Jazzy Mitchell, Musings of a Madwoman

Three women’s lives interweave as they struggle to navigate life and love. And the effects of a meteorite.

Patricia Steitz, a successful romance writer, is flabbergasted when Rudi Singlewood shows up at one of her book signings and initiates a summer romance. She worries that the fantasies she’s harbored regarding the world-renown Broadway actress may prevent her from accepting who Rudi really is. She relates her fears to her best friend, Marcia Struthers, a successful Manhattan litigator.

Knowing that Patricia has dreamed of Rudi for years, Marcia urges her to give the actress a chance by getting to know who she is behind her public persona. While working a high-profile case, Marcia must confront her resurging feelings for lead opposing counsel, Lexie Yamin, and the appearance of an unrequited love. All is not as it seems, however, as Marcia deals with unexpected physical changes and developing mental abilities after an encounter with a meteorite. Marcia’s not the only one dealing with changes induced by an extraterrestrial rock, though.

Kiernan Connelly, who has received intriguing letters over several months, begins to question her lifestyle. Her casual sexual relationship with Rudi and passable acting career no longer fulfill her. As Kiernan makes changes in her life, she finds herself dealing with the strange reality of being able to hear others’ thoughts. Could it be related to her close encounter with a meteorite?

Jazzy Mitchell loves to tell stories, whether in the classroom or on paper. She taught English in the public schools of her hometown for a decade, giving back to the system which helped her so much. Her debut novel, Lost Treasures, received an Honorable Mention for the 2016 Rainbow Awards and was nominated in three categories for GCLS’s 2017 Goldie Awards: Debut Author, Traditional Contemporary Romance, and Cover Design. Besides writing, Jazzy teaches real estate law, writes fanfiction as Jazwriter, and facilitates energy work through her business, the Lightarian Institute. Jazzy lives in Portland, Oregon, enjoying life with her wife, three children, and two dogs.

James H Bloom, Within Lies Hope

Join us for a reading from Within Lies Hope, a series of inspirational quote books from James H Bloom. Bloom was born in Louisville, Kentucky on December 7, 1950. Becoming an orphan at birth, James became a ward of the court, subsequently being raised in foster care until his adoption at the age of 4. At the age of 17, he joined the Marine Corps and served for a period of two years. Following his discharge, James went into heavy construction work and production fabrication work which he continued for over 42 years. He is married to his wife Diana for 48 years now, and they live in Portland Oregon.

 

Launch! Strongly Worded Women: The Best of the Year of Publishing Women (Anthology)

Not a Pipe Publishing is one of the only companies in the world to accept author Kamila Shamsie’s challenge to only publish women during 2018, making it the Year of Publishing Women. Strongly Worded Women: The Best of the Year of Publishing Women showcases the talent of 18 amazing writers across genres who all demonstrate the strength of their voices.

At this launch party, we’ll hear teasers from:

Chloe Hagerman
Julia Figliotti
Rosie Bueford
LeeAnn McLennan (The Supernormal Legacy)
Tonya Lippert
Maren Anderson (Closing the Store)
Elizabeth Beechwood
Lizzy Carney
Taylor Buccello
Debby Dodds (Amish Guys Don’t Call)

Authors Francesca Varela and Beth Kander

Join us for a reading from The Seas of Distant Stars by Francesca Varela, and from Original Syn by Beth Kander.
 
The Seas of Distant Stars
Agapanthus was kidnapped when she was only two years old, but she doesn’t remember it. In fact, she doesn’t remember her home planet at all. All she knows is Deeyae, the land of two suns; the land of great, red waters. Her foster-family cares for her, and at first that’s enough. But, as she grows older, Agapanthus is bothered by the differences between them. As an Exchanger, she’s frail and tall, not short and strong. And, even though she was raised Deeyan, she certainly isn’t treated like one. One day, an Exchanger boy completes the Deeyan rite-of-passage, and Agapanthus is inspired to try the same. But, when she teams up with him, her quest to become Deeyan transforms into her quest to find the truth―of who she is, and of which star she belongs to.
Original Syn
The world is divided into two populations, locked in a cold war after the Singularity: The Syns (“synthetic citizens,” human-computer hybrids with extraordinary enhancements and potentially infinite lifespans) and the Originals (those who did not merge their bodies with the machines). But the decades-long battle between Original and Syn is almost at an end, because the Originals are on the verge of extinction. One of the only young Originals left in the world, Ere, might someday be the very last of his kind. But when he meets a beautiful, powerful Syn girl called Ever, he questions everything he’s ever been told about his lifelong enemies. Original Syn is a rich, dangerous world of family secrets, free will, forbidden love, and the sparks that fly when aggressive technology meets stubborn humanity.
 

