Join me at the #ParkLit Hashtag Book Festival

I’m Bronwyn Mauldin, creator of GuerrillaReads. I’m delighted to announce that from September 5-18 I’ll be an artist in residence at Mesa Verde National Park.

That’s only a few weeks after the National Park Service turns 100 years old on August 25. To celebrate both events I’m organizing a one-day Hashtag Book Festival on Saturday, August 20 that brings together two of my favorite things in the world: parks and literature.Slide1

Everyone is invited, and anyone can participate. If you love parks and books, this festival is for you. Here’s how it works:

You post content to your favorite social media site related to literature and parks – especially national parks – with the hashtag #parklit. I’m aggregating everything on the #ParkLit Hashtag Book Festival page, and I’ll highlight the best contributions. For example, you could post

  • Books, stories, poems or  essays about parks
  • Reviews of books about parks
  • Selfies of you reading in a park
  • Pictures of family or  friends with their favorite books in a park
  • Vlogs of you talking about how books and parks fit into your life
  • Pictures of books about parks, in bookstores, libraries, at home and any other places

I’m especially looking for writers to post video or audio of yourself reading from your stories, poems and essays about parks, published or unpublished. Extra points if you record your reading in a national park.

Bookstores and libraries – post pictures of the sections where readers can find books about parks, or post reviews of books about parks by your staff.

For more details, check out my FAQs page. And please help me spread the word. The more people who participate, the better this festival will be!

GuerrillaReads No. 98: Neal Rabin

Literature meets tennis in this guerrilla reading by Neal Rabin.

Rabin has been a Club Med tennis and surf instructor, refrigerator stocker, and even worked as a “fetch” for Time Life Films. One-time founder and CEO of a global software company, he now spends his time doing the kind of stuff you’ll see in this video. Plus, he raises chickens. 23 Degrees South is his first book. 

And that’s game, set and match.

GuerrillaReads No. 97: A.R. Taylor

Watch as A.R. Taylor does a guerrilla reading of her story of horticulture gone amok. Listen as a murder of crows contributes to the soundtrack.

Taylor’s debut novel, Sex, Rain, and Cold Fusion won a Gold Medal for Best Regional Fiction at the Independent Publisher Book Awards 2015, and Kirkus Reviews named it one of the 12 Most Cinematic Indie Books of 2014. She’s been published in the Los Angeles Times, the Southwest Review, Pedantic Monthly, The Cynic online magazine, the Berkeley Insider, So It Goes––the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library Magazine on Humor, Red Rock Review, and Rosebud, where this story comes from. In her past life, Taylor was head writer on two Emmy winning series for public television. You can also find Taylor in the usual social spaces: @lonecamel and the Facebook.

GuerrillaReads profiled in The Atlantic

In her new article at The AtlanticTaking it to the Streets, Katharine Schwab profiles a number of terrific ventures around the world that take literature out of bookstores and libraries and, well, into the streets. GuerrillaReads was included, alongside the Coffee Sleeves Conversation project at Coffee House Press and London’s long-running s Poems on the Underground.

In our interview, Schwab asked how this website is a marketing tool. I told her that of course I want to sell books, but GuerrillaReads is about more than that.

It’s about building a community—a literary community is really at the heart of this.

If you haven’t seen many GuerrillaReads videos, scroll down and watch, or use the tags to the right to find something cool.

I launched GuerrillaReads back in 2008 as a way to help connect writers with readers, while also trying to make the internet a little more literary. If you haven’t yet appeared on GuerrillaReads, check out our submission guidelines. And if you have, thanks for being part of this literary community that we are building one writer, one reader and one reading at a time.

Read Taking it to the Streets at The Atlantic.

GuerrillaReads No. 96: Jessica M. Wilson

Jessica M. Wilson is one of those poets you’ll find everywhere. She’s organized all sorts of readings and reading series around LA including Writers’ Row, SoapBox Poets Open Mic, Writer Wednesdays, the NoHo Salon, and she’s the LA Organizer for 100 Thousand Poets for Change. Jessica teaches with California Poets in the Schools and she’s also founder of the Los Angeles Poet Society, who participated in the 2015 North Hollywood LitCrawl, reading at the NoHo Metro station.

Her latest book is Serious Longing from Paris-based Swan World Press.

GuerrillaReads No. 95: James Berkowitz

James Berkowitz is a poet, writer, multidimensional artist, and event producer. Recent credits include Edgar Allan Poet Journal #3, San Francisco Peace and Hope literary and art journal, anthologies The Revolutionary Poets Brigade, Men in the Company of Women and Los Angeles Poetry Society Features amongst several places where his work is recognized.

This guerrilla reading is at the 2015 LA LitCrawl, at the Metro Red Line Station in North Hollywood. Berkowitz read with other members of the Los Angeles Poet Society.

Berkowitz calls himself “a human camera of observation.” He loves the magnificence of nature and its many settings as well as the pulse and stimulation of city streets. His greatest reward is connecting with other sentient beings, which you can do virtually at http://www.jamesberkowitz.com

GuerrillaReads No. 94: Ian Brennan

Ian Brennan is probably best known as a Grammy-winning producer, working with acts that include Ramblin’ Jack Elliott, Tinariwen, Lucinda Williams and David Hidalgo (Los Lobos). Some folks also know him as the author of three books (and a fourth one coming soon).

Brennan’s most recent novella, Sister Maple Syrup Eyes, is a fictionalized account of a man who survives his partner’s rape. It’s something Brennan knows about from a very personal experience.

At age 21, Brennan’s life was forever changed when his first love was raped. He describes his experience this way:

I knew full well that the trauma I’d experienced was infinitesimal compared to hers. Yet, nonetheless, it was still devastating and changed the course of my entire life. The one thing I was determined to do was to try to produce something good from that bad, a celebration and memorial of what was, and that if it leant some small healing to even one person, it was somehow worth the while to help tip the scales however insignificantly back towards sanity.

Brennan has gone on to train people in violence prevention, anger-management, and conflict resolution at shelters, schools, hospitals, clinics, jails and drug-treatment centers across the US and in Europe, Africa, Asia and the Middle East. This book delves more deeply, exploring the experience of the other victim of rape.

Watch Brennan’s guerrilla reading here, and learn more about the book.