siel ju

live and write in l.a.
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…...
October giveaway: Santa Monica Review prize package & party tickets

October giveaway: Santa Monica Review prize package & party tickets

Santa Monica Review celebrates its 30th anniversary next year — and as part of the celebration, one lucky reader will win a 4-issue prize package from the literary journal! But first, a bit about Santa Monica Review: Founded by Jim Krusoe back in 1988, this well-established and respected national literary magazine published some…...
Cake Time gets a review in ZYZZYVA -- Plus see you at six October events

Cake Time gets a review in ZYZZYVA — Plus see you at six October events

One of my first fiction publications was in the west coast lit journal ZYZZYVA a few years ago. That story’s included in my novel-in-stories Cake Time published a few months ago, and a few days ago, ZZYZZYVA reviewed Cake Time so I feel like the world’s come full circle: For…...
September book reviews: Zhang, Rhys, Khong, Walls, Gray, Maum plus two guys with two-syllable names

September book reviews: Zhang, Rhys, Khong, Walls, Gray, Maum plus two guys with two-syllable names

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 my enjoyment: Sour Heart by Jenny Zhang (Lenny, 2017) “All I had wanted for so long was to be part of a…...
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…...
Amelia Gray on emotions, odalisque sentences, and a cold Italian beach

Amelia Gray on emotions, odalisque sentences, and a cold Italian beach

Every month, I interview an author I admire on her literary firsts. I first discovered Amelia Gray’s writing through Gutshot, her collection of sharp, macabre short stories that took me through all sorts of emotions: fear, discomfort, anxiety — and almost always, surprise. So when I picked up her latest novel,…...
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 five 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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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… read more

Giveaway: A Ticket to The Joshua Tree Experiential Arts and Writing Retreat

Giveaway: A Ticket to The Joshua Tree Experiential Arts and Writing Retreat

*** Winner selected! Congratulations to Suzanne — Hope you enjoy the retreat! *** Here’s your chance to spend a blissful weekend writing in the desert — getting inspired by the natural habitat around you while communing with and learning from fellow writers and artists. That’s the goal behind The Joshua… read more

Amelia Gray on emotions, odalisque sentences, and a cold Italian beach

Amelia Gray on emotions, odalisque sentences, and a cold Italian beach

Every month, I interview an author I admire on her literary firsts. I first discovered Amelia Gray’s writing through Gutshot, her collection of sharp, macabre short stories that took me through all sorts of emotions: fear, discomfort, anxiety — and almost always, surprise. So when I picked up her latest novel,… read more

Gratitude Beverly Hills: Clean vegan eats with creative cocktails

Gratitude Beverly Hills: Clean vegan eats with creative cocktails

What is the difference between a Cafe Gratitude restaurant and the new Beverly Hills spot called just plain Gratitude? Both offer delicious, organic, vegan food with a dose of self-empowering messages — but only the latter boasts a full bar. So though I rarely drink, when I stopped by the… read more

September giveaway: Isadora by Amelia Gray

September giveaway: Isadora by Amelia Gray

*** Winner selected! Congratulations to Isaly in Fort Worth, Texas! *** I’m one of those people who don’t function well when there’s a lot of drama going on in life, yet I often find myself pulled towards it, and to people who go out of their way to seek it… read more

Siel wants to see you in September

Siel wants to see you in September

If you follow me on Facebook, you know I just quit my day job. And while I suddenly have a lot more time for socializing and posing for pics with photogenic purple veggies, I’d love to see you at one of my three September readings — all of which are free… read more