Readings | Prose Reading Series & Magazine


Make friends, enjoy a drink and stimulate your creative juices as both established and new writers share selections from their works. Don't be shy. Please do drop on by.


NYC | November 19, 2017

A luminous literary lineup lands at the November 19th Sunday Salon. Like gold in your pocket. (Yes, autumn is a cool, but gracious season.) Join us in welcoming to the mic four fierce, funny, and insightful writers with new books. You won’t want to miss this event. At Von Bar, 3 Bleecker St. 7pm.

Abeer Y. Hoque is a Nigerian born Bangladeshi American writer and photographer. She likes angry feminists, ink on paper, and salt. Her books include a travel photography and poetry monograph (The Long Way Home, 2013), a linked collection of stories, poems, and photographs (The Lovers and the Leavers, 2015), and a memoir (Olive Witch, 2017). See more at

Bud Smith is a graduate of Central Regional High School. Go, Golden Eagles! His books are Work (CCM, 2017) as well as Dust Bunny City (Disorder Press, 2017) among others. He lives in Jersey City, NJ and works heavy construction. 

Joshua Weiner is the author of three books of poetry, most recently The Figure of a Man Being Swallowed by a Fish (all from University of Chicago Press). The recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Whiting Writer’s Award, and the Rome Prize, he teaches at University of Maryland and lives in Washington D.C.

Darcie Wilder (b. 1990) is the Twitter account @333333333433333 and the Instagram account @cumcumcumcumcumcumcumcum. She graduated from from SUNY Purchase Film Conservatory with a BFA in 2012, and wrote across platforms at MTV News. Literally Show Me A Healthy Person (Tyrant Books, 2017) is her second book.

WORD Bookstores will be at the event to sell our authors’ books.

Chicago/November 19, 2017

We’re bringing you one last blast of prose before true winter sets in! Please join us at 7pm at Riverview Tavern, 1958 W Roscoe in Chicago’s Roscoe Village. Here’s our fantastic lineup: GERALD BRENNAN, CRIS MAZZA, ALAN CROSS, CORNELIA SPELMAN. Come early if you want to grab dinner and a good seat.

Gerald Brennan graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point, and earned a Master’s from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism. He’s the founder of Tortoise Books, as well as the author of Resistance, Zero Phase, Public Loneliness, and Island of Clouds. He’s been profiled in Newcity and featured in Hypertext Magazine, and his writing has appeared in the Chicago Tribune, The Good Men Project, and Innerview Magazine. A self-described corporate brat, he grew up all over the eastern half of the continent but calls Chicago home.

Cris Mazza is the author of seventeen books, including Charlatan: New and Selected Stories (Curbside Splendor, October 10, 2017). Her last title, Something Wrong With Her, was a real-time memoir chronicling the 25-year journey to reunite with a boy from her past. She was also co-producer, writer, and lead actress for a feature film, Anorgasmia, a fictional sequel to that memoir, a groundbreaking blend of memoir, documentary and fiction. Mazza has sixteen other titles including her first novel, How to Leave a Country, which won the PEN/Nelson Algren Award for book-length fiction, and the critically acclaimed Is It Sexual Harassment Yet? She is a professor in the Program for Writers at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Naeem Murrʼs first novel, The Boy, was a New York Times Notable Book. Another novel, The Genius of the Sea, was published in 2003.  His latest, The Perfect Man, was awarded The Commonwealth Writersʼ Prize for the Best Book of Europe and South Asia, and was long-listed for the Man Booker Prize.  His work has been translated into eight languages.  He has received many awards for his writing, most recently a Guggenheim Fellowship and a Pen Beyond Margins Award.  He has been a writer-in-residence at the University of Missouri, Western Michigan, and Northwestern University, among others.  Born and brought up in London, he has lived in America since his early twenties, and currently resides in Chicago.

