The Pen Parentis Literary Salon is a unique Downtown series that shatters parental stereotypes as it celebrates the diverse creative work of writers that are also parents. On the second Tuesday of each month September through May, join us at 75 Wall Street (Andaz Wall Street). Each night begins with networking over wine, compliments of Andaz Wall Street. Readings are followed by Q&A moderated by Pen Parentis founder M. M. De Voe and Salons curator Christina Chiu. Each event ends with mingling and book signings. Come join the fun! Pen Parentis Literary Salons are a great place to meet book-loving neighbors as well as industry notables. You don’t have to be a parent or even a writer to enjoy these events – join us!
See below for details of who is reading next and to RSVP!
March 2009 – October 2015
Cara Hoffman is the author of Nike, a Novel and The Wedding and Other Stories. She has won a New York State Foundation for the Arts Fellowship, a New York State Council on the Arts Grant, and a Saltonstall studio residency for her fiction.
She received neither a high school diploma nor an undergraduate degree and was graciously admitted to Goddard College’s Masters of Fine Art in Writing program based on the merit of her published work. Hoffman has lectured in the creative writing and journalism departments of Cornell University, Hobart William Smith Colleges, and SUNY Cortland.
Rebecca Barry is the author of the novel-in-stories Later, at the Bar, which was a New York Times Notable Book and a Barnes and Noble Discovery Pick. Her nonfiction has appeared in the Washington Post Magazine, the New York Times, the New York Times Magazine, Details, More, and the Best American Travel Writing. Her short fiction has been in Ploughshares, Tin House, One Story, Ecotone, the Mid-American Review, and the Best New American Voices. She lives in upstate New York with her two boys and authors the blog “The Main Street Diaries.” She is currently working on a novel.
Julie Klam grew up in Bedford, NY. She has been a freelance writer since 1991, writing for such publications as “O, The Oprah Magazine,” “Rolling Stone,” “Harper’s Bazaar,” “Cookie,” “Allure,” “Glamour,” and “The New York Times Magazine” and her essay, “I’m Not Fat, I’m Pregnant” is including in the Harper Collins book The Organic Pregnancy. A graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, Julie worked from 1999 – 2002 as writer for VH1’s Pop-Up Video, where she earned an Emmy nomination for Special Class Writing. She was also a Senior Writer on VH1’s Name That Video. Please Excuse My Daughter, her memoir, will be available in paperback August 7, 2009.
She lives in Manhattan with her husband, daughter and 4 dogs.
Arthur Phillips has been a child actor, a jazz musician, a speechwriter, a dismally failed entrepreneur, and a five-time Jeopardy! champion. His first novel, Prague, a national bestseller, was named a New York Times Notable Book, and received The Los Angeles Times/Art Seidenbaum Award for best first novel. His second novel, The Egyptologist, was a national and international bestseller, and was on more than a dozen “Best of 2004″ lists. Angelica, his third novel, was a national bestseller and made The Washington Post best fiction of 2007. His work has been translated into twenty-five languages. The Song Is You is his highly anticipated fourth novel. He lives in New York with his wife and two sons.
Joanna Hershon is the author of Swimming, The Outside of August, and a third novel, The German Bride (March 08). Her writing has appeared in One Story, The Virginia Quarterly Review, Post Road, the literary anthology Brooklyn Was Mine, and was shortlisted for the 2007 O. Henry Prize Stories. She teaches in the Undergraduate Creative Writing department at Columbia University and lives in Brooklyn with her husband, the painter Derek Buckner, and their twin sons.
Joshua Henkin is the author of the novel MATRIMONY (Pantheon, 2007, Vintage, 2008), which was named a New York Times Notable Book, a Book Sense Highlight Pick of the Year, and a Borders Original Voices Selection. He is also the author of the novel SWIMMING ACROSS THE HUDSON, which was named a Los Angeles Times notable book. His short stories have been widely published. He lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his wife and two small daughters and teaches in the creative writing programs at Sarah Lawrence College and Brooklyn College, and at the Unterberg Poetry Center of the 92nd Street Y.
Tad Friend is a staff writer at The New Yorker, where he writes the magazine’s “Letter from California.” Prior to that, he wrote regularly for Outside, New York, and Esquire, and wrote travel stories from all seven continents. He plays golf and squash and watches a lot of television. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife, Amanda Hesser, and their children, Walker and Addie. CHEERFUL MONEY (Little, Brown and Company / September 2009) is his first book.
Deborah Copaken Kogan is the author of Shutterbabe, the bestselling memoir of her years as a war photographer; the novel BETWEEN HERE AND APRIL, an Elle Reader’s Prize finalist; and Hell is Other Parents, a forthcoming book of humorous essays. Her work has appeared in the New Yorker, the New York Times, O: The Oprah Magazine, Paris Match, Newsweek, Time, Elle, Géo, L’Express, and PHOTO, and on ABC News, Dateline NBC, and CNN. She lives in New York with her husband and three children.
JT Petty is the author of the popular series of chapter books for young readers, CLEMENCY POGUE, published by Simon & Schuster. FAIRY KILLER, along with its sequel, THE HOBGOBLIN PROXY, were optioned for film adaptation by the Jim Henson Company. Also a screenwriter and director of movies, his first feature film, SOFT FOR DIGGING, was selected for the 2001 Sundance Film Festival, and went on to dozens of festivals world-wide. His most recent film THE BURROWERS, is a monster western (Lionsgate, 2009).
He has been writing for videogames since 1999, and is one of the creators of the game SPLINTER CELL, a best-selling franchise which earned him a Game Developer’s Choice Award. His most recent videogame work was on the adaptation of John Favreau’s IRON MAN. He and his wife, literary horror writer Sarah Langan, live in Brooklyn with their newborn daughter.
Sarah Langan first novel THE KEEPER (2006) was a New York Times Editor’s Pick. Her second novel THE MISSING (2007), won the Bram Stoker Award for outstanding novel, was a Publisher’s Weekly favorite book of the year, and an IHG outstanding novel nominee. Her third novel AUDREY’S DOOR, is due out from HarperCollins in October, and she is currently at work on her fourth novel, EMPTY HOUSES. She has published a dozen short stories and several essays and is working on a Master’s in Environmental Toxicology from New York University. The New York Times Book Review recently compared her to Mary Shelley. Langan lives in Brooklyn, New York with her husband, screenwriter/director/children’s book author JT Petty and their newborn daughter and house rabbit.
Joanna Smith Rakoff’s novel, A FORTUNATE AGE, was a New York Times‘ Editors’ Pick, a winner of the Elle Readers’ Prize, and a selection of Barnes and Noble’s First Look Book Club. She has written for the New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, Vogue, O: The Oprah Magazine, and many other periodicals. Her poetry has appeared in The Paris Review and The Kenyon Review, among others. She lives in New York with her husband, son and daughter.
Stewart Lewis is a singer songwriter, novelist, and radio personality. His soulful blend of pop and folk has been featured on TV and film and he has performed worldwide. He has published two novels, Rockstarlet, and Relative Stranger, which was hailed by best-selling author Augusten Burroughs as, “A droll, spirited read–terrific fun.” His reports on “City Life” can be heard thrice weekly on WCBS News Radio. He lives in New York City with his partner and three year old daughter, Rowan. For more information, visit www.stewartlewis.com
Amy Sohn is the New York Times bestselling author of Run Catch Kiss (Simon & Schuster, 1999), My Old Man (Simon and Schuster, 2004), and Sex and the City: Kiss and Tell (Pocket; Rev Upd edition, 2004). Prospect Park West (Simon & Schuster; September 1, 2009) is her highly anticipated new novel. She has been a columnist for New York magazine and has written for The Nation, Harper’s Bazaar, The New York Times, and Playboy. She lives with her husband and daughter in Brooklyn.
Jeffrey Rotter , writer, father, and Brooklyn resident will read from his critically acclaimed novel THE UNKNOWN KNOWNS and will be so riveting that we might just name a drink after him…
Sam Apple , a graduate of the creative nonfiction MFA program at Columbia University, is the director of interactive media at Nerve. He has served as the editor-in-chief of New Voices Magazine and has written for The New York Times Magazine, The Financial Times Magazine, ESPN The Magazine, and Slate.com, among many other publications. His first book, Schlepping Through the Alps (Ballantine Books, 2005), was a finalist for the PEN America Award for a first work of nonfiction. In 2005, he received the annual Faux-Faulkner award. His second book, American Parent (Ballantine Books, 2009) is his latest. He lives in Brooklyn with his family.
Ellen Umansky’s articles, essays, and fiction have appeared in numerous publications, such as The New York Times, Salon, Playboy, and Tablet, as well as the short-story anthologies Lost Tribe and Sleepaway. She has worked in the editorial departments of The New Yorker, the Forward, and the late New York Sun. She has been awarded a residency at the Millay Colony for the Arts and holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Columbia. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two young daughters.
Yona Zeldis McDonough, in addition to many acclaimed books for children, is the author of two novels for adults, THE FOUR TEMPERAMENTS and IN DAHLIA’S WAKE—her third novel, BREAKING THE BANK, came out in September to stunning reviews. She presently lives in Brooklyn, NY with her husband, their two children and two small, yappy dogs.
Mark Shulman has published over 100 children’s books of every kind. He has also written nonfiction, preschool, trivia, readers, movie tie-ins, sticker books, and humor books for adults. His most recent projects include a young adult novel, Scrawl. He lives in Manhattan with his wife, a literacy teacher, and their two children.
Meg Mullins, celebrated author of The Rug Merchant, joins the Pen Parentis Author Salon while on book tour for highly anticipated novel, Dear Strangers. Her short fiction is widely published. The story that formed the basis of The Rug Merchant appeared in The Best American Short Stories 2002. She lives in New Mexico with her husband and their two children.
Rachel Sherman holds an MFA in fiction from Columbia University. Her short stories have appeared in various publications including the anthology Full Frontal Fiction: The Best of Nerve Anthology. Her book of short stories, The First Hurt was short listed for The Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award, and was named one of the 25 Books to Remember from 2006 by the New York Public Library.
Austin Ratner’s first novel, The Jump Artist, was heralded as “a remarkable work” by Harper’s Magazine and named one of ten promising debuts of 2009 by Publishers Weekly. His work has appeared in The New York Times Magazine and has been honored with the Missouri Review Editors’ Prize in Fiction. He attended the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Before turning to writing he received his M.D. from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and he is co-author of the textbook Concepts in Medical Physiology, which is used at Harvard Medical School and elsewhere.
Julie Metz is the author of the memoir PERFECTION, a Memoir of Betrayal and Renewal. She is a writer, graphic designer, and artist. Her freelance essays have appeared in publications including The New York Times, Huffington Post, Glamour, Publishers Weekly, and the online story site mrbellersneighborhood. The recipient of a MacDowell Fellowship, where she completed work on her memoir, Julie lives in Brooklyn, New York with her family.
Max Watman is the author of Race Day, which was an editors choice in the New York Times Book Review. He was the horse racing correspondent for the New York Sun and has written for various publications on books, music, food, and drink. He lives in the Hudson Valley with his wife and son. A master storyteller, his current book “Chasing the White Dog, an amateur outlaw’s adventures in moonshine,” was well received in the New York Times Sunday Book Review.
Anna Solomon‘s short stories have been published in literary magazines including The Georgia Review, One Story, Harvard Review, and Shenandoah; her story “Lotto” was awarded a Pushcart Prize. An essay about new motherhood, “The Three-Month Itch,” appeared in the New York Times Magazine. Anna’s debut novel, The Little Bride, is forthcoming in 2011. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and daughter.
Kristen Schultz Dollard lives with her daughter and husband in Manhattan. She has been studying yoga for 15 years and classical ballet for another 15. In 2004, she trained with Yogi Raj Alan Finger. Currently the Digital Director of SELF.com Magazine, she is launching dontwasteyourrace.com, a stubhub for endurance and athletic races and she is developing her next yoga book: CALM MOM: PUTTING THE OM IN MOM. She has launched Women’s Health Magazine, YogaLife Magazine and the websites iyogalife.com, Prevention.com, and Women’s Health.com. Schultz Dollard, a graduate of NYU in journalism and women’s studies, also spent four years at ABC NEWS/Good Morning America where she launched the live audience component in Times Square and wrote live promos for Diane Sawyer and Charlie Gibson.
