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LITERARY WOMEN

Celebrating Women Authors Since 1982



Searching for Mercy Street, by author Linda Gray Sexton
Linda Gray Sexton, author of Searching for Mercy Street

Linda Gray Sexton

Linda Gray Sexton spares nothing and no one in her courageous memoir, Searching for Mercy Street. Her mother, Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Anne Sexton, committed suicide when Sexton was a twenty-one year old Harvard student. Her book reveals the pain, explores the gifts, and accepts the love in their tumultuous mother-daughter relationship. Sexton has written several novels, one of which, Points of Light, was adapted for the 1994 television movie Reunion,

Visit Linda Gray Sexton’s website › From 1996 Festival ›
Playwriting, by author Laura Shamas
Laura Shamas, author of Playwriting

Laura Shamas

Prize-winning playwright Laura Shamas has given Los Angeles three productions in recent months: Delicacies; Telling Time; and Lady-Like which will open in Philadelphia and New York soon. Another twelve of her plays have been produced and eight are in publication, together with her new book Playwriting.

Visit Laura Shamas’s website › From 1992 Festival ›
Evelyn Sharenov, author of Dreams in the Cathedral of Moonlight

Evelyn Sharenov

Evelyn Sharenov, who lives in Long Beach, writes poetry ranging from her relationships with her daughter to her European origins via Ellis Island. We are hearing from her as her first “chapbook” of poetry is being published.

From 1987 Festival ›
Crows Over a Wheatfield, by author Paula Sharp
Paula Sharp, author of Crows Over a Wheatfield

Paula Sharp

Paula Sharp creates unforgettable characters who find themselves tossed about by powerful issues that cannot be ignored. This writer, attorney, translator, and parent has claimed the attention and praise of critics with, The Woman Who Was Not All There, Lost in Jersey City, Crows Over a Wheatfield, and her current I Loved You All.

Visit Paula Sharp’s website › From 2001 Festival ›
White Swan, Black Swan, by author Adrienne Sharp
Adrienne Sharp, author of White Swan, Black Swan

Adrienne Sharp

In White Swan, Black Swan, Adrienne Sharp, once a ballerina herself, writes about the ballet world that she once knew intimately. She has created twelve interconnected and elegant short stories about the lives of professional dancers for whom fanatical devotion, emotional stress, and physical pain are the prices paid for success in this most demanding of the arts.

From 2002 Festival ›
A Jury of Her Peers: American Women Writers from Anne Bradstreet to Annie Prolx, by author Elaine Showalter
Elaine Showalter, author of A Jury of Her Peers: American Women Writers from Anne Bradstreet to Annie Prolx

Elaine Showalter

Critic, feminist, and leading scholar of women’s literature, ELAINE SHOWALTER is the author most recently of A Jury of Her Peers: American Women Writers from Ann Bradstreet to Annie Proulx. The work is the first comprehensive history of American women writers from the 17th to 21st centuries and follows by 30 years her groundbreaking work, A Literature of Their Own: British Women Novelists from Bronte to Lessing. A professor emerita of Princeton University, she is a founding scholar of feminist literary criticism.

From 2011 Festival ›
Flowers in Salt, by author Sharon Sievers
Sharon Sievers, author of Flowers in Salt

Sharon Sievers

Flowers in Salt is Sharon Sievers engrossing study of the birth of feminist consciousness in modern Japan. Sievers chronicles the early struggles of Japanese women - often against formidable odds - to improve their status and create a fragile legacy for future generations. Flowers in Salt has been called a classic example of the best uses of women’s history. It is important reading for those interested in understanding modern Japan as well as women’s struggle for equality.

Visit Sharon Sievers’s website › From 1990 Festival ›
The Size of the World, by author Joan Silber
Joan Silber, author of The Size of the World

Joan Silber

Novelist and short story writer JOAN SILBER received the Hemingway Foundation/PEN Award for her first book, Household Words, and was a National Book Awards finalist. Her stories have been published in The New Yorker, Ploughshares, Paris Review and other magazines. Her most recent books are Ideas of Heaven and The Size of the World. She teaches at Sarah Lawrence College.

