Hey, Lit Lit is having a mixer! At the great Happy Valley Bar at 296 Main St. in Beacon on Thursday, October 12 from 6-8 PM. We’ll be yakking it up in their beautiful courtyard.
The nice folks at Happy Valley have offered us a 10% discount at the bar. (Nonalcoholic beverages also available, and you can even order eats from MOD.) Also, everyone who is interested in writing and reading is welcome — you don’t need to have come to Lit Lit before!
So, I have a couple new pieces on the Substack that I really wanted to tell you about! Coming out today, I have a science fiction story called “The Tender Brigade” that is a riff on the fact that the US military has been developing lethal, autonomous military robots with, um, “ethical” capacities. And because this is a story by me, the ethical, military robots are also gay, and very sexual.
Next, I wrote an essay called “This Is the One About Class,” which details exactly what economic class I currently am, plus the class that I grew up in. This one was hard to write — it’s about, among other things, growing up on welfare, but much later on becoming economically privileged through the pure luck of the draw. And how I feel about that very complicated reality. It’s very much about the shame many of us feel about being poor, and about how easy it is to be attracted to the false claims of elitism (the idea that we get better stuff in society BECAUSE WE’RE WORTH IT! I’m proud of this piece, so I’d love it if you’d take a read.
Finally, I have some neato events coming up! Lit Lit in Beacon is Friday, May 5 at the Howland Cultural Center, from 7-9 PM. We have our very first LIT LIT MIXER scheduled for Thursday, May 11 at Homespun Foods, 272 Main Street in Beacon, 7-9 PM — an opportunity for all of us local readers and writers to meet each other and TAWK! And then, on Friday, May 12, I will be participating in a fantastic event called Twice Told Tales, where 10 writers write original pieces based on photographs by the artist Margot Kingon. At Norma’s, in Wappinger’s. Then on June 17 and 18th, get on down to the first Beacon Literary Festival, where I will be reading and talking about my work on the 17th. Would love to see you there. 🙂
Houston, we have a Substack! Yup, after thinking about it and working on it for awhile I have launched a Substack called Rough Tongue, dedicated to “sensation, emotion, and food under capitalism.” Want to see it? Here it is:
I’m going to write about why luxury feels so damn good even though we know it’s based on someone getting the shaft. Whether upper-class food or poor people’s food is objectively “better.” And why we should all listen much more to our emotions, because they’re on our side.
Some more topics: why sex when you’re old is better (at least for me 🙂 ). What does it mean that even most upper-middle-class people can’t afford to eat at the majority of Manhattan restaurants? And then, of course, regular lists of stark raving pleasures that are absolutely free, from Sappho borrowed from the library to the sight and smell of the roses at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, if you ask for free admission.
Two more bits of news: I was interviewed by a wonderful podcast called Beaconites about my life and writing, you can listen here.
Finally, the next Lit Lit will be Friday, March 3 at the Howland Cultural Center, 477 Main St. in Beacon. See everybody there!
We got a lot going on in January here In Donnaville:
On Thursday evening, January 12, I will teach A FREE MEMOIR WRITING WORKSHOP at the Howland Public Library, 313 Main Street in Beacon, 6 PM- 7:15 PM. Please register here.
My next 8-week memoir workshop starts Wednesday, January 25 at 7 PM. It goes for eight Wednesday nights, from 7-9 PM, and the cost is $325. See here for more info.
The next LIT LIT is Friday, January 20 at the Howland Cultural Center at 7 PM, 477 Main St. in Beacon. If you’re interested, come on down! Some reading slots will be available at the door, or just come and listen 😎
I’m thrilled to report that poet Betsy Andrews will be the featured author at Lit Lit next month, Friday, November 4! Betsy’s poetry is fierce and lyrical at once, all about the climate, the family, and the Anthropocene, edgy, political, and freaking gorgeous all at once.
Her latest, Crowded, is just out from Nauset Press, and Betsy will read from it and sign books at the November 4 Lit Lit at the Howland Cultural Center, 477 Main Street in Beacon, 7-9 PM. As Susan Tichy writes, “Private and planetary angers twist together in Betsy Andrews’ Crowded, rising and falling together in the drunken winds of violence we have come to recognize as home.”
Come hear Betsy — followed by our usual kickass Lit Lit writers. Betsy is the winner of the Brittingham Prize in Poetry and the 42 Miles Press Prize in Poetry, and also one of the best food writers around.
You can sign up at the door to read one of your own pieces of writing, up to 5 minutes in length! We will take all comers till we run out of time 😄
Hey everyone, two quick things to announce: 1) My next memoir workshop starts Wednesday, September 21 from 7 to 9 PM Eastern Time on Zoom. It will go for eight Wednesdays until November 16 (skipping the week of October 5 for Yom Kippur).
The focus is on craft, especially using emotion, sensuality, storytelling, lyricism, and voice. Everyone will get frequent feedback in a supportive atmosphere; class size will be small. The fee is $325.
Writers at all levels are welcome. For more information or to register, please contact me at email@example.com.
2) We have a fabulous LIT LIT coming up for Friday, October 7 at the Howland Cultural Center! 🙂 Let me know if you want to read! For those of you who don’t know the drill, it’s 7 to 9 PM at the Howland, 477 Main Street in Beacon New York! Everyone who wants to can read their own writing of any genre of up to five minutes in length, until we run out of time. Because of the unique magic of Beacon, we get amazingly good memoir writers, novelists, poets, playwrights, and others!
I also keep a few slots so that people can sign up at the door. Or just come and listen. Lit Lit is a great place to meet Beacon writers and readers 🙂
To sign up, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. The event is free, and soft drinks, wine, beer, and snacks are available by donation. Masks are required.
Update: the next Lit Lit will be Friday, June 3 at 7 PM, at our regular location, the Howland Cultural Center. We are thrilled that Shaina Loew, author of Elegy for an Appetite and chef/owner of Café Mutton in Hudson, will be our featured reader this month and sign books!! Advance open mic signups are now closed. Proof of vaccination is required at the door.