Laura Vanderkam, New York City-based writer and mother of two, is the author of GRINDHOPPING: BUILD A REWARDING CAREER WITHOUT PAYING YOUR DUES as well as the exciting new book 168 HOURS (promo video for 168 Hours here). She is a member of USA Today’s Board of Contributors, and her work has appeared in Reader’s Digest, Scientific American, Wired, The American, Portfolio and other publications.
Mary Ann Zoellner and Alicia Ybarbo are both Emmy award-winning producers for NBC’s TODAY, the number-one rated morning TV show. “Today’s Moms: Essentials for Surviving Baby’s First Year” was published in 2009 by Harper Collins. They’ve appeared on TODAY, MSNBC, FOX News, WNBC and LXTV as well as in People, Redbook, Cookie, OK! and Parenting Magazine. The book is a humerous and informative collection of first-year-of-parenting anecdotes by the personalities on the Today Show. They’re currently working on their next book together and live in New York with their families.
Abby Sher, 2010 Pen Parentis Fellowship Award Recipient, is a writer and performer, mama, wife, daughter, sister, lover of compost and fine naps. Her memoir, Amen, Amen, Amen: Memoir of a Girl Who Couldn’t Stop Praying was published by Scribner in October, 2009. It got a nod from Oprah and won ELLE Readers’ Prize, Chicago Tribune’s Best of 2009, and Moment Magazine’s Emerging Writers Award.
She lives in Manhattan with her husband, daughter and 4 dogs.
Darin Strauss is the best-selling author of the New York Times’ Notable novels The Real McCoy and More Than It Hurts You and the Los Angeles Times Book of the Year Chang & Eng. Strauss has seen his work translated into fourteen languages, and published in over 20 countries; he has received numerous awards, most recently a Guggenheim Fellowship in Fiction Writing. Also a screenwriter — he has worked with Disney films, Julie Taymor, and, on the screen adaptation of Chang & Eng, Gary Oldman — Darin has written fiction, essays, and criticism for the New York Times, GQ, Esquire, One Story, McSweeney’s, The Washington Post, Salon, and many others.
Jennifer Egan was born in Chicago, raised in San Francisco, studied in England, and backpacked the world. She has published short stories in The New Yorker, Harpers,Granta, McSweeney’s and other magazines. Her first novel, The Invisible Circus was released as a movie starring Cameron Diaz in 2001. Also that year, her second novel, Look at Me, was a National Book Award Finalist. Her third, The Keep, is a highly acclaimed national bestseller. She is the author of the new book, A Visit from the Goon Squad, which has been receiving high praise and is well on its way to outpacing The Keep in sales. Also an award-winning journalist, Egan lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two sons.
Jennifer Belle, bestselling author of Going Down, High Maintenance, Little Stalker, and The Seven Year Bitch.
Marcy Dermansky is the author of Bad Marie and Twins. Bad Marie has been selected as a Barnes and Noble 2010 Discover Great New Writers pick. Her short stories have been published in numerous literary journals, including McSweeneys, The Alaska Quarterly Review, FiveChapters.com and The Indiana Review. A film critic for About.com and a MacDowell fellow, she lives in Astoria, New York, with her husband, writer Jürgen Fauth, and their daughter, Nina.
Pang-Mei Natasha Chang is a Chinese-American memoirist and essayist who writes about identity, relationships, and the intersection of cultures, generations and the sexes. Pang-Mei wrote about China’s first modern divorcée, her great-aunt, in Bound Feet & Western Dress (Doubleday/Anchor) (www.pmchang.com). Her writings have been included in the New York Times Magazine, New Haven Review, and Saveur. She’s on the board of the literary magazine, the New Haven Review, and has taught writing at Yale and Bard colleges. She lives on the Upper West Side with her two daughters.
Jessica Francis Kane is the author of a collection of stories, Bending Heaven. Her work has appeared in McSweeny’s, Virginia Quarterly Review, the Missouri Review, and the online magazine The Morning News, where she is a contributing writer. Her novel, The Report, published by Graywolf, has been shortlisted for the Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel Prize from the Center for Fiction and is a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers selection.
She lives in New York with her husband and their son and daughter.
Larry Doyle Larry Doyle is an earthling. His first novel, “I Love You, Beth Cooper,” won the 2008 Thurber Award for Humor Writing. His new novel, “Go, Mutants!” has just been released and is supported by an altogether too extravagant website. Doyle was a writer and producer of “The Simpsons” for four years, writes not great movies and is a frequent contributor to the New Yorker. More, mostly reliable information is available at larrydoyle.com.
John Reed is, apparently, not the first John Reed, nor will he be the last. Accept that. His work includes (his latest) TALES OF WOE, SNOWBALL’S CHANCE, and THE WHOLE. According to a recent review on thefastertimes.com, his work is epic, and “our society thirsts for the sins Reed’s stories serve up.” He received an MFA in Creative Writing from Columbia University and currently teaches advanced fiction at New School University. His writing has been published in Open City, Artnet, Artforum, Paper Magazine, New York Press, Brooklyn Rail, Timeout New York, Bomb Magazine, Playboy, Art in America, and Los Angeles Times. He is currently a member of the board directors of the National Book Critics Circle.
Léna Roy was raised in New York City, and worked as a bartender, an actor, and as a therapist with at-risk adolescents before finding her voice as a writer in Young Adult fiction. When not writing and spending time with her family, she is teaching creative writing workshops for kids and teens from 8-18 with Writopia Lab in both NYC and Northern Westchester. Her inspiration and touchstone is her late grandmother, author Madeleine L’Engle, who was able to transform the solitary nature of writing into a sacred sense of community where her art and the art of others could flourish. EDGES is her first novel.
Liz Rosenberg has published award-winning books for young readers, as well as three prize-winning books of poems. She has served as Chair of the National Book Awards for Young People and as a judge for the Los Angeles Times Book Awards in Poetry, and has written a review column for The Boston Globe for the past 15 years. She states clearly that her best source of inspiration as a writer for children is a) having never grown up herself, and b) her son, Eli. She is a professor at the State University of New York at Binghamton. HOME REPAIR is her first novel for adults.
Patricia Henley Is a poet, parent, and novelist. Her novel,Hummingbird House was a finalist for the National Book Award. She has taught for 23 years in the MFA Program at Purdue University.
Thaisa Frank is a parent and two-time Pen Award Winner and Pushcart nominee. Her acclaimed debut novel, HEIDEGGER’S GLASSES, explores the fluid boundaries between the life of the imagination and the facts of recorded history.
Special Guest: Award-winning poet and parent. Recipient of two National Endowment for the Arts Poetry Fellowships, and a Pushcart Prize. Her poems have appeared in Poetry, The American Poetry Review, The Gettysburg Review, The Kenyon Review, and Ploughshares.
Heather Kristin has written about working on Sex and the City, youth culture in Russia, and home-schooling for various publications including Glamour, Slate, St. Petersburg Times, New York Press, and West Side Spirit. Heather’s unpublished novel BROOKLYN TO BOMBAY was a finalist for the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award. An essay she wrote willappear in a Simon and Schuster 2011 anthology, LOVE AND LET LIVE. Recently she was honored by the State of New Jersey General Assembly for her dedication on women’s issues and is thrilled to be returning for her fourth year as a mentor for an at-risk teen at Girls Write Now. Heather is currently writing a memoir and lives in Brooklyn with her husband and baby daughter Daisy.
LOVE AND LET LIVE (anthology), 2011
Lauren Grodstein‘s books include the novels A FRIEND OF THE FAMILY and REPRODUCTION IS THE FLAW OF LOVE and the story collection THE BEST OF ANIMALS. Her pseudonymous Girls Dinner Club was a New York Public Library Book for the Teen Age. Her work has been translated into German, Italian, French, Turkish, and other languages, and her essays and stories have been widely anthologized. Lauren teaches creative writing at Rutgers-Camden, where she helps administer the college’s MFA program. She lives with her husband and son in New Jersey.
A FRIEND OF THE FAMILY, 2010
REPRODUCTION IS THE FLAW OF LOVE, 2005
THE FLAW OF LOVE, 2005
Cathleen Davitt Bell is the author of the young adult books Slipping and Little Blog on the Prairie. She received her undergraduate degree from Barnard College and her MFA in Creative Writing from Columbia University. She has worked as a newspaper reporter, as a salesperson for a multimedia publisher, as a market researcher, and finally as a copywriter. She lives in Brooklyn, New York, with her husband, two children and two dogs named Oscar and Oprah. You can find out more about her and her books at www.cathleendavittbell.com.
Thelma Adams‘ debut novel PLAYDATE was published by St. Martin’s Press in January 2011. She has been the film critic at Us Weekly since 2000, following six years at the New York Post. She has twice chaired the New York Film Critics Circle. She has written for The New York Times Magazine, O: The Oprah Magazine, The Huffington Post, Marie Claire, More, Interview Magazine, The New York Times, The international Herald Tribune, Cosmopolitan and Self. In 1993, she earned an MFA in fiction from Columbia University. She lives in Hyde Park, New York, with her husband, son, daughter, three cats, one spaniel and a flock of wild turkeys.
The Cave Canem Fellow is the Editor of the women’s anthology His Rib: Stories, Poems & Essays by HER and author of several books including her latest book of poems: Swag. Mahogany bridges the gap between lyrical poets and literary emcee. Her freelance journalism can be found in magazines Uptown, KING, XXL, The Source, Canada’s The Word and UK’s MOBO. She facilitates performance poetry and writing workshops throughout the country, focusing on women empowerment and youth mentoring. Mahogany is currently host and curator at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe.
We are honored to be hosting Arthur Phillips for the second time. His first novel, PRAGUE, was named a New York Times Notable Book, and received The Los Angeles Times/Art Seidenbaum Award for best first novel. His second novel, THE EGYPTOLOGIST, was an international bestseller, and was on more than a dozen “Best of 2004” lists. ANGELICA, his third novel, made The Washington Post best fiction of 2007 and led that paper to call him “One of the best writers in America.” THE SONG IS YOU was a New York Times Notable Book, on the Post’s best of 2009 list, and inspired Kirkus to write, “Phillips still looks like the best American novelist to have emerged in the present decade.” His work has been translated into twenty-five languages, and is the source of three films currently in development. His fifth book will be published in April, 2011. He lives in New York with his wife and two sons. THE TRAGEDY OF ARTHUR, 2011
THE SONG IS YOU, 2009
THE EGYPTOLOGIST, 2004
Roy Kesey is the author of the collections All Over (finalist for the Foreword Magazine Book of the Year Award, and one of The L Magazine’s Best Books of the Decade), Nothing in the World, and a historical guide to the city of Nanjing. His debut novel Pacazo has been selected for The Rumpus Book Club and the Newtonville First Editions Club and will be published throughout the Commonwealth by Random House imprint Jonathan Cape. Kesey’s short stories, essays and poems have appeared in more than eighty magazines, including McSweeney’s, Subtropics, Ninth Letter, and The Kenyon Review. Writing awards include two Pushcart Prize Special Mentions and the 2008 Missouri Review Editors’ Prize in Fiction; anthologies include Best American Short Stories, The Robert Olen Butler Prize Anthology, and New Sudden Fiction. He is the recipient of a 2010 prose fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. He currently lives in Peru with his wife and children. www.roykesey.com
ALL OVER, 2007
NOTHING IN THE WORLD, 2006
Whitney Terrell is the author of The Huntsman, a New York Times notable book and The King of Kings County, which was selected as a best book of 2005 by the Christian Science Monitor. He was named one of 20 “writers to watch” by members of the National Book Critics Circle. In 2006 he embedded with the 22nd infantry in Baghdad. He is father to two sons, aged five and 10 months and along with his wife, a professor of French Literature, has no idea what they were thinking when they decided to have children in their late 30s. Or, as the case seems to be now, in their early40’s.
