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Odd Words January 9, 2014

Posted by Mark Folse in books, bookstores, Indie Book Shops, memoir, New Orleans, novel, Poetry, publishing, Toulouse Street, Writing.
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This coming week in literary New Orleans:

& Thursday at 5:30 pm the Norman Mayer Library continues its Writing Workshops led by Youths. Upstairs in the teen area. Encouraging creative arts exploration through reading, engaging discussions, and group activities. Youth ages 12-17 are invited! Group limited to 15 participants. Call the branch to reserve your spot: 596-3100

& This Friday through Saturday The Tennessee Williams Festival presents The New Play Bacchanal, a multi-faceted annual play festival that gathers local artists, playwrights, directors, and the theatre community to exchange ideas, to encourage the development of new work, and nurture local playwrights and support New Orleans’ creative community at large. In short, it’s a two-day play extravaganza for professionals and fans alike. Details are at TennesseeWilliams.net

& Thirteen poets will square off for two-rounds of no holds barred poetry and a chance to advance to the 2014 Team SNO finals at the end of January Friday at 8 pm at the Shadowbox Theater hosted by Charlie UptownzIllestson Vaughn Jr. $7 Admission SEMI-FINALS PERFORMERS: A Scribe Called Quess, Kataalyst Alcindor, Aurora, Beck Cooper, Desiree Dallagiacomo, Jim Dulin, Kaycee Filson, FreeQuency, Sam Gordon, Justin Lamb, Akeem Martin, Preach, and William Brian Sain.

& This Friday at 10 pm the literary libertines of The Poetry Brothel present their latest extravaganza. $10 cover; $5 requested donation for tokens. Doors @ 9:00. Show @ 10:00. Fearures include a guest reading by Geoff Munsterman. Our cast of poets includes: Tabitha “Totty” Quym (Aime’ SansSavant), Mam’zelle Cherie Louve (Anne Delatte), Jack Prince (Chris Shipman,) Alejandro Amoretti (Dean Felch), Jerome d’Amourt (Erik Elshire), Pearl du Mal (Izzy Oneiric), Bi Nary (Jenn Nunes), & Francis Shadfly (Jordan Soyka). Also featuring: Burlesque performances by Lana Turnover and Picolla Tushy; Acrobatics by Out on a Limb (Andrew Zutell & Ashley Fransien Brown); Busking by Aurelea River; Tarot card reading by Jenelle Campion; and, Cyanotype & stilting by Philip Ylannopoulos

& Saturday’s Story Time with Miss Maureen at Maple Street at 11:30 am features Madeline and the Old House in Paris by John Bemelmans Marciano, the grandson of Ludwig Bemelmans, creator of the Madeline books.

& Every Sunday at 3 p.m. The Maple Leaf Reading Series, the oldest continuous reading series in the south, founded by Everette Maddox, features guest poets and an open mic.

& Sunday is Slam and Spoken Word Day in New Orleans. WhoDatPoets.com lists five Spoken Word shows on Sunday nights. For phone numbers with more details on all these readings visit WHODATPOETS.COM. (I stopped listing all of the events because one venue’s name forced me to limit this post for readers over 21. Check WHODATEPOETS.COM for all the latest on slam and spoken word in New Orleans.

&  Monday at 4 pm the Main Branch of the New Orleans Public Library hosts a GLBTQ book club conversation for teens and their alli byes! We will provide paper and digital copies of a short story the week before; the subsequent discussion will be guided by the themes and issues explored in the reading.

& Do you think in verse that could become poetry? Do you imagine characters, dialogue, and scenes? If so, join the New Orleans Public Library Smith branch’s free Creative Writing Workshop. Every other Monday, beginning October 7, 5:30 p.m.

& Octavia Books hosts a presentation and signing with New Orleans writer and artist Dalt Wonk featuring his just released THE RIDDLES OF EXISTENCE.. The Riddles of Existence is an oversized deck of fifty cards, each with a full-colored figure wearing a costume. Beneath the illustration, there is a riddle in verse. The costume is the answer, or hint, to the riddle. This is the game. The illustrations and the verse provide great pleasure, above and beyond, the game. There is also a card with the answers to The Riddles of Existence for those who are stumped.

& Monday at 7 pm the East Jefferson Public Library Diction Writers Group hosts guest author David Armand will discuss his novel, Harlow, as well as his first novel, The Puglilist’s Wife. He teaches at Southeastern Louisiana University, Hammand, where he also serves as assistant editor for Louisiana Literature. The Fiction Writers’ Group is a support group for serious writers of fiction. We do not focus on poetry, essays or nonfiction. Events consist of critique sessions from group members, author talks and writing exercises. Free of charge and open to the public. Registration is not required.

