The End of Eve wins New Mexico – Arizona Book Award

Ariel Gore’s darkly comic memoir, The End of Eve, just won a 2014 New Mexico – Arizona book award. You can get a signed copy right here. $16.95. FREE SHIPPING.

“It turns out that both life and art are balancing acts. In one as in the other, Gore seems to be saying that even as we acknowledge past traumas, we cannot let those wounds dictate our actions in the present. The End of Eve is a product of bravery, love, and hard-won wisdom. In sharing it, Ariel Gore invites her reader to bask in the light she has found.” –Los Angeles Review of Books


Daphne Gottlieb to teach the poetry workshop

The Poetry Workshop

Taught by Daphne Gottlieb

November 3 – December 15

Daphne Gottlieb, winner of the Firecracker and Audre Lorde awards, comes to the Literary Kitchen to teach an intimate 6-week online poetry workshop this fall.

Get well-versed. The words you were looking for all year are waiting here for you. Spend the end of 2013 digging deep and writing them, using prompts, formal constraints, and all sorts of exercises to lure your brain out of hibernation and onto the page. This class aims to be the permission you have been waiting for, the kick in the ass you need, the dare that you take and the truth that you tell. All levels of experience are welcome – this is as much playroom as workshop. We will cast a wide, provocative net that will foster poetic explorations and inquiries that far outlast the class. And we will revise and rework, helping each other hone and whittle and shine, like the sweet razors we are.

Class size is strictly limited, so sign up early.

Class costs $195. A $60 deposit saves your spot.
Register right here:

New Fall Storytelling Class with Xtra Tuf Fisher Poet Moe Bowstern!

Tell Me a Story….Then Write it Down

September 5 – October 31 — Right here online in the Literary Kitchen! Moe rarely teaches online. This is a great opportunity.

Prepare for winter’s storytelling season by taking this 8-week course with Moe Bowstern, longtime Fisher Poet, editor of Xtra Tuf zine and story developer for various puppet show extravaganzas, most recently Paper Eclipse Puppet Company.

We’ll spend the autumn weeks honing the vernacular language of oral storytelling, with the goal of transforming told tales into written stories while preserving the vitality of the storyteller’s art.

With quick writes and regular assignments, Moe will help you find your voice and the truth of your story.

For those interested, we’ll also devote class time to taking the developed work from the written page onto the stage for performance.

You can read and listen to Moe Bowstern’s stories right here: http://www.inthetote.com/moe-bowstern.html

The cost for the 8-week class is $275. A $75 deposit holds your spot. Sign up early as class-size in strictly limited!

“The honest story, the true story (fact or fiction) is a gift offered. It’s a hand held out. ‘Hello, this is who I am, you and I both live here.‘ I like the way Moe holds her hand out, and I like her voice. It’s quiet, kind and funny, and it rings true. And the stories she tells take me to the damndest places! This world she and I and you live in, it’s always bigger and weirder than we could possibly know if we didn’t have our story-tellers.”

–Ursula K. LeGuin

 

Four New Classes in the Kitchen – Sign Up Today

May Intensive with Ariel Gore

This year we’re offering the spring intensive taught by Ariel Gore in late May. You’ll get 12 assignment in 12 days May 20th to May 31st. The intensives allow you to generate lots of new material quickly & get lots of feedback. Great for jump starting your creative brain or a new project.

The intensive costs $145. You can pay right here:

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Blocks and Traumas: Jamming Through, Moving On and Getting Back into Your Groove

8-week Summer Class with Inga Muscio

June 1 – July 30

Dealing with a happy life-changing event (birth, graduation, marriage, falling in love) can be just as unsettling to your life as a sad one (death, depression, violence, a break up). I designed this class because whenever one life’s little jackass interruptions comes my way, I had a tendency to reel and freak out, thus taking me even further away from whatever centering and productive creative project I am working on. I came to realize that life’s little jackass interruptions are not the problem. The problem was my way of dealing. So I developed a system to keep my creative patterns intact, no matter what.

Most people do not think happy events are problematic, but they are. Anything that significantly alters Life As You Knew It creates upheaval, and upheaval does not generally serve creativity. How can you facilitate the dust settling? This class will help you figure that one out.

