Tongue & Groove on March 3rd

Tongue & Groove @ the Boca de Oro
Orange County’s Premier Art & Literature Festival.
We are a small part of this great event. Please check out the full schedule at

Saturday March 3rd
8:00 pm
Chapter One /Red Room
227 N Broadway, Santa Ana, CA 92701
Our lineup features: +  Daniel McGinn, Debra Diaz, Sheila J Sadr, Cynthia
Romanowski, Steve Ramirez, Conrad Romo
+ Music (TBD)

Daniel McGinn is the author of The Moon, My Lover, My Mother & The Dog (Moon Tide Press, 2018) and 1000 Black Umbrellas (Write Bloody, 2011) He is a native of Southern California who’s led writing workshops at Half Off Books, The Orange County Rescue Mission, Los Angeles charter schools and poetry venues. Daniel received his MFA in writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts and has been married to the poet and painter, Lori McGinn, for 41 years.

Debra Diaz lived in a citrus worker camp during the first seven years of her life. On scholarship, she attended UCSD, where she received her Bachelor of Arts degree. She pursued post-graduate studies in the MFA program at the Motion Picture/Television Division of the University of California, Los Angeles, and then worked in the film industry for 15 years as a Line Producer. She is  now an educator. She has written numerous short stories along with her first novel, The Red Camp (Arte Público Press, 1996).

Sheila J Sadr is a first generation Iranian-American poet, journalist, educator, and resident cow-enthusiast nuzzled somewhere between Orange County & Long Beach California. She writes about her mother, her communities, flowers, her brown body, and her whole heart. She has been featured/ is forthcoming at Two Idiots Peddling Poetry, Afrohaus, As We Create, The Long Beach Poetry Slam, Cadence Collective, Nat. Brut, 22 West, Westwood Westwood, and many other gems. She has facilitated workshops at CSUF and CSULB and now serves as coach for the CSULB Slam Poetry Team. She also serves as a core staff member for Forthe Media and is the project lead on the Forthe-produced forthcoming video series Give Me Lip. She is one of the social media coordinators for The Definitive Soapbox family, one of LB’s longest running open mics that is now going on its eighth year.

Cynthia Romanowski is a writer and community organizer from Huntington Beach. Her column “Books. Read. Must.” appears monthly in Coast Magazine and online in the OC Register. Her short stories and essays have appeared in The Nervous Breakdown, Angel’s Flight Literary West, Writers Resist, The New Short Fiction Series, The Rumpus and others.

Steve Ramirez hosts the weekly reading series, Two Idiots Peddling Poetry. A former member of the Laguna Beach Slam Team, he’s also a former organizer of the Orange County Poetry Festival and former member of the Five Penny Poets in Huntington Beach. Publication credits include Pearl, The Comstock Review,Crate, Aim for the Head (a zombie anthology)  & MultiVerse (a superhero anthology).

Come early!  Seating is limited and we start on time!

The club is a two story black brick building 1/3 rd of a block below Hollywood Bl. There are parking lots on Selma as well as Cahuenga. Meters need to be fed till 8pm.

Tongue & Groove on July 30

Join us at Hotel Cafe, July 30th at 6pm for a monthly offering of short fiction, personal essays, poetry, spoken word + music produced by Conrad Romo. This month featuring: Amanda Fletcher, Xach Fromson, Yennie Cheung, Mike Sonksen, Chelsea Rose and our musical guest is Erin & Melissa. Entry: $7

Amanda Fletcher is a 2012 PEN Center USA Emerging Voices Fellow. She was a flash fiction finalist for the Orlando Prize. Her work has appeared in the Orange County Register, Hippocampus, Coast and AfterParty Magazine. She is currently working on her memoir tentatively titled, HALO.