THE KING OF KINGS COUNTY, 2005
THE HUNTSMAN, 2002
Ann Hood is the author of nine novels including the bestsellers, THE RED THREAD, THE KNITTING CIRCLE, and SOMEWHERE OFF THE COAST OF MAINE, a collection of short stories, and two memoirs. Hermost recent memoir, COMFORT: A JOURNEY THROUGH GRIEF, was a New York Times Editor’s Choice and named one of the top ten non-fiction books of 2008 by Entertainment Weekly. She is the step mother of Ariane, a junior at Northwestern University and mother to Sam, 17, and Annabelle, 6. Her five year old daughter Grace died in 2002 of a virulent form of strep. Hood and her family live in Providence, RI.
THE RED THREAD, 2010
CONEY ISLAND DREAMS, 2010
COMFORT: A JOURNEY THROUGH GRIEF, 2009
SOMEWHERE OFF THE COAST OF MAINE, 2008
THE KNITTING CIRCLE, 2008
HOW I SAVED MY FATHER’S LIFE, 2008
AN ORNITHOLOGIST’S GUIDE TO LIFE: STORIES, 2005
Cara Hoffman returns to Pen Parentis with a new book! Back in 2009, she was our first reader ever, and had only a half-finished (but show-stopping) manuscript, a son, and a fantastic life story. Like Dan Chaon and Alexander Chee, Hoffman distills the essence of family into something darkly beautiful and worthy of intimate attention. She has won a New York State Foundation for the Arts Fellowship for her work on violence and adolescents and has worked as an investigative reporter covering New York State’s rural and Rust belt communities, where she wrote about environmental politics and crime. She lives in Manhattan with her son and works as a writing tutor at the Lower Eastside Girls Club.
SO MUCH PRETTY, 2010
Marina Budhos grew up in Queens, NY, in Parkway Village, a community built for U.N. families, and a haven for international, mixed, and American families during the ferment ofcivil rights and social change. She is married and has two young sons. Her most recent work includes TELL US WE’RE HOME (2010), ASK ME NO QUESTIONS (2007), and REMIX: CONVERSATIONS WITH IMMIGRANT TEENAGERS, all written for young adults. She explains her cross-over from writing for adults into an author of young adult fiction, by pairing the concept with her interest in both fiction and nonfiction. At the core of her creative process exists the action that all writers do: “[we] cross over into territory both familiar and unknown.” To Budhos, crossing-over is the best way to create and to connect with readers.
HOW SUGAR CHANGED THE WORLD, 2010
TELL US WE’RE HOME, 2010
ASK ME NO QUESTIONS, 2007
REMIX: CONVERSATIONS WITH IMMIGRANT TEENAGERS, 1999/2007
THE PROFESSOR OF LIGHT, 2000
HOUSE OF WAITING, 1995
SEXUAL HARRASSMENT: RESEARCH & RESOURCES, 1995
FATHER’S TALE, 1989
Sarah Gardner Borden holds an MFA from the Warren Wilson Program for Writers. Her fiction and non-fiction have appeared in a variety of journals, including Open City, Willow Springs, the Chicago Reader, Other Voices, Literary Mama, and The New Haven Review. Mother of two daughters, she lives in Brooklyn most of the time. She is the author of Games to Play After Dark, published by Vintage Books in May 2011
Rebecca Wolff is the author of three books of poems, including most recently The King, (W. W. Norton, 2009), and a new novel, The Beginners, (Riverhead, June 2011). She is the founding editor of Fence, a biannual literary journal, and of Fence Books, and of The Constant Critic, an online site for poetry criticism. A graduate of the Iowa Writers Workshop, she is now a fellow at the New York State Writers Institute at the University at Albany. She lives with her family in Athens, New York.
AND PRESENTING FRANK HABERLE, THE 2011 PEN PARENTIS WRITING FELLOW!
John Langan has been called “an emerging master of the elegant macabre” (Locus Magazine). He is the author of a novel, House of Windows (Night Shade 2009), and story collection, Mr. Gaunt and Other Uneasy Encounters (Prime 2008). His stories have appeared in The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, and in anthologies including The Living Dead (Night Shade 2008) and Poe (Solaris 2009). New stories are forthcoming in Supernatural Noir (Dark Horse 2011), Ghosts by Gaslight (Harper Collins 2011), and Blood and Other Cravings (TOR 2011). He teaches Creative Writing at SUNY New Paltz, and lives nearby with his wife, son, a dog, three cats, and whatever else his son brings home.
Matt Costello’s best-selling and award-wining work has always strived to mesh game play, technology and story. He is the writer and creator of groundbreaking projects for TV, Online, novels, nonfiction books, PC and console games in both the US and UK. His game work includes “The 7th Guest” (over 3 million copies sold), its sequel “The 11th Hour,” and “Doom 3.” For television, he has created and written projects for Disney, PBS, BBC and others. His books include prize-winning mysteries and thrillers including his latest VACATION.
Elissa Schappell is the author of the novel USE ME, and co-editor with Jenny Offill of the anthologies The Friend Who Got Away and Money Changes Everything. She is a contributing editor of Vanity Fair, co-founder of Tin House magazine where she is currently Editor-at-Large, and a frequent contributor to the New York Times Book Review. Her long awaited collection BLUEPRINTS FOR BUILDING BETTER GIRLS was just published in September.
Greg Olear is The Nervous Breakdown’s senior editor and the author of the novels Totally Killer and Fathermucker. A speaker at the 2011 Quais du Polar literary festival in Lyon, France, he teaches fiction writing at Manhattanville College. He lives with his family in New Paltz, N.Y.
John Burnham Schwartz is the author of the acclaimed novels Bicycle Days, Reservation Road, Claire Marvel and The Commoner, which was made into a motion picture based on his screenplay. His writing has appeared in many publications, including The New York Times and The New Yorker, and his books have been translated into over two dozen languages. He has taught at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, Harvard University, and Sarah Lawrence College, and he is currently the Literary Director of the Sun Valley Writers’ Conference. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife, screenwriter and food writer Aleksandra Crapanzano, and their son, Garrick.
Helen Schulman is the author of the novels This Beautiful Life, A Day At The Beach, P.S., The Revisionist and Out Of Time, and the short story collection Not A Free Show. P.S. was also made into a feature film starring Laura Linney and was written by Helen Schulman & Dylan Kidd. She co-edited, along with Jill Bialosky, the anthology Wanting A Child. Her fiction and non-fiction have appeared in such places as Vanity Fair, Time, Vogue, GQ, The New York Times Book Review and The Paris Review. She is presently the Fiction Coordinator at The Writing Program at The New School where she is a tenured Associate Professor.
Simon Van Booy grew up in rural Wales. He is the author of The Secret Lives of People in Love and Love Begins in Winter, which won the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award. He is the editor of three philosophy books, titled Why We Fight, Why We Need Love, and Why Our Decisions Don’t Matter, and his essays have appeared in the New York Times, The Daily Telegraph, The Guardian, and on NPR. He lives in New York City with his family, where he teaches at the School of Visual Arts and is involved in the Rutgers Early College Humanities program for young adults living in underserved communities. A finalist for the Vilcek Prize for Creative Promise, his work has been translated into thirteen languages. His debut novel, EVERYTHING BEAUTIFUL BEGAN AFTER was released in July 2011 from Harper Perennial.
Born in 1950, poet Marie Howe received her MFA from Columbia University in 1983. Her debut volume, The Good Thief, was selected by Margaret Atwood as winner of the 1987 Open Competition of the National Poetry Series. Since then, she has published two more collections, What the Living Do (1998) and The Kingdom of the Ordinary (2008). She also co-edited the anthology In the Company of My Solitude: American Writing from the AIDS Pandemic.
Her awards include a fellowship at the Bunting Institute, as well as a Guggenheim Fellowship and a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship. She has served on the faculty of several schools, including Tufts University and Dartmouth College. She currently teaches at Sarah Lawrence, New York University, and Columbia University in New York City, where she lives with her daughter.
Brooklyn Poet Laureate, Tina Chang is the author of the poetry collections Half-Lit Houses and Of Gods & Strangers and co-editor of the anthology Language for a New Century: Contemporary Poetry from the Middle East, Asia and Beyond. Her poems have appeared in American Poet, McSweeney’s, Ploughshares, and The New York Times among others.
Anthologized in Identity Lessons, Poetry Nation, Asian American Literature, Asian American Poetry: The Next Generation, From the Fishouse: An Anthology of Poems and in Poetry 30: Poets in Their Thirties, she has received awards from the Academy of American Poets, the Barbara Deming Memorial Fund, the Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation, the New York Foundation for the Arts, Poets & Writers, the Van Lier Foundation among others. The mother of two, she currently teaches poetry at Sarah Lawrence College.
Joanna Smith Rakoff is the author of the novel A Fortunate Age, which won the Goldberg Prize for Jewish Fiction by Emerging Writers, was a New York Times Editors’ Pick, a winner of the Elle Readers’ Prize, a selection of Barnes and Noble’s First Look Book Club, an IndieNext pick, and a San Francisco Chronicle bestseller. As a journalist and critic, she’s written for The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Washington Post Book World, the Boston Globe, Vogue, Time Out New York, O:The Oprah Magazine, and many other newspapers and magazines. Her poetry has appeared in The Paris Review, Western Humanities Review, Kenyon Review, and other journals. She has degrees from Columbia University, University College, London, and Oberlin College. This is her second appearance at Pen Parentis.
Evan Smith Rakoff‘s poems have appeared in the Paris Review, Ploughshares, Green Mountains Review, and elsewhere; a native of North Carolina, he has been a fellow at the Millay Colony, Ragdale, Yaddo, and the MacDowell Colony. Evan and Joanna live on the Lower East Side of Manhattan with their two children.
with Martin MacKinnon
Martin MacKinnon was raised in the Island of Skye off the northwest coast of Scotland where he spent most of his schoolyears pestering girls with silly notes and rhymes. He now resides in Queens with his wife Kim and her 6 year old son Kal who refers to Martin as Bonus-dad.
Amelia Kahaney’s short stories have appeared in Best American Non-Required Reading, One Story, Crazyhorse, and other publications. She has recently ghostwritten three bestselling young adult novels, but her next book will have her name on its cover. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and son.
Austin Ratner returns to the Pen Parentis stage to teach us the value of persistence. His first novel, The Jump Artist, is the 2011 winner of the Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature. It was praised as “a remarkable work” by Harper’s Magazine and featured in Publishers Weekly in 2009 as one of ten promising debuts.
His work has appeared in The New York Times Magazine and has been honored with the Missouri Review Editors’ Prize in Fiction. He attended the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Before turning his focus to writing he received his M.D. from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and he is co-author of the textbook Concepts in Medical Physiology.
He grew up in Cleveland, Ohio and now lives in Brooklyn, New York with his wife and two sons.
Stephen Stark is the author of the recently published novel The Final Appearance of America’s Favorite Girl Next Door, which was a USA Today Indie Top 10 pick. His other novels are Second Son and The Outskirts. Second Son was a New York Times Book Review Notable Book of the Year, and a Barnes & Noble Discover New Writers pick. He is also a bestselling ghostwriter. His essays, short stories, and criticism have appeared in The New Yorker, Poets & Writers, The Washington Post and the New York Times Book Review, among other journals.
Honors include fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and Bread Loaf, where he has also taught. He has taught and worked in the administration of the creative writing program at the University of Houston.
Stark currently lives in Virginia and is a graduate of George Mason University and the writing program at Hollins University. He raised three daughters while writing his third novel, which (perhaps not so coincidentally) is written from the female perspective. He also has a teenaged son with whom he bounces ideas for his next novel–about a man who meets his alternate-universe self.
Eleanor Henderson was born in Greece, grew up in Florida, and attended Middlebury College and the University of Virginia, where she received her MFA in 2005. Her stories and essays have appeared in Agni, North American Review, Virginia Quarterly Review, Ninth Letter, Poets & Writers, The Wall Street Journal, and on NPR. Her story “The Farms” was selected by Alice Sebold for The Best American Short Stories 2009, and Ecco published her first novel, Ten Thousand Saints, in June 2011. An assistant professor at Ithaca College, she lives in Ithaca, New York, with her husband Aaron, three-year-old son Nico, and new baby Henry.
