Monday, November 14, 2016

December 7th Readings: Tobias Carroll, D. Foy, Heather Rounds

We're back, and we're better than ever at our new location, Bird in Hand in Charles Village. This event takes place at 7 pm:

Heather Rounds’ debut novel There won the 2011 Emergency Press International Book Award and was published by the Press in 2013. Her poetry and short works of fiction have appeared in numerous publications, including PANK, Big Lucks, Smokelong Quarterly, and Atticus Review. Her novella, She Named Him Michael, is forthcoming from Ink Press. Visit her at

D. Foy is the author of the novels Made to Break and Patricide. His work has appeared in Guernica, Literary Hub, Salon, Hazlitt, Post Road, Electric Literature, BOMB, The Literary Review, Midnight Breakfast, The Scofield, and The Georgia Review, among others, and has been included in the books Laundromat, A Moment’s Notice, and Forty Stories: New Writing from Harper Perennial.

Tobias Carroll is the managing editor of Vol.1 Brooklyn. His writing has been published by Bookforum, Men's Journal, Tin House, Hazlitt, and Rolling Stone. He is the author of the collection Transitory and the novel Reel. He's on Twitter at @TobiasCarroll.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

September 17th Readings: Michelle Brafman, Ron Tanner, Dana Cann, and Curtis Smith


Michelle Brafman is the author of the novels Washing the Dead and Bertrand Court. Her work has appeared in Tablet, Fifth Wednesday Journal, the Los Angeles Review of Books, and numerous other publications. She teaches fiction writing at the Johns Hopkins MA in Writing Program and lives in Glen Echo, Maryland with her husband and two children.
Ron Tanner's awards for writing include a Faulkner Society gold medal, a Pushcart Prize, a New Letters Award, a Best of the Web Award, and many others. His writing has been named "notable" in both Best American Essays and Best American Short Stories and he has won fellowships from the Michener/Copernicus Society, Sewanee Writers Conference, and the National Park Service, to name a few. He is the author of Missile Paradise (novel), A Bed of Nails (stories), Kiss Me Stranger (illustrated novel), and From Animal House to Our House (memoir). He teaches writing at Loyola University-Maryland and directs both the Marshall Islands Story Project ( and Preservation America ( He and his wife live on a historic farm called Good Contrivance Farm outside of Baltimore, MD, and run a DIY site called House Love:

Dana Cann is the author of a novel, Ghosts of Bergen County (Tin House Books). His short stories have been published in The Sun, The Massachusetts Review, The Gettysburg Review, Barrelhouse, Fifth Wednesday Journal, The Florida Review, and Blackbird, among other journals. He has received fellowships from the Maryland State Arts Council, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation. Dana earned his M.A. in Writing from Johns Hopkins University. He lives in Bethesda, Maryland, where he also teaches fiction workshops at The Writer’s Center.

Curtis Smith  has published over 100 stories and essays. His work has been cited by The Best American Short Stories, The Best American Mystery Stories, and The Best American Spiritual Writing. He’s worked with literary presses to publish a pair of flash-fiction chapbooks, three story collections, three novels, and an essay collection. 2016, Ig Publishing just released his latest book, Kurt Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse Five, as part of their bookmarked series.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

August 8th Reading: Jessica Anya Blau, James Magruder, David Olimpio, and Stephen Zerance

Jessica Anya Blau’s latest novel, The Trouble with Lexie, is out now! Jessica is also the author of The Wonder Bread Summer; Drinking Closer to Home; and the national bestseller, The Summer of Naked Swim Parties. Jessica’s books have been featured on CNN, NPR, The Today Show and in Vanity Fair,, Cosmo, Bust and other national media. Jessica’s books have been optioned for film and television. Recently, Jessica ghost-wrote a memoir that is coming out with HarperColllins in the fall of 2016. Jessica grew up in Southern California and currently divides her time between Baltimore and New York.