& Susan Larson, the former book editor of the former Times-Picayune newspaper and member of the National Book Critics Circle hosts The Reading Life on WWNO (89.9 FM) on Tuesdays at 1:30 p.m. She features interviews with authors of local and national interest.

& Please join Octavia Books Tuesday at 6 pm for a presentation and booksigning with columnist Charles Krauthammer featuring his #1 New York Times Bestseller, THINGS THAT MATTER: Three Decades of Passions, Pastimes and Politics. Tickets are required. Each ticket admits one person and may be exchanged at the event for one signed edition of THINGS THAT MATTER by Charles Krauthammer. Tickets are the price of one book. As space is limited, we strongly recommend that you purchase your ticket now. You may purchased tickets online by clicking here. Or you may tickets by coming to Octavia Books or calling us during store hours at 504-899-READ (7323). You must pay for your tickets at the time you reserve them. Tickets are the price of one book. From America’s most preeminent conservative columnist-a long awaited collection of his essential, timeless writings that goes beyond the world of politics to offer Charles Krauthammer’s penetrating and surprising reflections on everything from psychology, space exploration, medicine, his family, chess, religion and baseball.

& Every Tuesday night get on the list to spit at the longest running spoken word venue in New Orleans at Sweet Lorraine’s Jazz Club hosted by African-American Shakespear. Doors open at 7pm and the Mic pops at 8pm. It is $5 to get in.

& Tuesday at 7 pm the Jefferson Parish Library West Bank Fiction Writers Group meets at the Westwego branch. Writing exercises or discussions of points of fiction and/or critique sessions of members’ submissions. Meets the second Tuesday of every month. Moderator: Gary Bourgeois. Held in the meeting Room.

& The Louisiana Endowment fokr the Humanities hosts a discussion of Nancy Dixon’s new book N.O. Lit: 200 Years of New Orleans Literature featuring a panel Discussion with Editor Nancy Dixon, Contributor Moira Crone, New Orleans Literature Scholar CW Cannon, and Contributor Fatima Shaik at the LEC center on Lafayette Street.

Odd Words June 6, 2013

Posted by Mark Folse in books, bookstores, literature, New Orleans, novel, Odd Words, Poetry, publishing, Toulouse Street.
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& Team Slam New Orleans is hosting and defending their title in the Southern Fried Poetry Slam in venues all over the city, with qualifying rounds and after hours events. Here is the schedule, with more details on their Tumblr.


11 -12pm Community Service: Poetry In Motion Care Bears Children Hospital

10-12am Slam Master’s Meeting (TBD)

10-12pm Youth (Y) & Adult (A) Workshops (New Orleans Public Library-Main Branch)

12-1pm Lunch

6-8pm Round 2: Bout 1 (Café Istanbul, The Cathedral, Byrdie’s, Sweet Lorraine’s)

8-10pm Round 2: Bout 2 (Café Istanbul, The Cathedral, Byrdie’s, Sweet Lorraine’s)


11am-12pm Community Service: Poetry In Motion Care Bears Ochsner Hospital

10-11am Slam Master’s Meeting (TBD)

10-12pm Youth (Y) & Adult (A) Workshops: New Orleans Public Library-Main Branch

12-1pm Lunch

5-6 pm *Black On Black Rhyme Presents The Staccato Slam (Sweet Lorrain’s)

8-10pm Round 3: Bout 1 (Café Istanbul, The Cathedral, Byrdie’s,Sweet Loraine’s)

8-10pm Round 3: Bout 2 (Café Istanbul, The Cathedral, Byrdie’s, Sweet Lorraine’s)

10:30-1am *Slam Masters Slam (Café Istanbul)*

Beauty vs. Brawn (Sweet Loraine’s)*
Inclusive Gauntlet Slam (Venue TBD)*


10-12pm Youth Showcase (New Orleans Public Library)

1-3pm City Tour

7:30-10pm Final Slam (Ashe Cultural Arts Center) & Closing Remarks

10:30pm The After Party (Venue TBD)


10am-12pm Southern Fried Brunch (Trolley Stop)

12-2pm Farewell Open Mic (Venue TBD)

(*) denotes that event is free to the general public. A ticket to all qualifying events is $20 and finals admission is $25 at the door.

