Dire Literary Series

The Dire Literary Series is back with DAVE KEIFABER, CAITLIN MCGILL and ANNA ROSS.

DAVE KEIFABER is a Baltimore-based writer whose work, largely essays and speculative fiction, has been published in Front Porch Journal, Battered Suitcase, ULA Redux, The Light Ekphrastic, LOOP, Artichoke Haircut, Welter, and Cobalt, among other places. He is also a regular contributor to Adfreak, Adweek Magazine’s blog, and has contributed to The Lit Pub and jmww.

He self-publishes his more experimental work, including three ‘zines and a collection of short stories, through his own micropress, Banners of Death.
In 2012, he received his MFA in Creative Writing & Publishing Arts from the University of Baltimore.

CAITLIN MCGILL is a 2016 St. Botolph Emerging Artist Award winner and Bread Loaf Writers’ conference scholarship recipient. She was also the 2014 winner of the Rafael Torch Nonfiction Literary Award. Her essays and flash fiction have appeared or are forthcoming in Blackbird, Crab Orchard Review, Consequence, Gravel, Iron Horse Literary Review, The Southeast Review, Vox, War, Literature, & the Arts, and several other magazines. Currently, she is working on a memoir about her family’s hidden past, intergenerational trauma, inherited survival mechanisms, immigration, race, class, addiction, mental illness, war, and the cost of ignoring our histories. One essay from her book was named a Notable Essay in The Best American Essays 2016.

ANNA ROSS is the author If a Storm (Anhinga Press), selected by Julianna Baggott for the Robert Dana-Anhinga Prize for Poetry, and the chapbooks Figuring (Bull City Press), which was a finalist for the 2015 Alice Fay Di Casagnola Award from the Poetry Society of America, and Hawk Weather (Finishing Line Press), winner the New Women’s Voice Prize and the Jean Pedrick Chapbook Award from the New England Poetry Society. Her work has been recognized by the Massachusetts Cultural Council Artist Fellowship program, and she has received additional scholarships and fellowships from the Vermont Studio Center, Sewanee Writers’ Conference, Squaw Valley Poetry Workshop, and Grub Street. Individual poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Barrow Street, The Brooklyn Quarterly, Harvard Review, The New Republic, The Paris Review, Salamander, The Southern Review, Southwest Review, Tupelo Quarterly, and Pangyrus, among other journals. She holds degrees from Mount Holyoke College and Columbia University, teaches in the Writing, Literature & Publishing Program at Emerson College, and is a contributing editor for Salamander. She lives in Dorchester, MA, with her husband, daughter, and son.

Dire Literary Series with Yarbrough, Cherches and Pleasants


Steve Yarbrough is the author of eleven books, most recently the novel The Unmade World, due out in January 2018. His other books are the nonfiction title Bookmarked: Larry McMurtry’s The Last Picture Show, the novels The Realm of Last Chances, Safe from the Neighbors, The End of California, Prisoners of War, Visible Spirits and The Oxygen Man, and the short story collections Veneer, Mississippi History and Family Men. His work has been published in several foreign languages, including Dutch, Japanese and Polish, and it has also appeared in Ireland, Canada, and the U.K. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters Award for Fiction, the California Book Award, the Richard Wright Award and the Robert Penn Warren Award. He has been a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award and is a member of the Fellowship of Southern Writers.

Called “one of the innovators of the short short story” by Publishers Weekly , Peter Cherches is a writer, singer and lyricist. Over the past 40 years his writing, both fiction and nonfiction, has appeared in dozens of magazines, anthologies and websites. His first recording as a jazz vocalist, Mercerized! Songs of Johnny Mercer , was released in 2016. He is the author of three previous prose collections, including LIFT YOUR RIGHT ARM (Pelekinesis, 2013) and AUTOBIOGRAPHY WITHOUT WORDS (Pelekinesis, 2017). Cherches is a native of Brooklyn, New York

Willie A. Wideman-Pleasants – discovered her love for poetry at an early age. She loves Langston Hughes’ poetry. His words resonated within her. She understood how he felt during those troubled times in his life. As a woman of color, she had to endure discrimination, retaliation, lies, and limited promotions in the workplace. She even shared some of those stories in her first book, “Ain’t That the Truth.” Her writing has propelled her on a journey of reading and teaching to children and adults. This new book includes a poem about her disillusion of a thirty-year marriage called, “Stayed Too Long.” She believes that when people share their stories it can help to edify others.

