Archives for category: Los Angeles Authors



Tonight, at Gatsby Books in Long Beach, California, Donna Hilbert will read from her new poetry collection, The Congress of Luminous Bodies (Aortic Press). So-Cal residents, this is the best way you could possibly spend a Thursday night (and most other nights!).

WHAT: Donna Hilbert reading from The Congress of Luminous Bodies

WHERE: Gatsby Books, 5523 E. Spring St., Long Beach, CA, 90808,

WHEN: 7 p.m. start

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Donna Hilbert’s latest poetry collection, The Congress of Luminous Bodies, was recently released by Aortic Books. Other publications include The Green Season, World Parade Books, a collection of poems, stories, and essays, now available in an expanded second edition. Donna appears in and her poetry is the text of the documentary Grief Becomes Me: A Love Story, a Christine Fugate film. Earlier books include Mansions and Deep Red from Event Horizon, Transforming Matter and Traveler in Paradise from Pearl Editions, and the short story collection Women Who Make Money and the Men Who Love Them from Staple First Editions (published in England). Poems in Italian can be found in Bloc notes 59 and in French in La page blanche, in both cases translated by Mariacristina Natalia Bertoli. New work is in recent or forthcoming issues of 5AM, Nerve Cowboy, Pearl, and Poets & Artists. Learn more at

Silver Birch Press is pleased to announce that Skylight Books, Los Angeles, will host a launch party for the Silver Birch Press BUKOWSKI ANTHOLOGY. So-Cal Buk (and book) lovers, please mark your calendars!

WHAT: Silver Birch Press BUKOWSKI ANTHOLOGY launch party and reading

WHERE: Skylight Books, 1818 N. Vermont Ave., Los Angeles, CA, 90027, 323-660-1175

WHEN: Sunday, September 22, 2013, 5-7 P.M.

More information about the event coming soon! 

(Cover art by Mark Erickson and Birgit Zartl)

Image Silver Birch Press extends a big thank you to the fabulous Skylight Books in the Los Feliz neighborhood of Los Angeles for hosting a June 30th launch event for Philippa Mayall and her memoir PHOENIX (Silver Birch Press, June 2013).

During well-attended gathering, Philippa read the first chapter of her book — a harrowing account of her rescue from a tragic house fire — answered questions about the memoir and her writing process, and signed books for the enthusiastic and supportive attendees.

We appreciate the opportunity to showcase our latest release at the prestigious Skylight Books. Please support Skylight Books by purchasing books — either in person or on line — from this outstanding independent bookstore. Skylight offers an awesome (and reasonable) membership package that provides impressive discounts and free shipping. So, no matter where you live, please patronize the stellar Skylight Books. To learn more about memberships, please visit

Skylight books is located at 1818 N. Vermont Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90027, 323-660-1175.


Silver Birch Press is honored to celebrate the release of PHOENIX, a memoir by Phillipa Mayall, with a reading and book signing by the author at Los Angeles’s acclaimed Skylight Books on June 30, 2013. We invite our Southern California readers (and authors!) to join Silver Birch Press and Philippa Mayall for this event. 


WHERE: Skylight Books

LOCATION: 1818 N. Vermont Avenue, Los Angeles, California, 90027


PHONE: 323-660-1175

EVENT INFORMATION: Philippa Mayall Reading

WHEN: Sunday, June 30, 2013

TIME: 5 p.m.



At the Silver Birch Press blog, one of our favorite topics is noir — novels (anything by Dashiell Hammett, Raymond Chandler, or Ross MacDonald) and films (especially Double Indemnity, directed by Billy Wilder, with a script by Chandler and Wilder). That’s why we were intrigued when we learned about THE NIGHT GOES ON ALL NIGHT: Noir Inspired Poems, edited by Rick Lupert (Ain’t Got No Press, November 2011) published in conjunction with the Los Angeles Poetry Festival’s “Night and the City” Noir Festival.

The collection features work from 24 poets who, according to the book description, explore “their own noir-de-vivre with humor, grit, nostalgia, and the requisite fedora.” The book includes an introductory note about noir from Los Angeles Poetry Festival director Suzanne Lummis.

CONTRIBUTORS INCLUDE: E. Amato, Michael C. Ford, Michael Cluff, Brendan Constantine, Mike Daily, Gloria Derge, Peggy Dobreer, Jerry Garcia, Joelle Hannah, Kris Huelgas, Elizabeth Iannaci, Jack Bowman, Ruth Nolan, Marc Olmsted, Kevin Patrick Sullivan, Angela Penaredondo, Douglas Richardson, Anthony Seidman, Eric Steineger, Eric Tuazon, Mehnaz Turner, Wyatt Underwood, Wanda VanHoy Smith and Florence Weinberger.

Here is a sampling from the collection…

by Brendan Constantine

We started wearing
dark glasses between the house & the garage.
Panorama City had no view; from any window
we saw another window.

