Archive for Short Stories

LIVE ON CROWDCAST: Sam Cohen, “SARAHLAND” w/ Nikki Darling

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, Short Stories, live on crowdcast by skylightbooks on April 12th, 2021

In Sarahland, Sam Cohen brilliantly and often hilariously explores the ways in which traditional stories have failed us, both demanding and thrillingly providing for its cast of Sarahs new origin stories, new ways to love the planet and those inhabiting it, and new possibilities for life itself. In one story, a Jewish college Sarah passively consents to a form-life in pursuit of an MRS degree and is swept into a culture of normalized sexual violence. Another reveals a version of Sarah finding pleasure—and a new set of problems—by playing dead for a wealthy necrophiliac. A Buffy-loving Sarah uses fan fiction to work through romantic obsession. As the collection progresses, Cohen explodes this search for self, insisting that we have more to resist and repair than our own personal narratives. Readers witness as the ever-evolving "Sarah" gets recast: as a bible-era trans woman, an aging lesbian literally growing roots, a being who transcends the earth as we know it. While Cohen presents a world that will clearly someday end, "Sarah" will continue.

In each Sarah's refusal to adhere to a single narrative, she potentially builds a better home for us all, a place to live that demands no fixity of self, no plague of consumerism, no bodily compromise, a place called Sarahland.

Cohen is in conversation with Nikki Darling.

This episode was recorded on March 9, 2021 during a live Crowdcast event hosted by Skylight Books. Visit us at www.crowdcast.io/skylightbooks to RSVP for future events.
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo, Lance Morgan, & Michael Kowaleski

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," an unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




LIVE ON CROWDCAST: Tod Goldberg, “THE LOW DESERT” w/ Mark Haskell Smith

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, fiction, Short Stories, anthology, live on crowdcast by skylightbooks on March 12th, 2021

With gimlet-eyed cool and razor-sharp wit, these spare, stylish stories from master of modern crime fiction Tod Goldberg assemble a world of gangsters and con men, of do-gooders breaking bad and those caught in the crossfire. The uncle of an FBI agent spends his life as sheriff in different cities, living too close to the violent acts of men; a cocktail waitress moves through several desert towns trying to escape the unexplainable loss of an adopted daughter; a drug dealer with a penchant for karaoke meets a talkative lawyer and a silent clown in a Palm Springs bar.

Witty, brutal, and fast-paced, these stories expand upon the saga of Chicago hitman-turned-Vegas-rabbi Sal Cupertine–first introduced in Gangsterland and continued in Gangster Nation–while revealing how the line between good and bad is often a mirage.

Goldberg discusses The Low Desert with Mark Haskell Smith.

This episode was recorded on February 24, 2021 during a live Crowdcast event hosted by Skylight Books. Visit us at www.crowdcast.io/skylightbooks to RSVP for future events.
 
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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & Michael Kowaleski

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," an unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: Nathan Elias, “THE REINCARNATIONS” w/ Alex Thurnher

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, Short Stories, skylit by skylightbooks on December 30th, 2020

These loosely connected stories are laced with the familiar and the uncanny, the real and the surreal, the ordinary and the fabulistic. A documentary filmmaker refuses to give up on finding his daughter who mysteriously disappears by the river. A small-time real estate agent recovers from a brief psychotic episode upon discovering his fianc e's affair. An actress struggles to grasp reality when the recordings of lucid dreams are used in movies instead of live performances. An eccentric teenager recounts his first romance from beyond the grave.

Spanning the boundaries of literary and speculative fiction, The Reincarnations revolves around multiple forms of Zenlike rebirth. Equal parts raw emotion and wild imagination, Nathan Elias's debut story collection ushers in an electrifying yet tender new voice in fiction.

Elias is in conversation with writer Alex Thurnher.

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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & Michael Kowaleski

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," a new, unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: Susan Buttenwieser, “WE WERE LUCKY WITH THE RAIN” w/ Lyman Clayborn

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, Short Stories, skylit by skylightbooks on December 28th, 2020

Susan Buttenwieser’s writing has appeared in numerous publications. We Were Lucky with the Rain is her first book. She teaches creative writing in New York City public schools and to incarcerated women.

Buttenwieser is in conversation with Lyman Clayborn.

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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & Michael Kowaleski

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," a new, unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: Nana-Ama Danquah, “ACCRA NOIR” w/ Anniwaa Buachie

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, Short Stories, anthology, BIPOC, skylit by skylightbooks on December 4th, 2020

Akashic Books continues its award-winning series of original noir anthologies (launched in 2004 with Brooklyn Noir) with Accra Noir. Each book comprises all new stories, each one set in a distinct neighborhood or location within the respective city.

