Literary Los Angeles has always existed apart from our country’s publishing capital—3,000 miles apart, to be exact. What does this distance offer writers and book artists? What are the freedoms and the challenges of being outside the traditions and trends of literature? A panel of L.A. writers—authors of fiction, essays, graphic novels, screenplays, and poetry—delve into these questions, considering their impact on both the individual and the community.
Bernard Cooper is the author of Maps To Anywhere; A Year of Rhymes; Truth Serum; a collection of short stories, Guess Again, and his most recent book is The Bill From My Father. Cooper’s many awards include the PEN/USA Ernest Hemingway Award, O. Henry Prize, a Guggenheim grant, and a National Endowment of the Arts fellowship in literature. His work has appeared in many anthologies, including The Best American Essays and as well, in magazines and literary reviews including, Harper's, The Paris Review, Story, The Los Angeles Times Magazine, and The New York Times Magazine. Mr. Cooper teaches Creative Non-Fiction at Bennington College.
Joyce Farmer is best known for co-creating the Tits 'n Clits comics anthology in the 1970s, a feminist response to the rampant misogyny in underground comix. Her graphic memoir Special Exits is a Fall 2010 release from Fantagraphics Books.
Lynell George is an L.A.-based journalist and essayist. A longtime staff writer for both the Los Angeles Times and L.A. Weekly, she covers books, music, visual art and social issues and identity politics. Her work has also appeared in Vibe, Essence, The Smithsonian, Black Clock and Boom: A Journal of California. Currently she is an Assistant Professor of English at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles where she teaches journalism.
Marisela Norte is the recipient of the Ben Reitman award from San Diego State University for Peeping Tom Tom Girl, a collection of poetry and prose. Her poems featured on MTA buses in the OUT YOUR WINDOW project were recently selected among the the ten best transit poems in the world by the Atlantic. Norte continues to document life in Los Angeles in words and through photography via public transportation.
Michael Tolkin is the author of four novels: The Player, Among the Dead, Under Radar, and The Return of the Player. He won the Writers Guild of America award for his screenplay for The Player, and also directed the movies The Rapture and The New Age.
David L. Ulin is book critic for the Los Angeles Times. From 2005-2010, he was the paper's book editor. He is the author of The Lost Art of Reading: Why Books Matter in a Distracted Time and The Myth of Solid Ground: Earthquakes, Prediction, and the Fault Line Between Reason and Faith, and the editor of Another City: Writing from Los Angeles and Writing Los Angeles: A Literary Anthology, which won a 2002 California Book Award. His essays and criticism have appeared in many publications.
Photo: LAPL Photo collection
ALOUD is one of the many free programs the Library Foundation makes possible at the Los Angeles Public Library. Most ALOUD author programs are followed by book signings. To help sustain this valuable cultural exchange, at least one copy of the author’s featured book must be purchased from the Library Store if you wish to participate in the post-program book signing. Other non-featured books by the author may be eligible for the signing without having been purchased at the Library Store. Proceeds support the Los Angeles Public Library. Library Foundation members receive a 15% discount on all Library Store purchases.
Unless otherwise indicated, ALOUD programs take place at the Los Angeles Central Library's Mark Taper Auditorium, 630 W. Fifth Street, Los Angeles, CA 90071.