Karen Abbott is the New York Times bestselling author of Sin in the Second City, American Rose, and, most recently, Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy, named one of the best books of 2014 by Library Journal and the Christian Science Monitor, Amazon, and Flavorwire, and optioned by Sony for a miniseries. A native of Philadelphia, she now lives in New York City, where she’s at work on her next book.Visit Karen Abbott’s website › 2016 Festival ›
Diane Ackerman, author of A Natural History of the Senses, A Natural History of Love, and other volumes of nonfiction and poetry, is a rare combination of poet and scientist. Recipient of a number of awards, grants and honors, she has taught at a number of universities. Ackerman’s work appears regularly in The New Yorker, National Geographic and The New York Times.Visit Diane Ackerman’s website › 1995 Festival ›
The Long And The Short Of It
Alice Adams, novelist and short story writer, is a frequent contributor to The New Yorker, and her stories have been included in many O’Henry collections. Novels: Rich Rewards, Listening to Billy, Families and Survivors. Short story collections: Beautiful Girl, To See You Again.
Jonis Agee, acclaimed for her short stories, poetry, and two novels: Sweet Eyes which holds small-town morality under a microscope; and Strange Angels that explores the power of familial and cultural myths of the contemporary West. South of Resurrection is due in 1997.Visit Jonis Agee’s website › 1997 Festival ›
Mia Alvar has written nine eye-opening and unforgettable short stories in her award winning debut novel, In The Country. The “country” in the title is the Philippines, and the stories focus on Filipinos uprooted from their homeland. Each story explores changes, loss and the desire to stay connected. Alvar’s writing is deeply compassionate and richly felt.Visit Mia Alvar’s website › 2017 Festival ›
Lesley Nneka Arimah, born in England of Nigerian parents, has lived in Africa and the United States where she received her BA degree from Florida State University and an MFA from Minnesota State University. She has received many Grants and Awards, and was recently short-listed for the prestigious Caine Prize for African Writing.
What It Means When A Man Falls From The Sky, her truly wonderful debut, is a book of twelve powerful short stories, each a gem of evocative prose and memorable characters trapped in heartbreaking situations with a moral dilemma that requires more thought and attention than a single reading can supply.Purchase from Creating Conversations › Visit Lesley Nneka Arimah’s website › 2018 Festival ›
Honored poet RAE ARMANTROUT’s eleventh book, Money Shot, was released this January to critical acclaim. Armantrout won the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for her thought-provoking book, Versed. She has been referred to as “the laureate of the everyday or uncanny,” and her work has been widely anthologized. She is a professor of writing and literature at UCSD.2011 Festival ›
Jami Attenberg is the New York Times best selling author of five novels including The Middlesteins and Saint Mazie. She has contributed essays about sex, urban life, technology and food to numerous publications, including The New York Times Magazine, The Wall Street Journal and Elle. She divides her time between New Orleans and Brooklyn.Visit Jami Attenberg’s website › 2016 Festival ›
Elizabeth Barber started a two month project for a 10-page article about women and weaving in prehistoric ages which became a 17-year project culminating in her work, Prehistoric Textiles: The Development of Cloth in the Neolithic and Bronze Ages. She has just completed her third book, Women’s Work: The First 20,000 Years, for which she is doing the illustrations. We are most grateful to Elizabeth Barber for filling in for us when Alice Kohler had to forgo her participation at the Festival.1993 Festival ›
ANDREA BARRETT is the author of six novels and two collections of short fiction, Ship Fever, which received the National Book Award, and Servants of the Map, a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. A MacArthur fellow, she’s also received Guggenheim and NEA fellowships. She currently teaches at Williams College in Massachusetts.Visit Andrea Barrett’s website › 2008 Festival ›
When first-time author, Mary Ann Shaffer became too ill to finish her novel The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, she asked her niece ANNIE BARROWS to step in. The epistolary novel tells the story of a reporter in Post-World War II London who corresponds with a group of quirky Guernsey islanders. Ms. Barrows is also the author of the Ivy and Bean series of children’s books.Visit Annie Barrows’s website › 2009 Festival ›