Negative events obviously impact your creative flow, as do emotional blocks. Writing is a great way to get back into stride and move through the sadness, grief or depression, but when it takes a pile driver to get you out of bed, writing seems an a faraway dream from pixie-dust lands.

This class isn’t just for writers. Whether you’re working on a long-term writing project or haven’t written since your book report days, we’re gonna work out a system to help you get back, and stay in, a nice groove.

Class size is strictly limited, so please sign up early!

Class cost: $275

$75 deposit saves your spot

 

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Lit Star Summer Session with Ariel Gore

June 15 – mid-August

A new session of Lit Star Training — the 8-week writing course taught by Ariel Gore — starts June 15th and runs through mid-August. Writers in Lit Star Training spend at least a few hours each week on their writing and online critiques. You can log in any time of the day or night. Writers in the group are new and seasoned, wanting to work on memoir or fiction. The class works as well for those writing to weekly assignments (with no big projects in mind) and for people who are starting or working on existing book projects.

The class is $275 — a $90 deposit will hold your spot. You can pay the deposit right here:

 

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NEW! Turning Life into Literature: Reading and Writing the New Memoir

Taught by Ariel Gore

June 29 – August 24

We’ll spend the summer sharpening our craft by delving into eight classic memoirs of the 20th and 21st centuries (as well as selected passages from eight more). With group discussion and short writing exercises based on our readings, we’ll deepen our understanding of the evolving art of the contemporary memoir and come away prepared to tell our stories not just as whiney kids who know how to write but as literary artists working in a real and radical tradition. This class will require reading a book a week (reading list will be available a few weeks early so that slower readers can get a head start) and will include shorter writing exercises than the regular Lit Star Training class.

The class costs $265 — a deposit of $85 saves your spot

You can pay right here:

Ariel Gore is a fabulous workshop facilitator; I’ve been taking classes from her since 2001. In each of the workshops, she brings together a diverse group of writers with varying degrees of competency; and, whether the writer is seasoned or a beginner, she understands exactly where each person is coming from and she meets them there. Not only did I find my unique voice, I learned how to be a thoughtful listener and how to provide insightful critique. I would recommend her workshops to anyone interested in memoir and the art of a good story.

—Lani Jo Leigh

 

Ariel’s workshops jumpstarted my psyche. I’m back into looking at the world as a writer instead of as a would-be writer. I have her to thank for that. Workshops are almost at your own pace. Always encouraging. She has a knack for assembling a great group of writers together every time.

—Margaret Elysia Garcia

 

Ariel Gore’s writing workshop pushed me past the borders of my creativity and into an exciting unknown place of writing within myself. If you’ve ever put to pen to paper and wondered what you were really capable of Ariel’s workshop will take you there.

—Gabrielle Rivera

 

I throughly enjoy Ariel’s workshops. Writers from a variety of backgrounds gather together, bringing in work with all kinds of themes, and as each piece is workshopped, Ariel’s ear for the crucial aspects of great storytelling kicks right in. Her feedback is thoughtful, insightful, precise, and multilayered.

—Bonnie Ditlevsen

 

When I started writing with Ariel I had zero idea how to write for audience. In work shopping with her, I have found my voice and with practice have found different ways to formulate story. I have learned how to incorporate dialogue and am so much more confident with my work. I recommend this workshop to all aspiring, practicing, and practiced writers.

—Krystee Sidwell

New zine from Ariel

I made a new zine called On the Mend. It fits in your pocket and has stories and drawings and recipes for pie and cupcakes and New Mexican red chile sauce. Not to mention advice from Punk Rock Miss Manners…

You can get a copy for $4 (free shipping). Beautifully printed by Scout Books at Pinball Publishing in Portland, Oregon. Thanks for ordering.

Spring Writing Workshop with Ariel Gore

LIT STAR TRAINING – SPRING SESSION

8-Week Online Class Taught by Ariel Gore
March 16 – May 12, 2013

This class is your springtime creative jolt — for new and experienced writers wanting to work on either memoir or fiction — we’ll make time to write, create new material with weekly deadlines, and improve our craft with practice and critique. Appropriate for writers working on longer projects as well as those who want to write to weekly assignments and produce short essays and stories. The pace is quick and energizing–you won’t even have time to worry about creative blocks.

Class consists of online discussion/critique.

