The Franklin Park Reading Series (recently lauded in The Jewish Week, among its many accolades) returns TONIGHT (Monday) with a reading from "Funny People," including several well-respected locals. Complete information from their Facebook page is copied below.
I'll be heading to Franklin Park this evening, not just because I always enjoy the readings Penina puts together, but because after a week when Crown Heights was nothing but "Crime Heights" in the citywide and national media, the readings are a welcome reminder that there's much more to the neighborhood than tragedy and misery. This is not to diminish the loss of Denise Gay, or to suggest that investigating the terrible circumstances that led to her untimely death is wrong, but rather to acknowledge that no one event is emblematic of any local New York community, particularly one as diversely peopled as Crown Heights. As I told the reporter from the Jewish Week, one of the things I love most about the Reading Series is the opportunity it affords to hear the voices of writers from the many different sub-communities that make up Crown Heights. So if, after a hard week, you're in need of a reminder that there is much that is good and beautiful along the Avenue and beyond, stop by tonight at 8pm.
TIPHANIE YANIQUE (How to Escape from a Leper Colony)
MICHAEL SHOWALTER (Mr. Funny Pants, Wet Hot American Summer)
EMMA STRAUB (Other People We Married)
SETH FRIED (The Great Frustration)
ELIZA SNELLING (The L Magazine)
As always, the fun is FREE and the drink special will be $4 pints.
SUBWAY: 2/3/4/5 to Franklin Avenue
Between the gloomy weather and depressing economy we could all use some cheering up -- so this month, four of today's most inventive short fiction writers -- TIPHANIE YANIQUE, EMMA STRAUB, SETH FRIED, and ELIZA SNELLING -- and comedian MICHAEL SHOWALTER will introduce you to a bunch of funny characters.
TIPHANIE YANIQUE is the author of How to Escape from a Leper Colony. She has been awarded a Pushcart Prize, the Kore Press Fiction Prize, The Academy of American Poets Prize, a Fulbright Scholarship, and the Boston Review Fiction Prize. She is also the winner of a 2010 Rona Jaffe Prize in Fiction and is a National Book Foundation “5 Under 35” honoree. Her fiction, poetry, and essays can be found in the Best African American Fiction, Transition Magazine, American Short Fiction, The London Magazine, Prism International, Callaloo, and other journals and anthologies. A professor of Creative Writing and Caribbean Literature at Drew University, she is from the Virgin Islands and now lives in Brooklyn.
MICHAEL SHOWALTER is a comedian, screenwriter, and director and the author of the comedic memoir Mr. Funny Pants. He was a founding member of the sketch comedy troupe The State, which ran as a series on MTV. He is also the creator and star of the films Wet Hot American Summer and The Baxter, as well as the Comedy Central series Michael and Michael Have Issues. He teaches screenwriting at the NYU Graduate Film School and lives in Brooklyn with his lady and a bunch of cats.
EMMA STRAUB is the author of the story collection Other People We Married. Her stories and essays have been published by Tin House, The Paris Review, Barrelhouse, The Saint Ann’s Review, Cousin Corinne’s Reminder, The L Magazine, and many other journals. Her novel is forthcoming from Riverhead Books. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband.
SETH FRIED is the author of the debut story collection The Great Frustration. His short stories have appeared in numerous publications, including Tin House, One Story, McSweeney's Quarterly Concern, The Kenyon Review, The Missouri Review, and Vice and have been anthologized in The Better of McSweeney's, Volume 2 and The Pushcart Prize XXXV: The Best of the Small Presses.
ELIZA SNELLING is a Master of Fine Arts student in the fiction program at Brooklyn College. Her work has appeared in the online journals The Writing Disorder and Swamp Writing and is forthcoming in the Wolf Review and The Brooklyn Review. She was also a finalist in L Magazine’s Literary Upstart Contest. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Sarah Lawrence College and lives in Crown Heights.