Myfanwy Collins was born in Montreal, Canada, grew up in the Adirondack Mountains of New York State, and now lives on the North Shore of Massachusetts with her husband and son. Her work has been published in The Kenyon Review, AGNI, Cream City Review, QuickFiction, and Potomac Review. Her debut novel, Echolocation, is forthcoming from Engine Books in March 2012. A collection of her short fiction, I AM HOLDING YOUR HAND, is forthcoming from PANK Little Books in August 2012. She and her husband, Allen, have been married for nine years and have one son, Henry, who is 4, and a geriatric dog who is almost 14. Learn more about Myfanwy at her author site.
Suzzy Roche is a singer, songwriter, author, and founding member of the singing group The Roches. She has recorded over fifteen albums, written music for TV and Film, and toured extensively for thirty years all across the U.S. and Europe. Suzzy has been an associate member of The Wooster Group; the experimental theater company based in New York City, and performed with them off and on for years throughout Europe. Her children’s book HOW TO BE IN A BAND will be published in January 2013. WAYWARD SAINTS is her first novel.
Ann Napolitano is the author of the novels A Good Hard Look and Within Arm’s Reach. A Good Hard Look was published in July 2011, and was an Indie Next Pick, an Okra Pick and spent several weeks on the Southern independent bestseller list. Her nonfiction has been published in Poets & Writers and The Millions. She received her MFA from New York University, and lives in New York City with her husband and two sons.
Deborah Copaken Kogan is the author of Shutterbabe, the bestselling memoir of her years as war photographer; the novel Between Here and April, an Elle Reader’s Prize finalist; and Hell is Other Parents, a book of humorous essays. Her work has appeared in the New Yorker, the New York Times, O: The Oprah Magazine, Paris Match, Newsweek, Time, Elle, Géo, L’Express, and PHOTO, and on ABC News, Dateline NBC, and CNN. She lives in New York with her husband and three children. This is her second appearance at Pen Parentis.
Tara Altebrando is the author of several novels for adults (writing under her maiden name McCarthy) and teenagers, including, most recently, Dreamland Social Club (Dutton Books), named by Kirkus Reviews as one of the Best Books for Teens of 2011. A graduate of Harvard University who has also worked as a music journalist and copywriter, Tara lives in Astoria, Queens, with her husband and two daughters—four-year-old Ellie and one-year-old Violet.
Anna Solomon’s fiction has appeared in One Story, The Georgia Review, Harvard Review and elsewhere. Her stories have twice been awarded the Pushcart Prize, have won The Missouri Review Editor’s Prize, and have been nominated for a National Magazine Award. Her essays have been published in The New York Times Magazine, Slate’s Double X, and Kveller.
Anna holds an MFA from the Iowa Writers Workshop and has taught writing at the Sackett Street Writers Workshop and Manhattanville College. She lives in Providence, Rhode Island with her husband and daughter. We are pleased to welcome her back for her second appearance at Pen Parentis.
Christine Schutt is the author of two short story collections, Nightwork and A Day, a Night, Another Day, Summer. Her first novel, Florida, was a National Book Award finalist; her second novel, All Souls, a finalist for the 2009 Pulitzer Prize. A third novel, Prosperous Friends, is forthcoming from Grove/Atlantic in fall of 2012. She has published fiction in such magazines as Harper’s, The Alaska Quarterly Review, and The Kenyon Review.
Among other honors, Schutt has twice won the O.Henry Short Story Prize, as well as Pushcart and Mississippi Review fiction prizes. She is the recipient of NYFA and Guggenheim Fellowships. Schutt is a senior editor of NOON, a literary annual, and lives and teaches in New York.
AND AN EXCITING ADDITION TO THE PROGRAM: acoustic guitarist Ben Lahring will again provide live music!
Josh Rolnick’s debut collection, “Pulp and Paper,” won the 2011 John Simmons Short Fiction Award. His short stories have also won the Arts & Letters Fiction Prize and the Florida Review Editor’s Choice Prize. They have been published in Harvard Review, Western Humanities Review, Bellingham Review, and Gulf Coast, and have been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and Best New American Voices. Josh holds an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, and an MA in Writing from The Johns Hopkins University. He is working on a novel. He lives with his wife and three sons, dividing his time between Akron, Ohio, and Brooklyn, New York.
Theodore Hamm is the founding editor of The Brooklyn Rail and director of the Journalism and New Media Studies program at St. Joseph’s College-NY. His books include Pieces of a Decade, and The New Blue Media. He lives in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, with his wife Toni and their toddler son Ellis.
John Reed, author of the novels, A Still Small Voice, The Whole, the SPD bestseller, Snowball’s Chance, All The World’s A Grave: A New Play By William Shakespeare, and Tales of Woe, he holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Columbia University. His publications include Paper Magazine, Popmatters, the New York Press, Timeout New York, Artforum, Bomb Magazine, Playboy, the Wall Street Journal. He is a current member of the board of directors of the National Book Critics Circle. He lives with his wife and two young children in Hell’s Kitchen. (photo by: Dustin Luke Nelson) www.johnreed.org
René Steinke is the author of the novel, Holy Skirts, which was a finalist for the 2005 National Book Award, a finalist for the Virginia Book Award, and listed among the Best Books of 2005 by the Chicago Tribune and the Washington Post. The novel has been translated into Italian and Spanish. She is also the author of the novel, The Fires. Her writing has appeared in the New York Times, Vogue, Bookforum, TriQuarterly, and elsewhere. She teaches writing at Fairleigh Dickinson University, and she lives in Brooklyn with her seven-year-old son.
Julia Fierro is the Founder and Director of The Sackett Street Writers’ Workshop, which, in the last ten years, she has grown from eight writers in a cramped kitchen to a creative home for over 1400 short-story writers, novelists, memoirists and essayists. Julia is a graduate of The Iowa Writers’ Workshop, where she was a Teaching-Writing Fellow. She has taught Literature and Creative Writing in the Honors Program at Hofstra University and at the University of Iowa. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two small children, and is busy absorbing material for her novel-in-progress on contemporary Brooklyn parenting.
Lewis Gross, holistic dentist, a member of Community Board 1, founder and president of Manhattan’s Downtown Little League, and self-described ‘Mayor of Tribeca’ migrates seasonally between the coasts of Tribeca and Montauk with his wife and two sons. He has written one book Montauk Tango: From the Ashes of 9/11 to the Frying Pan of a Hampton’s Restaurant to local acclaim. In between tango lessons and dentistry, he finds time to work on his second book, The Amalgamist – the Da Vinci Code of Dentistry, a medical mystery exposing the mercury cover-up in dentistry.
Lucille Lang Day author of the memoir Married at Fourteen: a true story, has published creative nonfiction in numerous journals. She is the recipient of the Willow Review Award in Creative Nonfiction and a Notable Essay citation in Best American Essays. She is also the author eight poetry collections and a book for children. Her first poetry collection, Self-Portrait with Hand Microscope, received the Joseph Henry Jackson Award.
She received her M.A. in English and M.F.A. in creative writing at San Francisco State University, and her M.A. in zoology and Ph.D. in science and mathematics education at the University of California at Berkeley. The founder and director of a small press, Scarlet Tanager Books, she also served for 17 years as the director of the Hall of Health, an interactive children’s museum in Berkeley. Mother of two grown daughters and grandmother of four, Lucy currently baby-sits often and lives in Oakland with her husband, writer Richard Michael Levine. For more info, please visit her website.
Karl Taro Greenfeld is the author of the novel TRIBURBIA, as well as five nonfiction books: BOY ALONE (about his autistic brother, Noah), SPEED TRIBES, STANDARD DEVIATIONS, and CHINA SYNDROME. A long time writer and editor for The Nation, Time and Sports Illustrated China. He currently lives in TriBeCa with his wife, Silka, and their two daughters, Esmee and Lola.
Amy Sohn’s newest novel, MOTHERLAND, was published by Simon & Schuster on August 14, 2012. She is the New York Times bestselling author of RUN CATCH KISS, and MY OLD MAN. She has been a columnist for New York Magazine and has written for The Nation, Harper’s Bazaar, The New York Times, and Playboy. She lives with her husband and daughter in Brooklyn. PROSPECT PARK WEST, the prequel to MOTHERLAND, was published in 2009 to critical acclaim. This is her second appearance at Pen Parentis; like the moms in her most recent books, she lives in Brooklyn.
Joshua Henkin returns to Pen Parentis as the author of the novels MATRIMONY, a New York Times Notable Book, and SWIMMING ACROSS THE HUDSON, a Los Angeles Times Notable Book. His new novel, THE WORLD WITHOUT YOU, was recently published by Pantheon. His short stories have been published widely, cited for distinction in BEST AMERICAN SHORT STORIES, and broadcast on NPR’s “Selected Shorts.” He lives in Brooklyn, NY, and directs the MFA program in Fiction Writing at Brooklyn College.
Robin Black began writing seriously at the age of thirty-nine after being at home with her three kids for nearly fifteen years. She took an MFA at Warren Wilson College. Her collection, IF I LOVED YOU, I WOULD TELL YOU THIS was published in seven countries. The collection was also a finalist for the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Prize, a Summer Reading pick in O. Magazine, and the recipient of many other mentions and awards. Currently, Robin is the Distinguished Visiting Writer at Bryn Mawr College and is at work at her first novel.
David Ebenbach has a PhD in Psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and an MFA in Writing from the Vermont College of Fine Arts. He has been awarded the Drue Heinz Literature Prize; fellowships to the MacDowell Colony, the Virginia Center for Creative Arts, and the Vermont Studio Center; and an Individual Excellence Award from the Ohio Arts Council. David currently teaches at Georgetown University and very happily lives in Washington, D.C.
with his wife and son, both of whom are a marvel and an inspiration.
Gae Poliser is a writer of young adult and women’s fiction. Her debut YA novel THE PULL OF GRAVITY is on shelves now. When she’s not writing she is hanging with her two great boys or swimming. She swims a lot. In her spare time she is a lawyer.
Patricia Dunn’s debut novel, REBELS BY ACCIDENT tells the story of a troubled teen sent to Cairo who finds revolution is everywhere, including in ourselves. She has an MFA in creative writing from Sarah Lawrence College where she also teaches. She has traveled throughout the Middle East, and lived in Jordan and Egypt before settling back down in New York where she lives with her teenage son and her toddler dog.
Gae Poliser is a writer of young adult and women’s fiction. Her debut YA novel THE PULL OF GRAVITY is on shelves now. When she’s not writing she is hanging with her two great boys or swimming. She swims a lot. In her spare time she is a lawyer.
Patricia Dunn’s debut novel, REBELS BY ACCIDENT tells the story of a troubled teen sent to Cairo who finds revolution is everywhere, including in ourselves. She has an MFA in creative writing from Sarah Lawrence College where she also teaches. She has traveled throughout the Middle East, and lived in Jordan and Egypt before settling back down in New York where she lives with her teenage son and her toddler dog.
Thaddeus Rutkowski grew up in central Pennsylvania and is a graduate of Cornell University and The Johns Hopkins University. He is the author of the innovative novels Haywire,Tetched, and Roughhouse. He teaches literature at Medgar Evers College in Brooklyn and fiction writing at the Writer’s Voice of the West Side YMCA in Manhattan. He was awarded a 2012 fellowship in fiction writing from the New York Foundation for the Arts. He lives with his wife, Randi Hoffman, and their daughter, Shay, in Manhattan.
Emily Raboteau is the author of a novel, The Professor’s Daughter, and the newly-published book Searching for Zion, about which Dave Eggers has written, “I doubt there will be a more important work of nonfiction this year.” She teaches creative writing at City College, in Harlem, and lives uptown with her husband, the novelist Victor LaValle, and their toddler, Geronimo. She is presently eight months pregnant with their second child.
Her stories and essays have been widely published and anthologized in places such as The Believer, The Guardian, The Oxford American, Guernica, The Huffington Post, Best American Nonrequired Reading and Best American Short Stories.