Visit Joan Silber’s website › From 2010 Festival ›
Babe in Paradise, by author Marisa Silver
Marisa Silver, author of Babe in Paradise

Marisa Silver

MARISA SILVER is the author of Baby in Paradise, a short story collection that was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year and Los Angeles Times Best Book 2001, and No Direction Home, a first novel which establishes her as on the the new literary voices of contemporary Los Angeles.

Visit Marisa Silver’s website › From 2007 Festival ›
Fair and Tender Ladies, by author Lee Smith
Lee Smith, author of Fair and Tender Ladies

Lee Smith

Lee Smith’s writing “…sparkles like diamonds with all the diamond’s cutting edge,” revealing keen insights into small-town Southern life. Readers delight in Smith’s deft interweaving of lyric prose and richly comic scenes in her highly praised novels, which include, Family Linen, Fair and Tender Ladies, and Saving Grace, and in her three collections of stories, the latest of which is News of the Spirit.

Visit Lee Smith’s website › From 2000 Festival ›
Presto, by author Roberta Smoodin
Roberta Smoodin, author of Presto

Roberta Smoodin

Meditations on the Meaning of Magic
Roberta Smoodin, author of Presto!

From 1983 Festival ›
Ursus Major, by author Roberta Smoodin
Roberta Smoodin, author of Ursus Major

Roberta Smoodin

Go Anywhere, Do Anything, Be Anyone - The Magic of Writing
Roberta Smoodin, author of Presto and Ursus Major, talks about the liberation inherent in the act of writing. Ms. Smoodin is currently working on a novel concerned with the problems of biography and love triangle; and illusion and reality.

From 1984 Festival ›
Lotus Eaters, by author Tatjana Soli
Tatjana Soli, author of Lotus Eaters

Tatjana Soli

A finalist for the 2010 Bellwether Prize, TATJANA SOLI’s debut novel, The Lotus Eaters, provides a unique and multilayered perspective of the Vietnam War through the eyes of a woman among men, a female photojournalist. A graduate of Stanford University and the Warren Wilson College, Ms. Soli lives in Orange County.

Visit Tatjana Soli’s website › From 2011 Festival ›
Stone Arabia, by author Dana Spiotta
Dana Spiotta, author of Stone Arabia

Dana Spiotta

Dana Spiotta is the author of Stone Arabia, a National Book Critics Circle Award Finalist and a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. Her previous novels are Eat the Document, which was a National Book Award Finalist, and Lightning Field, which was a Los Angeles Times Best Book of the West. Spiotta has received a Guggenheim Fellowship and a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship.

Visit Dana Spiotta’s website › From 2013 Festival ›
The Women Poets in English, by author Ann Stanford
Ann Stanford, author of The Women Poets in English

Ann Stanford

Trampling Out The Vintage
Robin Johnson PhD., poet-in-residence at Pepperdine. Ann Stanford, PhD., poet, and editor of The Women Poets in English.

From 1983 Festival ›
Because a Fire Was in My Head, by author Lynn Stegner
Lynn Stegner, author of Because a Fire Was in My Head

Lynn Stegner

LYNN STEGNER’s most recent novel, Because a Fire Was in My Head, was the recipient of the William Faulkner-William Wisdom Award for Best Novel of 2005. Her soul-felt portrait of a lost woman is “authentically compassionate as it is unsparing, a rare feat in fiction and in life.” Ms. Stegner has written three other award-winning novels and is currently at work on a collection of short stories.

Visit Lynn Stegner’s website › From 2009 Festival ›
The Writer on Her Work, Volumes I & II, by author Janet Sternburg
Janet Sternburg, author of The Writer on Her Work, Volumes I & II

Janet Sternburg

What makes women write? In The Writer on Her Work, Volumes I & II, Janet Sternburg has gathered answers from more than three dozen major American women writers. Authors as diverse as Alice Walker, Joan Didion and Jan Morris talk about what it means to be a woman and a writer. Sternburg’s work provides an excellent guide to some of the most important and interesting women writing today.