ABOUT THE EDITOR: Rick Lupert has been involved in the Los Angeles poetry community since 1990. He served for two years as a co-director of the Valley Contemporary Poets, a non-profit organization that produces readings and publications out of the San Fernando Valley. His poetry has appeared in numerous magazines and literary journals, including The Los Angeles Times and Chiron Review. He edited A Poet’s Haggadah: Passover through the Eyes of Poets anthology and is the author of thirteen books. Since 1994, he has hosted the long-running Cobalt Cafe reading series in Canoga Park and is regularly featured at venues throughout Southern California. Rick created and maintains the Poetry Super Highway, a major internet resource for poets. ( Currently Rick works as a music teacher and web designer and can be reached by email at

Find the 56-page THE NIGHT GOES ON ALL NIGHT: Noir Inspired Poetry at



by Charles Bukowski

we were young
at this
machine. . .
it was a most 
only now
instead of
moving toward
moves toward 
makes each word 
into the
feeding a


On November 24, 2012, Silver Birch Press released CHARLES BUKOWSKI Epic Glottis: His Art & His Women (& me)  — a respectful, affectionate literary profile of novelist and poet Charles Bukowski by Joan Jobe Smith.

In the book, awarding-winning author Joan Jobe Smith — a Pushcart Honoree — shares up-close, personal recollections of her mentor and friend, Charles Bukowski (1920-1994). CHARLES BUKOWSKI Epic Glottis also features remembrances and comments from women in Bukowski’s life — including Frances Dean Smith (francEyE), Ann Menebroker, Linda King, and Pamela “Cupcakes” Miller Wood — in interviews conducted by Joan Jobe Smith and poet/author Fred Voss. This years-in-the-making volume also includes poetry, essays, and other writings by Smith and Voss.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Joan Jobe Smith, founding editor of Pearl and Bukowski Review, worked for seven years as a go-go dancer before receiving her B.A. from California State University Long Beach and MFA from the University of California Irvine. A Pushcart Honoree, her award-winning work has appeared internationally in more than 500 publications, including Outlaw Bible, Ambit, Beat Scene, Wormwood Review and Nerve Cowboy—and she has published 20 collections, including Jehovah Jukebox (Event Horizon Press, US) and The Pow Wow Cafe (The Poetry Business, UK), finalist for the UK 1999 Forward Prize. In July 2012, with her husband, poet Fred Voss, she did her sixth reading tour of England (debuting at the 1991 Aldeburgh Poetry Festival), featured at the Humber Mouth Literature Festival in Hull. In 2013, World Parade Books will release her memoir Tales of an Ancient Go-Go Girl.

The poems of Joan Jobe Smith have the reality of force properly put down on paper…a game girl…she cuts herself loose into the stratosphere…a strange woman, a strange, good, basic woman.”


CHARLES BUKOWSKI Epic Glottis: His Art & His Women (& me) is available at


L.A. poet Wendy Rainey (pictured at right) is working on a novel entitled Nancyland. An excerpt is featured in this week’s Cultural Weekly here. The subject matter shows that inspiration comes when and where we least expect it. Here’s the excerpt’s opening paragraph:

It all seems like a dream since I made my way out of Nancyland. The world is a different place to me now, bigger and bolder. Sometimes I feel as if I have to grab hold of life right here and now while I still can before my flesh and bone become part of the great compost heap we all must return to when our bodies can no longer endure prison or war or even freedom. Sometimes I still have nightmares about Nancy but I don’t give them much credence anymore. It’s the hum-drum day to day details that trip me up. The slapping of thongs, the smell of strawberry preserves, any Beatles song, even the bastardized elevator version can trigger disturbed and restless musings that are a part of a landscape that I myself have created. At one time, the idea of having God’s love and protection was meaningless to me. But now, when I see someone lying in the fetal position on the steps of the library, or dazed and speaking in tongues at the bus stop I think, “there but for the grace of God go I.” It is odd the way certain events can happen in one’s life that change a person forever. Through the Pasadena smog I saw the beast and was confronted with my own animal nature. It was then that I finally cast off the burden of youth and made my way out of Nancyland.”

Photo: Cultural Weekly


From Chapter 17 of Charles Bukowski’s Scarlet by PAMELA “CUPCAKES” WOOD

“…With Bukowski, I could do what I wanted, when I wanted, and how I wanted. He tolerated just about anything and everything — loud music, outside noise, distractions, boozing, pill popping, singing, or dancing on the tables. There were no rules and no limits — and I liked it that way…I felt as if I were in a safe harbor, where no one would judge me…Most of the time, life was fun with Bukowski — a crazy, relaxed, free-for-all.”

Find the book at here.

Photo courtesy of Pamela “Cupcakes” Wood


“When Amalia Gomez woke up, a half hour later than on other Saturdays because last night she had had three beers instead of her usual weekend two, she looked out, startled by God knows what, past the screenless iron-barred window of her stucco bungalow unit in one of the many decaying neighborhoods that sprout off the shabbiest part of Hollywood Boulevard, and she saw a large silver cross in the otherwise clear sky.” Opening line to The Miraculous Day of Amalia Gomez by JOHN RECHY

Note: What a great opening line! It’s all there — who, what, when, where. Read the novel to find out more of the what and the why. I’ve read this beautiful novel twice and will probably read it again. The prose is amazing, the story engrossing, the main character compelling. It’s magic realism set in Hollywood, circa 1990. Highly recommended.

Blurb from book jacket: Known for his exploration of worlds seldom seen by others, best-selling author John Rechy brings us intimately into the life of a Chicano family in Los Angeles today, and without glancing away from the harshness of their lives, tells their story with humor and poignancy. Blending tough realism with religious and cultural fables, Rechy celebrates the enduring human spirit in what may be his best novel.