Francesca G. Varela was raised in Oregon’s Willamette Valley. In 2015 she graduated from the University of Oregon with degrees in Environmental Studies and Creative Writing, and she then went on to receive her master’s degree in Environmental Humanities from the University of Utah.
 
Francesca’s dream of becoming an author began in third grade, and her writing career had an early start; she wrote her award-winning first novel, Call of the Sun Child, when she was only 18 years old, and she wrote her second novel, Listen, when she was only 20.
 
When not writing or reading, Francesca enjoys playing piano, figure skating, hiking, identifying wild birds, plants, and constellations, and travelling to warm, sunny places whenever she can.
Beth Kander lives and writes in Chicago, where stories keep her warm. Her dystopian epic Original Syn debuts in September (Owl House Books). An award-winning playwright, Beth has an MFA in Creative Writing from Mississippi University for Women, and also holds degrees from Brandeis University (BA) and the University of Michigan (MSW). ​She drinks too much coffee and enjoys a variety of activities, but her favorite time is spent going on adventures with her husband and daughter, or snuggling on the couch with their two geriatric rescue dogs and some good books.

Ryan Bernstein, OCD to Me: An Anthology of Anxieties

Join us in welcoming Ryan Bernstein, who will read from his non-fiction work OCD to Me: An Anthology of Anxieties.

In OCD to Me, sixty courageous individuals open their hearts and share what having OCD feels like. The book features a foreword by Dr. Jenny Yip, a clinical psychologist, author, speaker, nationally recognized OCD expert, and founder of the Renewed Freedom Center in Los Angeles, California. Two Ph.D psychologists, Drs. James Claiborn and Fred Penzel, who are also OCD leaders, contribute chapters filled with valuable treatment information, tips, and practical advice about how to manage OCD. All proceeds from book sales will be donated to the International OCD Foundation. When you purchase a book you support the OCD community.

Ryan Bernstein is a high school student with OCD. He is the founder and facilitator of Hand in Hand, a weekly OCD support group where he helps teens at his school who struggle with anxiety learn new coping skills. As a national youth advocate for OCD, Ryan seeks to educate through his writing and public-speaking. He has been featured in national blogs and newsletters including the International OCD Foundation, OCD Talks, and The Peace of Mind Foundation. Ryan encourages taking charge of OCD by helping others.

Poetry Night with Sherri Levine, Liz Nakazawa, Rebecca Smolen, and Igor Brezhnev

A collection of voice poems, In These Voices by Sherri Levine allows us to peek inside the lives of a variety of characters. Levine, through the magic of language, embodies a jilted lover, a worried husband, a young woman, a son, a granddaughter and even a squirrel.

Painting the Heart Open by Liz Nakazawa includes poems of memory, thanks, prayer, bliss, dreams and blessings, embedded in color, and, while ethereal, are also rooted firmly to the earth. Hope is the sustaining thread even if some poems veer into darkness. Light is never too far away.

Womanhood & Other Scars by Rebecca Smolen explores what it means to be a woman in the 21st century. Through the eyes of the poet as young girl, teenager, daughter, granddaughter, wife and mother, we traverse both the triumphs and heartbreaks of womanhood. Let these poems blanket you in the realization you are not alone—you have a community who will help you navigate the waters of misogynistic behavior and societal expectations. The scars of each of our experiences are there to remind us how far we’ve come, and give us the strength to keep rising.

Igor Brezhnev’s new collection of poetry, america is a dry cookie and other love stories, is now available for pre-order. The book contains ninety nine poems (with one additional surprise poem) on one hundred and ninety two pages. The poem ‘america is…’ features 15 illustrations by two very talented artists, Grace Anderson and Bernard McKenna.


Sherri Levine lives in Portland, Oregon where she teaches English as a Second Language to adult immigrants and refugees at Portland Community College and Portland State University. Her work has been published in The Timberline Review, Hartskill ReviewVoiceCatcher: A Journal of Women’s Voices & VisionsVerseweaversPerspectives Magazine, The Poeming Pigeon, and The Sun Magazine. She won First Prize (Poet’s Choice) in the Oregon Poetry Association’s Biannual Contest (2017). Sherri recently served as Poetry Editor for VoiceCatcher. She escaped the long harsh winters of upstate New York and has ever since been happily soaking in the Oregon rain.

Liz Nakazawa is the editor of Deer Drink the Moon: Poems of Oregon (Ooligan Press), a collection of nature poems by 33 Oregon poets. It was designated as one of the Best 100 Books about Oregon in the last 100 Years by the Oregon State Librarian. It was also a Best Picks of Powell’s.  She also edited The Knotted Bond: Oregon Poets Speak of Their Sisters (Uttered Chaos Press), a collection of poems by 32 Oregon poets. Her own poems have appeared in Turn, The Timberline Review and The Poeming Pigeon journals and haiku has appeared in ahundredgourds.