Dire Lit Series

Another round of the Dire Lit Series with JD SCRIMGEOUR, DAVID ATKINSON, and JANE ROSENBERG LAFORGE.
J.D. Scrimgeour is a writer who lives in Salem, Massachusetts. His personal essays and poetry often focus on class and education, exploring what constitutes authentic learning in the exchange between student and teacher. Learning was a major theme in Themes For English B: A Professor’s Education In & Out of Class, which won the AWP Award for Nonfiction, and his work on the subject has appeared in The Boston Globe Magazine, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Thought & Action, Off the Coast, and Organica.
He also has published literary work on sports, especially basketball and baseball. He’s the author of the basketball memoir, Spin Moves, and his sports writing has appeared in various journals including the anthology Fast Break to Line Break: Poets on the Art of Basketball and Creative Nonfiction, where his essay “My Outfield,” won the magazine’s Writing about Baseball contest.
David S. Atkinson is the author of books such as “Roses are Red, Violets are Stealing Loose Change from my Pockets While I Sleep” (forthcoming July 1, 2018), “Apocalypse All the Time,” and the Nebraska book award winning “Not Quite so Stories.” He is a Staff Reader for “Digging Through The Fat” and his writing appears in “Spelk,” “Jellyfish Review,” “Thrice Fiction,” “Literary Orphans,” and more.
Jane Rosenberg LaForge’s is a poet, a memoirist and a novelist. Her books include poetry collections: “After Voices” (Burning River 2009); “Half-Life” (Big Table Publishing Co.); “With Apologies to Mick Jagger, Other Gods, and All Women” (The Aldrich Press 2012); “The Navigation of Loss” (Red Ochre Press 2012); “In Remembrance of the Life” (Spruce Alley Press 2016); “Daphne and Her Discontents” (Ravenna Press 2017); an experimental memoir: “An Unsuitable Princess: A True Fantasy/A Fantastical Memoir” (Jaded Ibis Press 2014); and now a novel, “The Hawkman: A Fairy Tale of the Great War” (Amberjack Publishing 2018). She’s on tour now. How to buy her latest book: bit.ly/TheHawkman
More info www.direreader.com

Dire Literary Series presents Sonya Larson, Michael Keith and Marguerite Bourvard


About the readers:

Sonya Larson’s short fiction and essays have appeared in Best American Short Stories
2017, American Short Fiction, American Literary Review, Poets & Writers, Writer’s Chronicle, Audible.com, West Branch, Salamander, Memorious, Solstice Magazine, Del Sol Review, Red Mountain Review, The Hub, and more. She has received honors and fellowships from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, Vermont Studio Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison, St. Botolph Club Foundation, and more.

She currently works as Director of the Muse and the Marketplace literary conference, hosted by GrubStreet in Boston, as well as Director of GrubStreet’s race and advocacy work. She received her MFA in fiction in the Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College.

Sonya lives in Somerville, MA, and is currently writing a novel.

Michael Keith is the author of over 20 books on electronic media, as well as a memoir and ten books of fiction. In 2009, he coedited a found manuscript by legendary writer/director Norman Corwin. What he refers to as his “fringe” group series consists of a monograph that examines the use of broadcast media by Native Americans—Signals in the Air (Praeger, 1995), a book that explores the nature and role of counterculture radio in the sixties—Voices in the Purple Haze (Praeger, 1997), a book that probes the extreme right-wing’s exploitation of the airwaves—Waves of Rancor (M.E. Sharpe, 1999, with Robert Hilliard), a book that examines the role of gays and lesbians in broadcasting—Queer Airwaves (M.E. Sharpe, 2001, with Phylis Johnson), a book about broadcasting and the First Amendment—Dirty Discourse (Blackwell, 2003, with Robert Hilliard), and a volume that evaluates the loss of localism in American radio—The Quieted Voice (Southern Illinois University Press, 2005, with Robert Hilliard).

Marguerite Guzmán Bouvard latest book “Social Justice: The Power of Compassion,” addresses some of the most pressing problems facing our country today: the environment, immigration, racism and criminal justice. As a writer, she has published several books of poetry and numerous non-fiction books in a variety of fields. She has received grants for her poetry from the Puffin Foundation and the Danforth Foundation and has won awards for two of her poetry books. She has been a writer in residence at the University of Maryland and has had residencies at the MacDowell Colony, the Yaddo Foundation, the Djerassi Foundation, the Leighton Artists’ colony at the Banff Centre and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. Her poetry has been widely anthologized and published in literary magazines around the world for she considers herself a world poet.

Her non-fiction books are concerned with women and human rights. Her books and research about women working for human rights reveal that mothering is very often a part of feminism. She has also written about social justice, illness, and grief. Her concern for the human condition is a common theme that runs throughout her publications.

Marguerite was a professor of Political Science and a Director of Poetry Workshops at Regis College, and a writer in residence at the University of Maryland. She is currently a Resident Scholar at the Women’s Studies Research Center at Brandeis University. She has received fellowships from the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study and the Wellesley College Center for Research on Women.

