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      Date/Time
      Date(s) - 05/21/2017
      10:00 am

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      LitFest Pasadena, a free literary arts festival, celebrates its sixth year with a weekend of events, authors’ panels and readings.

      LitFest will unfold again on the sidewalks and in the storefronts, corridors and unique venues of the Playhouse District. Vroman’s Bookstore and the Pasadena Playhouse will serve as anchor points, as the festival features Pulitzer Prize winners, L.A.’s most diverse and exciting authors, and eclectic discussion panels.

      Schedule

      SUNDAY, MAY 21

      11:15 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

      The Kurdish Trilogy Author Laleh Khadivi In Conversation with Keenan Norris
      Location: Pasadena Playhouse – The Makineni Library (39 S. El Molino Ave. Pasadena 91101)

      Iranian-American novelist and documentary filmmaker Laleh Khadivi is the author of the Kurdish Trilogy, including her debut novel, The Age of Orphans, which received the Whiting Award for Fiction. Her debut documentary film 900 WOMEN aired on A&E and premiered at the Human Rights Watch Film Festival. Her fiction and nonfiction can be found in The Los Angeles Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, VQR, The Sun and other publications. She is the recipient of a 2016 National Endowment for the Arts Grant and a 2016 Pushcart Prize for her story Wanderlust. Laleh’s latest book to be released on May 23, 2017, A Good Country, is a timely novel about the radicalization of a Muslim teen in California.

      Laleh Khadivi will be in conversation with Keenan Norris, a professor, an editor, and the author of an award-winning novel as well as the forthcoming Born by the River: Richard Wright, Barack Obama and “Chi-Raq.”

      Signing hosted after panel.

      Featuring: Laleh Khadivi (A Good Country) & Keenan Norris (Brother and the Dancer)

      Poets and Allies for Resistance
      Location: Zona Rosa Alley (15 S. El Molino Ave. Pasadena 91101)

      Poets & Allies for Resistance is a monthly social justice themed reading and open mic which features 2 Black poets on the first Monday of the month at The Sidewalk Cafe in Pasadena.

      Featuring: Sabreen Adeeba, Khadija Anderson, Nikki Blak, Derek D. Brown, Marvin Dorsey, J.G. Finch, GT Foster, Jessica Gallion, Regina Higgins, Janaci, James Evert Jones, Kuahmel, Hiram Sims, Tim Stiles, AK Toney, Pam Ward, C. Imani Williams, & Daniel F. Williams

      The Humor & Heartbreak of L.A.
      Location: Pasadena Playhouse – Friendship Room (off courtyard) (39 S. El Molino Ave. Pasadena 91101)

      The L.A. Times’s great columnist Jack Smith once wrote, “The real Los Angeles is invisible.” Critic and essayist David Ulin moderates a conversation with four novelists who have all set stories in L.A, with varying degrees of humor and heartbreak, realism and imagination, fame and invisibility. What makes L.A. work as a setting for these perceptive novelists?

      Signing hosted after panel.

      Featuring: Nina Revoyr (Lost Canyon), Lian Dolan (Helen of Pasadena), Christopher Noxon (Plus One), Dana Johnson (Not Quite Dark) & David Ulin (Sidewalking), Moderator

      10 Best Ways to Get a Literary Agent — And What to Avoid
      Location: Sculpture Plaza – The Stand (36 S. El Molino Ave. Pasadena 91101)

      Literary agents B.J. Robbins and Betsy Amster will answer your questions on getting published.

      Travel on the Page: Food, Adventures, and Everyday Life Abroad
      Location: El Portal Restaurant – North Courtyard (695 E. Green St., Pasadena 91101)

      Travel writers talk bringing their journeys, experiences, and sensations to life on the page.

      Signing hosted after panel.

