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 online! Chat with our authors, be heard! Participate in discussions with writers in real time.

Readings by small groups of exemplary authors, writers, and poets (all are parents, usually organized by a theme) are followed by lively roundtable discussions moderated by Pen Parentis founder M. M. De Voe and Salons curator Christina Chiu. Come join the fun! You don’t have to be a parent or even a writer to enjoy these events – all lovers of the written word are welcome to join us!

See below for details of location, who is reading next, and to RSVP!

Scroll down past the mailing list signup to view archives of photos and livecasts from past Salons


UPCOMING (mark your calendars!)

JULY 14 – 7pm

Pen Parentis revisits New York Times-acclaimed novelists Gae Polisner, Joanna Hershon and Elizabeth Kadetsky in an interactive summer Livecast celebration of excellent novels by powerful literary women who also happen to have kids.

$10 donation is optional (but please give if you can!)

Reservations open now!

CLICK HERE TO RSVP.

 


HEADS UP! We may very well keep doing salons this summer since they’re all online. Like that? Make sure to join our mailing list below.

LMHQ is an event space run by Downtown Alliance. It is located at 150 Broadway in Lower Manhattan on the 20th floor. Pen Parentis events are partially funded by a ConEd Bright ideas grant.

This season of PEN PARENTIS LITERARY SALONS is made possible in part with public funds from Creative Engagement, supported by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council and administered by LMCC.


BECOME A FRIEND OF THE SALONS – make a donation by clicking here.


 

Sign up to be on our Salons mailing list even if you’re not a writer-parent!


SEASON TWELVE archives:

“Technology!”

June 9: Helen Schulman  Deborah Paradez  and Davon Loeb discussed Technology in a LiveCast from their homes with hosts M. M. De Voe and Christina Chiu. In addition to reading from new work, they discussed writing during quarantine, having kids at home 24/7, staying on creative track, Black Lives Matter, diversity and how it affects them personally, and how writing intermingles with current events. The recording of the livecast is available here.

“Springtime Grand Slam”

May 12:  Gish Jen, Ted O’Connell, and Granville Wyche Burgess joined on a Livecast from a country home in upstate Vermont, a small town in Washington state, and the Deep South to talk baseball, Kafka, renewals, rejuvenations, and other beginnings–including their own! Moderated by M. M. De Voe and Christina Chiu, whose book Beauty, was newly launched that week –Granville told us about his days of being an Emmy nominated screenwriters, and Gish explained where she got the ideas in her novel The Resisters. Ted even plays his guitar! Check out this recording of the livecast.

“Transforming Discouragement into Motivation”

April 14 – our Technology Salon was postponed to June 9th, so Christina Chiu rounded up some good friends of Pen Parentis to talk about a topic dear to the heart of all writers. This star-studded panel, with Sergio Troncoso, Marie Myung-Ok Lee, Charles Salzberg and M. M. De Voe, moderated by Chiu, originally presented on this topic in 2019 at the AWP Writing conference in Portland, OR. Reconvened online during the pandemic, this inspiring talk was recorded live on the date the Salon should have run. Watch the entire roundtable.

“THE BODY”

March 10 – with Kathryn Curto (because of Covid-19 related concerns, David Ebenbach and Caroline Hagood were unable to make it)  — what should have been a full house was instead an intimate roundtable!

To see our photos from the event, click here.

To watch the Livecast recording (from the day before New York City closed its public spaces), click here.

“SHORTS”

February 11: with Richard Peabody and Dawn Raffel (Jose de Pierola was unable to make the event)

Photos from the event, click here!

To watch the Livecast recording, click here.

ANNUAL WINTER POETRY SALON

January 14: “Annual Poetry Salons” with poets Sarah Kain Gutowski, Tim Donnelly, Diane Mehta (canceled due to illness), Len Lawson, and Nancy Hoch.

Check out the photos! 

Watch Livecast Recording. (thanks for recording this, Lisette!)


SEASON ELEVEN archives:

Miss anything??

September 10: “Freedom” with Renee Simms, Virginia Hartman & Jess DeCourcy Hinds   —  

VIEW SLIDESHOW!

October 8: “Alternative Lives” with Amy Edwards, Janice Eidus, and Randon Billings Noble

Watch the livecast recording

November 12: “Small Towns, USA” with Marie Lee, Jimin Han, and Keetje Kuipers

See the photos

Watch the livecast recording

December 10: Annual Author Mingle & Season Closer – “All in the Family,” with Terese Svoboda, Susan Van Sciver, and Huda Al-Marashi

See the photos

Watch the livecast recording