Dire Literary Series Finale with ELIZABETH GRAVER and other writers

Timothy Gager presents the finale of his long running Dire Literary Series. Readers include:

ELIZABETH GRAVER’s fourth novel, The End of the Point, was long-listed for the 2013 National Book Award in Fiction  and selected as a New York Times Notable Book of the Year.  Her other novels  are Awake, The Honey Thief, and Unravelling. Her story collection, Have You Seen Me?, won the 1991 Drue Heinz Literature Prize. Her work has been anthologized in Best American Short Stories (1991, 2001); Prize Stories: The O. Henry Awards (1994, 1996, 2001), The Pushcart Prize Anthology (2001), and Best American Essays (1998).  She teaches at Boston College and is at work on a new project that draws on the Sephardic Jewish history of her family.

DOUG HOLDER is the founder of the Ibbetson Street Press of Somerville, Mass and is the arts/editor of The Somerville News. He teaches writing at Endicott College in Beverly, Mass and Bunker Hill Community College in Boston. In addition he is the Director of the Newton Free Library Poetry Series, and the co-founder of the Somerville News Writers Festival. He hosts a literary talk show on Somerville Community Acces TV “Poet to Poet: Writer to Writer.” Holder’s own work: books, interviews, etc… are archived at Harvard University, Brown University, Yale University, Poets House (NYC) and others. He is the author of a number of poetry collections including: “The Man in the Booth in the Midtown Tunnel” ( Cervena Barva Press), “Wrestling With My Father” ( Yellow Pepper Press), ” No one Dies at the Au Bon Pain” (sunnyoutside), to name a few. In 2007 Holder was a visiting poet for the “Voices Israel” organization and ran workshops and lectured in Jerusalem, Haifa, and elsewhere. Holder’s poetry and prose have appeared in the Endicott Review, Boston Globe Magazine, Rattle, Toronto Quarterly, Quercus Review, Main St. Rag, Caesura, Voices Israel, Sahara, Long Island Quarterly, Poetry Quarterly, etc… Holder holds an M.A. in American Literature and Language from Harvard University. For over 20 years he has run poetry workshops at McLean Hospital in Belmont, Mass. He resides in the Union Square section of Somerville with his wife and cat Menow.

AMY DRESNER is a former professional stand-up comic, having appeared at The Comedy Store, The Laugh Factory, and The Improv. Since 2012, she has been a contributing editor of the online addiction and recovery magazine TheFix.com. She’s also written for the Good Men Project, The Frisky, Refinery 29, and has been a regular contributor to Addiction.com and PsychologyToday.com, where she has her own addiction blog entitled “Coming Clean.” “My Fair Junkie” is her debut book.

HANNAH LARRABEE is a poet, science-geek, and former Mainer who grew up on a blueberry farm. Her first full-length collection, Wonder Tissue, won the 2018 Airlie Press Prize. Her chapbook Murmuration (Seven Kitchens Press) is part of the Robin Becker Series for LGBTQ poets. She’s had work appear in: The Adirondack Review, Barren Magazine, Harpoon Review, Lambda Literary Spotlight, Rock & Sling, and elsewhere. Hannah was one of 22 artists selected by NASA to see the James Webb Space Telescope, and her JWST poems were displayed at Goddard Space Center. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of New Hampshire.




NADINE DARLING is the author of SHE CAME FROM BEYOND!, winner of the McLaughlin Esstman Sterns First Novel Prize. A three-time Pushcart Prize nominee, she lives in the greater Boston area with her husband and fellow writer Kenneth Darling, who, with respect to Aimee Mann, saved her from the ranks of the freaks who suspect that they could never love anyone.

RENUKA RAGHAVEN tends to focus on brief, dramatic prose and poetry. She’s that person in front of you in the check-out line who just dumped a week’s worth of groceries onto the conveyor belt only to realize she left her wallet in the car. Next time, say hi. Renuka would love to meet you! She writes and lives in Massachusetts with her family and beloved beagle.

RUSTY BARNES is a 2018 Derringer finalist and author of the story collections Breaking it Down (Sunnyoutside Press 2007) and Mostly Redneck (Sunnyoutside Press 2011), as well as four novels, Reckoning (Sunnyoutside Press, 2014), Ridgerunner (Shotgun Honey/Down & Out Books, 2017), Knuckledragger (Shotgun Honey/Down & Out Books 2017) and The Last Danger (Shotgun Honey/Down & Out Books 2018), His fiction, poetry and non-fiction have appeared or are forthcoming in over two hundred journals and anthologies, like Dirty Boulevard: Crime Stories Inspired by the Songs of Lou Reed (Down & Out Books 2018), Best Small Fictions 2015, Mystery Tribune, Goliad Review, Smokelong Quarterly, Red Rock Review, Porter Gulch Review and Post Road. His poetry collections include On Broad Sound (Nixes Mates Press, 2016) and Jesus in the Ghost Room, (Nixes Mates Press 2017). He founded and edits Tough, a journal of crime fiction and occasional reviews, with a story by Matthew Lyons appearing in Best American Short Stories 2018, edited by Roxane Gay. He lives in Revere, MA.