CityLit Stage Features Regional Writers at BBF '13
Join CityLit Project, the Baltimore Office of Promotion and The Arts, scores of writers, and thousands of readers for the annual Baltimore Book Festival. The Baltimore Book Festival features hundreds of appearances by local, celebrity and nationally known authors, book signings, more than 100 exhibitors and booksellers, nonstop readings on multiple stages, cooking demos by top chefs, poetry readings, workshops, panel discussions, walking tours, storytellers and hands-on projects for kids, live music, and a delicious variety of food, beer, and wine. For complete festival schedules, go to www.BaltimoreBookFestival.com.
CityLit Stage features writers and musicians from around the region all weekend long. The stage is located on the cobblestone circle on the southside of the Washington Monument.
Friday, September 27, 2013
12-1pm Free Friday Feedback
Hey writers, here’s your chance for free advice and constructive commentary from two experienced leaders of Baltimore’s literary scene. Bring two poems or up to four pages of double-spaced prose for some on-the-spot feedback and suggestions on what to do next.
Christine Stewart is program director for arts in education, literary arts, and children’s events with the Maryland State Arts Council and director of Maryland’s Poetry Out Loud program. A former artist-in-residence with Creative Alliance in Baltimore, Chris has an MA and MFA in creative writing and poetry, is the recipient of a Ruth Lilly Fellowship, and has been a Pushcart Prize nominee.
Adam Robinson runs Publishing Genius Press and works as a publishing consultant. His first book, Adam Robison and Other Poems, was nominated for the Goodreads Poetry Award. He self-published his second book, Say Poem. He is a contributor to the internet literary magazine blog of the future, HTMLGiant. He earned his MFA in Creative Writing and Publishing Arts from the University of Baltimore.
5:30pm Literary Happy Hour
*** Beer courtesy of Chesapeake Wine Company ***
Join the CityLit family for cold beer and book talk celebrating the fabulous Baltimore Book Festival.
6:00pm Smile, Hon, You’re In Baltimore
Music by Red Sammy with Steve Matanle
Tandy Trice Matanle
Work! Join a rambunctious cast of writers from the latest edition of Smile, Hon, You’re In Baltimore. Impresario and ringmaster William P. Tandy leads the way with contributing writers from the zine recently dubbed a “Best of Baltimore” by Baltimore magazine. Music by Red Sammy with special guest poet Steve Matanle.
Adam Trice is the singer/songwriter for the gritty Americana band, Red Sammy. The band name is a reference to Flannery O’Connor’s short story, “A Good Man is Hard to Find.” Life, hard work, disappointment, love and loss are all themes found in his songwriting/storytelling. Red Sammy’s latest album, These Poems With Kerosene, blends the simplicity of song with poetic sensibilities in a collaboration with University of Baltimore professor and poet Steve Matanle. Together they explore matters of greed, dependence, lust, and the false hope for perfection.
Saturday, September 28
12pm Little Patuxent Review: Upbeat—The Music of Poetry in Performance
Burke Harriss Hughes
A trio of local poets will rock listeners with their insights into the music of performance poetry. Featuring three stellar artists who work with young poets: LPR contributing editor and performance poet LindaJoy Burke, Towson University Professor Emerita Clarinda Harriss, and Baltimore Youth Slam Team mentor Slangston Hughes. Moderated by poet and teaching artist Virginia Crawford and LPR editor Laura Shovan, this session includes a panel discussion, reading, and a writing activity for the audience. “Upbeat” is presented as part of the 100,000 Poets for Change annual global event.
1:30 Crime Writing After The Wire
Janis Tabeling Lang
A panel of writers discuss chronicling real-life crime and how their subject matter has changed in light of The Wire, which Entertainment Weekly recently named the #1 TV show of all time.
Stephen Janis produces award winning music, journalism, and television. After a long career as an investigative reporter for print media, Janis continued his work as a watch dog journalist by founding Investigative Voice. The site won several awards and will be the subject of national documentary called “Fit To Print.” In 2011, Janis joined the staff of local television station WBFF/ Fox 45 television as an Investigative Producer. He co-authored Why Do We Kill?: The Pathology of Murder in Baltimore and Black October and the Murder of State Delegate Turk Scott.