      Featuring: Caroline Allen & Kay Young (I’ve Never Been So Unannoyed: Iceland for the Lady Traveler), Leo Bulgarini (Owner of Bulgarini Gelato), Tom Lutz (And the Monkey Learned Nothing: Dispatches from a Life in Transit), Bernadette Murphy (Harley and Me: Embracing Risk On the Road to a More Authentic Life), & Adrian Kalvinskas (Founder, Distant Lands Travel Bookstore & Outfitters), Moderator

      HUIZACHE [wee-sah-chae]: A Panel On and Readings from the Country’s Premiere Latino Lit Magazine
      Location: Trio Courtyard (Courtyard behind and between Bank of the West and Tender Greens) ( (587 E Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91101)

      Huizache [wee-SAW-chay] Magazine: Writers Jesús Treviño, Abel Salas and Alana Hinojosa represent the “Chicano,” “Chican@” and “Xicanx” eras, respectively. While each hails from a distinct generation in the history of Mexican American letters and literature, they have all written for HUIZACHE, the nation’s preeminent Latino literary magazine, a six-year-old publication which also frequently features Black, Asian and Native American authors alongside writing from the western U.S. by storytellers and poets who are not always “exotic” imports. They are just as likely to be wordslingers whose histories and written narratives actually precede the arrival of “frontier” settlers and their mythical–as well as much exaggerated–“taming” of the west. As inter-media and cross genre documentarians, poets and journalists and writers of fiction, the panelists are emblematic of why critics have described Huizache as “The Paris Review of Latino lit in the U.S.

      Signing hosted after panel.

      Featuring: Alana de Hinojosa (Editorial Member, The Bozalta Collective), Jesús Treviño (Return to Arroyo Grande) & Abel Salas (Editor and Publisher of Brooklyn & Boyle), Moderator

      2:00 p.m. – 3:15 p.m.

      The Tomorrow Prize! Dramatic Readings of the Best in Short SciFi by L.A. County’s Teens
      Location: Sculpture Plaza – The Stand (36 S. El Molino Ave. Pasadena 91101)

      Experience readings of L.A. County’s top teen scifi short stories at The Tomorrow Prize! Special guest performers including Jasika Nicole (Fringe), Jonathan Slavin (Dr. Ken), Peter Mackenzie (Black-ish), David Blue (SGU Stargate Universe), Anna Maria Horsford (The Bold and the Beautiful), and Graham Sibley (Fear the Walking Dead) will treat audiences to dramatic readings of the works of six finalists for The Tomorrow Prize. After the reading, prizes will be awarded to the top story writers! This program is presented by Sci-Fes L.A. and Light Bringer Project with the support of Mysterious Galaxy Books and Hi De Ho Books & Comics.

      Finalists include SAMUEL FISCHBACH (Aether.Reality), LESLIE LE (The Dead Light), RICHARD MAGDALUYO (EARTH II), JONATHAN HERBST (A Helping Hand), JOSEPH SPRINGER (The Most Satisfying Sound), and EKATERINA ZHOSAN (The Multiverse Theory). Honorable Mentions include CIRA DAVIS, ZACHARIAH NASH, ANGELICA PICO, ALLISON PLEITEZ, VIANNI VALLE, and PAULA WANG.

      Featured Guest Actors Reading the Stories: Jasika Nicole (Fringe; Underground), Jonathan Slavin (Dr. Ken; Speechless), Peter Mackenzie (Black-ish; Grace and Frankie), David Blue (SGU Stargate Universe), Anna Maria Horsford (The Bold and the Beautiful), and Graham Sibley (Fear the Walking Dead).

      Queers of the Valleys: Finding Community in Los Angeles (and not just WeHo)
      Location: Trio Courtyard (Courtyard behind and between Bank of the West and Tender Greens) ( (587 E Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91101)

      Queer community can be found in West Hollywood, but where else? Tobi Harper (Editor of Quill Publishing at Red Hen Press), Novelist C.B. Lee (Not Your Sidekick), poet Blas Falconer (A Question of Gravity and Light), playwright Josh Gershick (Bluebonnet Court), and 2016 Pushcart nominated poet Bonnie S. Kaplan come together to discuss identity, writing, living, and finding community in the San Gabriel and San Fernando Valleys.