Xach Fromson is the co-founder of the Shades & Shadows literary series. He is a Los Angeles native who has been obsessed with horror and dark fiction from a very young age. After a brief and ill-advised attempt at being a theater major, he received his BA in Creative Writing from California State University Northridge in 2009. He earned his MFA in Creative Writing from the University of California Riverside’s Palm Desert program. He appeared on stage at Dirty Laundry Lit in February, 2013, and has had work appear on The Rumpus, The Los Angeles Times, and the anthologies Halloween Tales and Winter Horror-Days. He is currently in various stages of working on a ton of projects. Asking him his favorite book will earn you as blank a stare as asking him his favorite wine or whiskey. And once, he slew a dragon. Find him on Twitter @_mythogenesis_.

Yennie Cheung is co-author of the upcoming book DTLA/37: Downtown Los Angeles in Thirty-seven Stories. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from UC Riverside-Palm Desert, and her work has been published in such places as The Los Angeles Times, Word Riot, Angels Flight • Literary West, The Best Small Fictions 2015, and the PEN Center/Rattling Wall anthology Only Light Can Do That. She lives in Los Angeles.

Mike Sonksen is equally a scholar and performer. Mike Sonksen, also …known as, Mike the Poet, is a 3rd-generation L.A. native acclaimed for poetry performances, published articles and mentoring teen writers. Following his graduation from U.C.L.A. in 1997, he has published over 500 essays and poems. Mike has an Interdisciplinary M.A. in English and History and his writing has been included in programs with the Mayor’s Office, the Los Angeles Public Library’s Made in LA. series, Grand Park, the Music Center and the Friends of the Los Angeles River. His most recent book, Poetics of Location was published by Writ Large Press. Mike has taught at Cal State L.A., Southwest College and Woodbury University.

Chelsea Rose is an art-minded person from southern California. While attending UC Riverside for linguistics, she was Editor-in-Chief of the 49th edition of Mosaic: A Journal of Literature and Art. She curated The Casserole Online Reading Series, a literary reading/interview show broadcast and archived on YouTube. While living in Seattle, Chelsea created an art happening called The Party of Your Dreams. She also once collaborated with a friend to bedazzle and collage a disused toilet that was left outside her apartment, and it remained on the street as a work of art for a month. Her writing has appeared in Black Napkin Press, Phantom Journal, Catacomb Journal and elsewhere.

Erin & Melissa met in a magical place not found on traditional maps. One day they realized their penchant for comedy and nonsense. Today they are living it up in SoCal making movies, taking pictures and involving themselves in general ruckus.

Come early! Seating is limited and we start on time!

Tongue & Groove Memorial Day Weekend

A monthly offering of short fiction, personal essays, poetry, spoken word + music produced by Conrad Romo. This month featuring: Ben Loory, Joshua Nguyen, Cynthia Romanowski, Brandi Neal, Jian Huang, and musical guest Hannah Rebekah

Sunday May 28
6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
The Hotel Cafe
1623 1/2 No. Cahuenga Blvd.
Hollywood, Ca 90028

Ben Loory is the author of the collection Stories for Nighttime and Some for the Day (Penguin, 2011) and a picture book for children, The Baseball Player and the Walrus (Dial Books for Young Readers, 2015). His fables and tales have appeared in The New Yorker, Tin House, READ Magazine, and Fairy Tale Review, been heard on This American Life and Selected Shorts, and performed live at WordTheatre in Los Angeles and London. His second collection, Tales of Falling and Flying, is coming from Penguin in September.

Joshua Nguyen began writing with the Meta-Four Houston Youth Slam Team from 2008-2012 and competed in Brave New Voices. He is an alumnus of the University of Texas at Austin and was part of the UT Spitshine slam team from 2014-2016. He placed #1 in the nation in 2014, won ‘Best Writing as a Team’ in 2015, and was the 2015 CUPSI Haiku Champ. In 2016, he traveled to Washington D.C. as a member of Future Corp to organize the 2016 Brave New Voices International Poetry Festival. He was a featured poet in a commercial for the National Education Association’s ‘Do You Hear Us?’ campaign. 

Joshua is a Kundiman Fellow. He has been published in The Offing, The Acentos ReviewFreezeray PoetryButton Poetry and is forthcoming in Birds Thumb and The Texas Review. In 2015, he was part of the Word Around Town Poetry Tour (WAT) in Houston, Texas. He is a tapioca connoisseur and plays an aggressive-tight strategy in poker.