Black October and the Murder of State Delegate Turk Scott is based on one of former police lieutenant Stephen Tabeling’s case files. As the drug business spread through the city of Baltimore in the 1970s, a shadowy vigilante group emerged threatening to fight the narcotics trade with street justice. And in the cavernous parking garage of a non-descript apartment building, Black October did just that. Gunned down was State Delegate Turk Scott, a consummate political insider who had just been indicted for bringing ten kilos of heroin into the city. The book is a deep and compelling look at the emerging drug business that would engulf the city in violence for decades.
Ken Lang is a former homicide detective and an award-winning author of several true crime books, including Walking Among the Dead, Standing In Death’s Shadow, and Death Comes Uninvited. In 2011, he was named one of “50 Great Writers You Should Be Reading” by the Author’s Show. This year he was honored as the 2013 DETC Alumni of the Year from Columbia Southern University for his writing contributions to the criminal justice profession.
Dick Ellwood was a police officer for the Baltimore Police Department from 1965 to 1990. From investigating murders to arresting prostitutes and fighting corruption, this defender of the law did everything he could to protect the city he loved. He doesn’t think twice about sharing the gritty details not found on network TV. The short stories in Cop Stories range from arresting his childhood baseball hero, Mickey Mantle, to responding to the civil rights riots of 1968. Cop Stories reveals what it truly means to protect, serve, and live the life of a tough, dedicated cop.
Panel moderator Jill Yesko’s extensive writing career includes stints as a reporter and contributing writer to national publications including Shape magazine, Sky magazine, The Baltimore Sun, the Michelin Guide to New York City, and National Public Radio. A versatile journalist, Jill has reported on topics from healthcare and aging to wadlopen (recreational mudflat hiking). Following a solo trip around the world, Jill was featured as an “adventurous traveler” in O, The Oprah Magazine.
2:30pm Lizzie Skurnick Books
Lizzie Skurnick has spent most of her adult life and literary career reliving her youth, writing and reviewing the sort of books she loved as a teenager. Little did she know that one day she would manage her own eponymous imprint—Lizzie Skurnick Books. LSB is devoted to bringing back the very best young adult literature, from classics of the 1930s and ’40s to the thrillers and novels of the 1970s and ’80s. Lizzie also sits on the board of the National Book Critics Circle and has written on books and culture for the New York Times Book Review, Times Sunday Styles, the LA Times, NPR.org, The Washington Post, and many other publications. Her latest book, Shelf Discovery: The Teen Classics We Never Stopped Reading, was published in 2009. Welcome Lizzie, a long-time Baltimorean, back to town for a lively discussion about her new publishing endeavor.
3:30pm Manuscript Makeover with Editors from the
Diehl Hellen Kolakowski
Noronha Sawyers Smith
Join The Baltimore Review editors Barbara Diehl, Kathleen Hellen, Ann Kolakowski, Lalita Noronha, Seth Sawyers, and Dean Bartoli Smith for brief readings and a panel discussion on their personal checklists for moving manuscripts from inspired draft to crafted manuscript—and on to publication! The Baltimore Review was founded in 1996 as a literary journal publishing short stories and poems, with a mission to showcase the best writing from the Baltimore area and beyond. In 2012, it began new life as a quarterly, online literary.
4:30 Mother-Daughter Mother-Son
Shirley J. Brewer and Danuta E. Kosk-Kosicka take listeners on a poetic journey involving their literary work that encompasses and celebrates the relationships between mothers and daughters, mothers and sons. Brewer is the author of A Little Breast Music, a poetry chapbook published by Passager Books, and After Words, a poetry collection published by Apprentice House. She is currently seeking a publisher for her full-length poetry collection, "Bistro in Another Realm." Kosk-Kosicka, born and raised in Poland, is a scientist, poet, writer, poetry translator, photographer, and co-editor of the literary journal Loch Raven Review. Her poems have appeared in numerous literary journals and anthologies in the United States and throughout Europe, winning literary prizes in both America and Poland.
5:30 Nonfiction Presented by the New Mercury Series
Smith Booker Vogel
The New Mercury, the area’s only on-going nonfiction reading series, takes place every month at the Windup Space in Station North. Hosted by series curators Deborah Rudacille and John Barry.