Giaconda Belli’s novel, The Inhabited Woman, a political adventure romance, draws from her background as part of the Managuan upper crust and subsequent life as a Sandanista revolutionary. She and another became the last survivors of her cell. Her poetry, which celebrates equality, both political and sexual, has won the prestigious Casa de las Americas prize. Harlold Pinter describes her as “one of the most gifted writers to come out of Central America in the last ten years.”1996 Festival ›
Known for her imaginative prose, Aimee Bender has published three short story collections and two novels. Her most recent book, The Color Master, was a New York Times Notable Book for 2013. Bender’s award-winning short fiction has appeared in numerous publications, including Granta, GQ and Harper’s. She lives in Los Angeles and teaches creative writing at USC.Visit Aimee Bender’s website › 2015 Festival ›
Elizabeth Benedict knows women. In Slow Dancing she answers all the questions about how it was to be a liberated, college-educated career woman in the seventies. In Beginner’s Book of Dreams, she sensitively gives us a girl growing to womanhood in the fifties and sixties, and her mother with her forties and fifties history. This is a young novelist of strong power.Visit Elizabeth Benedict’s website › 1989 Festival ›
If any author can be said to capture the way women think, it is Elizabeth Berg, author of the best-selling Talk Before Sleep. Her insights into the human condition have led to six intensely moving novels exploring friendship, marriage, mortality, and love in its many varieties. Her most recent book, What We Keep, explores the confused, conflicted landscape of a mother-daughter relationship.1999 Festival ›
Unforgettable characters pop to life in Megan Mayhew Bergman’s first collection of short stories, Birds of a Lesser Paradise. The book earned a starred review from Publisher’s Weekly and raves from many quarters. No experience seems to have escaped the author’s eagle eye as she twists even the most mundane into something special.Visit Megan Mayew Bergman’s website › 2013 Festival ›
JUDY BLUNT’s memoir Breaking Clean, which received a Whiting Writers Award, is the antithesis of romanticized myths of the American West. Her beautifully crafted work illuminates the hard life on Montana cattle ranches forty years ago. Born into a third generation ranching family, married at eighteen into another, mother of three, Blunt struggled to escape the stifling confines of a patriarchal culture.2003 Festival ›
Laurel Ann Bogen, acclaimed poet/performer in Los Angeles, was nominated in 1991 for a Pulitzer Prize after publication of her book, The Burning. She was selected as Los Angeles’s “Best Female Poet/Performer” in 1989. Emotional and humorous, her work often reflects personal upheaval and passion gone astray. The voice is “sometimes fragile, as it confronts intense private fractures, and it is also humorous as it triumphs and heals.”Visit Laurel Ann Bogen’s website › 1993 Festival ›
…is the title of the newest collection of poetry by the versatile and gifted Kate Braverman. Novels: Lithium for Medea and Palm Latitudes. Other poetry collections: Milk Run and Lullaby for Sinners.
What’s Novel in California?
Jacqueline Briskin, author of Onyx, Paloverde and others.
Mae Briskin, who did not start writing until age 45, has achieved wide recognition for her collection of short stories, A Boy Like Astrid’s Mother. The book received the 1989 PEN American Center West Award for Fiction (Short Story Category), Los Angeles Times “Critics Choice” and other honors. Her exquisitely wrought stories restore the reader’s faith in humanity and give insight into the feelings and connections between people. She has a new book which will be available in the Fall of 19901990 Festival ›
GERALDINE BROOKS is the author of the novel March, which received the 2006 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. Her novel, People of the Book, is scheduled for release January 2008. She is also the author of Year of Wonders, Nine Parts of Desire and Correspondent. Brooks was correspondent for the Wall Street Journal in Bosnia, Somalia and the Middle East.Visit Geraldine Brooks’s website › 2008 Festival ›
The sisters in Eleanor Brown’s entertaining and engaging new novel, The Weird Sisters, had an unusual upbringing, listening to their professor father speak primarily in Shakespearean verse. Brown’s novel focuses on what happens when the adult sisters gather to care for their sick mother. Their “weirdness” is explored with humor, compassion, and poignancy. In true Shakespearean fashion, all’s well that ends well.Visit Eleanor Brown’s website › 2013 Festival ›
Dorothy Bryant, publisher of Ata Books in Berkeley, speaks with honesty to the humanity of those without money, privilege or position in a variety of pertinent and timely novels. The Kin of Ata Are Waiting for You is now a “cult classic,” A Day in San Francisco is relevant to the AIDS pandemic; and Ella Price’s Journal is a must reading for women. She achieves a splendid maturing in The Confessions of Madame Psyche.Visit Dorothy Bryant’s website › 1988 Festival ›