Monday, December 22, 2008

January 17th Readings: Susan McCallum-Smith, Richard Peabody, Patricia Schultheis, and Tim Wendel

We are please to begin our second season of the 510 Readings with Susan McCallum-Smith, Richard Peabody, Patricia Schultheis, and Tim Wendel. Come and help us bring in the new year, and pick up our 2009 schedule!

Susan McCallum-Smith is the literary editor of Urbanite magazine and a contributing reviewer to Maryland Public Radio. Her work has also been featured, or is upcoming, in The Scottish Review of Books, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and The Gettysburg Review. She received her degrees in creative writing from Johns Hopkins and Bennington College, and currently teaches in the Odyssey Program at Johns Hopkins. Her short story collection, Slipping the Moorings, will be available in January 2009. She was born in Glasgow, Scotland, and currently lives in Baltimore.

Richard Peabody, a prolific poet, fiction writer and editor, is an experienced teacher and important activist in the Washington, DC community of letters. He is editor of Gargoyle Magazine (founded in 1976), and has published a novella, two books of short stories, six books of poems, plus an e-book, and edited (or co-edited) seventeen anthologies including: Mondo Barbie, Mondo Elvis, Conversations with Gore Vidal, A Different Beat: Writings by Women of the Beat Generation, and Kiss the Sky: Fiction and Poetry Starring Jimi Hendrix. Peabody teaches fiction writing for the Johns Hopkins Advanced Studies Program. You can find out more about him at: or

Patricia Schultheis has had several essays and nearly two dozen short stories published in national and international literary journals. She has served on the editorial board of The Baltimore Review and currently serves on the editorial board of Narrative. She is a member of The Author’s Guild and a voting member of The National Book Critics Circle. Her pictorial local history titled Baltimore’s Lexington Market was published by Arcadia Publishing of South Carolina in 2007, and her collection of short stories about a fictional street in Baltimore named St. Bart’s Road was a finalist for the 2008 Flannery O’Connor Award. She recently was a writing consultant for the Fitzgerald Literary Conference. Patricia holds two graduate degrees from The Johns Hopkins University and an undergraduate degree from Albertus Magnus College in New Haven.

Tim Wendel is an award-winning novelist and journalist. His books include Red Rain, Castro’s Curveball, and Far From Home. In early 2009, a limited edition about the Buffalo Braves' basketball team, Buffalo, Home of the Braves, will be released by Sun Bear Press. Tim’s stories have appeared in The Potomac Review and Gargoyle, while his articles have appeared in The New York Times, Washington Post, USA Weekend, Esquire, Washingtonian, and GQ. His columns appear on the USA Today op-ed page, where he is on the Board of Contributors. Tim teaches fiction and nonfiction writing at Johns Hopkins University.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

A Very Special Thank You

Thank you Madeleine Mysko, Savannah Schroll Guz, Joseph Young, David R. Matthews, Rachel Bradley, Luca Dipierro, David Housley, Christine Stewart, Maud Casey, Michael Downs, Geoff Herbach, Betsy Boyd, Adam Robinson, Susan Muaadi-Darraj, Lalita Noronha, Rosalia Scalia, Sean Carman, Rupert Wondolowski, Larry Doyle, Jackie Corley, Linda Franklin, Jessica Anya Blau, Tita Chico, Merrill Feitell, Stacey D'Erasmo, Rafael Alvarez, Madison Smartt Bell, William Henry Lewis, Dan Fesperman, Karen Lillis, Charles Rammelkamp, Brian Evenson, A.E. Peterson, Darcelle Bleau, Deborah Rudacille, Lia Purpura, Brian Eden, Peggy Hoffman, Minas Konsolas, and YOU for making our inaugural season of the 510 Readings such a success.

The 510 Readings will be on hiatus the month of December. See you in January 2009!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

510 Readings on YouTube

For your viewing pleasure, or in case you missed it, the November 15th 510 Reading in its entirety is available on YouTube!

Brian Eden reads "Fear the Laundry" and "A Brief and Unpleasant Run-in With My Ex":

"Fear the Laundry"

"A Brief and Unpleasant Run-in With My Ex"

Lia Purpura reads "The Space Between":

"The Space Between," Part 1

"The Space Between," Part 2

"The Space Between," Part 3

Deborah Rudacille reads "Smoke":

"Smoke," Part 1

"Smoke," Part 2

Please note that the 510 Readings will be on hiatus until January 17th. We wish you the happiest of holidays. See you soon!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

November 15th Readings: Deborah Rudacille, Lia Purpura, and Brian Eden

We're pleased to present our first nonfiction installment of the 510 Readings on Saturday, November 15th. We hope you join us for readings from Deborah Rudacille, Lia Purpura, and Brian Eden!

