Saying ‘yes” to the world: Anthony Doerr reads for H-town

January 29, 2016, by

RM3_8019It felt electric when I walked down to my seat on Monday night for the highly anticipated, sold-out Inprint reading by Anthony Doerr.  Winner of the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for All the Light We Cannot See, Doerr’s novel about war-ravaged France has been on the New York Times bestseller list for the better part of two years.

There was so much interest in his visit to H-town that, for the first time, Inprint, in collaboration with Houston Public Media, live-streamed the reading.  In fact, tickets for Doerr’s event, part of the 2015-2016 Inprint Margarett Root Brown Reading Series, sold out in 90 minutes. According to St. John Flynn, Arts and Culture Director at Houston Public Media, more than a thousand people saw the reading online, and that number will rise, as it will soon be available on the Inprint website for those who still wish to partake.


As Rich Levy introduced Doerr, he surprised me by saying Doerr would be reading from a short story—his 2011 Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award Winner.  Doerr, who grew up in Cleveland, Ohio, has described himself as coming from a place where if you described yourself as a “writer,” you would be called “precocious or pretentious.”  Doerr, who is likeable and easy-going, certainly is not pretentious.  But he sure can write.  Continue reading

A whirlwind of poetry and translation comes to Houston

January 21, 2016, by

Kim Kyung-JuThe wonderful thing about literature is that you can travel the world without stepping outside your door. Houston’s diverse literary community celebrates that fact by presenting many authors from different parts of the world.

On Friday, January 22, to celebrate the English-language version of his bestselling collection, Korean poet Kim Kyung-Ju commences his debut tour through the United States at Asia Society Texas Center, in collaboration with Gulf Coast: A Journal of Literature and Fine Arts. Kim will read in concert with his Tucson-born, Seoul-based translator Jake Levine. The multi-lingual program also features Luisa Muradyan and Henk Rossouw, students from the Creative Writing Program at University of Houston (both are Inprint fellowship recipients), presenting translation and transnational work in Ukrainian and languages of South Africa, respectively.

A power house, Kim Kyung-Ju is one of the most distinguished young writers in Korea. His first volume of poetry, I Am a Season that Does Not Exist in the World, has sold over 20,000 copies. He is the author of over a dozen books of poetry, essays, and translation. Additionally, his poetic-dramas have been performed in Seoul and New York. Apart from writing, Kim has curated several art exhibitions, is the organizer of the Penguin Rhyme Club, and produces inter-disciplinary, collaborative projects with musicians and artists. Most recently he took part in the poetic hip-hop project Poetic Justice with the acclaimed Korean rapper MC Meta. Continue reading

Indie book presses are continuing to find great new talent

January 11, 2016, by

Indie book night imageAnother exciting evening of literary fun awaits Houstonians tonight as Brazos Bookstore presents Indie Book Night. Inprint blogger Erika Jo Brown interviewed Brazos’ Ben Rybeck to get a sneak peak on tonight’s event.

ERIKA: What can an attendee expect from Indie Press Night? What’s on the program?

BEN: For this event, editors from five different independent publishers (Archipelago, New Directions, Open Letter, Restless Books, Tyrant Books) will gather to drink beer, eat snacks, and talk with attendees about upcoming releases. Will there be hobnobbing? You bet. Networking? Duh. Jump rope? No. As ever, we’ll have books for sale—but wait (as they say), there’s more! The publishers will have some giveaways and prizes too. So basically, attendees can expect, to paraphrase Mark Twain, a hella wicked time.

ERIKA: How might attending this event satisfy a New Year’s resolution?

BEN: Come meet some editors—and then, years later, when you run into them at AWP (Association of Writers & Writing Programs Conference) as you hunt around for a home for your novel in which somebody walks and thinks for 200 pages…well, maybe the editor will remember your name! So if your New Year’s Resolution is to get a book published (or at least get a personalized “no”)—but I guess I shouldn’t make any promises. Just come! Continue reading