Visit Janet Sternburg’s website › From 1992 Festival ›
Second Hand Coat, by author Ruth Stone
Ruth Stone, author of Second Hand Coat

Ruth Stone

Ruth Stone is a eminent poet, mentioned for the Pulitzer Prize. She wrote In An Iridescent Time, Topography and Other Poems, Unknown Messages and Cheap. The reader in The Norton Anthology of Literature by Women will see her own sisters and mother, friends, and perhaps herself. Rarely stuffy, her poems seem to say life is good no matter how hard. Stone has worked as a poet-in-residence and teacher, raised three children, and involved herself with drum music, bus travel and the women’s liberation movement. Her newest collection of poems is Second Hand Coat.

Visit Ruth Stone’s website › From 1988 Festival ›
Aquaboogie: A Novel in Stories, by author Susan Straight
Susan Straight, author of Aquaboogie: A Novel in Stories

Susan Straight

Susan Straight writes from the unique perspective of a white woman immersed in the black community in which she lives. Her gifts are acute perception and a breathtaking ability to express what her heart discovers. The epiphanies of Aquaboogie: A Novel in Stories illuminate the delicate balance Straight’s characters maintain as they evolve within their culture and the wider world. Her second novel is Living Large.

Visit Susan Straight’s website › From 1992 Festival ›
Olive Kitteridge, by author Elizabeth Strout
Elizabeth Strout, author of Olive Kitteridge

Elizabeth Strout

ELIZABETH STROUT is the author of three novels: Amy and Isabelle, which won the Los Angeles Times Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction, Abide With Me, a national bestseller and Book Sense pick, and her latest book, the wonderfully rich and unforgettable, Olive Kitteridge. Her short stories have been published in numerous magazines, including The New Yorker and O, The Oprah Magazine.

Visit Elizabeth Strout’s website › From 2009 Festival ›
Cane River, by author Lalita Tademy
Lalita Tademy, author of Cane River

Lalita Tademy

LALITA TADEMY, in her debut novel, Cane River, recounts with compelling detail the lives of her matriarchal ancestors who were born into slavery in pre-Civil War Louisiana. Tademy describes her historical novel, an Oprah’s Book Club selection, as a work of fiction that is “deeply rooted in years of research, historical fact and family lore.” This universal story of strong-willed survivors is illustrated with documents and evocative photographs.

Visit Lalita Tademy’s website › From 2005 Festival ›
Vaclav & Lena, by author Haley Tanner
Haley Tanner, author of Vaclav & Lena

Haley Tanner

Haley Tanner’s breakout novel, Vaclav & Lena, is a magical story about the strength and endurance of love. Her poignant tale of two Russian immigrant children who meet in an ESL class in Brooklyn will steal your heart as you follow the story of these unforgettable protagonists, the endearing budding magician, Vaclav, and his “lovely assistant,” Lena.

Visit Haley Tanner’s website › From 2012 Festival ›
How To Pronounce Knife, by author Souvanhkam Thammavongsa
Souvanhkam Thammavongsa, author of How To Pronounce Knife

Souvanhkam Thammavongsa

With spare prose and a subtle mastery of tone, Souvankham Thammavongsa draws upon her childhood to offer glimpses into the daily lives of refugees: their desires, disappointments, and triumphs. Born in a Lao refugee camp in Thailand, Thammavongsa was raised in Toronto where she still resides. Her personal journey empowers this debut collection of fiction. How to Pronounce Knife,“cuts to the core of the immigrant reality like a knife – however you pronounce it.”

Purchase from Creating Conversations › Visit Souvanhkam Thammavongsa’s website › From 2022 Festival ›
Romancing the Stone, by author Diane Thomas
Diane Thomas, author of Romancing the Stone

Diane Thomas

Diane Thomas….The success of Romancing the Stone turned this 33-year-old Long Beach screenwriter into Hollywood’s Cinderella of 1984. “Hollywood loves an overnight success, ” says Ms. Thomas, “but, as everyone knows, it’s never overnight.”

From 1985 Festival ›
Isak Dinesen: The Life of a Storyteller, by author Judith Thurman
Judith Thurman, author of Isak Dinesen: The Life of a Storyteller

Judith Thurman

Judith Thurman’s Isak Dinesen:The Life of a Storyteller is the result of penetrating research into the private world of the author of Out of Africa. This widely travelled New Yorker is a translator and a contributor to Vogue, Ms., Cosmopolitan and the Village Voice, as well as poet, anthologist and and associate producer of Out of Africa starring Meryl Streep.

From 1987 Festival ›


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