Coming up in August and September, I have more readings scheduled. In a nutshell, it’s looking like this:
August and September readings
Click a link to go straight to the details:
5 August: Reading at Tuesday Night Café in LA
31 August: Reading at Sumarr Reading Series in LA
3 Sept: Reading at University of Southern California in LA
6 Sept: Reading at Elliott Bay Book Company in Seattle
It all starts with three readings in LA.
First up, on Tuesday 5 August, I’ll be doing a reading at the reading series Tuesday Night Café. According to the webpage, Tuesday Night Café features “new original work from Asian American/Pacific Islander communities and the greater Los Angeles area…”. “(O)ne of the longest-running free arts series in Downtown LA, it has average audiences of between 100-250 per event. The series is produced by Tuesday Night Project, an Asian American grassroots organisation.
Some months ago, I went through a formal application process to be a featured reader at Tuesday Night Café, so I’m excited that I’ve now been selected. A big thanks to Calvin Ho for letting me know about this series!
Tuesday 5 August, 7:30pm
Aratani Courtyard/Union Center for the Arts (two blocks from the Little Tokyo/Arts District Goldline Metro stop)
120 Judge John Aiso St., Los Angeles
Please join us at one of the longest running free public arts series in downtown Los Angeles. Highlighting new work in visual and performance arts from the Los Angeles and Asian American artistic community in Los Angeles’ Little Tokyo.
Resident Host: Johneric Concordia
Resident DJ: DJ WaxStyles
The Open Mic
Open Mic sign-ups and lottery at 7 pm
Three 5-min open mic slots are available
More details at the Facebook event
At the end of August, I’ll be reading at Sumarr Reading Series. This series takes place every summer. Each event has about five readers, a musical performance, and a DJ. The series was recently listed in Electric Literature’s “Nine Innovative L.A. Reading Series”.
Sunday 31 August, 3pm
The Pop-Hop, 5002 York Blvd, Los Angeles
Final Sumarr event of the summer! Readings from Chris Muniz, Tom Cho, Brandon Som (author of recently-published “Tribute Horse”), Allison Carter, (author of recently-published “Here Versus Elsewhere”), and Aaron Kunin. Music from Elephants with Guns.
More details at the Facebook event
Then I have a reading at University of Southern California (USC). This reading is being co-sponsored by the Center for Transpacific Studies and Gender Studies and Kaya Press (which publishes literature from the Asian and Pacific Island diasporas. I was chuffed to see that they publish my fellow Giramondo author, Brian Castro).
I’m very grateful to Feng-Mei Heberer, a doctoral student at USC, for instigating this reading. Mei saw me read at homo-centric last month. I love how readings can lead to other opportunities. I’m also grateful to Karen Tongson, Associate Professor of English and Gender Studies at USC, for her support.
At this event, I’ll be interspersing my readings from my work with some comments on a few other topics, including my artistic background and some of my other arts projects, some reflections on the short story form, my interest in the work of Tom of Finland, perhaps a comment on my approach to trans literature, and more.
Wed 3 September, 1-3pm
Kaprielian Hall, Room KAP 445, University of Southern California, 3620 S Vermont Ave, Los Angeles
An un-named protagonist undergoes a series of transformations, shape-shifting through figures drawn from film and television, music and books, porn flicks and comics. This protagonist becomes Godzilla, a Muppet, Whitney Houston’s bodyguard, a robot that becomes a car, the Fonz and – in the climax of all climaxes – a 55-metre tall cock rock star who performs for the people of Tokyo.
Join author and performer, Tom Cho for a reading of his book Look Who’s Morphing, first published in Australia by Giramondo Publishing in 2009 and in North America and Europe by Arsenal Pulp Press in April 2014.
Light refreshments will be served. Free and open to the public
Sponsored by University of Southern California’s American Studies and Ethnicity, Center for Transpacific Studies, Center for Feminist Research, Gender Studies, and Kaya Press
And finally, September also means Seattle! My thanks to Chelsea Slattum, publicist at Chin Music Press in Seattle, for helping to instigate this event. Thanks also to Elliott Bay Bookstore and Jennifer Barry, Executive Director of Shunpike, for their support.
I’m really excited to be reading with Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore (who will likely be reading from her novel-in-progress, Sketchtasy) and Chad Goller-Sojourner (who will be reading from his memoir in progress Sitting in Circles with Rich White Girls: Memoir of a Bulimic Black Boy).
Saturday 6 Sept, 7pm
Elliott Bay Book Company, 1521 Tenth Avenue, Seattle
Featuring Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore, Chad Goller-Sojourner and Tom Cho. Hosted by poet and performer Imani Sims
Full details at the Facebook event
(Photo: Charlie Stephens)
Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore is most recently the author of a memoir, The End of San Francisco, winner of a 2014 Lambda Literary Award. Sycamore is also the author of two novels and the editor of five nonfiction anthologies, most recently Why Are Faggots So Afraid of Faggots?: Flaming Challenges to Masculinity, Objectification, and the Desire to Conform, an American Library Association Stonewall Honor Book. Mattilda is currently finishing a third novel, Sketchtasy. [mattildabernsteinsycamore.com]
(Photo: Tashi Ko)
Chad Goller-Sojourner is a Seattle-based writer, solo-performer and recipient of a distinguished Artist Trust/Washington State Arts Commission Performing Arts Fellowship. His work has been funded by the National Endowment for the Arts and featured on NPR. Most recently he was selected as the 2013 Ohio University Glidden Visiting Professor. In 2011 he was awarded both an Artist Trust Grant and Creative Artist Residency to further develop his sophomore solo show: Riding in Cars with Black People & Other Newly Dangerous Acts: A Memoir in Vanishing Whiteness, which debuted in April 2013, and is currently touring nationally. His inaugural solo show: Sitting in Circles with Rich White Girls: Memoirs of a Bulimic Black Boy, premiered in 2008 and toured for three years. [ridingincarswithblackpeople.com; sitting-in-circles.com]
Those are all the gigs to share for now but, as a heads-up, here’s some further news: from 9-12 October, I’ll be returning to Vancouver to appear at literASIAN2014, a festival of Pacific Rim Asian Canadian writing. This will be my first Canadian literary festival appearance so it feels especially significant for me. (Bonus extra teaser: I have some other exciting touring news that I’ll be sharing soon. Update: Check out my news here.)
Touring is hard work and it doesn’t leave as much room for writing as I would like, but there are plenty of reasons for me to feel gratified about all the readings I’ve been doing over the past few months. One of the reasons why I decided to go travelling is because I wanted to experience artistic opportunities that weren’t available to me in Australia. In this respect, it’s worked out even better than I had hoped – on the touring front and on other fronts. There’s a lot more that I need and want to do, but so far, I’ve found many new artistic opportunities in Canada and now the USA, and I’m feeling grateful.