Jian Huang  Immigrant. Proud American. 2016 PEN Emerging Voices Fellow. Jian’s parents brought her to the Unites States from Shanghai, China, when she was six years old. She grew up in South Los Angeles and earned her bachelor’s degree in art history from the University of Southern California. She has worked for a number of social service organizations, including the LA Conservation Corps, Los Angeles County Arts Commission, Homeboy Industries, and Little Tokyo Service Center. Jian is working on her first memoir titled Business in the Front about the journey to the American Dream. Read more at

Brandi Neal is a staff writer at the women’s news and lifestyle website Bustle, and a regular contributor to Coast magazine. She has also been published in Freshly Hatched, Ignite magazine, MovieMaker magazine, The Blue Room, Port City Life magazine, Portland magazine, Common Dreams, and more. She was a 2016 Idyllwild Arts Summer Writers Week Creative Nonfiction Fellow and a 2012 Summer Literary Series Workshop Fiction Fellowship finalist. Brandi has an MFA in creative writing from Stonecoast at the University of Southern Maine. She lives in North Hollywood with her special-needs dog, BiBi and is currently revising her memoir “Night Swimming.”

Cynthia Romanowski is just another asshole with an MFA. Her short stories have appeared in places you’ve never heard of and her monthly book column Shelf-Awareness can be found in Coast Magazine . She lives in Huntington Beach and has been working on a novel-in-stories called “The Habitual Position Of Being Okay” for longer then she likes to admit. You can read more of her work at

Hannah Rebekah is a Wisconsin-bred nomad who is finally starting to enjoy Los Angeles. She lives in a tricked out van and parks in your neighborhood at night. Compassion, creation, and social progress are at the heart of her foot-stomping alt folk. Check it out at and on FB under Hannah Rebekah.

Come early!  Seating is limited and we start on time!


Tongue & Groove
Saturday April 29th
6-7:30 pm
The Hotel Cafe
1623 1/2 N. Cahuenga Blvd.
Hollywood, Ca 90028

A literary variety show with short fiction, poetry, personal essays, spoken word etc. and with music. This  month we proudly features the 2017 PEN Center USA Emerging Voices Fellows:  +  music tbd

Soleil David was born and raised in the Philippines and now lives in Los Angeles. She graduated with high distinction from the University of California, Berkeley. She is a recipient of the Julia Keith Shrout Short Story Prize, andher poetry and prose have been published inOur Own VoiceThe Philippine Daily InquirerPittsburgh Poetry Review, and the Asian American Writers’ Workshop anthology The Margins. She is working on a collection of poems.

Peter H.Z. Hsu was born in Taipei, Taiwan, and raised in the San Gabriel Valley. He attended the University of California, Los Angeles, where he received a bachelor’s degree in English literature, and California State University, Los Angeles, where he earned a master’s degree in psychology. His fiction debuted in March 2016 in The Margins and is included in the Fall 2016 issue of Pinball. Peter is currently working on a short story collection.

Kirin Khan was raised in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and currently lives in Oakland, California. A Senior Analyst for YouGov, she has a bachelor’s degree in economics from Mills College and a post-baccalaureate in math from Smith College. Kirin is a 2016 VONA Voices alum and an upcoming 2017 Grotto Fellow. She is published inUprootsPARKLE & bLINK, and 7×7.LA. Kirin is currently working on her first novel.

Chinyere Nwodim was raised in Baltimore, Maryland, and attended Johns Hopkins University where she received a bachelor’s degree in biology and history of science. In addition to writing, she works in development at a regional community health center serving low-income populations in Los Angeles and Orange County. Chinyere currently lives in Los Angeles and is working on a short story collection.

Jessica Shoemaker was raised in Torrance, California, and earned a bachelor’s degree in cultural anthropology from University of California, Santa Barbara. She now lives in San Pedro, California, and teaches middle school. Her fiction has appeared in Blue Skirt ProductionsFiction Southeast, and Lunch Ticket. Jessica is working on a collection of short stories.

Come early!  Seating is limited and we start on time!