Raboteau’s awards include a Pushcart Prize, a literature fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Chicago Tribune’s Nelson Algren Award. A consummate world-traveler, she recently visited Antarctica to research her upcoming novel, Endurance.
Sean Ferrell’s fiction has appeared in journals such as Electric Literature’s “The Outlet” and The Adirondack Review. His short story “Building an Elephant” won The Fulton Prize. His debut novel “Numb” was published by Harper Perennial in 2010, and “Man in the Empty Suit,” was published in 2012 by Soho Press. Sean has lived for almost sixteen years in Brooklyn, and he’s been a dad to an amazing boy for almost 8 of those years.
Victor LaValle is the author of the short story collection Slapboxing with Jesus, three novels, The Ecstatic, Big Machine, and The Devil in Silver, and a novella, Lucretia and the Kroons. He has been the recipient of numerous awards including a Whiting Writers’ Award, a United States Artists Ford Fellowship, a Guggenheim Fellowship and the key to Southeast Queens. He was raised in Queens, New York. He now lives in Washington Heights with his wife (Emily Raboteau) and son and impending daughter. He teaches at Columbia University. He can be kind of hard to reach, so show up to his readings. He will be happy to see you.
L. Annette Binder was born in Germany and grew up in Colorado Springs. Her fiction has recently appeared or is forthcoming in One Story, American Short Fiction, The Southern Review, Third Coast, Fairy Tale Review, and others. Her story “Nephilim” will be included in The Pushcart Prize XXXVI. She has an AB from Harvard in Classics, an MA from Berkeley, and a JD from Harvard Law School and an MFA in Fiction from the University of California, Irvine.
David Ebenbach has a PhD in Psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and an MFA in Writing from the Vermont College of Fine Arts. He has been awarded the Drue Heinz Literature Prize; fellowships to the MacDowell Colony, the Virginia Center for Creative Arts, and the Vermont Studio Center; and an Individual Excellence Award from the Ohio Arts Council. David currently teaches at Georgetown University and very happily lives in Washington, D.C. with his wife and son. We are delighted to be able to reschedule him after Hurricane Sandy caused us to postpone his initially scheduled appearance.
Austin Ratner’s first novel THE JUMP ARTIST was winner of 2011 Sami Rohr Prize for excellence in Jewish Literature ($100,000 prize) It was praised as “a remarkable work” by Harper’s Magazine and featured in Publishers Weekly in 2009 as one of ten promising debuts. His work has appeared in The New York Times Magazine and has been honored with the Missouri Review Editors’ Prize in Fiction. He attended the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop. Before turning his focus to writing he received his M.D. from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and he is co-author of the textbook Concepts in Medical Physiology. He grew up in Cleveland, Ohio and now lives in Brooklyn, New York with his wife and two sons. This is his third appearance at our Salon.
Sarah Gerkensmeyer‘s short story collection, What You Are Now Enjoying, was selected by Stewart O’Nan as winner of the 2012 Autumn House Press Fiction Prize. A Pushcart Prize nominee and a finalist for the Katherine Anne Porter Prize in Short Fiction and the Italo Calvino Prize for Fabulist Fiction, Sarah has received scholarships to the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, Ragdale, Grub Street, and the Vermont Studio Center. Her stories have appeared in Guernica, The New Guard Literary Review, The Massachusetts Review, Hayden’s Ferry Review, and Cream City Review, among others. Sarah, a mother of two little ones, is the 2012-13 Pen Parentis Fellow. She received her MFA in fiction from Cornell University and now teaches creative writing at State University of New York at Fredonia.
Kelly Link is the author of three collections, Pretty Monsters, Magic for Beginners and Stranger Things Happen. She was born in Miami, Florida, and once won a free trip around the world by answering the question “Why do you want to go around the world?” (“Because you can’t go through it.”) Link lives in Northampton, Massachusetts, where she and her husband, Gavin J. Grant, run Small Beer Press. They have a three-year-old daughter, Ursula.
Leigh Newman returns to the Pen Parentis Salon as deputy editor of Oprah.com, where she writes about books and life and editor-at-large for the indie press Black Balloon Publishing. Premiered while still in manuscript format at one of the earliest Pen Parentis events, her hilarious memoir about her Alaskan childhood, Still Points North, is forthcoming from Dial in 2013. Her essays and short stories have appeared a variety of magazines and newspapers, including One Story, Tin House, Fiction, the New York Times, Modern Love. She believes in making her own popcorn, embarrassing her kids by writing I LOVE YOU in red frosting on their lunch sandwiches, and owning dogs that are just way too big to fit in the bed. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband, two boys and many, many light sabers. Her work can be found at leigh-newman.com Read more of her work.
Anne Korkeakivi is the author of An Unexpected Guest, about which Kirkus Reviews said, in a starred review, “A beautifully modulated first novel… a knowing comedy of manners, a politically charged thriller and a genuinely moving study of the human heart.” Her short fiction has been published by The Atlantic, The Yale Review, The Bellevue Literary Review, and Consequence magazine, among others, and in 2011 she was made a Hawthornden Fellow. Her nonfiction has appeared in many publications in the US and UK. More about her writing, etc., can be found on her website. A native New Yorker, she is married to a human rights lawyer with the UN, whose current posting is in Geneva, Switzerland. They have two daughters.
Helen Phillips is the author of the novel-in-fables And Yet They Were Happy and the children’s adventure novel Here Where the Sunbeams Are Green. She is the recipient of a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writer’s Award and her work has been featured on NPR’s Selected Shorts. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband, artist Adam Douglas Thompson, and their baby daughter Ruth, born in June 2012.
Jennifer Cody Epstein is the author of The Gods of Heavenly Punishment and the international bestseller The Painter from Shanghai. She has written for The Wall Street Journal, The Asian Wall Street Journal, Self, Mademoiselle and NBC, and has worked in Hong Kong, Japan and Bangkok, Thailand. She lives in Brooklyn, NY with her husband, two daughters and an especially needy Springer Spaniel.
Joanna Hershon is the author of four novels: Swimming, The Outside of August, The German Bride and A Dual Inheritance. Her writing has been included in the literary anthologies Brooklyn Was Mine and Freud’s Blind Spot, short-listed for the 2007 O. Henry Prize Stories, and has appeared in (among other places) The New York Times, One Story, Five Chapters and The Virginia Quarterly Review. She is an adjunct assistant professor at Columbia University and lives in Brooklyn with her husband, the painter Derek Buckner, and their twin sons.
Amy Shearn is the author of the novels The Mermaid of Brooklyn and How Far Is The Ocean From Here. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in The New York Times, Real Simple, Martha Stewart Living, Poets & Writers, and The Millions, and she regularly writes for Oprah.com and the Huffington Post. She received her MFA in creative writing from the University of Minnesota, and has taught writing for NYU, Sackett Street Writers Workshops, and Gotham Writers Workshops. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband, two children, and a lazy mutt named Quimby the Mouse.
Liz Rosenberg is the author of four books of poetry, more than twenty award-winning books for young readers, and two adult novels including, most recently, THE LAWS OF GRAVITY, a best-selling novel here and in the UK about the ways in which family pulls together and tears itself apart. Her work has won an IRA Children’s Choice Award, the Center for the Book Prize, The Patterson Prize, The Agnes Starrett Prize, an Atlantic First Award and 2014 Fulbright. She is the mother of a 25 year old son, Eli, who has performed as a magician for Pen Parentis in the past, and 10 year old daughter Lily, adopted from China, who will probably do magic in the future. Liz often writes about family, and frequently teaches a class called “Telling the Family Story.”
Will Allison is the author of two novels, the New York Times bestseller Long Drive Home (2011) and What You Have Left (2007), a San Francisco Chronicle Notable Book and Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers pick. A contributing editor for One Story, he has also served as the executive editor of Story and editor at large of Zoetrope: All-Story. He lives outside New York City with his wife and 11-year-old daughter in South Orange, New Jersey.
John Jodzio’s stories have appeared in One Story, Barrelhouse, The Tampa Review, and numerous other places in print and online. He’s the author of two short story collections, “If You Lived Here You’d Already Be Home” (Replacement Press) and “Get In If You Want To Live” (Paper Darts Press). He lives in Minneapolis with his wife Kate and his two-year old son, Theo. Find out more at www.johnjodzio.net
Ben Greenman is an editor and writer at the New Yorker and the author of several acclaimed books of fiction, including Superbad, Please Step Back, and What He’s Poised To Do. His most recent books are The Slippage, a novel, and Mo’ Meta Blues, co-written with Questlove. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife and two sons.
Jessica Francis Kane’s first novel, The Report, was a Barnes & Noble “Discover Great New Writers” selection and a finalist for the Center for Fiction’s 2010 Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel Prize, the Indie Booksellers’ Choice Award, and the Grub Street Book Prize for Fiction. A story collection, This Close, was published in March 2013 and longlisted for the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Prize. She is a contributing writer for The Morning News and lives with her husband, daughter and son in New York City.
Danielle Lazarin’s fiction has been published by Five Chapters, Boston Review, and Michigan Quarterly Review. Her story “Spider Legs” won first prize in Glimmer Train‘s Family Matters competition and is forthcoming in Glimmer Train in 2013. A graduate of Oberlin College’s creative writing program, she received her MFA from the University of Michigan. She is a three-time recipient of an individual artist grant from The Northern Manhattan Arts Alliance. She lives in her native New York, where she is raising her daughters and working on a novel and a collection of short stories.
Reservations are strongly recommended for this event, click “read more” for details
Aleksandra Crapanzano is a screenwriter and food journalist. She was awarded the M. F. K. Fisher Award for Distinguished Writing from the James Beard Foundation for her work in Gourmet; she has written for The New York Times Magazine, Food and Wine, Saveur, Travel & Leisure and Marie Claire and she has a dessert column in The Wall Street Journal. She is currently writing a feature film on the life of Alinea chef Grant Achatz and she has a film on John Ruskin in pre-production in the U.K.
Edward Lewine writes regularly for the New York Times, Smart Money, Salon, Glamour, Premiere, Stuff, Arena, Detroit News, Newark Star-Ledger, the Art Newspaper, and Golf & Travel. He is the author of Death and the Sun and lives in Brooklyn with his family.
Caroline M. Grant is co-editor, with Lisa Catherine Harper, of The Cassoulet Saved Our Marriage: True Tales of Food, Family, and How We Learn to Eat (Roost Books, 2013). She is also Editor-in-Chief of Literary Mama, named one of Writer’s Digest’s Best Websites for Writers, and the Associate Director of the Sustainable Arts Foundation. She co-edited the anthology Mama, PhD: Women Write about Motherhood and Academic Life and has published many essays. She grew up in suburban New York, eating only produce grown in the backyard and now, with her two young sons, raises what vegetables she can in San Francisco. She blogs regularly about food and books at her website, carolinemgrant.com
John Donohue The cartoonist and writer John Donohue, an editor at the New Yorker, has been passionate about food all his life. He is the editor of Man with a Pan: Culinary Adventures of Fathers Who Cook for Their Families. John lives in Brooklyn with his wife and two daughters and blogs about the writing he does for his family at www.stayatstovedad.com
This December the elegant ANDAZ Wall Street opens its doors with holiday cheer to authors and fans alike – expect live music and lots of camaraderie, and perhaps a few surprises!
Daphne Uviller is the author of the novels Hotel No Tell and Super in the City, which are currently optioned for television, and is the co-editor of the anthology Only Child: Writers on the Singular Joys and Solitary Sorrows of Growing Up Solo. She is a former Books and Poetry editor at Time Out New York, and her reviews, profiles, and articles have been published in The Washington Post, The New York Times, Newsday, The Forward, New York Magazine, Oxygen, Allure, and Self, for which she wrote an ethics column.
Gabriel Roth was born and raised in London and educated at Brown University and at San Francisco State University, from which he received a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing. For several years he was employed as a reporter and editor at the San Francisco Bay Guardian. He now works as a writer and software developer and lives with his family in Brooklyn, New York. The Unknowns is his first novel.
