Monday, November 19, 2007

Upcoming Events of Note

Check out the following events if you need a post-Thanksgiving culture boost that you can’t find amidst the dehumanizing crush of holiday shoppers at your local mall:

“Old Books & New Stories”: Mary Kay Zuravleff
Reading at Riverby Books on Capitol Hill
Wednesday, November 28, 2007, 7 pm
417 E. Capitol St., SE (near the Folger Theater)
Washington, DC

In Mary Kay’s own inimitable words:

Mary Kay Zuravleff is the next author featured in “A Space Inside,” the popular reading series at D.C.’s Riverby Books. Zuravleff is the author of THE BOWL IS ALREADY BROKEN, which the London Independent called, “A highly original, extremely funny, and surprisingly moving novel” and THE FREQUENCY OF SOULS, which one critic deemed, “The best short comic novel ever written about refrigerator designers with psychic powers.” She will not be reading from either of these books. The reading is free, the books are used, and the wine is new. Spread the word.”


Local literary impresario Richard Peabody has sent along the following announcement:

Electric Grace: Still More Fiction by Washington Area Women will launch at Politics & Prose on Wednesday, December 5 . Rose Solari will MC a panel of contributors that will include: Michelle Brafman, Merle Collins, T. Greenwood, Joanne Leedom-Ackerman, Faye Moskowitz, Barbara Mujica, Jessica Neely, Amy Stolls, Hananah Zaheer, and Christy J. Zink.

Politics & Prose
Wednesday, December 5th at 7pm
5015 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC

The book is $18.95 and features 42 women writers. Copies are available at the launch, from our site, and from and the Writer’s Center.

“They may all be from Washington, but they fling their fiction far, imagining medieval torture—how like love!—cocktails in dog parks, old flames, gangsters, pregnant wives—the many possibilities of female life. This is a rich and varied anthology—in tone, in pace, in setting.” — Martha Tod Dudman, author of Augusta, Gone and Black Olives

“The unique voices in this collection, with a winning combo of freshness and maturity, perfectly capture the impact of the everyday in the way that only the best fiction can…Revealing how certain moments, both great and small, can disturb us all the way back to ourselves—our true selves.” — Cara Haycak, author of Red Palms

“Electric Grace is a marvel, a glorious humming party-line of voices. Bend your ear to the wire and have a listen. You won’t be disappointed.” —Ann Downer, author of Hatching Magic and The Spellkey Trilogy


For those farther afield, help support DC’s Spilt the Rock Poetry Festival by attending this benefit reading. (Editor’s note: I heard Mark Doty read at Bread Loaf; he’s a compelling presence.)

A Benefit Reading for Split This Rock Poetry Festival
With Mark Doty, Regie Cabico, and Kathy Engel

Monday, December 10, 2007, 8 pm
Bowery Poetry Club
308 Bowery, New York, NY
Tickets: $25 at the door

Split This Rock Poetry Festival, Washington, DC, March 20-23, 2008, calls poets to a greater role in public life and fosters a national community of activist poets. Featuring readings, workshops, panels, contests, walking tours, film, parties, and activism! See the website for the incredible line-up of poets, including Mark Doty, Sonia Sanchez, Martín Espada, Naomi Shihab Nye, and many more. Or contact:

Mark Doty will be featured at Split This Rock in March. The only American poet to have won Great Britain's T. S. Eliot Prize, Doty is the author of six books of poems, including My Alexandria (1993), which received both the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award. He has also published Atlantis (1995), Sweet Machine (1998) and Source (2001), and School of the Arts (2005), as well as the memoirs Heaven's Coast (1996) and Firebird (1999). Among his many other awards are two NEA fellowships, Guggenheim and Rockefeller Foundation Fellowships, a Lila Wallace/Readers Digest Award, and the Witter Bynner Prize. Doty teaches in the graduate program the University of Houston, and is a frequent guest at Columbia University, Hunter College, and NYU. He lives in Houston and in New York City.

Regie Cabico is Artistic Director of Sol & Soul, a Split This Rock founding sponsor. He is a poet, playwright, and spoken word performer. He took top prizes at the 1993, 1994, and 1997 National Poetry Slams. His work appears in over 30 anthologies and he co-edited Poetry Nation: A North American Anthology of Fusion Poetry. He received a NYFA Artist Fellowship for Poetry in 1997, NYFAs in 2003 for Poetry and Performance Art, and two Brooklyn Arts Council Poetry Awards. Cabico has been a teacher for Urban Word and developed a poetry and performance program for teens with psychiatric illness at Bellevue Hospital. He received the 2006 Writers for Writers Award from Poets & Writers in recognition of his work with diverse communities.

Kathy Engel’s books include Ruth's Skirts (IKON, February 2007), a collection of poems and prose pieces; and We Begin Here: Poems for Palestine and Lebanon (Interlink Books, March 2007), which she coedited with Kamal Boullata. She is an advisory board member of Split This Rock, a communications/strategic planning consultant, and a producer for social justice, peace and human rights organizations. She founded the women's human rights organization MADRE and was the executive director for five years. Before that she worked at the Academy of American Poets, New York Mobilization for Survival and as executive director of the Fund For Open Information and Accountability.


DC-area author Leslie Pietrzyk explores the creative process and all things literary.