Fiction is all about characters: the heroes we love, the villains we hate, and the sidekicks who feel like our friends. But how do you bring those characters to life on the page? In this workshop, Alex Kourvo and Bethany Neal will show you how to write characters as real as the people we know.
This is part of the monthly Emerging Writers Workshops, which offer support, learning, and advice for local authors. Each month, two weeks after the workshop, there is a meet-up where the instructors will read samples of your work and offer advice and assistance in a casual, supportive atmosphere.
Do you have a completed manuscript? Consider submitting it to the library’s imprint Fifth Avenue Press.
Literati is excited to welcome author Leslie Carol Roberts who will be discussing her new memoir Here Is Where I Walk.
About Here Is Where I Walk:
It is in the Presidio of San Francisco, California, that Leslie Carol Roberts walks. The Presidio, America’s only residential national park tucked wholly into an urban setting, is a fading historic forest. Here is where Leslie’s memories of other places, people, and travels emerge. Here is where the author’s home has been for more than a decade, and here is the place she raised her two children as a single mother.
In layered stories of her life and travels, Leslie turns her daily walks into revelations of deeper meaning. From Maryland to Iowa to Tasmania, we follow a fierce and keenly observant walker through places of exquisite beauty and complexity. Her daily walks inspire Leslie to accept the invitation of the beckoning trees where she finds herself colliding with the urban coyote, the peculiar banana slug, and the manzanita. She also notes both ridiculous and poignant aspects of human ecosystems in pursuit of what it means to live a life of creativity and creation from scientist-activists battling to save environments to the tragic realities of ordinary life.
In this finely crafted eco-memoir, each place provides Leslie with exactly the scaffolding needed to survive, with nature serving as the tonic. Here is Where I Walk provides a vivid answer to how we can find our place, not only in nature but within ourselves and the world we walk.
Leslie Carol Roberts is an author, journalist, and essayist. She is also professor and chair of the MFA Writing Program at California College of the Arts in San Francisco, California.
Pete Griffin, speaker, storyteller, naturalist, and retired Forest Service Ranger will join us to deliver personal stories, photos, and short videos about living off the land in Alaska.
This event will be recorded
Susan Whitall was a writer/editor at Creem magazine in Detroit and a music and feature writer at the Detroit News. Join us as she shares from her new work Joni on Joni: Interviews and Encounters with Joni Mitchell.
Seating at the event will be first-come first-served. This event will be a standing-room crowd, so if you require a seat for medical reasons, please contact us in advance to make arrangements.
About the Book
Few artists of the 20th century are as intriguing as Joni Mitchell. She was a solidly middle-class, buttoned-up bohemian; an anti-feminist who loved men but scorned free love; a female warrior taking on the male music establishment. She was both the party girl with torn stockings and the sensitive poet. She often said she would be criticized for staying the same or changing, so why not take the less boring option? Her earthy, poetic lyrics (“the geese in chevron flight” in “Urge for Going”), the phrases that are now part of the culture (“They paved paradise, put up a parking lot”), and the unusual melodic intervals traced by that lissome voice earned her the status of a pop legend. Fearless experimentation ensured that she will also be seen as one of the most important musicians of the 20th century. Joni on Joni is an authoritative, chronologically arranged anthology of some of Mitchell’s most illuminating interviews, spanning the years 1966 to 2014. Many are revealing pieces from her early years in Canada and Detroit, and influential articles such as Cameron Crowe’s Rolling Stone piece appear. Interspersed throughout the book are key quotes from dozens of additional Q&As. Together, this material paints a revealing picture of the artist—bragging and scornful, philosophical and deep, but also a beguiling flirt.
About the Author
Susan Whitall was a writer/editor at Creem magazine in Detroit and a music and feature writer at the Detroit News. Her previous books are Women of Motown and Fever: Little Willie John’s Fast Life, Mysterious Death and the Birth of Soul.