We are delighted to present live music by Wilson Montuori – a guitarist who bills his style as “very eclectic.” He holds a BFA in music from City College of New York, where he won the prestigious “Sidney Zolot Award,” given each year to a graduating music major who has demonstrated excellence as a performer. He has toured worldwide with Livio Guardi; they recorded two CDs, the latest titled, Diomedee, a collection of songs and instrumentals inspired by the Mediterranean Sea. He records extensively for 2soul Music Incorporation, plays lead guitar in the folk-rock band of Irish singer-songwriter Allen Gogarty, in the Italian musical group “I giullari di piazzi”, and with famous remo percussionist Alessandra Belloni. He also teaches at the nonprofit music school Church Street School for Music and Arts in Tribeca.
Pen Parentis welcomes the New Year with an intimate and lively evening of poetry and conversation, featuring five acclaimed poets: James Arthur, Timothy Donnelly, Miranda Field, Lynn Melnick, and KC Trommer. Each author will read from their work and then talk about their writing and parenting lives in an informal roundtable. With this many poets on the stage, you can expect an animated, sharp, and witty discussion covering a wide variety of topics! It’s sure to be fun and thought-provoking, and we hope that you will join us.
January’s Salon takes place on Tuesday, January 14th at the elegant Hotel Andaz at 75 Wall Street, which graciously provides happy hour specials on beer on wine. The night kicks off at 7:00 pm, and admission is free. RSVP is recommended, but not required—the Pen Parentis Literary Salon is open to adults over the age of 21. The authors’ books are available for purchase from The Park Slope Community Bookstore.
January 14th’s Literary Salon features:
James Arthur’s poems have appeared in The New Yorker, The New Republic, Poetry, Ploughshares, and The American Poetry Review. He has received the Amy Lowell Traveling Poetry Scholarship, a Wallace Stegner Fellowship, a Hodder Fellowship at Princeton, a Discovery/The Nation Prize, and a residency at the Amy Clampitt House. His first book, Charms Against Lightning, was published by Copper Canyon Press in 2012 as a Lannan Literary Selection. He teaches in the Writing Seminars at Johns Hopkins University, and lives in Baltimore with his wife and son.
Timothy Donnelly is the author of Twenty-seven Props for a Production of Eine Lebenszeit (Grove, 2003) and The Cloud Corporation (Wave, 2010; Picador, 2011), winner of the 2012 Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award. With John Ashbery and Geoffrey G. O’Brien he is the co-author of Three Poets published by Minus A Press late last year. His poems have appeared such magazines as A Public Space, Fence, Harper’s, Harvard Review, The Iowa Review, The Nation, The New Republic, and The Paris Review, among others. He is a recipient of The Paris Review’s Bernard F. Conners Prize and fellowships from the New York State Writers Institute and the Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. He is the poetry editor of Boston Review and teaches in the Writing Program at Columbia University’s School of the Arts. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife and two daughters.
Miranda Field is the author of Swallow (Houghton-Mifflin). Her work appears in various journals and several anthologies, including Legitimate Dangers: American Poets of the New Century (Sarabande), and Not For Mothers Only (Fence Books). She has received a Katherine Bakeless Nason Literary Publication Award, a Discovery/The Nation Award, a Pushcart Prize, and a Teaching Fellowship at Bread Loaf Writers Conference. Born and raised in North London, UK, she lives in Manhattan with her husband, poet Tom Thompson, and their two sons—the younger of whom calls her “my robot that makes crepes.”
Lynn Melnick is the author of If I Should Say I Have Hope (YesYes Books, 2012). Her poetry has appeared in BOMB, The Brooklyn Rail, Guernica, Gulf Coast, jubilat, The New Republic, The Paris Review, A Public Space, and elsewhere. Her fiction has appeared in Opium and Forklift, Ohio, and she has written essays and book reviews for Boston Review, Coldfront, LA Review of Books, Poetry Daily, and VIDAweb, among others. She grew up in Los Angeles and currently lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two daughters.
A graduate of the MFA program at The University of Michigan, KC Trommer has been the recipient of an Academy of American Poets Prize and has been awarded fellowships from the Table 4 Writers Foundation, the Center for Book Arts, the Vermont Studio Center, the Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, and the Prague Summer Program. Her poems have appeared in AGNI, The Antioch Review, Coconut, MARGIE, Octopus, The Sycamore Review, Poetry East and a number of other journals. She is currently seeking a publisher for her first collection of poems and is at work on her second collection. A chapbook of her poems, The Hasp Tongue, is forthcoming from dancing girl press in 2014. She lives in Jackson Heights, Queens with her family.
On February 11th, we are delighted to welcome three writers from the acclaimed literary journal Tin House: Cari Luna (The Revolution of Every Day), Elissa Schappell (Blueprints for Building Better Girls, contributing editor at Vanity Fair and editor-at-large at Tin House), and Matthew Specktor (American Dream Machine, optioned for television by Showtime).
Cari Luna received an MFA in fiction from Brooklyn College. Her debut novel, The Revolution of Every Day, was named one of the Top 10 Northwest Books of 2013 by The Oregonian. Her work has appeared in Salon, failbetter, Avery Anthology, PANK, and Novembre Magazine. New York-born, she now lives in Portland, OR.
Elissa Schappell is the author of two books of fiction, most recently Blueprints for Building Better Girls, which was chosen as one of the “Best Books of the Year” by The San Francisco Chronicle, The Boston Globe, The Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, and O Magazine, and Use Me, runner up for the PEN Hemingway award, a New York Times “Notable Book” and a Los Angeles Times, “Best Book of the Year” She is co-editor with Jenny Offill of two anthologies, The Friend Who Got Away and Money Changes Everything. Her fiction, non-fiction and essays have appeared in publications including, The Paris Review, Bomb, The New York Times Book Review, and SPIN, as well as anthologies such as, The Mrs. Dalloway Reader, The Bitch in the House, Lit Riffs and Cooking & Stealing. Currently, she is a Contributing Editor at Vanity Fair, and a Founding-editor, now Editor-at-Large of Tin House magazine. She teaches in the MFA program at Columbia University and the low-residency MFA program at Queens, in Charlotte, N.C. and lives with her family in Brooklyn. This is her second appearance at Pen Parentis.
Matthew Specktor is the author of the novels American Dream Machine and That Summertime Sound, as well as a nonfiction book of film criticism. His writing has appeared or is forthcoming in The Paris Review, The Believer, Tin House, and other publications. He is a founding editor of The Los Angeles Review of Books. (photo credit: Lisa Jane Persky)
Pen Parentis is excited to welcome three acclaimed authors for a night of lively conversation about parenting, writing, and the passions that feed their spirits: Ann Hood, author of the novel The Obituary Writer and editor of the anthology Knitting Yarns, will discuss her love of knitting; novelist Rick Moody, author of On Celestial Music, will talk about his music writing and making, and journalist Max Watman, author of the forthcoming Harvest, will share his love for good food.
Rick Moody is the author of five novels, including THE ICE STORM which was made into a successful movie, three collections of stories, a memoir, and, most recently a volume of essays entitled On Celestial Music. Since 2009 he has written on music at The Rumpus. He teaches at New York University and Yale. (photo by Thatcher Keats)
Pen Parentis is thrilled to announce an evening of writers on the verge, featuring three rising literary stars – acclaimed short story author and New York Fellow for the Arts Sara Lippmann, prolific Chicago writer Ben Tanzer, author of the novel Orphans and the essay collection Lost in Space, and Caeli Wolfson Widger, whose debut novel Real Happy Family comes out in March. As a special treat, Julia Fierro, director of The Sackett Street Writers’ Workshops and author of the forthcoming novel Cutting Teeth, will co-host.
Ben Tanzer is the author of the books My Father’s House, You Can Make Him Like You, So Different Now and the forthcoming Orphans and Lost in Space, among others. He also oversees day to day operations of This Zine Will Change Your Life, directs Publicity and Content Strategy for Curbside Splendor, and can be found online at This Blog Will Change Your Life, the center of his growing lifestyle empire.
Caeli Wolfson Widger’s work has appeared in such publications as the New York Times Magazine, Another Chicago Magazine, and the Madison Review, as well as on NPR and CBS Radio. She earned her MFA from the University of Montana and has taught creative writing at the Sackett Street Writers’ Workshop, University College
London, and Johns Hopkins University. Real Happy Family is her first novel. A Florida native, Caeli now lives with her husband and three children in Santa Monica, CA.
Special Guest Host:
Julia Fierro’s debut novel, Cutting Teeth, will be published by St. Martin’s Press in May 2014. A graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, where she was a Teaching-Writing Fellow, her writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Guernica, The Millions, Poets & Writers Magazine, Flavorwire, and other publications. She has been profiled in The L Magazine, Brooklyn Magazine, The Observer, and The Economist. In 2002, she founded The Sackett Street Writers’ Workshop, a creative home for over 2000 writers. She lives on the Brooklyn waterfront with her husband and two children.
The eleventh consecutive Pen Parentis Literary Salon season comes to a close with an evening of reading and discussion featuring four acclaimed novelists: Miranda Beverly-Whittemore, author of The Effects of Light and Bittersweet, which publishes the day of the salon, Andre Dubus III, author of the bestsellers House of Sand and Fog and The Garden of Lost Days, and Dirty Love, Andre Aciman whose distinguished list of publications includes the excellent novel Harvard Square and the award-winning memoi,r Out of Egypt, and Alexi Zentner, author of Touch and the forthcoming The Lobster Kings. Each author will read from their work and then participate in an informal, salon-style roundtable about their writing and parenting lives. It’s sure to be an insightful, lively evening, and we hope that you will join us.
May 13th’s Literary Salon features:
Miranda Beverly-Whittemore is the author of Bittersweet (Crown, 2014); Set Me Free (Warner Books, 2007), which won the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize for the best book of fiction by an American woman published that year, and The Effects of Light (Warner Books, 2005). Her short story Pertussis won the Crazyhorse Fiction Prize. Camera Obscura (2010), the short film adaptation of The Effects of Light, which she co-wrote and co-produced, starred Mary Lynn Rajskub. She lives and works in Brooklyn.
Andre Dubus III is the author of six books, including The New York Times bestsellers House of Sand and Fog, The Garden of Last Days, and his memoir, Townie. Mr. Dubus has been a finalist for the National Book Award, and has been awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship, The National Magazine Award for Fiction, two Pushcart Prizes, and is a 2012 recipient of an American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature. He teaches full-time at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, and he lives north of Boston with his wife, Fontaine, a modern dancer, and their three children. His latest book, Dirty Love, was published in the fall of 2013.
Alexi Zentner is the author of the novels, Touch, and The Lobster Kings. He has been shortlisted for The 2011 Governor General’s Literary Award, The Center for Fiction’s 2011 Flahery-Dunnan First Novel Prize, the 2012 VCU Cabell First Novelist Award, and the 2011 Amazon.caFirst Novel Award, and longlisted for the 2011 Scotiabank Giller Prize, and the 2013 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award. His short fiction has appeared in The Atlantic, Tin House, Glimmer Train, Narrative, and many other magazines, and he is the winner of both the O. Henry Prize and the Narrative Prize, and has been shortlisted for the Best American Short Stories and the Pushcart Prize. Alexi is an Assistant Professor at Binghamton University and a member of the faculty in the Sierra Nevada College low-residency MFA program. Before becoming a writer, Alexi was a stay-at-home-dad. He lives in Ithaca, NY with his wife and two daughters. www.alexizentner.com
and the exciting addition of André Aciman who was born in Alexandria, Egypt, and is an American memoirist, essayist, novelist, and scholar of seventeenth-century literature. His work has appeared in the New Yorker, the New York Review of Books, the New York Times, the New Republic, Condé Nast Traveler, the Paris Review, and Granta, as well as in many volumes of The Best American Essays. Aciman received his Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from Harvard University and is chair and distinguished professor of Comparative Literature at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. He is the author of the Whiting Award–winning memoir Out of Egypt (1995) and of three novels, Harvard Square (2013), Eight White Nights (2010), and Call Me by Your Name (2007), for which he won the Lambda Literary Award for Men’s Fiction (2008). He is also the author of two essays collections,False Papers (2001) and Alibis (2011).