Deborah Rudacille graduated from the Writing Seminars at Johns Hopkins University in 1998. Since then, she has published two non-fiction books—The Scalpel and the Butterfly (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2000) and The Riddle of Gender (Pantheon, 2004). Her history of Baltimore steelworkers, Roots of Steel, will be published by Pantheon in 2009. She appears regularly in the Urbanite, STYLE, and other magazines.

Lia Purpura is the author of The Brighter the Veil (winner of the Towson University Prize in Literature) and Poems of Grzegorz Musial: Berliner Tagebuch and Taste of Ash, translated on a Fulbright year in Poland. She was awarded a 2004 National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in Prose. Her essay collection On Looking was published by Sarabande Press in 2006. Her collection of essays, Increase, won the Associated Writing Programs Award in Creative Nonfiction and was published by the University of Georgia Press in 2000. Her collection of poems, Stone Sky Lifting, won the Ohio State University Press/The Journal Award and was also published in 2000.

Brian Eden is an advertising copywriter and the author of the blog "Walk a Mile in My Underpants" ( He has won national and international advertising awards, a fantasy football league, and a few hard-fought games of Jenga. His humor writing has been politely rejected by The New Yorker, McSweeney's, and This American Life. He currently lives in Baltimore and is the #1 ranked Brian Eden on Google.

Monday, November 3, 2008

November 1st: A Very Special Reading

Saturday was a night of beautiful books, beautiful stories, and beautiful people. Here are some of the highlights:

The crowd filleth.

A.E. Peterson read an excerpt from her novel-in-progress for the first time in public. It's full of beautiful language, some of it from talkative rivers.

Darcelle Blau read three stunning short works, including an overview of poppers and extreme sports.

Aaron Cohick, founder of NewLights Press, previewed THE DROWNABLE SPECIES by Brian Evenson, a handmade, limited-edition release.

Brian Evenson treated the crowd to a selection from THE DROWNABLE SPECIES, an examination of identity and reality with some Poe-like narratives included to haunt us all.

See you November 15th for Brian Eden, Deborah Rudacille, and Lia Purpura!

Friday, October 24, 2008

A Special 510 Reading: November 1, 5pm

Put this one on the calendar. It's going to be a great 510 reading: Brian Evenson, A.E. Peterson, Darcelle Bleau. Aaron Cohick of NewLights Press is publishing a handmade book by Brian Evenson, THE DROWNABLE SPECIES. The NewLights Press is an independent publisher of experimental literature and artists books, concentrating primarily on where the two can and do overlap. All NewLights Press books are printed and bound by hand, using techniques ranging from the obsolete (letterpress) to the utilitarian (laser printing). The Press was founded in Baltimore in 2000, and currently resides in San Francisco.

Brian Evenson is the author of seven books of fiction, most recently The Open Curtain (Coffee House), which was a finalist for an Edgar Award and an IHG Award and was among Time Out New York's top books of 2006. He lives and works in Providence, Rhode Island, where he directs Brown University’s Literary Arts Program. Other books include The Wavering Knife (which won the IHG Award for best story collection) and The Brotherhood of Mutilation. He has translated work by Chrstian Gailly, Jean FrÈmon and Jacques Jouet. He has received an O. Henry Prize as well as an NEA fellowship. A novel, Last Days, and a new collection of stories, Fugue State, are forthcoming in 2009.

A.E. Peterson lives and writes in Baltimore. Her short stories, essays, and reviews have appeared in Modern Painters, Poets & Writers, Pierogi Press, Brooklyn Review, Center for Digital Storytelling, and elsewhere. She has received fellowships from the Sacatar Foundation, Fundacion Valparaiso, Ucross Foundation, and Julia and David White Artists Colony. She teaches at the Maryland Institute College of Art and is currently working on a novel.

Darcelle Bleau graduated from the Johns Hopkins MFA program in 2006. Since then, she has participated in a year-long writing residency at Maryland Art Place and edited the visual literary catalogue, Entangled: Art & Word.

Monday, October 20, 2008

October 18th Reading Highlights

Thanks to everybody who came out Saturday. It was another standing-room only crowd for Charles Rammelkamp, Karen Lillis, and Dan Fesperman. Please remember that we're doubling up in November with readings on November 1st (Brian Evenson, A.E. Peterson, and Darcelle Bleau) and November 15th (Brian Eden, Deborah Radcliffe, and Lia Purpura). Hope to see you then!