Open-mic storytelling competitions. Open to anyone with a five-minute story to share on the night’s theme. Come tell a story, or just enjoy the show!
6:30pm Doors Open | 7:30pm Stories Begin
FLAWED: Prepare a five-minute story about pitfalls. Imperfections….a glitch that changed your course either for the better or for the worse. Times that even Beyonce couldn’t say “I woke up like this.” Some say the flaws are what makes something beautiful.
*Tickets for this event are available one week before the show, at 3pm ET.
*Seating is not guaranteed and is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Please be sure to arrive at least 10 minutes before the show. Admission is not guaranteed for late arrivals. All sales final.
Media Sponsor: Michigan Radio.
Literati is so excited to welcome author Susan Choi who will be reading and discussing her new novel Trust Exercise. Susan will be joined for a post-reading conversation with author Lillian Li.
About Trust Exercise:
In an American suburb in the early 1980s, students at a highly competitive performing arts high school struggle and thrive in a rarified bubble, ambitiously pursuing music, movement, Shakespeare, and, particularly, their acting classes. When within this striving “Brotherhood of the Arts,” two freshmen, David and Sarah, fall headlong into love, their passion does not go unnoticed–or untoyed with–by anyone, especially not by their charismatic acting teacher, Mr. Kingsley.
The outside world of family life and economic status, of academic pressure and of their future adult lives, fails to penetrate this school’s walls–until it does, in a shocking spiral of events that catapults the action forward in time and flips the premise upside-down. What the reader believes to have happened to David and Sarah and their friends is not entirely true–though it’s not false, either. It takes until the book’s stunning coda for the final piece of the puzzle to fall into place–revealing truths that will resonate long after the final sentence.
As captivating and tender as it is surprising, Trust Exercise will incite heated conversations about fiction and truth, and about friendships and loyalties, and will leave readers with wiser understandings of the true capacities of adolescents and of the powers and responsibilities of adults.
Susan Choi is the author of the novels My Education, A Person of Interest, American Woman, and The Foreign Student. Her work has been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the PEN/Faulkner Award and winner of the PEN/W.G. Sebald Award and the Asian-American Literary Award for fiction. With David Remnick, she co-edited Wonderful Town: New York Stories from The New Yorker. She’s received NEA and Guggenheim Foundation fellowships. She lives in Brooklyn.
Lillian Li received her BA from Princeton and her MFA from the University of Michigan. She is the recipient of a Hopwood Award in Short Fiction, as well as Glimmer Train‘s New Writer Award. Her work has been featured in Guernica, Granta , and Jezebel. She is from the D.C. metro area and lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Number One Chinese Restaurant is her first novel.
On the second Wednesday of the month, we hold a relaxed and informal poetry workshop. Anyone is welcome to participate. At a workshop, you are encouraged to present a poem you are working on for positive and constructive comment by your peers. Please bring about 6 copies of the work you are presenting.
Your Poetry Circle Coordinators are Edward Morin, Joseph Kelty, and David Jibson.
ONE PAUSE POETRY SALON is (literally) a greenhouse for poetry and poets, nurturing an appreciation for written art in all languages and encouraging experiments in creative writing.
We meet every Weds in the greenhouse at Argus Farm Stop on Liberty St. The poems we read each time are unified by form (haiku, sonnet, spoken word), poet, time / place (Tang Dynasty, English Romanticism, New York in the 70s) or theme / mood (springtime, poems with cats, protest poems). We discuss the poems and play writing games together, with time for snacks and socializing in between.
Members are encouraged to share their own poems or poems they like – they may or may not relate to the theme of the evening. This is not primarily a workshop – we may hold special workshop nights, but mostly we listen to and talk about poems for the sake of inspiring new writing.
Whether you are a published poet or encountering poetry for the first time, we invite you to join us!
$5 suggested donation for food, drinks and printing costs.
8-10 p.m., Argus Farm Stop greenhouse, 325 W. Liberty. $5 suggested donation. onepausepoetry.org, 707-1284.