      Signing hosted after panel.

      Featuring: Blas Falconer (A Question of Gravity and Light), Josh Gershick (Bluebonnet Court), Bonnie S. Kaplan, C.B. Lee (poet) & Tobi Harper (Editor of Quill Publishing at Red Hen Press), Moderator

      Mixed-Race and Interracial Experience To Make Meaning in a Time of Protest
      Location: El Portal Restaurant – North Courtyard (695 E. Green St., Pasadena 91101)

      With issues of race, ethnicity, identity and citizenship very much at the forefront of our national dialogue, great writers play a more important role than ever in picking through the chatter, the soundbites and the propaganda that passes for news. Award-winning novelists Heidi Durrow (The Girl Who Fell from the Sky) and Natashia Deon (GRACE) join Pasadena Lit Fest 2017 for a compelling discussion about the experience of being of mixed race in modern times and of interracial union in antebellum America.

      Featuring: Heidi Durrow (The Girl Who Fell from the Sky) & Natashia Deon (Grace) In Conversation

      The L.A. Cookbook: How the City Eats & Cooks
      Location: Pasadena Playhouse – Friendship Room (off courtyard) (39 S. El Molino Ave. Pasadena 91101)

      Some say Los Angeles is the country’s best food city, and who are we to argue? Joseph Shuldiner of The Institute of Domestic Technology will moderate a discussion among some of the city’s most interesting cookbook authors about immigrant influences in SoCal cuisine, the accessibility of ingredients, hybrid cooking styles, and how L.A.’s food is influencing the world. Presented by LitFest Pasadena and Prospect Park Books.

      Signing hosted after panel.

      Featuring: Bill Esparza (L.A. Mexicano), Amelia Saltsman (The Seasonal Jewish Kitchen) & Joseph Shuldiner (Pure Vegan), Moderator

      Hostile Environment Reporting for Young Female Journalists
      Location: Pasadena Playhouse – The Makineni Library (39 S. El Molino Ave. Pasadena 91101)

      Women starting their careers as journalists face unique challenges – especially when reporting out of hostile environments. Join award-winning author and reporter Jean Guerrero as she discusses reporting out of deadly smuggling routes at the U.S.-Mexico border, opium poppy plantations in southern Mexico and the sewers of Tijuana. The managing editor of Snopes, Brooke Binkowski, will share advice on how to handle death threats and more. They will be in conversation with Alex Trafton, U.S. Operations director for Global Media Risk, who has extensive experience conducting risk consultancy and training for journalists in conflict zones.

      Featuring: Jean Guerrero (journalist), Brooke Binkowski (Snopes Managing Editor) & Alex Trafton (US Operations Director, Global Media Risk), Moderator

      3:30 p.m. – 4:45 p.m.

      The Impossibility of L.A.
      Location: Trio Courtyard (Courtyard behind and between Bank of the West and Tender Greens) (587 E Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91101)

      Los Angeles is a city like no other, one that countless writers have attempted to tell the tale of. Artists, entertainers, moguls, immigrants, commoners, it’s a world city and the world within a city. So how does any one person write about it all? Los Angeles-based poet Mike Sonksen, novelist Daniel Olivas, Chiwan Choi and Traci Kato Kuriyama will tackle the topic in this panel just as they tackle it again and again in their work.

      Signing hosted after panel.

      Featuring: Daniel Olivas (Things We Do Not Talk About: Exploring Latino/a Literature Through Essays and Interviews), Chiwan Choi (The Yellow House), Traci Kato-Kuriyama (Signaling), & Mike Sonksen (Poetics of Location), Moderator

      Writing in the Times of Black Lives Matter & Resistance to Trumpism
      Location: Pasadena Playhouse – Friendship Room (off courtyard) (39 S. El Molino Ave. Pasadena 91101)

      Black writers discuss what it means to write during the time of Black Lives Matter and Trump.