The club is a two story black brick building 1/3 rd of a block below Hollywood Bl. There are parking lots on Selma as well as Cahuenga. Meters need to be fed till 8pm. Avoid Cahuenga street parking.

Tongue & Groove on March 14


Tongue & Groove @ the Boca de Oro:
Orange County’s Premier Art & Literature Festival.
We are small part of this great event. Please check out the full schedule at

Our reading happens:
Saturday March 4th
8:00 pm
The Rinconada 300 W 5th St.
Santa Ana, CA 92701

Our lineup features: +  Anna Leahy, Steve Ramirez, Chris Davidson, Conrad Romo music by Eddika  Organista of  El Haru Kuroi

Steve Ramirez hosts the weekly reading series, Two Idiots Peddling Poetry. A former member of the Laguna Beach Slam Team, he’s also a former organizer of the Orange County Poetry Festival and former member of the Five Penny Poets in Huntington Beach. Publication credits include Pearl, The Comstock Review, Crate, Aim for the Head (a zombie anthology) and & MultiVerse (a superhero anthology).

Chris Davidson is associate professor of English and co-director of first-year writing at Biola. He teaches courses in critical thinking and writing, writing for competency, and creative writing. He has a bachelor’s degree in English from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, and a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from University of California, Irvine. His work has appeared in several journals and anthologies, including Monster Verse: Poems Human and Inhuman. A chapbook, Poems, appeared in 2012.

Anna Leahy is the author of two full-length poetry collections, Aperture (Shearsman, 2017) and Constituents of Matter (KSUP, 2007), and two nonfiction books, Generation Space: A Love Story (with Douglas R. Dechow, Stillhouse, 2017) and Tumor (Bloomsbury, 2017). Her essays won the annual literary awards from Ninth Letter and Dogwood in 2016. She edited and co-wrote What We Talk about When We Talk about Creative Writing and Power and Identity in the Creative Writing Classroom (Multilingual Matters, 2016 and 2006).  

 In fall 2017, Anna’s nonfiction book Tumor will become part of Bloomsbury’s Object Lessons series, an innovative exploration of hidden lives of ordinary things. Conversing with Cancer, her co-written book about how patients, caregivers, and healthcare providers can improve communication, will be out in 2017.

  She teaches in the MFA and BFA programs at Chapman University, where she curates the Tabula Poetica reading series and edits the international journal TAB. | @generationspace

Conrad Romo grew up on the other side of the tracks (N.E.L.A.) short, stocky and swarthy. He has studied writing with Lynda Barry and Jack Grapes. He’s been published in Los Angeles Review, Latinos in Lotusland, Huizache, Palehouse, Coiled Serpent + Splicetoday. He is the producer of the monthly reading series called Tongue & Groove, now into year 13 and he is one of the founders of Lit Crawl L.A and the Melrose Bellow.

Eddika Édule Organista Moctezuma is an artist, musician, composer of songs, and poetry. Born in Boyle Heights and of Mexican decent was brought up in various parts of the U.S. and Mexico. Coming from a family of musicians, Eddika has been singing since 5 years old, playing guitar since 11 and has been writing songs since 12 years of age, which led to her interest in pursuing music. Her focus switched to music after studying art / printmaking at Pasadena City College, as well as at Self-Help Graphics in Boyle Heights. At PCC she studied in the jazz department under Bobby Bradford and later transferred to the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) for her Bachelor’s Degree in Ethnomusicology, with a minor in Brazilian Portuguese. Her music reflects elements of Jazz and music from various Latin American countries, such as Brazil, Mexico and Peru to name a few. Currently, Eddika is the front woman of the LA based group,  El Haru Kuroi and the recently formed group, Yanga  which is a hybrid of Colombian traditional music.


The Melrose Bellow


Tongue & Groove


The Melrose Bellow

bel·low: a deep roaring shout or sound.


Saturday November 12

8pm (round 2)

Sal’s Restaurant

7356 Melrose Ave, 90048


Featuring: Jack Grapes, Derrick Brown, David Huntsberger (animation)

and music by Erin and Melissa

The Melrose Bellow is a for fun and for free literary fest of 15 presenters!

