siel ju

live and write in l.a.
December giveaway: Things That Happened Before the Earthquake by Chiara Barzini

December giveaway: Things That Happened Before the Earthquake by Chiara Barzini

When I think of the ’90s, I think Nirvana, Beverly Hills 90210, and long stretches of childhood boredom. But Chiara Barzini’s debut novel reminded me that the ’90s was actually a rather violent and volatile time in Los Angeles, what with the L.A. Riots, the Northridge Earthquake, and of course,…...
November book reviews: A prince, a duchess, and a Harley rider

November book reviews: A prince, a duchess, and a Harley rider

Brief reviews of books by contemporary authors I read this month — along with photos of what I ate while reading. The list is ordered by the level of my enjoyment: The Gravedigger’s Daughter by Joyce Carol Oates (Ecco, 2007) “That sensation of things-falling-away. Once the ice begins to crack,…...
David Rocklin on worthwhile risks and addictive highs

David Rocklin on worthwhile risks and addictive highs

Every month, I interview an author I admire on his literary firsts. If you’re plugged into the L.A. literary community, you know about Roar Shack, the eclectic monthly reading series in Echo Park with its impromptu live write competitions. And if you’ve been to Roar Shack, you know its host…...
November giveaway: The Night Language by David Rocklin

November giveaway: The Night Language by David Rocklin

*** Winner selected! Congratulations to Shawn in Red Wing, Minn.! *** Political drama. False identities. Forbidden romance. David Rocklin’s new novel, The Night Language, contains all of these, but is at its heart a quiet — and unexpected — love story. After all, there aren’t too many novels starring black…...
Boxwalla: A Book box for world literature lovers

Boxwalla: A Book box for world literature lovers

If you want to read more international writers, but don’t know where to start, try a Boxwalla Book Box. This subscription box service promises to send you two new reads at a time — featuring writers from all over the world. Boxwalla’s picks seem pretty idiosyncratic and, in general, lesser…...
Santa Monica Review's Andrew Tonkovich on dream jobs, dream worlds

Santa Monica Review’s Andrew Tonkovich on dream jobs, dream worlds

Every month, I interview an author I admire on his literary firsts–except this month, I’m interviewing an editor. Editing a literary journal, I think, requires a certain level of masochism. We’re talking, after all, about publications with teeny tiny readerships that nonetheless get deluged with thousands of submissions from would-be…...
All Lit Up: Monthly poetry and prose fest at Chevalier's Books

All Lit Up: Monthly poetry and prose fest at Chevalier’s Books

Start going to literary readings in L.A., and you’ll likely run into Rich Ferguson fairly soon. Rich is a fixture in the L.A. literary community known for three things: His wide-brimmed straw hat, his ability to perform long poems of his from memory, and his fantastic reading series, All Lit…...
15 Literary journals for Los Angeles writers

15 Literary journals for Los Angeles writers

Get to know your local literary journals, and you’ll get to know your local literary community. Literary journals not only publish the work of local writers, but also hold readings where you can meet the readers, authors, and editors — as well as offer opportunities to get involved. Here are…...
Best coffee shops for writers in Los Angeles: Central LA

Best coffee shops for writers in Los Angeles: Central LA

Picky writers can’t just go to any coffee shop. We need good working spaces with comfy chairs and tables. We need decent wifi and electric outlets for our laptops. We (or at least I) need good reading light. And we like to be able to hang for a few hours…...
6 Best Book Clubs in Los Angeles

6 Best Book Clubs in Los Angeles

If you long to discuss books you love — in real life, outside the confines of Amazon reviews and Goodreads comments — make joining a local book club a resolution. Here are six to check out — For girls who brunch: L.A. Girly Book Club With most of the regulars…...
Get Your Free eBook: A Guide to Literary Los Angeles

Get Your Free eBook: A Guide to Literary Los Angeles

So you’re lit-curious. Maybe you’re a young writer thinking about signing up for your first poetry workshop. Or maybe you’re already an established novelist planning to visit Southern California. Or maybe you just love reading books, and want to meet other bibliophiles. Or maybe you’re a writer simply looking for…...
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December giveaway: Things That Happened Before the Earthquake by Chiara Barzini

December giveaway: Things That Happened Before the Earthquake by Chiara Barzini

When I think of the ’90s, I think Nirvana, Beverly Hills 90210, and long stretches of childhood boredom. But Chiara Barzini’s debut novel reminded me that the ’90s was actually a rather violent and volatile time in Los Angeles, what with the L.A. Riots, the Northridge Earthquake, and of course,… read more

See you at a literary celebration 12/10

See you at a literary celebration 12/10

Celebrate the literary holiday season with me and last month’s featured author, David Rocklin! The two of us will be reading together at a very special event: a joint Library Girl and Roar Shack reading and celebration. Both Library Girl and Roar Shack are local monthly reading series that happen on… read more

November book reviews: A prince, a duchess, and a Harley rider

November book reviews: A prince, a duchess, and a Harley rider

Brief reviews of books by contemporary authors I read this month — along with photos of what I ate while reading. The list is ordered by the level of my enjoyment: The Gravedigger’s Daughter by Joyce Carol Oates (Ecco, 2007) “That sensation of things-falling-away. Once the ice begins to crack,… read more

David Rocklin on worthwhile risks and addictive highs

David Rocklin on worthwhile risks and addictive highs

Every month, I interview an author I admire on his literary firsts. If you’re plugged into the L.A. literary community, you know about Roar Shack, the eclectic monthly reading series in Echo Park with its impromptu live write competitions. And if you’ve been to Roar Shack, you know its host… read more

November giveaway: The Night Language by David Rocklin

November giveaway: The Night Language by David Rocklin

*** Winner selected! Congratulations to Shawn in Red Wing, Minn.! *** Political drama. False identities. Forbidden romance. David Rocklin’s new novel, The Night Language, contains all of these, but is at its heart a quiet — and unexpected — love story. After all, there aren’t too many novels starring black… read more

Come celebrate: 11/1 is my birthday. Cake Time!

Come celebrate: 11/1 is my birthday. Cake Time!

November is one of my favorite months — because my birthday falls in it (My wishlist is here, just FYI). But I’m especially looking forward to it this year because it’s going to be a month of firsts: First time leading a National Writing Month workshop, first time judging a… read more