The reading takes place on Tuesday, May 13th at the elegant Hotel Andaz at 75 Wall Street, which graciously provides happy hour specials on beer on wine. The night kicks off at 7:00 pm, and admission is free. RSVP is recommended, but not required—the Pen Parentis Literary Salon is open to adults over the age of 21. The authors’ books are available for purchase from The Park Slope Community Bookstore.
Transportation info: Take the 2/3/4/5/J/M to Wall Street. The Salon takes place in the soaring lobby of the Andaz Hotel, at 75 Wall Street.
SAVE THE DATE:
Our 12th season kicks off on September 9th, 2014 with David Gilbert (&Sons), Julia Fierro (Cutting Teeth), and Mira Jacob (The Sleepwalker’s Guide to Dancing), and will also include the presentation of the 2014-2015 Pen Parentis Writing Fellow.
The Pen Parentis Literary Salon is thrilled to announce our first event outside of New York City: a night of readings and discussion at Head House Books in historic downtown Philadelphia, featuring Stephanie Feldman, author of the debut novel The Angel of Losses, Brian Gresko, editor of the anthology When I First Held: 22 Critically Acclaimed Writers Talk About the Triumphs, Challenges, and Transformative Experience of Fatherhood, and Marco Roth, author of the memoir The Scientists: A Family Romance and a founding co-editor of the magazine n+1. Each author will read from their work and then participate in an informal, salon-style roundtable about their writing and parenting lives. It’s sure to be an insightful, lively evening, and we hope that you will join us.
The reading takes place on Thursday, June 19th at the independently owned and operated Head House Books at 619 South 2nd Street. Event begins at 7:30pm. Free.
Stephanie Feldman grew up in Philadelphia and studied writing at the University of Pennsylvania and Barnard College. She lives in the greater Philadelphia area with her husband and daughter. The Angel of Losses (Ecco, July 2014) is her first novel.
Brian Gresko is the editor of When I First Held You: 22 Critically Acclaimed Writers Talk About the Triumphs, Challenges, and Transformative Experience of Fatherhood (Berkley Books, 2014). His work has appeared in Poets & Writers Magazine, The Brooklyn Rail, Glimmer Train Stories, and online at Salon, TheAtlantic.com, the Los Angeles Review of Books, and many other sites. He grew up just outside of Philadelphia, and now lives in Brooklyn with his wife and son.
Marco Roth is the author of The Scientists: A Family Romance (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2012) and a founding co-editor of the magazine n+1. He lives in Philadelphia with his daughter.
Mark your calendars!! We proudly launch our twelfth season on Tuesday, September 9th, with an extraordinary line-up of popular authors, including two debut novelists that are all the buzz in the industry: Julia Fierro and Mira Jacobs. They will share the stage with David Gilbert whose newest novel, & Sons, was highly acclaimed by the New York Times, New Yorker and on NPR. Each author will read from their work and then talk about their writing and parenting lives in an informal roundtable. Jess deCourcy Hinds, the 2014-2015 Pen Parentis Writing Fellow, will also present her winning short story and accept her award.
The readings take place on Tuesday, September 9th at the elegant Hotel Andaz at 75 Wall Street, which graciously provides happy hour specials on beer on wine. The night kicks off at 7:00 pm, and admission is free with no bar minimums. RSVP is recommended, but not required—the Pen Parentis Literary Salon is open to adults over the age of 21.
The authors’ books will be available for purchase from The Park Slope Community Bookstore.
Mira Jacob is the founder of the very popular Pete’s Reading Series in Brooklyn and earned her MFA from the New School for Social Research. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband, film-maker Jed Rothstein, and their son. The Sleepwalker’s Guide to Dancing is her first novel. (Photo credit: In Kim.)
DAVID GILBERT is the author of Remote Feed, The Normals and his current New York Times and New Yorker – acclaimed novel, & Sons. His stories have appeared in The New Yorker, Harper’s, GQ, and Bomb. He lives in New York with his wife and three children. (Photo credit: Susie Gilbert)
Julia Fierro has been profiled in The L Magazine, Brooklyn Magazine, The Observer, and The Economist. A graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, where she was a Teaching-Writing Fellow, her writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Guernica, The Millions, Poets & Writers, and Flavorwire. In 2002, she founded The Sackett Street Writers’ Workshop, a creative home for over 2000 writers. She lives on the Brooklyn waterfront with her husband and two children. This is her third appearance at Pen Parentis, her second as a reader. Cutting Teeth is her first novel.
The Pen Parentis Literary Salon welcomes four celebrated authors whose brilliance knows no bounds. These writers range across genre, from fiction to memoir, poetry, and theater. Featuring Nick Flynn, author of, most recently, The Replacements, and Another Bullshit Night in Suck City; Elizabeth Kadetsky, author of the memoir First There Is a Mountain, Darin Strauss, author of Chang & Eng and the National Book Critics Circle Award winning memoir Half a Life; and Rachel Zucker, author of MOTHERs and The Pedestrians. Each author will read from their work and then participate in an informal, salon-style roundtable about their writing and parenting lives. It’s sure to be an insightful, lively evening, and we hope that you will join us.
Nick Flynn’s most recent book, The Reenactments, completes a trilogy begun with Another Bullshit Night in Suck City. His previous book, The Captain Asks for a Show of Hands, was a collection of poems linked to the second book of the trilogy, The Ticking is the Bomb. Another Bullshit Night in Suck City won the PEN/Martha Albrand Award, was shortlisted for France’s Prix Femina, has been translated into fifteen languages, and was adapted into the film Being Flynn, starring Robert De Niro, Julianne Moore, and Paul Dano. His work has appeared in The New Yorker, the Paris Review, NPR’s This American Life, and The New York Times Book Review, among others. He is a professor in the creative writing program at the University of Houston, and spends the rest of his year in or near Brooklyn. (Photo credit: Geordi Wood)
Elizabeth Kadetsky is author of a memoir (First There Is a Mountain, Little Brown), a story collection (The Poison that Purifies You, C&R Press) and, forthcoming, a novella (On the Island at the Center of the Center of the World, Nouvella Books). Her fiction has been included in the Pushcart Prizes, Best New American Voices, and the Best American Short Stories notable citations, and her personal essays have appeared in the New York Times, Antioch Review, and elsewhere. She is assistant professor of creative writing at Penn State, has a child, and can be found at www.elizabethkadetsky.com
A recipient of the Guggenheim Fellowship and a winner of the American Library Association’s Alix Award and The National Book Critics Circle Award, the internationally-bestselling writer Darin Strauss is the author of the novels Chang & Eng, The Real McCoy, and More Than It Hurts You, and the NBCC-winning memoir Half a Life. These have been New York Times Notable Books, Newsweek, Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Amazon, Chicago Tribune, and NPR Best Books of the Year, among others. Darin has been translated into fourteen languages and published in nineteen countries, and he is a Clinical Associate Professor at NYU’s creative writing program. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife and two sons.
Rachel Zucker is the author of nine books, most recently, a memoir, MOTHERs, and a double collection of prose and poetry, The Pedestrians. Her book Museum of Accidents was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. She received a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in 2013. Zucker teaches poetry at New York University. She is the mother of a lovely boy (pictured in an NYC subway).
The readings take place on Tuesday, October 14th at the elegant Hotel Andaz at 75 Wall Street, in a private room on the Lower Level. The night kicks off at 7:00 pm, and admission is free. RSVP is highly recommended — the Pen Parentis Literary Salon is open to adults over the age of 21. The authors’ books will be available for purchase from The Park Slope Community Bookstore for signings.
Transportation info: Take the 2/3/4/5/J/M to Wall Street.
Tuesday, November 11th: Risqué Writing with Paula Bomer, Vica Miller, Jonathan Papernick, and Amy Sohn.
We feature only authors who are parents – and one of the unique questions parents who write must ask themselves is “how do I write a sex scene knowing that my kids might read this?” Our November Salon will discuss these and other touchy subjects with these four brave authors — whose excellent books sizzle with risqué scenes. Join us on Veteran’s Day at the Andaz Wall Street, Lower Level at 7pm, Tuesday, November 11th.
Paula Bomer is the author of the collection, Inside Madeleine, the novel Nine Months, which received exuberant reviews in The Atlantic, Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, The Minneapolis Star Tribune and elsewhere. Her collection, Baby and Other Stories, received a starred review in Publishers Weekly, calling it a “lacerating take on marriage and motherhood…not one to share with the Mommy and Me group”, Kirkus Review deemed it “a worthy, if challenging, entry into the genre of transgressional fiction”, and O Magazine referred to it as a “brilliant, brutally raw debut.” She also is the publisher of Sententia Books and edits Sententia: The Literary Journal.
Jonathan Papernick is the author the story collections There Is No Other and The Ascent of Eli Israel. His work has appeared in Night Train, Exile: The Literary Quarterly, Nerve, Folio, Failbetter, The Drum, Confrontation, The Reading Room and Post Road as well as numerous anthologies. He is currently at work on his third collection of stories Gallery of the Disappeared Men and is revising a novel about a con man who sells the Brooklyn Bridge. He recently released a limited-edition mini-collection of erotic stories entitled XYXX. His novel The Book of Stone will be published by Fig Tree Books in 2015. He is Senior Writer-in-Residence at Emerson College in Boston.
Vica Miller is a native of St. Petersburg (Russia) and a New Yorker for over two decades. She is the author of the debut novel, Inga’s Zigzags, and the founder of the Vica Miller Literary Salons, a chamber reading series held at select NYC art galleries, featuring both published and unpublished authors. She has written for Vogue Russia,Internet, Matador and Tennis Week. Her short stories have appeared in The Jet Fuel Review, Asymptote, The Linnet’s Wings and Thrice Fiction literary journals. She has also published a book of poems, and is currently at work on her second novel, The Shadow of a Blue Doll.
Amy Sohn is the author of the novels The Actress, Motherland, Prospect Park West, My Old Man, and Run Catch Kiss. She has written for The New York Times, Slate, Details, Harper’s Bazaar, and many other publications, and penned columns for The New York Press and The New York Post. She was a contributing editor to New York Magazine for six years, where she wrote the columns “The Naked City,” “Mating,” and “Breeding.” She has written screenplays and television pilots, and also co-created, wrote, and starred in one of the first shows on the Oxygen network, Avenue Amy. This is her second appearance at Pen Parentis. (Photo credit for Amy: Piotr Redlinski)
Join us in celebration of the holiday season with a mingling soirée, wine compliments of the Hotel Andaz Wall Street, and four prolific authors at varying points in their parenting lives and writing careers. Featuring Marie Myung-Ok Lee, author of the novel Somebody’s Daughter, Yona Zeldis McDonough, author, most recently, of the novel You Were Meant For Me, Bushra Rehman, author of the novel Corona and co-editor of the anthology Colonize This! Young Women of Color on Today’s Feminism, and Raina Wallens, young adult novelist who has written for a variety of online publications, including The Huffington Post. Each author will read from her new work and then participate in an informal, salon-style roundtable discussion about work and life. It’s sure to be an insightful, lively evening, and we hope that you will join us.
The reading takes place on Tuesday, December 9th at the elegant Hotel Andaz at 75 Wall Street. The night kicks off at 7:00 pm, and admission is free. RSVP is recommended, but not required—the Pen Parentis Literary Salon is open to adults over the age of 21. The authors’ books are available for purchase from The Park Slope Community Bookstore.
Marie Myung-Ok Lee is the author of the novel Somebody’s Daughter. Her next novel is forthcoming with Simon & Schuster and has been excerpted in Five Chapters and The KGB Bar Lit Journal. Marie’s essays, many about parenting a child with special needs, have appeared in The New York Times, Slate, The Guardian, The Nation, The Atlantic, and Salon. She was the first recipient of a creative writing Fulbright Fellowship to South Korea and has won the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts fiction fellowship and the Richard Margolis award for social justice reporting. She has been a judge for the National Book Awards and teaches creative writing at Columbia University, where she is the Our Word Writer-in-Residence. She is a founder and the former board president of the Asian American Writers Workshop in New York City.