Poets, Storytellers, Comedians, Fiction Writers and Musicians: will offer a dynamic and entertaining evening of a taste at what makes this great city a literary force. Some participants include: Rant & Rave, Da Poetry Lounge, The Groundlings, Story Salon.

See the full lineup here.

At 5pm to attend a FREE rubber block carving workshop and walk away with some art. Class size is limited to 18!

Take a look here.

Or sign up at 6:30 for an open mic at the Standup Bus.

Where? On a four-block stretch of Melrose Avenue from Poinsettia Place to Gardner Street.

The Bellow will happen at a variety of locations consisting of an art gallery, a tattoo parlor, a theatre space, an eyewear shop etc.

Check the site for info on where to park and bring a crowd with you.



Support for this program was graciously provided through the City of Los Angeles Arts Development Fee Program, Department of Cultural Affairs, the Office of Los Angeles City Councilmember Koretz, and the Melrose BID.

Tongue & Groove at The Hotel Cafe on December 20th!


Tongue & Groove 

A monthly offering of short fiction, personal essays, poetry, spoken word + music produced by Conrad Romo. This month features Steph Cha “Dead Soon Enough”,  Julia Ingalls, Amanda Montell, Dawn Dorland, Ashley Perez, Vicki Juditz, Stef Willen and our musical guest is Rosa Pullman

Sunday December 20th
6-7:30 pm
The Hotel Cafe
1623 1/2 No. Cahuenga Blvd.
Hollywood, Ca 90028


Steph Cha is the author of “Follow Her Home”, “Beware Beware” and “Dead Soon Enough”, all published by St. Martin’s Minotaur. She’s the noir editor for LARB and a regular contributor to the LA Times. She lives in her native city of Los Angeles with her husband and basset hound.

Julia Ingalls is primarily an essayist. Her work has appeared in The Los Angeles Times, Salon, Guernica, and on KCRW, among others. She’s into it.

Dawn Dorland‘s fiction appears in Green Mountains Review online, The Drum (audio), and is collected in Paragraph; her essays are available on the GrubStreet blog. Dawn’s debut novel-in-progress, “Econoline”, about generational poverty and American class ascent, has been recognized with fellowships and other support from the Vermont Studio Center, the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley, the Hambidge Center for the Arts, the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center, and Ragdale (2016). In 2015 Dawn was named a Visiting Artist for six weeks at a Regional Cultural Center in rural Minnesota. She earned her MFA at the University of Maryland, where she received full funding and won a teaching award, and teaches fiction and essay on the faculty of Writing Workshops LA and at the Downtown Women’s Center on Skid Row.

Amanda Montell is a Los Angeles writer and online content creator. She currently serves as the Managing Editor of digital literary journal, FORTH Magazine, and is a staff editor at online lifestyle magazine, Amanda is also the creator and host of “The Dirty Word,” a web series about gender, language, and pop culture, forthcoming on Amanda’s essays have appeared in Literary Orphans, Medium, and Trop Magazine, among others. She is also a regular contributor at Time Out Los Angeles.

Vicki Juditz (Actor) is best known for her one-woman show Teshuvah, Return, about her journey to Judaism, for which she received an LA WEEKLY nomination for Best Female Solo Performer and an Ovation Award nomination for Best Writing of a World Premiere.  She has performed her original stories at temples, theaters, and festivals, including the National Storytelling Festival, the Aspen LAFF Festival, and the Jewish Festival of Hong Kong. Locally, she performs at spoken-word series such as Speakeasy, Tasty Words, I Love a Good Story, Spark, Jewish Women’s Theater, and Tales by the Sea.  A frequent winner of Moth StorySLAMs, she also won a GrandSLAM on the theme Mea Culpa.  No stranger to TV, she has guest-starred on Storytime, Everybody Loves Raymond, YES, DEAR, and My Name is Earl.   Contact her at

Ashley Perez lives, writes, and causes trouble in Los Angeles. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Antioch University Los Angeles. She runs the literary site Arts Collide and does work of all varieties for The Rumpus, The Weeklings, Literary Orphans and Midnight Breakfast. You can also find her on Twitter: @ArtsCollide.