When the Ravens won Super Bowl XLVII in New Orleans, it was a joyous moment for fans and team alike. For Dean Bartoli Smith, a lifelong Baltimore football fan and writer for The Baltimore Brew and Press Box, it was especially sweet. In Never Easy, Never Pretty, he recalls the ups and downs and ultimate thrills of a special season while also showing how a football team impacts its fans and its city.
Smith’s poetry has appeared in Poetry East, Open City, Beltway, The Pearl, The Charlotte Review, Gulf Stream, and upstreet among others. His book of poems, American Boy, won the 2000 Washington Writer’s Prize and was also awarded the Maryland Prize for Literature in 2001 for the best book published by a Maryland writer over the past three years. He received an MFA in Poetry from Columbia University and is director of Project MUSE, a leading provider of digital humanities and social science content for the scholarly community.
Sheri Booker was only fifteen years old when she started working at Wylie’s Funeral Home in West Baltimore. She had no idea that her summer job would become nine years of immersion into a hidden world and the basis for her memoir, Nine Years Under: Coming of Age in an Inner-City Funeral Home. With AIDS and gang violence threatening to wipe out a generation of black men, Wylie’s was never short on business. As families came together to bury one of their own, Booker was privy to their most intimate moments of grief and despair. But along with the sadness, Booker encountered moments of dark humor: brawls between mistresses and widows, long-winded preachers who forgot the names of the deceased, and the creepy embalming room.
Sheri J. Booker is a writer, poet, spoken word artist, and teacher. She is the author of the poetry book, One Woman, One Hustle; I am the Poem; and the memoir Nine Years Under. She has traveled the U.S. speaking, reciting, and performing her poetry. Sheri has an MFA in creative nonfiction from Goucher College.
In Through the Perilous Fight: Six Weeks That Saved the Nation, Washington Post reporter Steve Vogel tells the gripping, little-known story of a pivotal six weeks in U.S. history—the perilous fight that preserved the new nation at a time of grave danger, severed remaining ties with America’s colonial past, and inspired the country’s most indelible song: “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
Vogel is the author of The Pentagon and a national reporter for The Washington Post. He has written extensively about military affairs and the treatment of veterans from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. His reporting about the war in Afghanistan was part of a package of Washington Post stories selected as a finalist for the 2002 Pulitzer Prize. Vogel covered the September 11, 2001, terrorist attack on the Pentagon, and the building’s subsequent reconstruction.
6:30 Fiction Presented by the 510 Reading Series
*** Beer courtesy of Chesapeake Wine Company ***
The 510, the area’s only on-going fiction reading series, takes place every month at the Minas Gallery and Boutique in Hampden. Hosted by series curators Michael Kimball and Jen Michalski, recently named a “Best of Baltimore” by Baltimore magazine and “One of 50 Women to Watch” by The Sun.
Blau Fruelund Hirsch
Michalski Rounds Sloboda
Nick Hornby said of Jessica Anya Blau’s third novel, The Wonderbread Summer, “[it’s] picaresque, properly funny, unpredictable, and altogether irrepressible … it made me so happy that after I’d read it, in two days flat, I bought everything I could find by the same author.” She is also the author of Drinking Closer to Home and The Summer of Naked Swim Parties.
Simon Fruelund is the author of five books, among them Mælk and Panamericana. His work has been translated into Italian, Swedish, and English from the original Danish, and his short stories have appeared in a number of magazines across the U.S., including World Literature Today, Redivider, and Absinthe.
Aubrey Hirsch’s stories, essays, and poems have appeared in American Short Fiction, Third Coast, Hobart, and The Los Angeles Review, among other publications. Her short story collection, Why We Never Talk About Sugar, is available now from Braddock Avenue Books.
Jen Michalski’s debut novel The Tide King is available from Black Lawrence Press. She is the author of two collections of fiction, Close Encounters and From Here, and a collection of novellas, Could You Be With Her Now. She also is the editor of the anthology City Sages: Baltimore, which won a 2010 “Best of Baltimore” award from Baltimore. She is the founding editor of the literary quarterly jmww.