& This Thursday at 8 p.m. the Thursday poetry scene moves to a reading at the open art salon at 1501 St. Roch Ave. features Brad Richard, Chris Tonelli and Megan Burns followed by an open mic. Food and Drink, please feel free to bring something. Richard’s Motion Studies won the 2010 Washington Prize from The Word Works. He is also the author of the collection Habitations (Portals Press, New Orleans, 2000) and the limited edition chapbook The Men in the Dark (Lowlands Press, Stuttgart, Germany, 2004). He is a recipient of fellowships from the Surdna Foundation, the Louisiana Division of the Arts, and the National Endowment for the Humanities, and poetry winner in the Poets & Writers’ 2002 Writers Exchange competition, he is chair of creative writing at Lusher Charter High school in New Orleans.c Tonelli is one of the founding editors of Birds, LLC, an independent poetry press. He also founded and curates the So and So Series and edits the So and So Magazine. He is the author of four chapbooks, most recently No Theater (Brave Men Press) and For People Who Like Gravity and Other People (Rope-A-Dope Press), and his first full-length collection is The Trees Around (Birds, LLC). New work can be found in or is forthcoming from jubilat, Fou, La Fovea, and Leveler. He works at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, where he lives with his wife, Allison, and their two kids, Miles and Vera. Burns edits the poetry magazine, Solid Quarter (solidquarter.blogspot.com). She has two books Memorial + Sight Lines (2008) and Sound and Basin (2013) published by Lavender Ink. She has two recent chapbooks: irrational knowledge (Fell Swoop press, 2012) and a city/ bottle boned (Dancing Girl Press, 2012). Her chapbook Dollbaby is forthcoming from Horseless Press. Her 30 Days of Weezy project is annotated over at Rap Genius.

& Thursday at Garden District Book Shop Kent Wascom and The Blood of Heaven is featured at 6 p.m. “The Blood of Heaven is a remarkable portrait of a young man seizing his place in a violent new world, a moving love story, and a vivid tale of ambition and political machinations that brilliantly captures the energy and wildness of a young America where anything was possible. It is a startling debut.”

& Friday at Garden District Book Shop Walter Culpepper presents The Replacement Son at 6 p.m. “From a thriving 19th-century New Orleans to the city’s devastation in Hurricane Katrina and amidst the harsh realities of England during World War II, The Replacement Son takes readers through vividly depicted locales and eras as Harry pursues his existential quest. With motifs ranging from chivalric adventure to metaphysical mystery, author W.S. Culpepper brings a charming but most unlikely hero and an exotic range of supporting characters to life in a compelling story of sacrifice and discovery.”

& Saturday’s Story Time with Miss Maureen is one of my favorites from when my kids were young: “We’ll eat cookies and read If You Give a Mouse a Cookie written by Laura Joffe Numeroff and illustrated by Felicia Bond.” 11:30 a.m. at Maple Street Book Shop uptown.

& Saturday night Chuck Perkins and Voices of the Big Easy will host an show and open mike/poetry slam at 8pm at Cafe Istanbul. In honor of the poets who are in town for Southern Fried we will have a open mic from 10pm until 11pm and the poetry slam will start afterwards.

& Sunday at 3 p.m. at the Maple Leaf Bar is the Maple Leaf Reading Series, the oldest continuous reading series in the south, founded by Everette Maddox. In the back patio, weather permitting. Periodic features and an open mic every Sunday. This Sunday Poets Sarah Beth Wildflower and Sulla (Charles Morgan) perform their work. Followed by open mic.

& The new Sunday show from Spoken Word New Orleans is Poetry and Paint Brushes. This week featuring Asia “Preach” Palmer, Will “Duece” Powell and and J. Mickey McKinney and special guest from St. Louis, MO, Louis Conphicltion. Spoken Word artists perform as a resident artist sketches the performers. Doors at 7 pm. and show at 8 pm. at Special Tea, 4337 Banks Street.

& On the second, fourth, and fifth Sunday of each month, Jenna Mae hosts poets and spoken-word readers at 8:00 p.m. at the Fair Grinds Coffee House on 3133 Ponce de Leon St.

& On Monday June 10th Andy Cohen visits Garden District Book Shop with his book Most Talkative: Stories from the Front Lines of Pop Culture. “From a young age, Andy Cohen knew one thing: He loved television. Not in the way that most kids do, but in an irrepressible, all-consuming, I-want-to-climb-inside-the-tube kind of way. And climb inside he did. Now presiding over Bravo’s reality TV empire, he started out as an overly talkative pop culture obsessive, devoted to Charlie’s Angels and All My Children and to his mother, who received daily letters from Andy at summer camp, usually reminding her to tape the soaps. Dishy, funny, and full of heart, Most Talkative provides a one-of-a-kind glimpse into the world of television, from a fan who grew up watching the screen and is now inside it, both making shows and hosting his own.”