Stef Willen is a contributor to This American Life and a semi-regular contributor to McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, where her award-winning column, Total Loss, also appears. She is currently turning Total Loss into a book slated to be published by Simon & Schuster in January 2017.

Rosa Pullman singer, writer, play, soul sister.


Come early!  Seating is limited and we start on time!


December 8: Tongue & Groove at the Annenberg Community Beach House


Tongue & Groove 

A monthly offering of short fiction, personal essays, poetry, spoken word + music produced by Conrad Romo. This  month features: Matthew Specktor “American Dream Machine”, Chris Wells (Secret City), Amanda Gorman (LA’s Youth Poet Laureate)  and  music by Malik ‘the FreQ’ Moore

Tuesday December 8 
6:30 -7:45
Annenberg Community Beach House

415 Pacific Coast Hwy, Santa Monica, CA 90402

Matthew Specktor is the author of the novels American Dream Machine and That Summertime Sound, as well as a nonfiction work of film criticism. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, GQ, Harper s, The Paris Review, The Believer, and many other periodicals and anthologies. He is a founding editor of the Los Angeles Review of Books

Chris Wells is an award winning writer/performer who divides his time between New York and Los Angeles. As host of The Secret City, an Obie-award winning gathering for artists and art lovers, Wells curates, produces and emcees a monthly event that is part salon, part cabaret and part ceremony. As a writer, Wells creates original solo work and first person stories about his life. He’s currently compiling a series of his stories into a collection entitled, I’m About To Touch

Amanda Gorman is LA’s First Youth Poet Laureate. She is a senior at New Roads High School in Santa Monica. She is also the founder of One Pen One Page, a nonprofit organization, and a contributor to Huffington Post. Her first book of poetry is titled “The One for Whom Food is Not Enough”.

Malik ‘the FreQ’ Moore is a vital part of the LA Reggae scene who performs with The Lions and The Bullets.  On his own he has been writing and performing genre exploring songs for years in his own unique  bitter-sweet haunting style.

Come early!  We start on time!


Tongue & Groove on Sunday, November 22nd


Tongue & Groove 

A monthly offering of short fiction, personal essays, poetry, spoken word + music produced by Conrad Romo. This  month features: J. Ryan Stradal “Kitchens of the Great Midwest”, Cheryl Montelle, Jeremy Radin ” Slow Dancing with Sasquatch”, April Davila  and  music by Maesa Pullman

Sunday November 22nd 

6-7:30 pm

The Hotel Cafe

1623 1/2 No. Cahuenga Blvd.

Hollywood, Ca 90028


J. Ryan Stradal is a volunteer and advisory board member at 826LA and co-produces the literary/culinary event “Hot Dish.” He’s also worked in TV, most recently as the Supervising Producer on the A&E series “Storage Wars: Texas.” Some places where he has been published include Hobart, The Rattling Wall, Midwestern Gothic, The Rumpus, and McSweeney’s. His first novel “Kitchens of the Great Midwest” is a New York Times best seller. He likes wine, books, root beer, and peas.

Jeremy Radin is a Jewish person/actor from Los Angeles. He also writes poems, which have appeared in numerous journals. His first book, Slow Dance with Sasquatch, is available from Write Bloody Publishing. You may have seen him on It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia or in a restaurant aggressively eating pancakes by himself.

Cheryl Montelle is a Los Angeles based writer whose stories have been published in various anthologies and magazines, and performed in Los Angeles, Joshua Tree and New York City. She is the producer and host of  “Desert Stories”, an annual fundraiser for the High Desert Playhouse in Joshua Tree, CA. which she has also produced in New York City and Los Angeles. Cheryl has collaborated with The Laboratory, an international artist collective on two multi-faceted  art magazines, and heads the veteran/community non-profit Mil-Tree.