Class size is limited, so please sign up early. $275
$90 deposit saves your spot – balance due when class starts

 

 

Ariel Gore is a fabulous workshop facilitator; I’ve been taking classes from her since 2001. In each of the workshops, she brings together a diverse group of writers with varying degrees of competency; and, whether the writer is seasoned or a beginner, she understands exactly where each person is coming from and she meets them there. Not only did I find my unique voice, I learned how to be a thoughtful listener and how to provide insightful critique. I would recommend her workshops to anyone interested in memoir and the art of a good story.

—Lani Jo Leigh

 

Ariel’s workshops jumpstarted my psyche. I’m back into looking at the world as a writer instead of as a would-be writer. I have her to thank for that. Workshops are almost at your own pace. Always encouraging. She has a knack for assembling a great group of writers together every time.

—Margaret Elysia Garcia

 

Ariel Gore’s writing workshop pushed me past the borders of my creativity and into an exciting unknown place of writing within myself. If you’ve ever put to pen to paper and wondered what you were really capable of Ariel’s workshop will take you there.

—Gabrielle Rivera

 

I throughly enjoy Ariel’s workshops. Writers from a variety of backgrounds gather together, bringing in work with all kinds of themes, and as each piece is workshopped, Ariel’s ear for the crucial aspects of great storytelling kicks right in. Her feedback is thoughtful, insightful, precise, and multilayered.

—Bonnie Ditlevsen

 

When I started writing with Ariel I had zero idea how to write for audience. In work shopping with her, I have found my voice and with practice have found different ways to formulate story. I have learned how to incorporate dialogue and am so much more confident with my work. I recommend this workshop to all aspiring, practicing, and practiced writers.

—Krystee Sidwell

A Queer and Pleasant Danger

Nina Packebush talks to Kate Bornstein about gender fluidity, writing from the scary places, and  Priscilla, Queen of the Desert 

by Nina Packebush

Reading Kate Bornstein’s A Queer and Pleasant Danger is like sitting down to coffee with any old friend. I found myself smiling, nodding my head in agreement, and crying more than a few tears.

Kate Bornstein is a self-described tranny, Jew, dyke, sadomasochist, adoptive Aunty to all the queer teenagers of the world, and lives with Borderline Personality Disorder. She calls herself a female, yet doesn’t identify as either a woman or a man and bucks most labels. In her new memoir,  A Queer and Pleasant Danger: The True Story of a Nice Jewish Boy Who Joins the Church of Scientology and Leaves Twelve Years Later to Become the Lovely Lady She Is Today, Kate talks candidly about her 12-year stint and eventual excommunication from the Church of Scientology, her battles with leukemia, anorexia, and cutting and her journey from “a good Jewish boy” to a transsexual icon.

Kate wrote the book as a sort of open letter to her estranged daughter and grandchildren who remain within the Church of Scientology. She wrote the book hoping that they will read it and come “to see a few more dimensions of their dad and granddad,” and possibly, reunite.

In the mean time, A Queer and Pleasant Danger is an inspirational, moving and funny must-read for the rest of us.

Nina Packebush: You said your PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) stopped or lessened after writing this book. Is writing a form of therapy for you?

 

Kate Bornstein:  Yeah, yeah cuz one of the things that came with PTSD is memory loss and recreating a timeline of my life helped me plug stuff in. Not that I remembered much, but I was able to ask people who were around at certain gates, “Hey what happened?” And that got filled in. So yeah.

 

Nina:  You talk about your anorexia and cutting pretty openly in your book and I love that. I think it’s really helpful for other people to hear you discuss these issues. Do you still struggle with anorexia and cutting?

 

Kate:  From time to time of course I do. They never go away. I haven’t starved myself in over…well in about 6 or 7 years now. Not that I haven’t had the thoughts to or the ideation, sure of course I have. And I still struggle with self-image, but I’ve learned to trust other people when they say, “Kate you look so good.” And I think, okay I don’t believe you, but I trust you. I trust you have a decent pair of eyes in your head and you wouldn’t lie to me and I lean on that trust and it helps. As far as the cutting goes, I’ve folded that into my SM play. I like to cut myself during SM play or doing warrior marks, but never out of self-loathing or self-hatred.

 

Nina:  Was it difficult to write so publicly about the SM stuff? In your book, I mean, knowing your daughter might read it?

