Celebrating Women Authors Since 1982

Presto, by author Roberta Smoodin
Roberta Smoodin, author of Presto

Roberta Smoodin

Meditations on the Meaning of Magic

Morning Session
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

Morning Session
Ann Stanford, PhD., poet, and editor of The Women Poets in English is joined by Robin Johnson PhD., poet-in-residence at Pepperdine for this discussion.

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 ›
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 ›
Irma Voth, by author Miriam Toews
Miriam Toews, author of Irma Voth

Miriam Toews

Miriam Toews’ recently released novel, Irma Voth, explores the inner life of a young woman living in an isolated Mennonite community. It is a similar theme to her award-winning novel A Complicated Kindness. Miriam’s other works are The Flying Troutmans, a novel that affirms the bonds of family; and Swing Low: A Life, a moving memoir about her manic-depressive father.

From 2012 Festival ›
How to Prepare for Your High School Reunion and Other Midlife Musing, by author Susan Allen Toth
Susan Allen Toth, author of How to Prepare for Your High School Reunion and Other Midlife Musing

Susan Allen Toth

Susan Allen Toth was born in Ames, Iowa in 1940. She writes of her years there with wit and an eye for remembered detail in Blooming: A Small Town Girlhood, which in 1981 received the New York Times Book Review Notable Book Award. It’s sequel, Ivy Days: Making My Way Out East, brings us universally recognized moments and characters from the tumultuous college years. Her most recent book is How to Prepare for Your High School Reunion and Other Midlife Musings.

Visit Susan Allen Toth’s website › From 1989 Festival ›
Dreaming Water, by author Gail Tsukiyama
Gail Tsukiyama, author of Dreaming Water

Gail Tsukiyama

GAIL TSUKIYAMA was born in San Francisco, California, to a Chinese mother and a Japanese father. Initially a poet, she now uses her cross-cultural experiences in all her novels, the latest of which is Dreaming Waters. She teaches at San Francisco State Universality and is book review editor for the on-line magazine Pacific Rim Voices.

From 2003 Festival ›
Makai, by author Kathleen Tyau
Kathleen Tyau, author of Makai

Kathleen Tyau

Reflecting her own background of mixed race and traditions, Kathleen Tyau’s widely acclaimed novels play out against the lush background of Hawaiian cultures and landscapes. The deeply layered, interwoven strands of both Makai and A Little Too Much Is Enough result in works that are, according to The Asian Reprter, “entertaining, innovative, and emotionally satisfying.”

From 2002 Festival ›
The Far Field, by author Madhuri Vijay
Madhuri Vijay, author of The Far Field

Madhuri Vijay

In her debut novel, The Far Field, Madhuri Vijay follows a young Indian woman on an odyssey for a lost figure from her childhood to seek resolution of uncertainties about her deceased mother. It is a journey that takes her from her privileged life in Southern India to a remote Himalayan village in the troubled region of Kashmir; and unwittingly, to the brink of a devastating political and personal reckoning.

Purchase from Creating Conversations › Visit Madhuri Vijay’s website ›
From 2020 Festival ›
The Moths and Other Stories, by author Helena Maria Viramontes
Helena Maria Viramontes, author of The Moths and Other Stories

Helena Maria Viramontes

Helena Maria Viramontes, another prizewinner, brings a unique insight into Chicano Literature. Born in East Los Angeles, a lecturer and short story writer, her first book, The Moths and Other Stories, will be out this Spring.

From 1985 Festival ›
The Toss of a Lemon, by author Padma Viswanathan
Padma Viswanathan, author of The Toss of a Lemon

Padma Viswanathan

PADMA VISWANATHAN’s bestselling debut novel The Toss of a Lemon, was inspired by family history. It takes the reader into the private world of a Brahmin clan in early twentieth century India, a turbulent time of social and political change. At the novel’s heart is Sivakami, a young widow bound by rigorous rules, which she observes – with the exception of a single defiant act.

Visit Padma Viswanathan’s website › From 2010 Festival ›
Copper Crown, by author Lane Von Herzen
Lane Von Herzen, author of Copper Crown

Lane Von Herzen

Lane Von Herzen’s lyrical first novel Copper Crown portrays an interracial friendship that transcends the bigotry and violence of rural Texas in the early 1900’s. Published in 1991, it was a Literary Guild selection and a featured novel in B. Dalton’s Discover Great New Writers series. Von Herzen won the 1990 Los Angeles Arts Council Fiction Prize. That same year she received her M.F.A. degree from the University of California at Irvine.

Visit Lane Von Herzen’s website › From 1993 Festival ›
The Passion of Artemisia, by author Susan Vreeland
Susan Vreeland, author of The Passion of Artemisia

Susan Vreeland

Susan Vreeland has enjoyed a thirty-year career teaching English and ceramics while publishing newspaper pieces and short fiction. Her books about women include What Love Sees, the best seller Girl in Hyacinth Blue, and her recently released The Passion of Artemisia that explores a woman’s struggle to paint in seventeenth-century Italy.

Visit Susan Vreeland’s website › From 2002 Festival ›
The Submission, by author Amy Waldman
Amy Waldman, author of The Submission

Amy Waldman

In The Submission, a finalist in the Hemingway Foundation/PEN First Fiction Award, Amy Waldman creates a fascinating look at the jury’s selection in an anonymous competition for the 911 memorial. A Muslim-American wins and the jury goes into a tailspin. Waldman eloquently considers the multiple issues that spring from this event.

Visit Amy Waldman’s website › From 2013 Festival ›
The Dreamers, by author Karen Thompson Walker
Karen Thompson Walker, author of The Dreamers

Karen Thompson Walker

An ordinary town is transformed by a mysterious illness that triggers perpetual sleep in this mesmerizing novel from bestselling author Karen Thomas Walker. Written in luminous prose, The Dreamers is a breathtaking and beautiful novel, startling and provocative, about the possibilities contained within a human life—in our waking days and, perhaps even more, in our dreams.

Purchase from Creating Conversastions › Visit Karen Thompson Walker’s website ›
From 2020 Festival ›

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