James Magruder’s fiction has appeared in The Gettysburg Review, New England Review, Subtropics, Bloom, The Normal School, Gargoyle, New Stories from the Midwest, and elsewhere. His début novel, Sugarless, was a finalist for a Lambda Literary Award and shortlisted for the 2010 William Saroyan International Writing Prize. His collection of stories, Let Me See It, was published by TriQuarterly Books/Northwestern University Press in 2014, and his novel, The Love Slaves of Helen Hadley Hall, by Queens Ferry Press in 2016. His adaptations of works by Molière, Marivaux, Lesage, Labiche, Gozzi, Dickens, Hofmannsthal, and Giraudoux have been staged on and off-Broadway, across the country, and in Germany and Japan. He is a four-time fellow of the MacDowell Colony and his writing has also been supported by the Kenyon Playwrights Conference and the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, where he was a Walter E. Dakin Fellow in Fiction. He teaches dramaturgy at Swarthmore College and fiction at UB. Visit him at

David Olimpio grew up in Texas, but currently lives and writes in Northern New Jersey. He believes that we create ourselves through the stories we tell, and that is what he aims to do every day. Usually, you can find him driving his truck around the Garden State with his dogs. He has been published in Barrelhouse, The Nervous Breakdown, The Austin Review, Rappahannock Review, Crate, and others. His debut nonfiction collection THIS IS NOT A CONFESSION (Awst Press, 2016) wants your eyeballs. You can find more about him at, including links to his writing and photography. He Tweets, Instagrams, and Tumbles as @notsolinear and would love for you to join him.

Stephen Zerance is the author of the chapbook Caligula’s Playhouse (Mason Jar Press, 2016). His poems have appeared in West Branch, Prairie Schooner, Quarterly West, Assaracus, and Knockout, among other journals, as well as on the websites of Lambda Literary and Split This Rock. He received his MFA from American University, where he received the Myra Sklarew award.

Friday, June 3, 2016

June 13th Readings: Paula Whyman, Sherrie Flick, Tara Laskowski, Laura Ellen Scott, and Art Taylor

Paula Whyman's writing has appeared McSweeney’s Quarterly, Ploughshares, Virginia Quarterly Review, The Washington Post, The Rumpus, and on NPR’s All Things Considered. She is a member of The MacDowell Colony Fellows Executive Committee. A music theater piece, “Transfigured Night,” based on a story in this collection, is in development with composer Scott Wheeler. A native of Washington, DC, she now lives in Maryland.
Sherrie Flick is author of the novel Reconsidering Happiness (Bison Books), the flash fiction chapbook I Call This Flirting (Flume), and the short story collection Whiskey, Etc. (Queen's Ferry Press, 2016). Her work has appeared in many journals and anthologies including Ploughshares, SmokeLong Quarterly, Flash Fiction Forward, and New Sudden Fiction. She lives in Pittsburgh and teaches in Chatham University's MFA and Food Studies programs.
Tara Laskowski's short story collection Bystanders was hailed by Jennifer Egan as "a bold, riveting mash-up of Hitchcockian suspense and campfire-tale chills." She is also the author of Modern Manners For Your Inner Demons, tales of dark etiquette. Her fiction has been published in the Norton anthology Flash Fiction International, Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine, Mid-American Review, and numerous other journals, magazines, and anthologies. Since 2010, she has been the editor of the online flash fiction journal SmokeLong Quarterly.
Laura Ellen Scott is the author of several novels including Death Wishing, a comic fantasy set in post-Katrina New Orleans, The Juliet, a western about the search for a cursed emerald in Death Valley, and the New Royal Mysteries series set in a fictional college/prison town in Ohio. The first New Royal Mystery is The Mean Bone in Her Body, will be released in late 2016. Born and raised in Northern Ohio, Laura now lives in Fairfax, Virginia and teaches creative writing at George Mason University.