& Monday the Jefferson Parish Library Fiction Writers Group hosts guest author Wanda Ramirez. In Hurricane Tsunamis, Ramirez shares her experiences in Hurricane Betsy as a child and Hurricane Katrina as an adult. After Katrina, she relocated to Memphis with her brother Sam. She works as an administrative assistant with Avon District 1804 of Louisiana. She also is a clarinetist with the Bartlett Community Band and the River City Concert Band of Memphis. She says she hopes to return to Louisiana to be near family and friends. Ramirez is working on another book titled, Born into Two Lands: Between New Orleans and Puerto Rico. The author says she is “privileged to be culturally endowed with two great lands with many similarities as well as unique differences.”

& Susan Larson, the former book editor of the former Times-Picayune newspaper and member of the National Book Critics Circle hosts The Reading Life on WWNO (89.9 FM) on Tuesdays at 1:30 p.m. She features interviews with authors of local and national interest.

& On Wenesday Maple Street Book Shop’s St. Claude Avenue Book Club will be meeting June 12th at 7PM at Fatoush in the Healing Center to discuss Hope Against Hope. The author, Sarah Carr, will be in attendance for the discussion. Please join us! Newcomers are always welcome.

& Also on Wednesday, The Shakespeare Festival at Tulane University kick’s off their 2013 season with a benefit featuring great food, drink and Elizabethan music with your friends. Get an insider’s look at the final dress rehearsal of The Merry Wives of Windsor. Join the auction for a wonderful weekend at the Windsor Court Hotel. Reception begins at 6:45 pm/ Curtain at 7:30 pm. Champagne, Desserts & Auction at 9:30 pm. at the Lupin Theatre at Tulane University. Single Tickets $100
Couple Tickets $180.

& Also on Wednesday Room 220 hosts a special event as part of the New Orleans Loving Festival—Black Rabbits and White Indians: Racially Controversial Children’s Books—at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, June 12, at the Press Street HQ (3718 St. Claude Ave.). NOTE: Unlike most Room 220 events, this one will start (sort of) on time. It will be immediately followed by another Loving Fest literary event in the same location, beginning at 7 p.m.

& The following event at Room 220 is A Poetic Gathering to celebrate Mixedness and the 46th anniversary of Loving Day featuring performances by local poets Travis Duc Tran, Rosana Cruz, Geryll Robinson and Delia Tomino Nakayama. Sponsored by Poets & Writers Inc. The victory of Mildred Jeter and Richard Loving – in the court case of Loving vs. Virginia – not only won them their freedom to love, but it also granted the same freedom to every interracial couple in every state in America.

Odd Words No. 140 September 6, 2012

Posted by Mark Folse in books, bookstores, literature, New Orleans, Odd Words, Poetry, publishing, signings, Toulouse Street.
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Bill Lavender and the New Orleans academic and literary community lost their battle to save the University of New Orleans Press from the governor’s and university president’s budget ax, but Lavender sent out the following announcement this week: “I’ll be reinvigorating my old-micro press, Lavender Ink, with a new imprint, Diálogos, and aggressively continuing to publish work of the caliber we were producing at UNO Press. I may even try offering some private workshops. If you would like to receive updates about Lavender Ink / Diálogos shenanigans (we do hope to have a major launch event before the end of this year), please sign up for the mailing list. I promise I won’t spam you; I’ll just send updates once every couple of months.” One of Lavender Ink’s next titles will be Black Widow Salon host Micheal Zell’s Errata, described as “Italo Calvino meets David Lynch in a neo-noir tale of obsession.”

Against the Day Update/Kindle Update: Page 691 (63%) and and a bit of aggravation to my tennis elbow from holding up the surprisingly light Kindle (blame my bad posture). My thumbs keep wanting to go to the buttons at the bottom instead of the page turners on the side, but that’s electronics habits imposing themselves on the reading of a book. I remember my first reading of Gravity’s Rainbow back in the early 70s, frequently while siting in the back of some unrelated high school class. I would make lists of terms, places and historic figures to look up, and scurry to the library at lunch. I believe the librarian thought me mad and I didn’t want to get into what I was reading as I’m not sure the stern old woman would have approved. Reading something this dense in the age of Google is so much easier. And yes I will end up buying a hard copy from the first independent bookstore to pimp mention Odd Words on their web page.

Susan Larson has assembled a humbling list of book events for the fall for Gambit’s The Book Issue, but you know you’re going to use that issue to start your charcoal or lose the link so don’t forget to check back here weekly.