Heather Rounds’s debut novel There, based on her experiences in Iraqi Kurdistan between 2007 and 2008, won Emergency Press’s 2011 International Book Award and will be published by the press in October. Her poetry and short works of fiction have appeared in such places as PANK, The Baltimore Review, and Big Lucks. She’s a co-founder of the roaming curatorial collective The Rotating History Project.
Noel Sloboda earned his PhD in English and American literature from Washington University in St. Louis. He is the author of the poetry collections Shell Games and Our Rarer Monsters as well as several chapbooks, most recently Circle Straight Back. Sloboda has also published a book about Edith Wharton and Gertrude Stein. He teaches at Penn State York.
Sunday, September 29
12pm Individual Artist Awards Reading: Fiction
Presented by the Maryland State Arts Council, these winners of the annual Individual Artist Awards showcase some of the smartest, sharpest fiction being created in the state today. Hosted by Christine Stewart, program director for literary arts with the Maryland State Arts Council
Dickinson Becker Downs
Flann Pierce Schwartz
Quotah Doyle Lancelotta
A writer of fiction and creative nonfiction, Sue Waterman has received several writing fellowships at the Virginia Center for Creative Arts, where she completed a book manuscript. Professionally, she is a research librarian at the Johns Hopkins University, and a lecturer in the German and Romance Languages and Literature department.
Elizabeth Evitts Dickinson is a journalist, author, and editor and her writing has appeared in The New York Times, Slate, The Baltimore Sun, and Little Patuxent Review, among others. Dickinson is a contributing editor at Architect magazine and she was the editor-in-chief of Urbanite magazine for three years. She teaches writing at MICA.
Geoffrey Becker is the author of four books of fiction, most recently Hot Springs, a novel published by Tin House Books, and Black Elvis, a collection that won the 2009 Flannery O’Connor award. He teaches creative writing at Towson University and in the MFA program at Queens University, Charlotte.
Michael Downs’s most recent book is The Greatest Show: Stories. He is an associate professor at Towson University and lives in the Hamilton neighborhood of Baltimore.
Kathy Flann’s fiction has appeared in Shenandoah, Crazyhorse, Quarterly West, New Stories from the South, and other publications. Her short story collection, Smoky Ordinary, won the Serena McDonald Kennedy Award and was published by Snake Nation Press. She is an assistant professor at Goucher College in Baltimore.
Nora Pierce is the author of the critically acclaimed novel The Insufficiency of Maps, a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers selection, and a finalist for the NCIBA Book of the Year award. She was a Wallace Stegner fellow and lecturer in fiction at Stanford University and a PEN/Rosenthal Fellow.
Lynn Schwartz’s plays have been performed in Atlanta and New York, including Lincoln Center. Her stories have appeared in literary journals, and she founded the Temple Bar Literary Reading Series in New York. Schwartz teaches fiction and memoir at St. John’s College and The Writer’s Center, and is a story development editor and ghostwriter for private clients.
Eman Quotah grew up in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, and Cleveland, OH. Much of her fiction is concerned with the Middle East, the American Midwest, or both. Her stories have appeared in Pindeldyboz, Gargoyle, and Amazing Graces: Yet Another Collection of Fiction by Washington Area Women. She lives in Rockville.
Christopher Kritwise Doyle grew up in Brunswick, Maryland, a small town nestled on the banks of the Potomac River and Blue Ridge Mountains. After receiving his MFA from the University of Baltimore, he has written about the origins of country music, an embattled elementary school principal in urban America, and the C&O Canal. He lives in Baltimore with his wife, daughter, and bluetick coonhound all in a cramped row house.
Victoria Lancelotta is the author of Here in the World: 13 Stories, and the novels Far and Coeurs Blesses. Her fiction has appeared in the Mississippi Review, nerve.com, Best American Short Stories 2009, McSweeneys, and other magazines. Her work has been anthologized in The Best of Literal Latte and Blue Cathedral: Short Fiction for the New Millenium. She has been a fellow at the Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center, the Djerassi Foundation, and the MacDowell Colony, and is the recipient of a Tennessee Individual Artist Fellowship, and a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship.