Accra is the perfect setting for noir fiction. The telling of such tales--ones involving or suggesting death, with a protagonist who is flawed or devious, driven by either a self-serving motive or one of the seven deadly sins--is woven into the fabric of the city's everyday life...

Accra is more than just a capital city. It is a microcosm of Ghana. It is a virtual map of the nation's soul, a complex geographical display of its indigenous presence, the colonial imposition, declarations of freedom, followed by coups d' tat, decades of dictatorship, and then, finally, a steady march forward into a promising future...

Much like Accra, these stories are not always what they seem. The contributors who penned them know too well how to spin a story into a web...It is an honor and a pleasure to share them and all they reveal about Accra, a city of allegories, one of the most dynamic and diverse places in the world.

Editor and Contributor Nana-Ama Danquah is in conversation with actress, filmmaker, and writer Anniwaa Buachie.

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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & Michael Kowaleski

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," a new, unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




SKYLIT: Yxta Maya Murray, “THE WORLD DOESN”T WORK THAT WAY, BUT IT COULD”

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, Short Stories, skylit by skylightbooks on September 3rd, 2020

The gripping, thought-provoking stories in Yxta Maya Murray’s latest collection find their inspiration in the headlines. Here, ordinary people negotiate tentative paths through wildfire, mass shootings, bureaucratic incompetence, and heedless government policies with vicious impacts on the innocent and helpless. A nurse volunteers to serve in catastrophe-stricken Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria and discovers that her skill and compassion are useless in the face of stubborn governmental inertia. An Environmental Protection Agency employee, whose agricultural-worker parents died after long exposure to a deadly pesticide, finds herself forced to find justifications for reversing regulations that had earlier banned the chemical. A Department of Education employee in a dystopic future America visits a highly praised charter school and discovers the horrific consequences of academic failure. A transgender trainer of beauty pageant contestants takes on a beautiful Latina for the Miss USA pageant and brings her to perfection and the brink of victory, only to discover that she has a fatal secret.

The characters in The World Doesn't Work That Way, but it Could grapple with the consequences of frightening attitudes and policies pervasive in the United States today. The stories explore not only our distressing human capacity for moral numbness in the face of evil, but also reveal our surprising stores of compassion and forgiveness. These brilliantly conceived and beautifully written stories are troubling yet irresistible mirrors of our time.

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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & Michael Kowaleski

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," a new, unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.

Visit https://www.skylightbooks.com/event for future offerings from the Skylight Books Events team.




LIVE ON ZOOM: Chelsea Bieker, Aja Gabel, Nina Renata Aron

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, Short Stories, nonfiction, novels by skylightbooks on May 15th, 2020

Join us for a Skylight virtual event! Chelsea Bieker, Aja Gabel and Nina Renata Aron will talk about their journeys to publication, the current literary landscape, and moms in all their forms.

Order Godshot by Chelsea Bieker

Order The Ensemble by Aja Gabel

Order Good Morning, Destroyer of Men's Souls by Nina Renata Aron

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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & Michael Kowaleski

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," a new, unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.




Kathryn Scanlan, “THE DOMINANT ANIMAL” w/ Brian Evenson

Posted in literature, skylight books, los angeles, book stores, books, fiction, Short Stories, novels by skylightbooks on May 4th, 2020

In The Dominant Animal, compression is key. Sentences have been relentlessly trimmed, tuned, and teased, rendering both their syntax and subjects wondrous and strange. A ferocious attention to rhythm and sound creates a thrum of excitability and distress. The nature of love is questioned at a golf course, a flower shop, an all-you-can-eat buffet. The clay head of a man is bought and displayed as a trophy. Interior life manifests on the physical plane, where characters—human and animal—eat and breathe, provoke and injure one another.

With exquisite control, Kathryn Scanlan moves from expansive moods and fine afternoons to unease and violence—and also from deliberate and generative ambiguity to shocking, revelatory exactitude. Disturbances accrue as the collection progresses. How often the conclusions open—rather than tie—up. How they twist alertly. No mercy, a character says—and these stories are merciless and strange and absolutely masterful.

Scanlan is in conversation with Brian Evensen, author of a dozen books of fiction, most recently the story collection Song for the Unraveling of the World (Coffee House Press, 2019).

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Produced by Maddie Gobbo & Michael Kowaleski

Theme: "I Love All My Friends," a new, unreleased demo by Fragile Gang.




WRITEGIRL 4 Group Reading

Posted in skylight books, poetry, fiction, Feminism, Short Stories, nonfiction, anthology, essays by skylightbooks on March 10th, 2020

WriteGirl is an innovative nonprofit organization that empowers teen girls through creative writing. Join us for this special chance to hear WriteGirl teens speak their minds and read their original poetry and prose. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, and you’ll be surprised—you won’t want to miss it! 