The Young Leadership Council’s One Book One New Orleans pick for the fall is Ned Sublette’s The World That Made New Orleans: From Spanish Silver to Congo Square
, by Ned Sublette. The onebookoneneworleans.com web site is down but you already own this one, don’t you? Really? Well, all the local indie bookstores are open and you have no excuse not to grab a copy. More details on the YLC’s annual project to get an entire city reading and talking about the same book when they get their website back up.

& so to the listings…

& On Thursday, Sept. 6 17 Poets! launches their Fall season with Poet John Knight and Writer Constance Adler. Knight is the recipient of the Louisiana Literature Award for Poetry, the Langston Hughes Poetry Prize, the Pirates Alley William Faulkner Poetry Award and the Eyster Prize for Poetry. He is a native of Georgia, but now resides in Louisiana. Adler teaches a creative writing workshop and writes a blog, Emily Every Day. Her writing has appeared in Spy Magazine, Utne Reader, Self, Cable Guide, Baltimore Magazine, Philadelphia Magazine, Oxford American, and Gambit, New Orleans’s alternative newsweekly. You can check out the entire fall schedule on the 17 Poets! web page.

& This weekend Sept. 7-9 Worldplay New Orleans hosts its annual Write, Nola! spoken word poetry fest including seminars and performances. Registration and a fee is required. The event concludes with a performance at Cafe Istanbul Sunday, Sept. 9 at 8 p.m. featuring an awards ceremony and performances by local and national artists.

& On Saturday, Sept. 8 at 2 p.m. the Dickens Fellowship of New Orleans will meet at Metairie Park Country Day School’s Bright Library for a discussion of GREAT EXPECTATIONS – Part I, Chapters 1-6.

& A new women-only book club has started up at Fair Grinds Coffee Shop, meeting at 1 p.m. Sundays. The current title (which they began Aug. 12th) is Bell Hooks All About Love. Drop a line to ladiesnight@noboyfriends.org for more information.

& Sunday at 3 p.m. is an open mic at the Maple Leaf Bar Reading Series.

& On Sunday evening at 7 p.m. Spoken Word New Orleans presents Speak Easy Sundays Poetry at the Club Caribbean 2441 Bayou Road. Cover. Visit their website for updates on other spoken words and visiting artists all around town.

& On Monday, Sept. 10 at 7 p.m. the Black Widow Salon sponsored by Black Widow Press starts its fall schedule with its annual Lafcadio Hearn Tribute. Special guest readers include: Priestess Miriam Chimani from the Voodoo Spiritual Temple reading about Marie Laveau and All Saint’s Day, Burlesque doyenne Trixie Minx reading about NOLA glamour, and historian/author/playwright Rob Florence reading from Hearn’s Chita. All ages welcome to bring Hearn books to read. Email books@crescentcitybooks.com for more information.

& Susan Larson, the former book editor of the former Times-Picayune newspaper and member of the National Book Critics Circle hosts The Reading Life on WWNO (89.9 FM) on Tuesdays at 1:30 p.m. repeating Sundays at Noon. She features interviews with authors of local and national interest.

& Next Thursday, Sept. 13th David Lummis celebrates the long-awaited publication of The Last Beacour, Part Two of The Coffee Shop Chronicles of New Orleans at Octavia Books. “Here is a guy who can paint accurately while he suffers—a talented bohemian, in other words. A worthy addition to your growing New Orleans shelf.” —Andrei Codrescu Garden District Books hosts

& Also next Thursday the 13th at 5:30 p.m. Garden District Books features William Barnwell’s Lead Me On, Let Me Stand: A Clergyman’s Story in White and Black, “a moving, passionate memoir of a life of ministry by a dedicated preacher striving to bring together things that tend to pull apart–the church and the world, women and men, old and young, straights and gays, works and faith, the Deep South and the Far North, blacks and whites, a quest for the love described by philosopher-theologian Soren Kierkegaard, “Love is the unity of hostile elements.”

Looking ahead:

& Starting Sept. 25th, the Keller Library and Maple Street Books will sponsor a new, lunch-time book club. The selection for August is Richard Ford’s Canada. The dates for the first four months are: Aug. 28th, Sept. 25th, Oct. 23rd, and Nov. 27th. (I’m pretty sure they didn’t meet on the 28th).

&The 2012 Louisiana Book Festival is Oct. 27 in Baton Rouge. If you want to get into the closer hotels downtown book early, as I ended up way out on I-10 last year desperately trying to reproduce my forgotten business cards at Kinko’s. Odd Words will be there writing up the best of the fest if you can’t make it.


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