1:30pm Lit & Art
Started in 2007, the Lit & Art Reading Series takes place five times a year at the Watermark Gallery near Harborplace. The program features artists who represent various literary genres combined with music and visual art: Jessica Anya Blau (new novel), Eric D. Goodman (fiction), Nitin Jagdish (poetry), Bathsheba Monk (new novel), Jacob Panic (live music), Manzar (original art). Hosted by Aaron Henkin of WYPR’s “The Signal,” which takes listeners on a weekly tour of Baltimore’s cultural landscape.
Blau Goodman Jagdish
Monk Manzar Panic
Jessica Anya Blau’s newest novel, The Wonder Bread Summer was picked as one of Five Thrilling Summer Reads by NPR’s All Things Considered and Oprah’s Book Club placed the novel on its summer reading list. Jessica is also the author of the critically acclaimed Drinking Closer to Home, and the bestselling The Summer of Naked Swim Parties.
Eric D. Goodman is the author of Tracks: A Novel in Stories (Atticus Books) set on a train from Baltimore to Chicago. He lives in Baltimore and writes about trains, wombs, and exotic animals gone wild.
Nitin Jagdish plays a low-level spin doctor at a federal agency. He also refuses to shut up about a party he attended for Yoko Ono over twenty years ago, or the time he was chased by an elephant. His Paul Verlaine translations (along with a review of Richard Hell’s memoir) will appear in the next issue of The Potomac.
Bathsheba Monk is the author of, most recently, Two Wrongs, a cozy mystery, as well as Nude Walker and Now You See It....Stories from Cokesville, PA. She is taking baby steps toward starting her own e-publishing company with tech wizard and marketing guru Jefferson Pezzella. She lives in Allentown, PA, with her exceptional husband, Paul Fuhrman, and her outstanding cat, Einstein.
Manzar was born in Tehran, Iran. Her work has been exhibited around the world. Find her permanent collection at the Watermark Gallery.
Jacob Panic is a singer-songwriter/banjo dude. His new album Pop-Grass introduces a new genre of music to the world, combining power-pop and bluegrass music. Be on the lookout for Jacob Panic in a town near you.
2:30pm Live from CityLit Press
CityLit Press, the literary imprint of CityLit Project, launched in 2010 to publish writers who might otherwise go ignored by larger publishers due to the regional focus or literary nature of their work. Featured are authors of recently published titles: Jennifer Wallace, It Can Be Solved By Walking (poetry); Neil Didriksen, Battle Creek: A Tale of Slavery and Freedom in Colonial Maryland (novel for middle-grade readers); Rebekah Remington, Asphalt (winner of the Clarinda Harriss Poetry Prize); and Tim Wendel, Habana Libre (novella).
Jennifer Wallace teaches at the Maryland Institute College of Art. She is a poetry editor at The Cortland Review and a founding editor of Toadlily Press. In 2009 she directed a short documentary, Inter : View, A Conversation About Nature and the City. Jennifer’s photographs have been exhibited at the Baltimore Museum of Art and at the Maryland Institute College of Art. She has written essays for exhibition catalogs and literary magazines; her poems appear in numerous journals and anthologies.
Battle Creek is a first novel for Neil Didriksen, whose professional career spans thirty years in nonprofit marketing and communications. The novel combines Neil’s avocation as an amateur historian with his interest in bringing colonial Maryland to life for young readers. When not exploring historical archives, Neil serves as the chief operating officer of a private foundation. He is at work on second and third historical novels set in Maryland for young readers.
Rebekah Remington holds a BA from The Johns Hopkins University and an MFA from the University of Michigan. Her poetry has appeared in Linebreak, The Missouri Review, Ninth Letter, Bellingham Review Online, Hayden Ferry’s Review, Smartish Pace, and elsewhere. She is the recipient of two Maryland State Arts Council Individual Artist Awards in poetry.
Tim Wendel’s books include Summer of ‘68: The Season That Changed Baseball, and America, Forever; High Heat: The Secret History of the Fastball and the Improbable Search for the Fastest Pitcher of All Time; Red Rain; and Castro’s Curveball. A writer-in-residence at Johns Hopkins University, his stories have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, GQ, and Esquire.
