It’s that time of year for the AWP Conference, the largest literary conference in North America. This year the conference will take place in Los Angeles, March 30-April 2, 2016. Why There Are Words will sponsor an offsite reading on March 31, at 7 pm, at the gorgeous Continental Club at 116 West 4th Street. You can check out the beautiful venue here. This will be a spectacular event with the following featured readers. Join us for readings you won’t forget!
Carmiel Banasky is the author of the novel, The Suicide of Claire Bishop (Dzanc, 2015), which Publishers Weekly calls “an intellectual tour de force.” Her work has appeared in Glimmer Train, American Short Fiction, Slice, Guernica, PEN America, The Rumpus, and NPR, among other places. She earned her M.F.A. from Hunter College, where she also taught Creative Writing. She is the recipient of awards and fellowships from Bread Loaf, Ucross, Ragdale, Artist Trust, I-Park, and other foundations. After four years on the road at writing residencies, she now teaches in Los Angeles. She is from Portland, Or.
Stacy Bierlein is the author of the story collection A Vacation on the Island of Ex-Boyfriends and a co-editor of the short fiction anthology Men Undressed: Women Writers and the Male Sexual Experience. Her award-winning anthology of international fiction, A Stranger Among Us: Stories of Cross Cultural Collision and Connection, was used in university classrooms across the country. She was a founding editor of Other Voices Books and co-founder of the writing program Other Voices Queretaro.
Jan Ellison is the author of the novel, A Small Indiscretion, a San Francisco Chronicle Best Book of the Year. Jan’s short fiction has received numerous awards, including a 2007 O. Henry Prize for her first published story. Her essays about parenting, writing and travel have appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and elsewhere. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband of twenty years and their four children.
Meg Howrey is a former professional ballet dancer, and toured nationally with the Broadway production of Contact, for which she won the Ovation Award in 2001 for best featured actress in a musical. She is the author of the novels Blind Sight, and The Cranes Dance, and coauthor, under the penname Magnus Flyte, of the New York Times bestseller City of Dark Magic and City of Lost Dreams. Her non-fiction has appeared in Vogue, and the Los Angeles Review of Books. Her new novel, The Wanderers, will be published in Spring, 2017.
Gallagher Lawson is the author of The Paper Man, which was selected as one of the Best Books of 2015 by LA Weekly. He is a graduate of UC Riverside’s Palm Desert MFA program, has worked as a travel writer and technical writer, and plays classical piano. He lives in Los Angeles.
Patrick O’Neil is the author of the memoir Gun, Needle, Spoon (Dzanc Books). His writing has appeared in numerous publications, including Juxtapoz, Salon, The Weeklings, The Nervous Breakdown, and Razorcake. He is a regular contributor to AfterPartyMagazine, has been nominated twice for Best of the Net, and is a contributing editor for Sensitive Skin Magazine. Patrick holds an MFA in creative writing from Antioch University, and teaches in AULA’s Inspiration2Publication program, as well as at Los Angeles Valley College. He recently relocated from the glittery sleaze of Hollywood to live in L.A.’s monument to broken dreams, the über hip downtown district, with his girlfriend and two giant Maine Coons.
Marisa Silver’s forthcoming novel, Little Nothing, will be published in September, 2016. She is also the author of the novel, Mary Coin, a New York Times Bestseller and winner of the Southern California Independent Bookseller’s Award. She is also the author of two previous novels, No Direction Home and The God of War, which was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for fiction. Her first collection of short stories, Babe in Paradise, was named a New York Times Notable Book of the Year and was a Los Angeles Times Best Book of the Year. When her second collection, Alone With You was published, The New York Times called her “one of California’s most celebrated contemporary writers.” Marisa Silver made her fiction debut in The New Yorker when she was featured in that magazine’s first “Debut Fiction” issue. Winner of the O. Henry Prize, her fiction has been included in The Best American Short Stories, The O. Henry Prize Stories, as well as other anthologies.
Ryan Stradal is the author of the New York Timesbestselling novel Kitchens of the Great Midwest. A native of Minnesota, he now lives in Los Angeles, where he is an Editor-at-Large at Unnamed Press, Fiction Editor at The Nervous Breakdown, and contributor to Hobart, The Wall Street Journal, The Guardian, Joyland, Midnight Breakfast, and The Rumpus, among other places. He likes wine, books, root beer, and peas.
Your host, Peg Alford Pursell, is the author of the forthcoming book of stories/hybrid prose, Show Her a Flower, a Bird, a Shadow. Her work has been published in or forthcoming from RHINO, the Journal of Compressed Creative Arts, and VOLT, among others. She curates Why There Are Words, the reading series she founded six years ago in Sausalito, and is the founding editor of WTAW Press, an independent publisher of fine literary books. She can’t wait to see you in LA! Come out to this unforgettable show and say hello!