Art Taylor is the author of On the Road with Del & Louise: A Novel in Stories, winner of this year's Agatha Award for Best First Novel and a finalist for the Anthony Award for Best First Novel. He also edited the collection Murder Under the Oaks, currently a finalist for the Anthony Award for Best Anthology. He has also won two Agatha Awards, the Anthony Award, the Macavity Award, and three consecutive Derringer Awards for his short fiction. He is an associate professor of English at George Mason University, and he contributes frequently to the Washington Post, the Washington Independent Review of Books, and Mystery Scene Magazine.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

May 23rd Readings: Elizabeth Hazen, Kurt Crisman, Michael Landweber, and Benjamin Warner

Elizabeth Hazen is a poet and essayist whose work has appeared in Best American Poetry 2013Southwest Review, The Threepenny ReviewThe Normal School, and other journals. She teaches English at Calvert School in Baltimore, Maryland. Chaos Theories is her first book.

Kurt Crisman is a Baltimore enthusiast and rugger, MARC train commuter, and writer. His publications included The Avenue and End of 83. Kurt was also a one-time participant in the Twitter Fiction Festival.

Michael Landweber lives and writes in Washington, DC. He is the author of two novels, “Thursday, 1:17 p.m.” (Coffeetown Press, 2016) and “We” (Coffeetown Press, 2013). His short stories have appeared in literary magazines such as Gargoyle, Fourteen Hills, Fugue, Barrelhouse, and American Literary Review. He is an Associate Editor at Potomac Review and a contributor for the Washington Independent Review of Books. Find out more at

Ben Warner has a novel called Thirst (Bloomsbury USA 2016). It came out in April. He teaches at Towson University.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

April 25th Readings: Robert Lopez, Sam Ligon, Gregg Wilhelm, and Elizabeth Gonzalez

Elizabeth Gonzalez’s debut story collection, The Universal Physics of Escape, won the 2015 Press 53 Short Fiction Award. Her stories have appeared in Best American Nonrequired Reading, New Stories from the Midwest, SolLit Selects, Greensboro Review, Post Road, and many other publications. In 2011, she received the Howard Frank Mosher Prize from Hunger Mountain for “The Speed of Sound,” and in 2012 she received the Tusculum Review Prize for “Shakedown.” She works as a freelance writer and editor in Lancaster, PA, where she lives with her husband and two daughters. Visit her at

In 2004, Gregg Wilhelm founded the nonprofit CityLit Project and acts as publisher of its CityLit Press imprint. A 2014 graduate of the University of Tampa’s M.F.A. in Creative Writing program, Gregg has since studied at the Sewanee Writers’ Conference and DISQUIET: International Literary Program in Lisbon, and was part of the first U.S. Publishers Delegation to Cuba organized by Publishers Weekly. Gregg regularly teaches literature, fiction, and publishing courses in the Odyssey Program at the Johns Hopkins University. He is currently the Director of Marketing and Enrollment Development for MICA Open Studies at the Maryland Institute College of Art. He lives in Highlandtown with his wife, Marik Moen, an assistant professor and Ph.D. candidate at the University of Maryland Baltimore’s School of Nursing, and their two daughters. Visit him at

Samuel Ligon is the author of two novels—Among the Dead and Dreaming and Safe in Heaven Dead— and two collections of stories, Wonderland, illustrated by Stephen Knezovich, and Drift and Swerve. He edits the journal Willow Springs, teaches at Eastern Washington University in Spokane, and is artistic director of the Port Townsend Writers’ Conference.

Robert Lopez is the author of two novels, Part of the World and Kamby Bolongo Mean River, and two story collections, Asunder and Good People. He lives in Brooklyn and teaches fiction writing at The New School, Pratt Institute, Columbia University, and the Solstice MFA Program at Pine Manor College.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

