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Community News

In the Community: Upcoming Online Literary Events and Connections

Each week, Literary Arts staff will round up news, events, and more happening in the literary community. Let us know if you have any events or book news to share.


2020 Governor’s Arts Awards Virtual Celebration (Oregon Arts Commission)
Saturday, September 12
7:00 – 8:00 p.m.
Join Governor Kate Brown and the Oregon Arts Commission to celebrate the recipients of the 2020 Governor’s Arts Awards!Oregon’s highest honor for exemplary service to the arts, the Governor’s Arts Awards recognize and honor individuals and organizations who have made significant contributions to the arts in Oregon.

Book Review Live: The Politics of Fiction (New York Times)
Wednesday, September 16 at 1:30 p.m. PT. 
FREE | RSVP here
This moment can be difficult to grasp. Can fiction help us to make sense of it all and better understand what lies ahead? From The New York Times, Book critic Parul Sehgal welcomes Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Ayad Akhtar, and novelists Marlon James and Rachel Kushner to discuss.

Creating Comics Without Words with Jonathan Hill (The Believer)
September 11 at 4:00 p.m. (PT)
For this week’s installment in The Believer’s free comics workshop series, we hope you’ll join us Friday, September 11 at 7 p.m. EDT / 4 p.m. PDT, for Creating Comics Without Words with Jonathan Hill. Register here

You can learn more about Jonathan’s book Odessa, Volume 1 via our friends at Bookshop, where proceeds help The Believer and independent bookstores. 

DREAMs Deferred Live (The Immigrant Story)
Saturday, September 12 & Thursday, September 17
Broadcasting From St. Andrew Lutheran Church Beaverton, Oregon via Facebook
Stories have power. Yet, time and time again, the stories we most need to hear often go unheard. Despite the historic Supreme Court ruling in June protecting DACA recipients, there are a number of forces threatening the rights of undocumented immigrants. With more stories coming from our undocumented community members, now is the time to listen.

The Paris Review Fall Issue Launch
Wednesday, September 23
6:00 p.m. Eastern Time
Online via Zoom | Free (registration required)
Join The Paris Review’s editor, Emily Nemens, for the Fall issue launch, featuring several contributors to no. 234. The program will include readings of poetry and prose from the issue.

Portland Virtual StorySLAM
(The Moth)
Tuesday, September 15
Doors open 7:15 p.m. | 7:30 p.m. Stories begin

Host: Elina Lim
Theme: Silenced
Prepare a five-minute story about suppression. Interrupted, talked over, censored, shushed. Pleading the Fifth about your sister’s boyfriend, your friend’s new haircut, your mother-in-law’s famous jello salad. Being told to hold your tongue, hush your mouth, or button your lip. OR the time you pushed back, shouted out, and brandished your words as weapons. Regale us with tales of words eaten…or spoken.

Virtual Festivals

AJC Decatur Book Festival presented by Emory University 2020
September 4 – October 4

Brooklyn Book Festival
September 28 – October 5

Fall into the Arts: A Radio Festival of Local Performances (All Classical Portland)
This nine-part concert broadcast series will air on Thursdays at 7pm PT, September 24 through November 19, in Portland at 89.9FM and streaming worldwide at allclassical.org

Library of Congress National Book Festival
September 25-27

Litquake 2020 (San Francisco’s Literary Festival)
October 8–24

TBA:20 (Portland Institute for Contemporary Arts)
September 10 – 20
TBA:20 is a request to take your time, to engage at your own pace, and to take care of yourself, each other, and your broader communities in all the ways we are called to do so now. Portland Institute for Contemporary Art has championed the practice of contemporary artists since 1995; and in this year, our 25th year, we need to talk, share, experience, process, and open our eyes to new possibilities–to the newly possible. TBA:20 is a platform for this much-needed exchange.