Charm City author and poet Charles Rammelkamp, reading from his collection Castleman in the Academy, picks up where last month's Dirty Words reading left off.

Pittsburgh's favorite daughter Karen Lillis joined us to give dynamic, poetic selections from her newest book, The Second Elizabeth.

Baltimore legend Dan Fesperman closes the show with a reading from his novel, The Warlord's Son.

see you in a few weeks!

Monday, October 13, 2008

October 18th Readings: Dan Fesperman, Karen Lillis, and Charles Rammelkamp

Dan Fesperman’s travels as a writer have taken him to more than 30 countries and three war zones. He spent most of that time as a correspondent for The Sun, and it wasn't until a trip to Sarajevo in the winter of '94 that he began writing his first novel, at the age of 39. His fifth novel, The Amateur Spy, published this year by Knopf, chronicles the wanderings of a disgraced American aid worker who has been forcefully recruited to spy on an old Palestinian friend, an assignment that carries him across Greece, Jordan, and the West Bank. Dan's books have won two Dagger awards from Britain's Crime Writer's Association, and a Dashiell Hammett award in the US. He lives in Baltimore.

Karen Lillis is the author of the novels, "The Second Elizabeth" (Six Gallery Press, 2009), and "i, scorpion: foul belly-crawler of the desert"; and the serialized novella, "Magenta's Adventures Underground." She has been involved in the small press for a number of years as editor, publisher, and blogger, among other roles. In 2000, she embarked on a cross-country reading tour via Greyhound. Her poems and prose have appeared in such journals as Avatar Review,, Keyhole Magazine, Long Shot,, and Pulse Berlin; her writing is included in "Wreckage of Reason: An Anthology of XXperimental Prose from Contemporary Women Writers" (Spuyten Duyvil, June 2008). She has been a photographer in Virginia, a bookseller in New York City, an art critic in Texas, a writer-in-residence in Paris, and is currently a library science student in Pittsburgh. You can find her on myspace at:

Charles Rammelkamp has lived in Baltimore for the past twenty-five years. He's been involved with a variety of publications, including being on the editorial board of THE TEACHER'S VOICE, and he edited a collection of essays entitled FAKE-CITY SYNDROME for Red Hen Press on American cultural issues to be used in college composition and rhetoric classes. He currently edits an online "journal of politics and poetry" called THE POTOMAC. He has published a number of works, including a novel, THE SECRETKEEPERS (Red Hen Press), and a collection of poems, THE BOOK OF LIFE (March Street Press), and several chapbooks, including GO TO HELL, a sequence that deals with a semester in the life of an adjunct English instructor. CASTLEMAN IN THE ACADEMY is a collection of eleven interrelated stories, recently published by March Street Press, about Roger Castleman, a writing teacher at a community college in Baltimore.

Monday, September 22, 2008

BBF Baltimore Festival Readings, Sept 26th

If you missed the titillating Dirty Words reading last Saturday, don't fear; we're double-dipping this month! We'll be at the CityLit tent from 6-8 pm, September 26th at the Baltimore Book Festival! Rafael Alvarez, Maddison Smartt Bell, Michael Kimball, Henry Lewis, Jen Michalski, and Christine Schutt will read. And there's also the matter of free beer, provided by Clipper City Brewery, Aaron Henkin from WYPR's "The Signal," and The CityLit Band!

Rafael Alvarez is a short story writer and screenwriter based in Baltimore and Los Angeles. A former City Desk reporter for the Baltimore Sun, Alvarez wrote for the HBO drama "The Wire" in the show's first three seasons and is the author of ORLO AND LEINI, a collection of short fiction and HOMETOWN BOY, an anthology of his journalism. He can be reached at

Madison Smartt Bell is the author of 12 novels, including SOLDIER's JOY, which received the Lillian Smith Award in 1989. Bell has also published two collections of short stories: ZERO DB (1987) and BARKING MAN (1990). In 2002, the novel DOCTOR SLEEP was adapted as a film, Close Your Eyes, starring Goran Visnjic, Paddy Considine, and Shirley Henderson. Bell's eighth novel, ALL SOUL'S RISING, was a finalist for the 1995 National Book Award and the 1996 PEN/Faulkner Award and winner of the 1996 Anisfield-Wolf award for the best book of the year dealing with matters of race. All Souls Rising, along with the second and third novels of his Haitian Revolutionary trilogy, Master of the Crossroads and The Stone That The Builder Refused, is available in a uniform edition from Vintage Contemporaries. Toussaint Louverture: A Biography, appeared from Pantheon in 2007. Born and raised in Tennessee, he has lived in New York and in London and now lives in Baltimore, Maryland, along with his wife, the poet Elizabeth Spires, and daughter. He is currently Director of the Kratz Center for Creative Writing at Goucher College, and has been a member of the Fellowship of Southern Writers since 2003. For more details, visit