February 22 Readings: Amber Sparks, Tracy Dimond, Melissa Gerr

Amber Sparks is the author of the just-released short story collection The Unfinished World and Other Stories, out from Liveright. She’s also the author of a previous short story collection, May We Shed These Human Bodies, and co-author of a hybrid novel, the Desert Places, with Robert Kloss and illustrator Matt Kish. She blogs sporadically and posts stuff sometimes on her website,, and wastes time generally on Twitter @ambernoelle. She currently lives in Washington, DC, with her husband, infant daughter, and two cats, though she originally hails from the upper Midwest.
Tracy Dimond co-curates Ink Press Productions. Her latest chapbook, I Want Your Tan, was released in May by Ink Press. She is also the author of Grind My Bones Into Glitter, Then Swim Through The Shimmer (NAP 2014) and Sorry I Wrote So Many Sad Poems Today (Ink Press 2013), winner of Baltimore City Paper’s Best Chapbook. Her poems have recently appeared or are forthcoming in The Nervous Breakdown, Fact-Simile, Barrelhouse, Pinwheel, Sink Review, and other places. She holds her MFA in Creative Writing & Publishing Arts from the University of Baltimore. She teaches composition and works in library event programming.

Melissa Gerr uses words, audio, and visuals to make stories. She is a senior reporter and managing editor at the Baltimore Jewish Times and her stories also appear in Style Magazine and the Baltimore City Paper. She’s written and produced for WYPR, PBS, Oregon Public Broadcasting, Annenberg Foundation, and a bunch of universities through the Laureate Education empire. She met Jen when she tried her hand at fiction and thought the instruction was fabulous, it’s still the telling-true-to-life stuff that she has the most fun at creating. She most recently published an article in the Baltimore City Paper called "Sugar Mountain: The Night Shift at Domino Sugar." She most recently published an article in the Baltimore City Paper called "Sugar Mountain: The Night Shift at Domino Sugar."

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

March 21th Readings: Max Weiss, Rafael Alvarez, Baynard Woods, and Abby Higgs

A native of New York, Max Weiss attended Bennington College, where she double majored in music and literature. After graduation, she moved to Baltimore, where she worked as a staff writer, columnist, and film critic for the Baltimore City Paper. She also wrote the award-winning “Nice Girl” humor column for the Baltimore City Paper. In 1992, Max began a longstanding relationship with Baltimore’s talk radio station, AM 1090 WBAL. For six years, she co-hosted a weekly movie review show with host Allan Prell until he left the station. For 15 years, as “Media Max,” she did a bi-weekly pop culture and film segment with WBAL’s “Dave Durian and the Morning Team.” In 1994, Max Weiss was hired by Baltimore Magazine as a staff writer. She now serves as the magazine’s managing editor. From 1998-2006, Max was the co-host of the nationally-syndicated weekly radio show, “Max and Mike on the Movies.” Since 2006, she has also been the weekend film critic for WBAL TV. A member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association and the Women’s Film Critics Circle, Max is also a frequent television guest, emcee, and lecturer in the Baltimore region. She blogs at,, and She is also a serious amateur cellist.

Rafael Alvarez was born in Baltimore in 1958 and educated in local Catholic schools, graduating in 1981 from Loyola University of Maryland with a degree in English. He landed in the sports department of the Baltimore Sun as a teenager and learned to write on the City Desk, where he worked as a neighborhood reporter and rewrite man for the next 20 years. A former staff writer for the HBO drama, The Wire, Alvarez is the author of nine books, all concerned with a single subject: the City of Baltimore. His most recent collection of fiction - Crabtown, USA - was published by PMMP in 2015. His website is

Baynard Woods writes about Baltimore for The Guardian and is editor at large for the City Paper. He is the author of Coffin Point: The Strange Cases of Ed McTeer, Witchdoctor Sheriff, which is being produced as a television series, and is working on a book about people who believe in the Greek gods. His erstwhile column Conflicts of Interest was awarded Best Column by the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies. He writes libretti for Rhymes with Opera and sings in the rock 'n' roll band The Barnyard Sharks.
Abby Higgs is a graduate of the University of Baltimore's MFA in Creative Writing & Publishing Arts program. Her work has appeared in or is forthcoming from The Guardian, Salon, The Rumpus, Freerange Nonfiction, Catapult, Bustle, VICE, and The Barely South Review. She is the Assistant Editor of Queen Mob's Teahouse - an international online literary journal based in London. More of her words can be found at