Neon Lit Alumni Reading @ The Twig Book Shop
About the Authors:
Olivia Clare is the author of a book of short stories, Disasters in the First World (Black Cat/Grove Atlantic), and a book of poems, The 26-Hour Day (New Issues). Her novel is forthcoming from Grove Atlantic. Her stories have been published or are forthcoming in The Paris Review, Granta, McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern, The Southern Review, ZYZZYVA, and elsewhere. Her poems have appeared in Poetry, The Southern Review, Denver Quarterly, and other journals. She is the recipient of an O. Henry Prize (fiction), a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writer’s Award (fiction), and a Ruth Lilly Fellowship from the Poetry Foundation. She holds graduate degrees from the Iowa Writers' Workshop and the University of Southern California. She graduated from UNLV with her PhD in 2016. She is currently an Assistant Professor in English, Creative Writing, at the University of Southern Mississippi.
Heather Lang-Cassera lives in Las Vegas, Nevada, and is Poet Laureate of Clark County. She holds a Master of Fine Arts in Poetry with a Certificate in Literary Translation. Her poems have been published by december, Diode, The Normal School, North American Review, Paper Darts, Pleiades, South Dakota Review, and many other literary journals, and they have been on exhibit in the Nevada Humanities Program Gallery and elsewhere. She has been awarded project and professional development grants from the Nevada Arts Council and serves as a world literature editor and literary critic for The Literary Review, faculty advisor for 300 Days of Sun, literary critic for Reading in Translation, and editor-in-chief for Tolsun Books. At Nevada State College, Heather teaches Introduction to Creative Writing, World Literature II, Modern American Poetry, and more. http://www.heatherlang.cassera.net
Wendy Wimmer is a PhD fiction fellow at Black Mountain Institute/ University of Nevada Las Vegas. She is the fiction editor of Witness literary journal and the founder of UntitledTown book and author festival in Wisconsin. Her work has been published in Barrelhouse, Blackbird, Per Contra, ANMLY, Drunken Boat, Paper Darts, Non-Binary Review, Salt & Syntax and more, as well as nominated for multiple Pushcart Prizes, AWP Intro to Journal and Best New Voices. Her short story collection was recently named a semi-finalist for the Hudson Prize. She was most recently a participant author at BelieverFest 2018. She lives in Nevada but her heart remains in the Midwest. Follow her on Twitter @wendywimmer or her very irregular website: www.wendywimmer.com
Sarah Kokernot’s writing has appeared in The Best American Short Stories, Michigan Quarterly Review, Crazyhorse, Front Porch, The New York Times, West Branch, Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet, and others. Originally from Kentucky, she currently lives in Chicago with her husband and son. Sarah works as Program Curator at StoryStudio, a non-profit creative writing center, and is revising her first novel
Marianne Chan grew up in Stuttgart, Germany, and Lansing, Michigan. She is the author of All
Heathens, forthcoming from Sarabande Books in March 2020. Her poems have appeared in Michigan Quarterly Review, The Cincinnati Review, West Branch, The Rumpus, and elsewhere. She earned her MFA in Creative Writing at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Creative Writing at the University of Cincinnati.
Dylan Fisher’s first book, The Loneliest Band in France, was the winner of Texas Review Press's 2019 Clay Reynolds Novella Prize. He is an editorial assistant for The Believer and a contributing editor for Witness Magazine. He currently splits his time between Denver, CO and Las Vegas, NV, where he is completing his MFA in Fiction at UNLV.
Juan Martinez is the author of Best Worst American, a story collection published by Small Beer Press and the inaugural winner of the Neukom Institute Award for Debut Speculative Fiction. He lives in Chicago and is an assistant professor at Northwestern University. His work has appeared in many literary journals and anthologies, including Glimmer Train, McSweeney's, Huizache, Ecotone, NPR's Selected Shorts, Mississippi Review and elsewhere, and is forthcoming in Shenandoah. Visit and say hi at https://fulmerford.com
Lorinda Toledo was born and raised in New Mexico, while Los Angeles has been her home for more than a decade. Her novel-in-progress was named first-runner up for the 2019 James Jones First Novel Fellowship, and earned an honorable mention in CRAFT literary’s First Chapters Contest. Her recent work has been published in the Mississippi Review and is forthcoming in The Normal School. She holds a PhD in Literature with creative dissertation from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, where her writing and research were supported by multiple awards, including a Black Mountain Institute PhD Fellowship. She is a past fiction editor at Witness literary magazine; and was assistant editor at Lunch Ticket. She is an affiliate faculty member at Antioch University Los Angeles.
Featured Books from Listed Authors:
- The Loneliest Band in France by Dylan Fisher (Texas University Press) https://www.tamupress.com/book/9781680032123/the-loneliest-band-in-france/
- I was the girl with the moon-shaped face by Heather Lang Casera (Zeitgeist Press). https://www.zeitgeist-press.com/index.php/product/i-was-the-girl-with-the-moon-shaped-face/
- All Heathens, by Marianne Chan (Sarabande Books) http://www.sarabandebooks.org/titles-20192039/all-heathens-marianne-chan
- The 26-Hour Day, by Olivia Clare (New Issues Poetry and Prose) https://newissuespress.com/the-26-hour-day-by-olivia-clare/
- Disasters in the First World, by Olivia Clare (Black Cat/Grove Atlantic) https://groveatlantic.com/book/disasters-in-the-first-world/
- Best Worst American, by Juan Martinez (Small Beer Press) https://smallbeerpress.com/books/2017/02/14/best-worst-american/
Mistaking an ad to join the titular The Loneliest Band in France for one to sell his blood, Migara de Silva, the novella’s narrator — a Sri Lankan student, new to Montpellier — finds himself, instead, under the sway of the band, drinking heavily and being recruited to play a battle-of-the-bands-esque concert (that night) at the local Café Bovary with its four members: N
"Marianne Chan's brilliant debut collection masterfully develops themes of identity and the long-term effects of colonization."
Olivia Clare's delightfully strange and tender debut collection traces the impact of larger-than-life forces on everyday people.
Winner of the inaugural Neukom Institute Literary Arts Award
These are the best Americans, the worst Americans. In these stories (these cities, these people) there are labyrinths, rivers, wildernesses. Voices sound slightly different than expected. There's humor, but it's going to hurt.