosses Bridges. You should too. Featuring a few friends from far and near. Phase 3, 8:30pm, Ritual Roasters, 1026 Valencia. Aneesha Capur, Molly Giles, Pam Houston, Michael Lukas, Kate Moses, Eric Puchner.

Aneesha Capur

Aneesha Capur‘s novel, Stealing Karma, debuted at the Beijing International Literary Festival in March 2011. The novel was launched by HarperCollins India in April to critical acclaim and was listed in the Top 5 Fiction Picks in The Hindu, India’s leading national newspaper, picked as Essential Reading in the Sunday Guardian, and featured on CNN-IBN among others. Excerpts have been recognized in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award, Wild River Review, two Glimmer Train Press competitions, and the Writer’s Digest Literary Short Story award. Born in India, she spent most of her childhood in Africa and now lives in San Francisco.


Molly Giles

Molly Giles has published a novel, Iron Shoes, and two short story collections: Creek Walk and Other Stories, which won the Small Press Award for Short Fiction, and Rough Translations, which won the Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction and was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. Her other awards include fellowships from the NEA, The McDowell Colony, and Yaddo, two Pushcart prizes, the Commonwealth Club of California Silver Medal, the Bay Area Book Reviewers’ Award, and The National Book Critics Circle Award for Book Reviewing. She directs the Programs in Creative Writing at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville.

Pam Houston

Pam Houston is the award-winning author of Cowboys Are My Weakness, Waltzing the Cat, A Little More About Me, and Sight Hound. Her stories have been selected for the Best American Short Stories, the O. Henry Awards, the Pushcart Prize, and the Best American Short Stories of the Century. Pam teaches in the graduate writing program at University of California, Davis. Her new collection of short stories, Contents May Have Shifted, is forthcoming in 2012.

Michael David Lukas

Author of The Oracle of Stamboul (HarperCollins, 2011), Michael David Lukas has been a Fulbright Scholar in Turkey, a night-shift proofreader in Tel Aviv, and a waiter at the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference in Vermont. A graduate of Brown University and the University of Maryland, his writing has appeared in VQR, Slate, National Geographic Traveler, and Georgia Review. He is also a recipient of scholarships from the National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Summer Writers’ Institute, Squaw Valley Community of Writers, and Elizabeth George Foundation.

Kate Moses

San Francisco native Kate Moses is the author of the acclaimed memoir, Cakewalk, and Wintering: A Novel of Sylvia Plath, published in 15 languages. She has worked as an editor at Berkeley’s acclaimed North Point Press and as literary director of Intersection for the Arts in San Francisco.  In 1997 she teamed up with journalist Camille Peri to found Salon.com’s popular daily website Mothers Who Think, which in turn inspired the nationally bestselling, American Book Award-winning anthology Mothers Who Think: Tales of Real-Life Parenthood (Villard 1999, Washington Square Press 2000) and Because I Said So: 33 Mothers Write About Children, Sex, Men, Aging, Faith, Race & Themselves (HarperCollins 2005, 2006).

Eric Puchner

Eric Puchner is the author of the novel, Model Home (Scribner, 2010) and the short story collection, Music Through the Floor (Scribner, 2005), which was a finalist for the NY Public Library’s Young Lions Award. His short stories have appeared in Zoetrope: All Story, Chicago Tribune, The Sun, The Missouri Review, Best New American Voices, and many other journals and anthologies. A recipient of a Pushcart Prize, a Wallace Stegner Fellowship, and a National Endowment for the Arts grant, he is an assistant professor of literature at Claremont McKenna College. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, novelist Katharine Noel, and their daughter.

Selected readers from North Bay Writers Groups appearing at Studio 333 in Sausalito, Oct. 13:

Nancy Au

Nancy Au is a native of San Francisco currently residing in West Marin, and a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley with a degree in Anthropology. She is working on a collection of short stories and has been studying with Peg Alford Pursell since 2009. Her work is published in the Mill Valley Public Library Literary Review, and Prick of the Spindle literary journal.

Erik Cederblom

Erik Cederblom, a non-recovering, compulsive storyteller, has been a Marine helicopter pilot, bartender, salesman, fly-fisherman, photographer, sailor, company executive and headhunter. His wife, Linda, of 42 years, concedes that she has no idea what he is thinking and enables his writing in the hope that she can finally figure him out. In a former life, he was published in The Laurentian Magazine and Letters from Viet Nam. He is working on his first novel, Down the River, and writes short stories, flash fiction, and children’s stories. Some of it is good.

Dianne Copans

Dianne Copans is a native of the east coast and has resided in Marin County since 2005. Her professional writing career began with a thirty second radio station commercial. She is currently pursuing her passion for creative writing and memoir through participation in the North Bay Writers Group. While she enjoys sharing her craft with others, she is most content writing solo in the confines of her quiet studio at home, and while traveling. Dianne is currently working on a memoir and a novel.

Stephanie Fuelling

Stephanie Fuelling is a Sausalito landscape contractor. She received a BS in Art from Indiana State University and an MBA from University of Southern Indiana. Drawn by the cultural diversity and the atmosphere of tolerance for creative pursuits, she settled in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is a member of the North Bay Writers Group where she cultivates her writing skills. Her growing body of work includes short fiction and TV treatment floating about in the ether of Hollywood.

Jim Lammers

Jim Lammers’ personal reflection on Point Reyes South Beach was accepted to the Environmental Writing Institute at the University of Montana, Missoula. His story about a young interracial couple in the 1950s South won a Marin Arts Council award for fiction and a Creative Capital Award at the Headlands Institute. He is currently at work on a novel about two orphaned brothers in 1930s Montana. In previous lives as a biologist, Jim worked on live rabid animals, trapped mosquitoes in Arkansas rice fields, detonated pine trees in East Texas, studied colony formation in fire ants, and was a necropsy assistant. He was cofounder of a literacy organization for Afghan refugee women and a teacher. He lives with his wife and stepson in San Anselmo, California.

Jean Mansen

Before turning to writing, Jean Mansen worked in banking and venture capital where she swears that she was creative, but never made up stuff. An avid dog lover, she’s written for Fetch and the Tales from the Trails column for the Marin IJ. She is at work on her first novel and enjoys reading flash fiction pieces at Pints n Prose in Fairfax among other Bay Area locations.

Michele Praeger

Michèle Praeger’s three previous lives read respectively as French childhood auto-fiction, absurdist comedy, and a Henry James’s novel. In her present life, she writes in English, in San Francisco.

Rochelle Sherbert

Rochelle Sherbert is a designer, writer and California native. She spent the first few decades of her career designing for the masses. She is now enjoying her second calling and studying writing with North Bay Writers Group. She has written several short stories and has written for Marin Arts Council and Channel Ten News in Sacramento.

Sandra Westin

Sandra Westin is a Michigan native, and by way of Portland, Oregon, a Bay Area resident. She graduated with an MFA from the University of San Francisco Writing Program, was a finalist in Phoebe’s Short Fiction Contest and published a short story in San Francisco Writer’s Conference Anthology. Sandra is an attorney with an LLM in taxation. After moving to the Bay Area she took up cycling, now a passion, which led to her current novel in progress, Rolling.