      Featuring: Gar Anthony Haywood, Dana Johnson (Not Quite Dark), Lisa Teasley (Heat Signature), Tricia Alkmia Cochée, James Farr, & Jervey Tervalon (Monster’s Chef)

      Signing hosted after panel.

      Poet Laureates: Spreading Poetry Love!
      Location: Zona Rosa Alley (15 S. El Molino Ave. Pasadena 91101)

      These accomplished, talented poets spreading their love of poetry through California’s Southland are all Poet Laureates, past or present. This group includes national award winners, Pushcart Prize nominees, lecturers, editors, publishers, poet performers, and book authors. Their backgrounds are as varied as they themselves are culturally, generationally, and philosophically. Their styles, genres, and topics span the spectrum of fine literature, but they all motivate and inspire us with their work. Panel moderated by Thelma T. Reyna.

      Featuring: Radomir Vojtech Luza, Maja Trochimczyk, Elsa Frausto, Marlene Hitt, Mary Langer Thompson, & Thelma T. Reyna, Moderator

      On Blooming
      Location: Sculpture Plaza – The Stand (36 S. El Molino Ave. Pasadena 91101)

      Presented by Tunnel Magazine, an online and irl art community for young people, based in Los Angeles but drawing submissions from around the globe. Editors of the magazine, all teens, discuss the importance of creating and sharing art in a short panel. This will be followed by an open mic and artmaking workshop, focused on sharing ideas about the Teen Experience. Accompanied musically by Nathaniel Stephens and Timothy Franco.

      On Blooming is coordinated by Amelia Anthony, the magazine’s editor and Brandon Yung, a contributing writer.

      Featuring: Amelia Anthony, Timothy Franco, Brandon Yung, Nathaniel Stevens

      “Fusion-Ha!”: Manga Influences on American Comic Books
      Location: Pasadena Playhouse – The Makineni Library (39 S. El Molino Ave. Pasadena 91101)

      Sailor Moon! Pokemon! DragonBall Z! Today, we are seeing the impact manga and anime have had on American comics and culture, from Nickelodeon’s show Avatar the Last Airbender, to Marvel and DC’s manga-influenced artists Babs Tarr (Batgirl), Annie Wu (Black Canary), and Kris Anka (Captain Marvel), to the rise of award-winning webcomics Megatokyo and MFK. Join us in a discussion on manga’s effect on American comics and what that means for its future.

      Signing hosted after panel.

      Featuring: Johnny Parker II (Broken), Brandon Easton (Vampire Hunter D: Message From Mars), Lillian Diaz-Przybyl (Sparkler Monthly), Nilah Magruder (M.F.K. – coming September 2017, A Year of Marvels: The Unbeatable #1) & MOM (Issue #1: Strong Female Lead), Moderator

      The Ins and Outs of Indie Publishing
      Location: El Portal Restaurant – North Courtyard (695 E. Green St., Pasadena 91101)

      What does it mean to be an independent press? What are advantages of working with one? How do you get published on an indie press? Why is Los Angeles such a great city for independents? How have indie publishers responded to changes in technology, consumer tastes, and the rise of social media? These are just some of the topics that will be covered in this informative panel discussion.

      Featuring: Neelanjana Banerjee (Kaya Press), Jessica Hundley (Hat & Beard Press), and C.P. Heiser (Unnamed Press), plus, Sam Silvas, an author on Silver Birch Press, and writer and editor Jaime Panqueva; Teena Apeles of Narrated Objects, Organizer

      SATURDAY, MAY 20 – SUNDAY, MAY 21

      8:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.

      “Expressing Feelings Through Art” Annual Art Exhibition
      Location: Art Center College of Design, South Campus (950 S. Raymond Avenue (& Glenarm Street)

      Light Bringer Project presents works created by L.A. County High School Youth accompanied by written statements expressing the emotions in their art.

      FREE. Open for Viewing Saturday & Sunday. Located off Site at Art Center College of Design, South Campus, 950 S. Raymond Avenue (& Glenarm Street).

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