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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.


Multnomah County Library is one of the nation’s busiest library systems but it is also one of the smallest serving a metro area in the U.S. Measure 26-211 addresses our outdated buildings and technology infrastructure. Vote “YES!” to help librarians reach more people with life-changing programs and services.

Learn more at YES for Our Libraries.


Portland State Creative Writing 2020-21 Reading Series
Friday, October 23 | 4:00 p.m. PT
PSU’s Creative Writing Reading Series continues with poet, novelist, and publisher Renee Gladman. Gladman composes prose and poetry that tests the potential of the sentence with mapmaking precision and curiosity. . Click here for free shipping on any featured author’s title from PSU partner Broadway Books.


Pop-up Magazine Fall Issue: Mama’s Babies
Friday, October 16 | 6:00 p.m.
Filmmaker and photographer Adrian Burrell has been documenting his family’s life in West Oakland since high school. Now, he’s turning his lens on the woman it all started with: his 94-year-old grandmother.

FREEMAN’S: Best New Writings on Love (Litquake 2020)
Saturday, October 17 | 5:00 p.m. PT
In a time of contentiousness and flagrant abuse, it often feels as if our world is run on hate. Invective. Cruelty and sadism. But is it possible the greatest and most powerful force is love? Editor John Freeman, Robin Coste Lewis, Tommy Orange, and Matt Summell discuss.View the full Litquake schedule here.

Know Sci-Fi & Fantasy: Virtual Think & Drink with Walidah Imarisha (Deschutes Public Library)
Monday, October 19, 2020 | 6:00–7:00 p.m.
Writer and educator Walidah Imarisha will explore the idea of “visionary fiction,” fantastical art that aids in imagining and building new just futures. She will do so engaging with the work of Octavia E. Butler, renowned Black feminist science fiction writer and public intellectual. Connecting science fiction to social change, Imarisha will show the necessity of imagination to change the world.

Connect in Place: Housing and Belonging
October 20 | 5:00 p.m. PT | Register here
Housing and homelessness is a visible and divisive issue in local media, in politics, and across the different communities within our state. This conversation will explore common assumptions and perspectives about the experience of houselessness/homelessness and seek to answer the question, How do we decide who “belongs” in our community?

The National Book Foundation’s 15th Annual 5 Under 35 Ceremony (Miami Book Fair)
Tuesday, October 20 | 7:00 p.m. EST / 4:00 p.m. PST
Honoring five fiction writers under the age of 35: 2020 Portland Book Festival authors Raven Leilani (Luster) and C Pam Zhang (How Much of These Hills Is Gold); and K-Ming Chang (Bestiary), Naima Coster (Halsey Street), and Fatima Farheen Mirza (A Place for Us).

Portland Virtual StorySLAM: Disguises
Tuesday, October 20 | 7:30 p.m. PT | $10
With host Elina Lim. DISGUISES: Prepare a five-minute story about going undercover. Fake mustaches, heel lifts, cloaks, a nurse’s uniform, or that giant hotdog costume. Mental disguises, like the Ph.D. you earned to appease your mother; or the “sensitive guy” persona you thought might work in your favor. Chameleon-level concealment. Pranks and mistaken identities. Wolves gussied up like lambs. The Trojan Horse, the Mighty Oz and now … you!
Across Today’s Tomorrow: IPRC BIPOC Artists & Writers in Residence Group Show
Saturday, October 24 | 6:00 p.m. PST | Carnation Contemporary *
Across Today’s Tomorrow features prints, writing, videos, and textiles of Salimatu Amabebe,Laura Medina & Angela SaenzJessica Mehta, Paulina RamirezMelanie Stevens, and Twin Chicken.
What unifies the pieces in this show is a concern with archiving histories, places, and narratives that are often pushed to the edges or that have been intentionally erased. Show hangs until November 22.
* Socially distanced, masks required, no more than four people at a time in the gallery.

Litcrawl 2020 Global
October 24 | 10:30 a.m.—10:30 p.m. PT

Litquake closes out its 2020 festival with an all-day closing Lit Crawl! Authors include Alia Volz, Charlie Jane Anders, Jessica Hagedorn, Lisa Brown, Nato Green, and others. Full schedule here.

Magical Feminism (Electric Lit Salon)
Monday, October 26 | 3:00 p.m PST
Electric Literature executive director Halimah Marcus talks to Marie-Helene Bertino and Elissa Washuta about coping with trauma and subverting expectations at the intersection of magic and reality. They will discuss how magic works in practice and as a rhetorical device in fiction.

Consider This with Jamelle Bouie
Tuesday, October 27 | 5:00 p.m. PT
One week before Election Day, New York Times columnist Jamelle Bouie will talk with Oregon Humanities about democracy, moments of transition, and the significance of this particularly charged political moment. there will be a breakout conversation on Zoom for viewers to discuss their responses to the conversation. To participate in the breakout conversation, register here.

Virtual Festivals

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

Lit Crawl Austin Goes Virtual
October 31–November 15
Lineup to be announced soon!

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


Authors League Fund
Now accepting applications from writers experiencing income loss due to COVID-19.
The Fund exists to help professional writers continue their careers with dignity by providing no-strings-attached “loans” to pay for pressing expenses. Repayment of this emergency support is not required. For guidelines and to apply, click here.

Oregon Humanities Magazine Call for Submissions
Deadline: November 11

We’re looking for Posts—short essays from readers— for the December issue of Oregon Humanities magazine on the topic of “feed.”  We want to hear stories about food, consumption, nourishment, and sustenance. What keeps our systems running, and what feeds our spiritual, social, and intellectual hungers?

What We’re Reading

The Skin of a Teenage Boy Is Not Alive by Senaa Ahmad (Nightmare Magazine)

“Parveen isn’t there when Benny falls off the roof. But everyone knows the story. Benny and his dumb demon cult.”

Never Say You Can’t Survive: Find Your Voice and Make It LOUD by Charlie Jane Anders (Tor.com)
 “The most important thing you can do to protect and nurture yourself, during dystopian times, is to nurture your own voice as a writer. Hone it, strengthen it, amplify it. Find your style, and your own way of stringing words together. Because this is another way of reminding yourself who you are, and that your voice, in particular, is vital and indispensable.


Portland Latin American Film Festival: Tesoros
Saturday, October 24 | 2:00 p.m. PST | Tickets $12
Stream-at-home Film Festival (Hollywood Theater)
Jacinta, a six-year-old girl, guides us through the story of siblings Dylan (6), Andrea (11), and Lucas (2 1/2) who arrive at a fishing community on Mexico’s Pacific coast and set off with their new local friends on a journey in search of long-lost pirate loot left behind by Francis Drake centuries ago.

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