It’s Now or Never: My Life in the Late Middle Ages

Boston-based writer and storyteller and GrubStreet instructor JUDAH LEBLANG presents the premiere of his one-man show  “It’s Now or Never” on Thursday evening June 21, 7:30 pm at Turtle Studios, 213 California Street in Newton. This is a special preview before he takes it on the road to fringe festivals in Canada. The show is a (mostly) humorous look at getting older, living a creative life, and dealing with times when ‘man planned, and God laughed.’ The show grew out of his memoir, “Finding My Place.” Copies of the book ($15) will be on sale at the event.

Summer Reading Series with MIRA T. LEE and OLIVE SENIOR

Lesley University’s summer reading series will bring a variety of acclaimed authors to campus June 22 to 27 at Marran Theater, 34 Mellen St., Cambridge. All readings are free and open to the public.

MIRA T. LEE (pictured) and OLIVE SENIOR will headline the annual series as visiting writers. A selection of writers from the Lesley MFA faculty will also read from their work in nonfiction, poetry, fiction and writing for young people.

Lee, a Cambridge resident and recipient of an Artist’s Fellowship from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, will read from her debut novel, “Everything Here is Beautiful.” The novel was selected an Indie Next pick by the American Booksellers Association and named as a top pick by The Wall Street Journal, O Magazine and Poets & Writers, among others. Lee’s short fiction has also appeared in journals such as the Southern Review and Harvard Review. She will read from her novel on Wednesday, June 27 at 7 p.m.

The Jamaican-born Senior is the author of 17 books of fiction, non-fiction, poetry and children’s literature. For her nonfiction work, “Dying to Better Themselves: West Indians and the Building of the Panama Canal,” Senior won the Lewis Book Prize of the Caribbean Studies Association and was shortlisted for the Foreword Reviews INDIEFAB Book Awards.

Although she now resides in Toronto, Canada, Senior’s work never strays far from her Jamaican roots, and she is currently working on a web-based version of her popular “Encyclopedia of Jamaican Heritage.” On Saturday, June 23 at 6:30 p.m., Senior will read from “Dying to Better Themselves.”

“Each MFA residency offers a wide range of MFA faculty readings, as well as featuring visiting writers who have received national or international recognition for their work,” notes Steven Haven, director of Lesley’s MFA in Creative Writing program.

During the June 2018 residency, seven MFA faculty, representing five literary genres, will offer presentations of their work. As always, these evening readings are free and open to the public. Faculty and visiting writer books are available for sale after each reading.

The full schedule is as follows:

Friday, June 22, 5 p.m.
• David Elliott, writing for young people
• Hester Kaplan, fiction

Saturday, June 23, 6:30 p.m.
• Olive Senior, nonfiction

Sunday, June 24, 7 p.m.
• Susan Goodman, writing for young people
• Joan Houlihan, poetry

Monday, June 25, 7 p.m.
• Tony Eprile fiction
• Kevin Prufer, poetry

Wednesday, June 27, 7 p.m.
• Mira T. Lee, fiction
• Pam Petro, nonfiction

“Writing About Politics” Reading & Open Mic

Participants from Writing About Politics workshop at GrubStreet read work from the class.

CARA BENSON – Instructor

Come out to hear creative responses to the current political climate! Short works inspired by Grace Paley, Omar Robert Hamilton, Claudia Rankine, and others. Bring your own 2 minute piece, and we’ll have an open read after.

Release Party for “The Shell Game,” with KIM ADRIAN, JUDY BOLTON-FASMAN, and STEVE EDWARDS

The Shell Game is an anthology of carefully chosen, beautifully written, thought-provoking hybrid essays tackling a broad range of subjects, including the secrets of the human genome, the intractable pain of growing up black in America, and the gorgeous glow residing at the edges of the autism spectrum. Surprising, delightful, and lyric, these essays are destined to become classics of this new and increasingly popular hybrid form.