Michael Kimball’s first two novels are THE WAY THE FAMILY GOT AWAY (2000) and HOW MUCH OF US THERE WAS (2005), both of which have been translated (or are being translated) into many languages. His third novel, DEAR EVERYBODY, has just been published in the US, UK, and Canada ( Time Out New York called the writing “stunning” and the Los Angeles Times said the book was “funny and warm and sad and heartbreaking.” Sam Lipsyte has called Michael Kimball “a hero of contemporary American literature.” He is also responsible for the collaborative art project—Michael Kimball Writes Your Life Story (on a postcard)--and the documentary film, I Will Smash You (2009).

William Henry Lewis’ first book, IN THE ARMS OF OUR ELDERS, was published by Carolina Wren Press in 1995 and has since seen three printings. His second collection of stories, I GOT SOMEBODY IN STAUNTON, (Amistad/HarperCollins, 2005), has been named by Kirkus Reviews as a Best Book of 2005, and honored as a finalist for the 2006 PEN Faulkner Prize for Fiction. He teaches Creative Writing at the University of Maryland, College Park. Recently, Lewis has been awarded a 2008 Creative Writing Fellowship in prose fiction by the National Endowment for the Arts. Lewis’s writing has appeared and forthcoming in many literary journals and several anthologies, home and abroad, including Best American Short Stories of 1996.

Jen Michalski's collection of short fiction, CLOSE ENCOUNTERS (2007), is available from So New Media. Her fiction has appeared in more than 30 publications, including McSweeney's, Failbetter, storySouth, Hobart, Pindeldyboz, Thieves Jargon, Word Riot, and others. She is the editor of the literary e-zine jmww and lives in Baltimore. You can visit her at

Christine Schutt is the author of two short story collections and FLORIDA, a novel and National Book Award finalist. Her second novel, ALL SOULS, was published in April 2008, and has been widely praised as "hauntingly unforgettable" and "one of the best private school novels to appear in recent years." Among other honors, Schutt has twice won the O’Henry Short Story Prize. She has taught in the writing programs at Columbia, Barnard, Sarah Lawrence, Bennington, and the University of California-Irvine. In spring she was the Louis D. Rubin, Jr., Writer-in-Residence at Hollins University and this past summer taught at the Sewanee Writers' Conference. Schutt is a senior editor of the literary annual NOON. She lives in New York.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Talk Dirty to Me

I think the City Paper is onto us. Check out our "Best Scene" mention in their "Best of" edition.

I guess they're not the only ones. A crowd of 60+ got a little closer in the upstairs of Minas Gallery and Boutique on Saturday, September 20th, for Dirty Words: A Literary Encyclopedia of Sex.

Summer of Naked Swim Parties author Jessica Blau started off the night with some musings on adultery.

Maud Casey, author of the novel Genealogy and the collection Drastic tackled pheromones.

Tita Chico, author of Designing Women: The Dressing Room in Eighteenth-Century Literature and Culture, gave a lecture on the history of the word pornography.

Stacey D'Erasmo, author of the novels Tea and A Seahorse Year, silver-balled us.

Merrill Feitell, author of the collection Here Beneath Low-Flying Planes, got us addicted to lust.

Finally, Michael Kimball, author of Dear Everybody, How Much of Us There Was, and The Way The Family Got Away, gave a handy talk on hand jobs.

A lot of cold showers ensued. But we'll be heating it up again Friday, September 26th, at the Baltimore Book Festival (CityLit Tent). Please join us for free beer, Maddison Smartt Bell, Rafael Alvarez, Christine Schutt, Michael Kimball, Jen Michalski, and William Henry Lewis. Aaron Henkin of WYPR's "The Signal" emcees. Oh, and did we mention free beer, courtesy of Clipper City Brewery?