Yona Zeldis McDonough was raised in Brooklyn, NY and educated at Vassar College and Columbia University. She is the award winning author of six novels for adults and 23 books for children and her essays, articles and short fiction have appeared in a number of literary and national publications. She has also edited two essay collections and is the fiction editor of Lilith Magazine. She lives in Park Slope, Brooklyn with her husband and their two children.
Bushra Rehman’s first novel Corona, a dark comedy about being South Asian in the United States, was included in Poets & Writers Best Debut Fiction issue of 2013, was a LAMBDA finalist for 2014, and featured in the LA Review of Books among a new wave of radical South Asian American Literature. Rehman co-edited the anthology Colonize This! Young Women of Color on Today’s Feminism, included in Ms. Magazine’s 100 Best Non-Fiction Books of All Time.
Raina Wallens is the author of seven young adult books, published under pseudonyms. Her writing has appeared in The Huffington Post, The Rumpus, and Ozy.com, amongst others. A mother of one and stepmother of two, Raina splits her time between New York and New Jersey.
As seen in the New Yorker, NY Times, Time Out NY and Four Seasons Magazine
January 13th’s WINTER POETRY Salon features readings by five notable poets — Diana Whitney, Adam Penna, Sarah Gutowski, Jared Harel, and Jennifer Michael Hecht — followed by discussion on the balance of active family life and creative career moderated by novelists M. M. De Voe (founder of Pen Parentis, Ltd) and Christina Chiu (2015 Pen Parentis curator). Please RSVP to this event.
Diana Whitney’s first collection of poetry, Wanting It, was released in August 2014 by Harbor Mountain Press. She graduated from Dartmouth College and Oxford University, where she was a Rhodes Scholar, and attended the Warren Wilson College MFA Program for Writers. Diana’s essays and poems have appeared in many publications, including The Boston Globe, The Washington Post, Numero Cinq, Dartmouth Alumni Magazine, and the Crab Orchard Review. Her irreverent parenting column, Spilt Milk, was syndicated for four years in several newspapers, garnered a loyal readership, ran as a commentary series on VPR, and is now being collected into a book. Diana lives in Brattleboro, VT with her husband, two daughters (ages 7 and 9), and fourteen chickens. www.diana-whitney.com
Adam Penna is the author of two books of poems, Little Songs & Lyrics to Genji and The Love of a Sleeper. His forthcoming book, Talk of Happiness, will be published by S4N press in late 2015. He has twice been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and has been featured on Verse Daily. He is an associate professor of English at Suffolk County Community College and lives in East Moriches with his love, six cats and two wonderful stepchildren.
Sarah Kain Gutowski is the author of Fabulous Beast: The Sow, a chapbook published by Hyacinth Girl Press, and an Associate Professor of English at Suffolk County Community College. Her work has been published in Stirring: A Literary Collection, Verse Wisconsin Online, Verse Daily, The Gettysburg Review, The Southern Review, Epiphany, The Threepenny Review, and So to Speak: A Feminist Journal. She keeps a record of her writing life, experience in academia, and motherhood at http://mimsyandoutgrabe.
Jared Harel is the author of ‘The Body Double’, a narrative long poem published by Brooklyn Arts Press. His poems have recently appeared in such journals as Tin House, American Poetry Review, The Southern Review and The Threepenny Review. He teaches writing at Nassau Community College, plays drums for the rock band, The Dust Engineers, and lives in Astoria, NY with his wife and two-year old daughter.
Jennifer Michael Hecht is a poet, intellectual historian, and commentator. She has published three books of poetry, most recently Who Said, with Copper Canyon in 2013. Her first book, The Next Ancient World won the Poetry Society of America’s Norma Farber First Book Award, and Publisher’s Weekly called her second poetry book, Funny, “One of the most original and entertaining books of the year.” She has also written award-winning history and philosophy books. She has been a guest on Hardball MSNBC, The Brian Lehrer Show, and On Being, and her work appears in The New Yorker, The New York Times, Poetry, American Poet, Politico, and The Washington Post. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband, NPR puzzle guru John Chaneski, and their son Max, 10, and daughter, Jessie, 8, where they all await further news on Max’s middle school picks.
Andrew Lewis Conn is the critically acclaimed author of the novels O, AFRICA! and P. He has also written essays, short fiction, and reviews on subjects ranging from James Joyce to Martin Scorsese, Bob Dylan to Sherlock Holmes. Conn has been a resident at Yaddo and the Ledig House International Writers’ Colony. He also has participated in the National Arts Club’s writing program to support New York City public schools and PEN Center USA’s Summer Writing Institute Workshop. A Phi Beta Kappa, magna cum laude graduate of Cornell University, Conn currently serves as a member of the Young Professional Committee of the YMCA of Greater New York. Intensely loyal to his native Brooklyn, Conn lives in Park Slope with his wife, daughter, and their twenty-year-old turtle, Marty.
Stephanie Lehmann was born and raised in San Francisco. She reluctantly moved to Manhattan for the graduate program in fiction writing at New York University, where she ended up receiving her MRS degree (got married). She wound up staying in NYC, giving birth to two children, and eventually publishing five novels: Thoughts While Having Sex, Are you in the Mood?, The Art of Undressing, You Could do Better, and Astor Place Vintage. Lehmann has taught writing classes at The Writer’s Voice, Mediabistro, and online at Salon.com, where her essays on sex, daughters and millionaires have been published. www.StephanieLehmann.com www.AstorPlaceVintage.com
Nic Esposito, Chris Tarry, and Cara Hoffman: three fantastic authors who are also parents read from their newest creative works at PERSONAL MONSTERS, the March Pen Parentis Literary Salon. The night begins at 7pm with networking over wine, compliments of Andaz Wall Street. Readings and signings will be followed by Q&A moderated by Pen Parentis founder M. M. De Voe and its new Salons curator, novelist Christina Chiu. Come join the fun! Pen Parentis Literary Salons were founded to celebrate the creative work of writers that are also parents, and are a great place to meet industry notables.
The event takes place on Tuesday, March 10th at the elegant Hotel Andaz at 75 Wall Street. The night kicks off at 7:00 pm, and admission is free. RSVP is recommended, but not required—the Pen Parentis Literary Salon is open to adults over the age of 21. Books will be vended and proceeds go to Community Bookstore in Brooklyn.
CARA HOFFMAN’s critically acclaimed novel Be Safe I Love You was named one of the Five Best Modern War Novels by the London Telegraph, and one of the Ten Best Books of Summer by the USA Today. The New York Times heralded it as “a reminder that art and love are all that can keep us from despair.” Hoffman’s first book So Much Pretty was named the New York Times Book Review’s Best Suspense Novel of 2011. This is her third appearance at Pen Parentis. She has been a visiting writer at St. John’s, Columbia and Oxford Universities. Her essays have appeared in the New York Times, Salon, Marie Claire, and on NPR. Originally from upstate New York, she lives in Manhattan with her partner, the artist Marc Lepson. Her son records music under the name Nervous. (PHOTO CREDIT: Constance Faulk)
CHRIS TARRY is a Canadian writer and musician living in Brooklyn. His work has appeared in The Literary Review, On Spec, Grain, The G.W. Review, PANK, Monkeybicycle, and many other cool places. He holds an MFA in creative writing from the University of British Columbia, is a four-time Juno Award winner (the Canadian Grammy), and one of New York’s most sought-after bass players. His debut story collection How To Carry Bigfoot Home is out March 17, 2015 from Red Hen Press. He is also the father of two great kids, Chloe three, and one-year old Lucas. You can find him at http://christarry.com
After developing urban farm projects throughout Philadelphia, NIC ESPOSITO and his wife Elisa now operate Emerald Street Urban Farm as well as their own homestead populated by their son, Luca, a dog, a cat, and a whole bunch of chickens. He writes about social change, urban farming and sustainability for blogs and magazine and spoke on urban farming at the 2010 TED X conference in Philadelphia. He is the author of novel Seeds of Discent and the essay collection Kensington Homestead. Nic is the founder of The Head & The Hand Press and The Head & The Hand Workshop.
The event takes place on Tuesday, April 14th at the elegant Hotel Andaz at 75 Wall Street. The night kicks off at 7:00 pm, and admission is free. Books will be vended for signings and proceeds go to Community Bookstore in Brooklyn.
PLEASE RSVP THROUGH THIS LINK!
Marly Youmans has been called “the best-kept secret among contemporary American writers” by John Wilson, editor of Books and Culture. Her recent books are: an epic adventure in blank verse, Thaliad (Montreal: Phoenicia Publishing, 2012); several collections of poems, The Foliate Head (UK: Stanza Press, 2012) and The Throne of Psyche (Mercer University Press, 2011); and a novel, A Death at the White Camellia Orphanage (Mercer, 2012 / The Ferrol Sams Award + Silver Award, ForeWord Book of the Year Awards.) She has published with a wide range of houses (FSG, Bard, Harcourt, Penguin/Firebird, LSU, etc.) and won The Michael Shaara Award, a NYFA fellowship, and others. Marly is the mother of two sons and a daughter. Glimmerglass is Marly’s twelfth book. Marly Youmans / The Palace at 2:00 a.m. Photo credit: Rebecca Beatrice Miller.
Lev Grossman is the book critic and lead technology writer for Time magazine and a widely published cultural critic. He is also the author of the bestselling novels The Magicians and The Magician King. His most recent novel The Magician’s Land debuted at #1 on the New York Times bestseller list. A graduate of Harvard and Yale, he lives in Brooklyn with his wife and three children. You can learn more about Lev Grossman on his website www.levgrossman.com and follow him on Twitter @leverus.
KELLY LINK is the author of the collections Get in Trouble, Stranger Things Happen, Magic for Beginners, and Pretty Monsters. She and Gavin J. Grant have co-edited a number of anthologies, including multiple volumes of The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror and, for young adults, Monstrous Affections and Steampunk! She is the co-founder of Small Beer Press. Her short stories have been published in The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, A Public Space, Tin House, One Story, Conjunctions, The Best American Short Stories, and Prize Stories: The O. Henry Awards. She has received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. Link was born in Miami, Florida. She currently lives with her husband and daughter in Northampton, Massachusetts.
John Langan’s new collection of stories, Sefira and Other Betrayals, is forthcoming from Hippocampus Press in early 2016. He is the author of two previous collections, The Wide, Carnivorous Sky and Other Monstrous Geographies and Mr. Gaunt and Other Uneasy Encounters, as well as a novel, House of Windows. With Paul Tremblay, he co-edited Creatures: Thirty Years of Monsters. He has new stories forthcoming in publications including Lois Gresh’s Innsmouth Nightmares, Christopher Golden’s Seize the Night, Ellen Datlow’s The Monstrous, and Paul Guran’s The Mammoth Book of Cthulhu. He is one of the founders of the Shirley Jackson Awards, for which he was a judge during its first three years. He lives in upstate NY with his wife, younger son, an assortment of animals, and whatever his son fishes out of local lakes and streams. His website: https://johnpaullangan.wordpress.com/ This is his second appearance at Pen Parentis.
Veronica Schanoes is a scholar, a writer, and a life-long New Yorker. Her fiction has appeared in Queen Victoria’s Book of Spells, Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet, and Strange Horizons and has been anthologized in Queen Victoria’s Book of Spells and The Doll Collection. Her novella, “Burning Girls,” published on Tor.com, was a finalist for the Nebula award. She is an Associate Professor in the Department of English at Queens College – CUNY. She has an adorable newborn. Visit her blog: http://vschanoes.livejournal.com (photo credit: Ellen Datlow)
Sarah Langan is an American horror author and three-time Bram Stoker Award winner. Holding an MFA from Columbia University, she has written three celebrated horror novels: The Missing, The Keeper, and Audrey’s Door, and multiple award-winning short stories. Langan was also one of the judges for the inaugural Shirley Jackson Award and is currently on the Board of Directors. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two daughters. She and John Langan are not married or related, despite the name thing. Her website is www.sarahlangan.com This is her second appearance at Pen Parentis.