 

Kate:  Well in the book yeah, because it was for my daughter, but I wanted her to know, I still want her to know who I am. And I want all my kids to know who I am and I have lots of kids. Queer kids kind of own me as Aunty and I would like them to know who I am and I want to be respectful of people, so that is difficult. Of walking the line of respecting my reader and wanting to give enough detail, but not so much that it’s like that episode of South Park where he writes the book. No, I didn’t want that, so there is a fine line to walk. And where I think I learned to walk that line was in writing that book. I learned how to write about some pretty dangerous stuff in a way that wasn’t mean to my reader.

 

Nina:  You use the word “tranny” and obviously that’s a controversial word in the queer community. Can you speak to that?

 

Kate:  Well okay. I use the word because that’s how I self-identify. I learned the word from my first drag mom Dorris Fish who was an ultimate queen in San Francisco when I was there. She came from Sydney, Australia and I don’t know if you know the movie…the movie with the bus. Oh what was the movie with the bus?

 

Nina: Priscilla Queen of the Desert?

 

Kate:  That’s it. You will notice in there the relationship between the one transsexual and the drag queen. That’s how it used to be. It used to be that every male-to-female that was transsexual or drag or whatever would do the drag shows. That’s how they’d make money. The transsexuals would save up money, get the surgery, and then say goodbye to the drag queens. And there was a hierarchy. They both thought they were better than the other, but they agreed that there was one word because they were family. And they called themselves trannies. And that’s a nice thing. That’s a family word. Now I understand that it’s been used as a hate word. I get that.

And then let’s take a look at why it’s so hateful. Whenever I ask someone why is it such a hateful word I get, “Well just google tranny and see what you get.” And I google tranny and I get all of this great tranny porn. Wow, yeah so what’s the problem there? Of course there are people who have been terribly wounded by the word and I’m sorry for them. I am truly sorry for them, but I think the vast majority of people hate the word because it’s so sexy and does imply there’s a lot of sex involved in a gender change and I own that and I think more people will be happier if they did too.

 

Nina: I have a grandson that’s very gender fluid. He identifies as a boy, but will only wear “girl” clothes and claims he’s going to be a girl when he grows up. It seems that recently there’s a lot out there about kids like this, especially boys that show more female traits. There are blogs, appearances on TV, news stories, and even books like The Princess Boy. What’s your take on the recent media focus on these kids? Do you think some of these kids are being pushed into claiming an identity too early?

 

Kate:  I don’t think I’m qualified to speak on that. My point would be to if I were to meet your child I would simply respect his/her wishes and I would encourage the child to not make any drastic changes until their brain had fully formed at around 17 or 18 years old. There are, I understand, some really cool hormone blockers available and I would certainly be all for that. You got a child that’s insisting all along, “I’m another gender than you think I am,” well block the child’s hormones and when the child has become an adult in his or her own mind and in the reality of biology in the culture then let that person decide.

 

Nina:  What is fear’s function in art? How does fear fuel art or does it?

 

Kate:  It is the fuel. That’s why I make art, to get through. I think they’re symbiotic. I don’t think you can make art without fear. You can make great crafts. No, no I’m serious. It’s a different thing. It’s apples and orange. Sometimes I make very good crafts, I make comic books like that, but I wouldn’t call it art. But when I go and make crafts with the intention of walking through my fear it turns into art somehow.

 

Nina:  What can queer artists, or artists in general, do to change the world?

 

Kate:  Nothing. Not a damn thing. That’s just the way it is.

 

Nina:  Do you have any advice for writers?

 

Kate:  Yeah, I guess. Write every day. Every. Day. Write. And write into the scariest parts. When you’re faced with the decision of writing this or that, write the scarier choice.

 

 

Kate_Bornstein-by_Barbara_Carrellas-FINAL2

Get your copy of The People’s Apocalypse right here!

edited by Ariel Gore and Jenny Forrester

The Beginning is Nigh!

Featuring new work by Derrick Jensen, Roy Coughlin, Evelyn Sharenov, Yasmin Elbaradie, Tomas Moniz, Dena Rash Guzman, Linda Rand, Margaret Elysia Garcia, Bonnie Ditlevsen, LaSara Allen, Vickie Fernandez, Dani Burlison, Matty Byloos, Mai’a Williams, and many others.


$15 includes shipping. A deal and a steal…