3:30pm Writing Family Writing Country
Two first-time novelists explore the ways in which families and countries of origin function as concentric circles of identity for their characters, who face unresolved conflicts both personal and public. In Cologne, Sarah Pleydell depicts the London landscape of the late-1950s as the meeting ground of childhood and post-WWII trauma; in this crucible of family and country, the dichotomy between winners and losers dissolves, and survival is envisioned in new terms. In A Secret Woman, Rose Solari explores how an estranged American mother and daughter can be reconciled, after the mother’s death, in the realm of England’s myth and history. This other country becomes an agent of forgiveness and reinvention for the daughter as well as for her mother.
A graduate of Oxford and London Universities, Sarah Pleydell is an award-winning writer, performer, and playwright who teaches English and writing at the University of Maryland. For the past twenty years she has developed humanities, literature, and interdisciplinary curricula for the English Department and for University Honors. In 2000, she won the American Association for Theatre Educators’ award for best book of the year.
Rose Solari is the author of two full-length collections of poetry, Difficult Weather and Orpheus in the Park, the one-act play, Looking for Guenevere, and a novel, A Secret Woman. She has lectured and taught writing workshops at many institutions, including the University of Maryland, St. John’s College-Annapolis, the Jung Society of Washington, and The Centre for Creative Writing at Kellogg College, Oxford University.
4:30 pm Daggers Drawn: 35 Years of KAL Cartoons in The Economist
Kevin Kallaugher (KAL) is the editorial cartoonist for The Economist magazine and The Baltimore Sun. In 2006, Kevin was named Artist-in-Residence at the Imaging Research Center at UMBC where he develops 3D digital caricatures that can be animated in real-time. Daggers Drawn, a 196-page coffee-table book with more than 300 cartoons from The Economist, is a retrospective collection of his best drawings along with essays discussing his work with the acclaimed international affairs magazine.
5:30pm Fiction from the Free State
Massey Dixon Chynoweth
Check out the diverse works of fiction being created by Maryland writers: Sujata Massey, Stephen Dixon, Michele Chynoweth, Michael Hughes, and Charles Belfoure.
Sujata Massey, a features reporter at the Baltimore Evening Sun during the 1980s, moved to Japan while her husband was in the Navy and created the international bestselling Rei Shimura series. Her latest novel, The Sleeping Dictionary, is a story of sadness, tragedy, love, and triumph. Pom, The lone survivor of a tidal wave that consumed her village, makes her way through British colonial India, renames herself Kamala, and creates a rich new life. Love lies within reach, but is this enough to give Kamala true security—or will the coming war sweep away her hopes once more?
Stephen Dixon is a retired faculty member of Johns Hopkins University. He is a two-time National Book Award nominee—for his novels Frog and Interstate—and his work has been selected for O. Henry Prizes, Best American selections, Pushcart Prizes, Best Stories of the South, the Norton Anthology of American Literature, among other honors. In His Wife Leaves Him, Martin thinks about the loss of his wife, Gwen. In Dixon’s hands, however, this straightforward premise becomes a work of such complexity that it no longer appears to be words on pages so much as life itself. Stories matter here, and the writer understands how people tell them and why they go on retelling them, for stories, finally, may be all that Martin has of Gwen.
Michele Chynoweth was a news reporter for several local papers including The Aegis in Bel Air, The Daily Times in Salisbury, and The Evening Sun in Baltimore, as well as an advertising agency owner before becoming a published author. She has won several awards including first place in the Maryland Writers Association fiction contest. Her novel, The Peace Maker, is based on the story of David and Abigail in the first Book of Samuel—a story of adversity, struggle, courage, and faith that God will lead his people.
Michael M. Hughes is a Baltimore-based writer of fiction and nonfiction. He also lectures on paranormal, fortean, and esoteric topics and performs as a mentalist. Blackwater Lights, his debut novel, is a genre-blurring tale of supernatural horror that combines the eldritch horror of H. P. Lovecraft with the contemporary thrills of Joe Hill. It has been described as "disturbing, surreal, and spooky as hell" and "a harrowing and riveting thrill ride."
Charles Belfoure is an author and architect who lives in Westminster, MD. A graduate of the Pratt Institute and Columbia University, his practice is in historic preservation working as both an architect and historic preservation consultant with a specialty in historic tax credit consulting. He has written architectural histories including being the co-author of The Baltimore Rowhouse. His books have won awards from the Maryland Historical Trust. The Paris Architect is his first novel.
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