Thursday, August 28, 2008

September 20th Reading: The Dirty Words Anthology

Join us for a smattering of dirty words as Michael Kimball, Tita Chico, Jessica Anya Blau, Maud Casey, Stacey D'Erasmo, and Merrill Feitell read their entries from Dirty Words: A Literary Encyclopedia of Sex, a playful encyclopedia (edited by Ellen Sussman) of America's real favorite pastime.

Michael Kimball’s third novel, DEAR EVERYBODY, has just been published in the US, UK, and Canada ( His first two novels are THE WAY THE FAMILY GOT AWAY (2000) and HOW MUCH OF US THERE WAS (2005), both of which have been translated (or are being translated) into many languages. He is also responsible for the collaborative art project--Michael Kimball Writes Your Life Story (on a postcard)—and the documentary film, I Will Smash You.

Tita Chico is Associate Professor of English and Associate Director of Graduate Studies at the University of Maryland-College Park. She is the author of Designing Women: The Dressing Room in Eighteenth-Century Literature and Culture (2005) and Editor of the scholarly journal, The Eighteenth Century: Theory and Interpretation.

Jessica Anya Blau is the author of THE SUMMER OF NAKED SWIM PARTIES (HarperPerennial 2008). Her short fiction has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and appeared in numerous publications in the U.S. and Canada. She is currently teaching at Johns Hopkins University.

MAUD CASEY ( is the author of the novels The Shape of Things to Come, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year, and Genealogy, a New York Times Editor's Pick, and an award-winning story collection, Drastic. She is the recipient of the Calvino Prize and international fellowships at the Fundacion Valparaiso and the Hawthornden International Retreat for Writers. She is an Assistant Professor of English at the University of Maryland and lives in Washington, D.C. []

Merrill Feitell's first book, Here Beneath Low-Flying Planes, won the Iowa Award for Short Fiction. She teaches at the University of Maryland in College Park and lives in Baltimore. She is currently working on a novel.

Stacey D’Erasmo is the author of the novels Tea, which was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year; and A Seahorse Year, which was named a Best Book of the Year by the San Francisco Chronicle and Newsday, and won both a Lambda Literary Award and a Ferro-Grumley Award. Her third novel, The Sky Below, will be published in January, 2009. She is currently an assistant professor of writing at Columbia University.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Larry Doyle's 2008 Thurber Prize Nomination

Congrats to recent 510 guest Larry Doyle (August 16th reading)! He is one of three finalists for the esteemed 2008 Thurber Prize for American Humor. Keep your fingers crossed!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Saturday, August 16th reading

Welcome to the August installment of the 510 Readings! Saturday, Linda Franklin, Jackie Corley, and Larry Doyle joined Michael and Jen and company at Minas in Hampden:

An audience, darkly.

Linda Franklin reads, with a surprise appearance by Joe Young

Jackie Corley, editor of Word Riot, reads from her short fiction collection The Suburban Swindle.

Larry Doyle reads from his novel I Love You, Beth Cooper, soon to be a major motion picture release in 2009!

Join us next month on September 20th to hear some Dirty Words (readings by Jessica Anya Blau, Maud Casey, Tita Chico, Merrill Feitell, and more) and also at the Baltimore Book Festival on September 26th (featuring readings by Madison Smartt Bell, Rafael Alvarez, Michael Kimball, Jen Michalski, Christine Schutt, and Henry Lewis!)

Monday, July 28, 2008

August 16th Readings: Larry Doyle, Jackie Corley, Linda Franklin

Larry Doyle is the author of I LOVE YOU, BETH COOPER, soon to be a minor motion picture directed by Chris Columbus and starring Hayden Panettiere in the title role. He was a writer-producer for The Simpsons for four years, and now makes something of a living writing screenplays and allegedly funny things for The New Yorker.

Jackie Corley was born in 1982. She developed Word Riot ( in March 2002 with the help of Paula Anderson. Word Riot Press, an independent publishing press, evolved out of the magazine in January 2003. Her writing has appeared on-line at, 3AM Magazine, and Pequin, among others, and in various print anthologies. Her short story collection, The Suburban Swindle, will be published in October 2008 by So New (

Linda Campbell Franklin has written and/or illustrated 40+ nonfiction books, but she's given up assembling and rearranging facts out of neat file cabinets, and has returned to what's in her messy brain—fiction. Soon she hopes to finish one of the four novels in progress. She teaches creative writing at a re-entry program for ex-offenders. Only one piece of fiction has been published—a short story for children a couple of years ago. She hasn’t tried to publish anything else, so if you have a carrot stick, please use it on her! Her blog is