Cornelia Spelman won a fellowship in non-fiction at Bread Loaf Writer’s Conference; was a radio program host in Vermont and a writer/performer with a political comedy program on Vermont Public Radio.  A clinical social worker, her picture books for children, including “The Way I Feel” series about managing emotion, have been translated into nine languages.  She’s author of a memoir, Missing, about the emotional legacies in her family, which was described by writer Alex Kotlowitz as “memoir writing at its absolute finest.” Cornelia has kept a diary for 36 years, and her several hundred volumes are being archived at the Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America at Harvard.  She has a podcast, “Diaries, Letters, Stories,” at

Chicago | September 24, 2017

Celebrate the return of fall to Chicago with poetry and prose at our fall reading! The line-up is AMAZING! The reading is at 7pm at the Riverview Tavern, 1958 W. Roscoe Ave. in Chicago’s Roscoe Village neighborhood. Come early if you want to have dinner and grab a good seat.


Ada Cheng is a professor-turned storyteller and performing artist. She is the winner of 2017Bughouse Square Debates. She has been featured at storytelling shows in Chicago, Atlanta, Cedar Rapids, New York, Asheville, and Kansas City. She has performed her solo show, NOT QUITE: ASIAN AMERICAN BY LAW, ASIAN WOMAN BY DESIRE, at National Storytelling Conference, Capital Fringe Festival, Minnesota Fringe Festival, and Boulder International Fringe Festival this year. Her motto: Make your life the best story you tell

Jimin Han was born in Seoul, Korea and grew up in New York, Rhode Island, and Ohio. She attended Cornell University and Sarah Lawrence College. Her writing can be found at NPR’s “Weekend America,” Poets & Writers Magazine, Entropy, The Rumpus, Hyphen Magazine, Kartika Review,, Bloom, and elsewhere. A Small Revolution is her first novel. She teaches at The Writing Institute at Sarah Lawrence College and lives outside New York City with her husband and children. photo credit: Janice Chung

David Hicks grew up in New York, moved to Colorado in his thirties, and now lives in Denver and teaches at Regis University, where he is four-time Professor of the Year and co-founder/co-director of the Mile-High MFA in Creative Writing. He has published stories in many journals, including Glimmer Train, Colorado Review, and Saranac Review. White Plains, his first novel, has been called “a captivating debut” by Leni Zumas, “beautifully and honestly wrought . . . a stunning portrayal of one man’s journal to redemption and transformation” by Kathy Fish, and in Ron Carlson’s words “a glowing set of stories, like late-night messages sent from a friend.”

Edward Kelsey Moore is the author of THE SUPREMES SING THE HAPPY HEARTACHE BLUES, which was published in June of 2017. His first novel, the New York Times and international bestseller THE SUPREMES AT EARL’S ALL-YOU-CAN-EAT, was chosen as a 2013 Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers selection and was awarded the 2014 First Novelist Award by the Black Caucus of the American Library Association. Edward’s award-winning essays and short fiction have appeared in the New York Times and a number of literary magazines, including Ninth LetterIndiana Review, and African American Review. He currently writes a series of essays for Minnesota Public Radio. In addition to his writing, Edward maintains a career as a professional cellist. He performs with a number of ensembles, including the Chicago Sinfonietta and the Joffrey Ballet Orchestra.


David Lazar was a Guggenheim Fellow in Nonfiction for 2015-16. His books include Who’s Afraid of Helen of TroyAfter MontaigneOccasional Desire: Essays, The Body of Brooklyn, Truth in NonfictionEssaying the Essay, Powder Town, Michael Powell: Interviews, and Conversations with M.F.K. Fisher. Forthcoming from the University of Nebraska Press in Fall 2017 is I’ll Be Your Mirror: Essays and Aphorisms. Seven of his essays have been “Notable Essays of the Year” according to Best American Essays. Lazar received the first PhD in the United States in nonfiction writing, in 1989. He then created the PhD program in nonfiction writing at Ohio University and directed the creation of the undergraduate and M.F.A. programs in Nonfiction Writing at Columbia College Chicago where he is Professor of Creative Writing. He is founding editor of the literary magazine Hotel Amerika, now in its seventeenth year, and series editor, with Patrick Madden, of 21st Century Essays, at Ohio State University Press.