In WriteGirl’s new award-winning anthology, This Moment: Bold Voices from WriteGirl, 180 teens share stories, poems, memoirs, scripts and songs about their hopes and fears, loves and losses, amigas and pan dulce, as they navigate a challenging present and uncertain future with determination and grace. Their words inspire reflection and ignite action. The book includes a Creativity Starter Kit with 15 fresh writing activities to inspire young writers. This Moment is available for purchase at Skylight Books.




Claire Rudy Foster, “SHINE OF THE EVER”

Posted in skylight books, book stores, books, Short Stories, anthology by skylightbooks on January 21st, 2020

By turns tender and punk-tough, Shine of the Ever is a literary mixtape of queer voices out of 1990s Portland. This collection of short stories explores what binds a community of queer and trans people as they negotiate love, screwing up, and learning to forgive themselves for being young and, sometimes, foolish.




Jonathan Blum, “THE USUAL UNCERTAINTIES”

Posted in skylight books, book stores, books, fiction, Short Stories by skylightbooks on November 11th, 2019

The Usual UncertaintiesJonathan Blum's highly anticipated first collection—is storytelling at its finest. In precise, elegant prose, these stories follow characters and communities often consigned to the edge of the frame: a community college dropout, a geriatric care manager, a square dance bar mitzvah, a Scrabble club, an entrepreneurial Thai immigrant, and a South Florida country club. With echoes of Leonard Michaels, Mavis Gallant, and Lore Segal, Blum explores the ways our divergent histories tether us together and at times push us completely apart. The Usual Uncertainties revels in the persistent human struggle to love with abandon and marks a radiant voice in American short fiction. 




Mimi Lok, “LAST OF HER NAME” w/ Amelia Gray

Posted in literature, skylight books, book stores, books, fiction, Short Stories by skylightbooks on November 5th, 2019

Mimi Lok's Last of Her Name is an eye-opening story collection about the intimate, interconnected lives of diasporic women and the histories they are born into. Set in a wide range of time periods and locales, including '80s UK suburbia, WWII Hong Kong and contemporary urban California, the book features an eclectic cast of outsiders: among them, an elderly housebreaker, wounded lovers and kung-fu fighting teenage girls. Last of Her Name offers a meditation on female desire and resilience, family and the nature of memory.

Lok is in conversation with Amelia Gray, author of five books, most recently Isadora.




Made in L.A., Vol. 2: Chasing the Elusive Dream

Posted in skylight books, book stores, books, Short Stories, anthology by skylightbooks on August 6th, 2019

The Made in L.A. indie author co-op presents contributors to the latest installment of their annual fiction anthology series, Made in L.A. Vol. 2: Chasing the Elusive Dream. Join a publication party with local authors who have a passion for writing about their home.

While the first volume was rooted in Los Angeles, this second volume focuses on goals, dreams, and the distant horizon. It explores the fantasies people carry with them to L.A., as well as the dreams Angelenos dream while surrounded by this vast and evolving city.

This anthology series showcases a diverse range of voices and genres. Like the City of Angels where these stories were born, nothing is off-limits. Literary or contemporary, fantasy or science fiction, each story in this volume invites you to view this urban landscape through a different lens. The evening will include discussions about what we find inspiring about Los Angeles, how our stories came about, and a behind-the-scenes peek at indie publishing and the DIY production of hyper-local literary culture. 




PEN America: Emerging Voices Meet & Greet

Posted in skylight books, book stores, books, Short Stories, PEN America by skylightbooks on July 8th, 2019

PEN America presents the 2019 Emerging Voices Fellows, alumni, and mentors in conversation on the 2020 application cycle at Skylight Books.

The evening will include summer cocktails, short readings, a fellowship overview, and audience Q&A. Featuring Judy Choi, Anthony Hoang, Fajer Alexander Khansa, T.K. Lê, Dare Williams, and Fellowship Manager Amanda Fletcher.




Ted Chiang, “EXHALATION”

Posted in literature, skylight books, book stores, books, fiction, Short Stories by skylightbooks on June 24th, 2019

From the acclaimed author of Stories of Your Life and Others—the basis for the Academy Award –nominated film Arrival—comes a groundbreaking new collection of short fiction: nine stunningly original, provocative, and poignant stories. These are tales that tackle some of humanity’s oldest questions along with new quandaries only Ted Chiang could imagine. In “The Merchant and the Alchemist’s Gate,” a portal through time forces a fabric seller in ancient Baghdad to grapple with past mistakes and second chances. In “Exhalation,” an alien scientist makes a shocking discovery with ramifications that are literally universal. In “Anxiety Is the Dizziness of Freedom,” the ability to glimpse into alternate universes necessitates a radically new examination of the concepts of choice and free will.

Including stories being published for the first time as well as some of his rare and classic uncollected work, Exhalation is Ted Chiang at his best: profound, sympathetic—revelatory.





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