TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 7-9PM: The BROOKLYN BOOK FESTIVAL comes to Crown Heights! In partnership with our friends at ringShout, the Franklin Park Reading Series will be hosting widely hailed poet SAEED JONES (Prelude to Bruise) and acclaimed authors BRIDGETT M. DAVIS (Into the Go-Slow), ELIZABETH NUNEZ (Not For Everyday Use, Anna In-Between), and LAUREN FRANCIS-SHARMA (‘Til The Well Runs Dry). Readings, followed by a conversation between these four exciting writers of the African diaspora who are “Writing The World.” The $6 cover charge gets you a free beer or glass of wine. For more details, please see our Facebook event page.
On Monday, September 8, we kicked off our fall season with fresh fiction from a mix of established and fast-rising stars: Justin Taylor (Flings, The Gospel of Anarchy, Everything Here Is the Best Thing Ever), Marie-Helene Bertino (2 A.M. at The Cat’s Pajamas, Safe as Houses), Scott Cheshire (High as the Horses’ Bridles), Dolan Morgan (That’s When the Knives Come Down), and Jennifer Marie Brissett (Elysium).
On August 11, we celebrated indie lit with five influential small press authors from across the country: Paula Bomer (Inside Madeleine, Nine Months), Michael Kimball (Galaga, Big Ray), Jamie Iredell (I Was a Fat Drunk Catholic School Insomniac), Brian Allen Carr (The Last Horror Novel in the History of the World), and Andrew Duncan Worthington (Walls). Check out the English Kills Review’s excellent photo recap here.
July 14 was our annual “Travels and Journeys” reading. Emma Straub (The Vacationers), Tiphanie Yanique (Land of Love and Drowning), Courtney Maum (I Am Having So Much Fun Here Without You), Boris Fishman (A Replacement Life), and Aaron Burch (Backswing) shared uproarious tales of misadventures in exotic locales.
June 9 was our Summer Blockbuster Reading, featuring six of the season’s hottest authors: Shane Jones (Crystal Eaters), Porochista Khakpour (The Last Illusion), Amy Sohn (The Actress), Julia Fierro (Cutting Teeth), Juliet Escoria (Black Cloud), and Edward Kearns (The Buzzard’s Banquet)! Time Out NY was on the scene, interviewing Shane Jones about his new novel Crystal Eaters.
On May 12, we hosted the legendary essayist and fiction author LYNNE TILLMAN (What Would Lynne Tillman Do, Someday This Will Be Funny), JEFF JACKSON (Mira Corpora), TOVA MIRVIS (Visible City, The Ladies Auxiliary), BRENDAN KIELY (The Gospel of Winter), and WAH-MING CHANG (Mississippi Review, Open City).
On April 7, we were thrilled to present fearless and innovative authors KIESE LAYMON (Long Division, How to Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America), JAMI ATTENBERG (The Middlesteins, The Kept Man), D. FOY (Made to Break), ANNE MARIE WIRTH CAUCHON (Nothing), and SASHA FLETCHER (Dear Gloria, When All Our Days are Numbered).
In a special event on March 24, we launched THE MARRIAGE ACT, the thought-provoking, sharply funny memoir by Liza Monroy, a fave alum who appeared at our inaugural event in March 2009. She was joined in the all nonfiction lineup by Jennifer Percy (Demon Camp), Kenan Trebincevic and Susan Shapiro (The Bosnia List), and Melynda Fuller (Bust, bookslut.com).
We celebrated our Fifth Anniversary on March 10 with a multigenre event featuring star alums Dani Shapiro (Still Writing, Devotion), Adam Wilson (What’s Important Is Feeling, Flatscreen), and Leah Umansky (Don Dreams and I Dream, Domestic Uncertainties), along with special guests Kyle Minor (Praying Drunk) and Tom Williams (Don’t Start Me Talkin’).
“Love & Madness” were in the air at our February 10 pre-Valentine’s Day reading, featuring jazz critic and Charlie Parker biographer Stanley Crouch (Kansas City Lightning), novelists Jennifer Gilmore (The Mothers), Mitchell S. Jackson (The Residue Years), and Joseph Riippi (Because, The Orange Suitcase), and short fiction writer Molly Tolsky (The Collagist, Lumina). We were honored to host the official launch of Joseph Riippi’s Civil Coping Mechanisms novel BECAUSE.
Our fifth annual Short Fiction Night on January 13 featured master storyteller Ben Marcus (Leaving the Sea), acclaimed debut author Chinelo Okparanta (Happiness, Like Water), FC2 Sukenick Prize for Innovative Fiction winner Luke B. Goebel (Fourteen Stories| None of Them Are Yours), Gigantic magazine cofounder Ann DeWitt (NOON), and rising star Ryan Chang (Vol. 1 Brooklyn). Check out Kate Gavino’s excellent sketches of the event at her blog Last Night’s Reading!
On December 9 we closed 2013 with a bang at our year-end bash featuring Okey Ndibe (Foreign Gods, Inc.), Heiko Julien (I Am Ready to Die a Violent Death), Sean Doyle (The Day Walt Disney Died), and Lauren Belski (Whatever Used to Grow Around Here). Big thanks to Sola Osofisan of africanwriter.com for this incisive recap.
On November 11, at our Transgression reading, taboo-breaking authors Scott McClanahan (Hill William, Crapalachia), Lindsay Hunter (Don’t Kiss Me, Daddy’s), Adelle Waldman (The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P.), Grazyna Plebanek (Illegal Liaisons), and James Yeh (Gigantic Magazine) had us laughing and cringing at their iniquitous and salacious tales.
October 14 was our Powerhouse Women night, featuring fierce female writers Susan Steinberg (Spectacle, Hydroplane), Laura van den Berg (The Isle of Youth), Vanessa Veselka (Zazen), Karolina Waclawiak (How to Get Into the Twin Palms), and T Kira Madden (The Kenyon Review).
We co-hosted a Bookend Event for the Brooklyn Book Festival with ringShout, the Brooklyn-based literary organization which celebrates work by African American authors. Featured readers were Kiese Laymon (Long Division), Sheri Booker (Nine Years Under), and Rachel Kaadzi Ghansah (The Paris Review). Check out Rob Field’s fantastic pics!
Learn more about the reading series here.
Cover photo courtesy of The Short Form.