Writer As Fearless Citizen Workshop Featuring Cheryl Strayed
Saturday, September 26, 10:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. P.T.
Join us for this extraordinary *benefit* writing workshop featuring bestselling writer Cheryl Strayed where we will explore the role of the writer-citizen in these unprecedented times. This is a full day 10:00-3:30PM (Pacific Time) Writing Workshop with a morning AND afternoon session, including a 1 hour lunch from 12:00-1:00 PM. The morning session (10:00-12:00) will be hosted by memoirist, novelist, and nonfiction writer, Albert Flynn DeSilver, and include innovative “warm-up” writing exercises, talk and discussion. The afternoon session from 1:00-3:00PM will feature bestselling writer Cheryl Strayed—author of WILD (memoir), TINY BEAUTIFUL THINGS (nonfiction), TORCH (fiction) Cheryl will be offering innovative writing exercises, a lecture/talk, discussion and Q&A. 3:00-3:30 will be for final sharing and closing remarks. A minimum 25% of net profit proceeds will benefit the Black Lives Matter movement via the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. The session will also be recorded!

What We’re Reading

We Will Emerge (PEN America)
How can we be better in the wake of our current crises? 

This was the question sparked by a conversation between Wajahat Ali and Dave Eggers. The question wasput to over 100 writers, actors, activists, politicians, reporters, and artists, all of whom were asked to respond to the prompt: 

“We will emerge… and find a better way.” 

The result is a series of short essays immersing readers in the thoughts and stirrings of some of the greatest thinkers and luminaries of our current moment. Participants include Chelsea ClintonRoxane GayJulia AlvarezMin Jin LeeLynn NottagePeter SagalIshmael ReedJelani CobbReza AslanAlyssa MilanoMayor Michael TubbsMaya Wiley, and many more.


John Lewis: Good Trouble
Online Panel Discussion (Portland’5 Centers for the Arts)
Monday, September 21 at 4:00 p.m.

Join Portland’5 Centers for the Arts and audiences from more than 50 arts nonprofits across the country for a screening of the riveting new documentary John Lewis: Good Trouble followed by a live virtual panel on Monday, September 21 at 4PM – featuring the film’s director and civil rights advocates as they talk about Representative Lewis’s legacy of fearless protest and how we can keep his campaign for justice alive.

First, rent the film directly from Magnolia Pictures for $12 (available through September 30). This rental allows you exclusive access to two other videos: Film of an interview Congressman Lewis gave to Oprah Winfrey shortly before his death earlier this year, as well as a one-hour panel, recorded in July, between the film’s director, Dawn Porter, and two of the other original Freedom Riders, Dr. Bernard Lafayette and Dr. Rip Patton. Your rental also includes a $5 donation to Portland’5!

Then, on Monday, September 21 at 4PM, join us for a live virtual panel with director Dawn PorterRas J. Baraka, Mayor of Newark, NJ, Khalil Gibran Muhammad, Professor of History, Race and Public Policy at Harvard Kennedy School and Director of the Institutional Antiracism and Accountability Project, and Lonnie G. Bunch III, Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution. Panel produced by New Jersey Performing Arts Center, Newark, NJ.
 Register for the Zoom discussion

Portland Latin American Film Festival
Starting Thursday, September 17–The Portland Latin American Film Festival brings its films online this year. Six films from six different countries (Argentina, Chile, Guatemala, Mexico, Switzerland, and Belgium) focusing on and celebrating the cultural diversity of Latin America. You can check out the lineup and get your tickets now!


A Map of American Literature’s Most Epic Road Trips (Atlas Obscura)

Online Exhibition: Art and Race Matters: The Career of Robert Colescott (Portland Arts Museum)
While Art and Race Matters: The Career of Robert Colescott is currently open for visitors to safely see in person, this new online exhibition offers those still staying close to home the opportunity to experience the exhibition and watch an updated introduction video, along with videos from community partners.

Blog cover photo: by Jaredd Craig on Unsplash

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