April Dávila’s short stories have appeared in the Santa Clara Review, The Writing Disorder, and Dissections. Her non-fiction has appeared in Yes! Magazine, Earth Island Journal, and Our World 2.0 (a United Nation’s publication). Her writing on the topic of genetically modified foods garnered attention from Elle Magazine, NPR, the League of Women Voters and more. As a travel writer, she has published stories up and down the west coast. Her book “Northern California” is set to be published by Eye Muse Books in 2016. She is currently working on her debut novel. Learn more about her at

Maesa Pullman started playing piano and writing songs when she was seven. She grew up in an artistic family whose roots go back to her grandfather who also played piano and sang. Maesa’s music is haunting with reflective lyrics; a poetic combination of folk, rock and soul steeped in Americana roots. Buy her CD Whippporwill at

Come early!  Seating is limited and we start on time!


Tongue & Groove on Sunday, October 25th


“Tongue & Groove”

A monthly offering of short fiction, personal essays, poetry, spoken word + music produced by Conrad Romo. This month features Janet Fitch, David Francis, Rita Williams, Julianne Ortale and music by Garretson & Gorodetsky

Sunday October 25th

6-7:30 pm

The Hotel Cafe

1623 1/2 No. Cahuenga Blvd.

Hollywood, Ca 90028


Janet Fitch is the author of the novels Paint It Black and White Oleander. Her short stories and essays have appeared in anthologies and journals such  as Black Clock, Room of One’s Own, Los Angeles Noir, the Los Angeles Times,, Black Warrior Review, Vogue and Los Angeles Review of Books, where she is a contributing editor She currently teaches at the Vermont College of Fine Arts and at the Squaw Valley Community of Writers.  Paint it Black has been made into a feature film, the directing debut of Amber Tamblyn, and will be released early next year.  She is currently working on an epic novel of the Russian Revolution.

In her memoir, If the Creek Don’t Rise, Rita Williams shares the story of her childhood with the last African American widow of a Civil War soldier in Colorado. Her work has appeared in O, The Oprah Magazine, O at Home, Saveur, Best Food Writing for 2007, The Los Angeles Times, LA Weekly, The Utne Reader and Fins and Feathers, as well as numerous anthologies.  She taught at the University of Southern California.  Rita is reading this evening from her work in progress: a novel about a trucker with a meth problem.

David Francis‘ first novel AGAPANTHUS TANGO was published internationally in seven languages and then in the United States as THE GREAT INLAND SEA.  His second novel, STRAY DOG WINTER, was named Book of the Year in The Advocate, Novel of the Year in the Australian Literature Review, was a LAMBDA fiction award finalist and won the American Library Association Stonewall Prize for Literature.  His short fiction has appeared in The Sydney Morning Herald, Best Australian Stories 2010 and 2012, Griffith Review,The Harvard Review, Australian Love Stories and The Ratting Wall. His third novel WEDDING BUSH ROAD is being released by Counterpoint press in the fall of 2016.

Julianne Ortale is co-editor along with Samantha Dunn of the short story anthology Women on the Edge: Writing from Los Angeles. Her work has appeared in The Rattling Wall, Alaska Quarterly Review, Salmagundi, The Malahat Review, Stand, Happy, The Gobshite Review and Barbaric Yawp. She received her MFA in Fiction at UC Irvine’s Programs in Writing where she was the Cheng Fellow. Her dialogues “Hombre Kabuki” and “Fluorescent Grey” were produced as short films and placed at Breckenridge Film Festival, Mexico International Film Festival, Tulsa International Film Festival, New Filmmakers Los Angeles, SNOB and won Narrative Merit Award at Los Angeles Cinema Festival. She lives with her family on Bainbridge Island where she writes and works with children with autism. Her story collection, Music For Incurables is under review. She is currently finishing a novel.

Weba Garretson and Ralph Gorodetsky combine folk and pop music, blues riffs and jazz harmonies with poetic lyrics to create songs that are haunting and humorous. Their most recent work “What Must the Hummingbird See?” is a song cycle about the fragile existence of urban wildlife In Los Angeles. Other commissions include music for Los Angeles Poverty Department’s “Utopia/Dystopia” at the Redcat, and the LA Public Library stage celebration of Melville’s Moby Dick “My Moby Dick” at the Broad Theatre.

Come early!  Seating is limited and we start on time!