In her free time Liz enjoys bird watching, dancing (both folk and ballroom), calligraphy, reading, hiking and walking, identifying trees and flowers, writing snail mail letters to her son and friends, and collecting old books, vintage writing paper and stamps. She feels incredibly grateful for the love and nurturing, as well as friendships and community, from the pulsating Oregon poetry community. Words bloom easily here in Oregon.

Rebecca Smolen is a writer based in Portland, Oregon transplanted from New Hampshire in 2014. She has a deep love for short story, poetry, hugs and animals. She grew up on a dead end road exploring drainage pipes and pond life. Since settling here, she works as a veterinary technician, volunteers with the Pacific Pug Rescue, chaperones class field trips occasionally for her two small children, promotes ‘feminism is for everyone,’ attempts to stay connected with friends, goes to as many writing workshops and retreats as her budget and time constraints allow, and pet sits on the side to earn funds for the aforementioned.

Rebecca enjoys writing darker than most would assume of her, diving deep into forgotten memories and her weird dreams which fuel her creativity. She loves twisting the normal route of thinking and creating new metaphors. She is a true believer that once put down in print, words are no longer for the writer, but instead are meant to help, heal or console others. You can find her writing recently published in the Unchaste Anthology, Vol. 2, Mutha Magazine, and VoiceCatcher: a journal of women’s voices & visions.

Igor Brezhnev is a poet, an author and an artist, amongst his other sins. He has been calling Portland, Oregon his home for the past five years, with occasional long visits to Phoenix, Arizona, which has been his home for over twenty years. He has first-hand experience with confronting depression, homelessness, poverty, and xenophobia, as well as more common ailments like heartbreak and spilled coffee. Igor has authored three books: the book of possibilities (2012), dearest void (2016) and america is a dry cookie and other love stories (2018).

Local Author Emily Wanderer Cohen

Join us for a reading and discussion with Emily Wanderer Cohen, a memoirist and trauma healing coach.

Most children and grandchildren of Holocaust survivors felt the omnipresence of the Holocaust throughout their childhood and for many, the spectre of the Holocaust continues to loom large through the phenomenon of “intergenerational” trauma.

In From Generation to Generation: Healing Intergenerational Trauma Through Storytelling, Emily Wanderer Cohen connects the dots between her behaviors and choices and her mother’s Holocaust experiences. In a series of vivid, emotional—and sometimes gut-wrenching—stories, she illustrates how the Holocaust continues to have an impact on current and future generations. Plus, the prompts at the end of each chapter enable you to explore your own intergenerational trauma and begin your healing journey.

This book will help you:

• Understand how Holocaust and other trauma survivors transmit their trauma to their children and grandchildren

• Recognize that you’re not alone in your emotions and feelings

• Uncover your own intergenerational trauma and specific triggers

• Stop the cycle of intergenerational trauma in your family

• Replace anger and resentment with forgiveness—and begin the healing process

Emily Wanderer Cohen is the daughter and granddaughter of Holocaust survivors. Ever since the day she came home from religious school asking her mother about the Holocaust, Emily heard her mother’s stories of incarceration in and escape from concentration camp as well as eventual immigration to the United States. Her mother also spoke to schoolchildren and other audiences about her personal Holocaust experiences, helping to ensure that this horrific event would never be forgotten. Emily now works with multiple generations of Holocaust survivors to understand and heal their transmitted trauma. She also speaks to Jewish and other organizations about her mother’s history as well as how her mother’s trauma affected her as a second-generation (2G) Holocaust survivor.

Local Author James R. Gapinski

In Edge of the Known Bus Line, a woman’s daily commute takes an abrupt turn when she’s dropped off in a grotesque shantytown. The townsfolk live in huts and tents scavenged from broken trinkets. They eat dead rats and human flesh. They’ve developed cult-like religions about miracle bus routes that will someday set them free. The narrator searches for a way out of this surreal hellscape while dredging up a few nightmares of her own.

Maryse Meijer, author of Heartbreaker, raves “Hallucinatory, savage, but ultimately hopeful, Edge of the Known Bus Line is a bloody bible for our times.” Melissa Reddish, author of Girl & Flame, proclaims “Edge of the Known Bus Line takes us on a one-way trip to the end of civilization and the beginning of what it means to be human.” Ashley Farmer, author of The Women, says “The dark, smart absurdity of James R. Gapinski’s writing jolts and delights in equal measure.”

James R. Gapinski is the author of Edge of the Known Bus Line, winner of the 2018 Etchings Press novella prize. He is also the author of Messiah Tortoise, a flash fiction collection available from Red Bird Chapbooks. His short fiction has appeared in Hobart, Juked, Monkeybicycle, Paper Darts, and other publications. James earned his MFA in fiction from Goddard College and his MA in postmodern literary studies from Prescott College. He is managing editor of The Conium Review and an instructional specialist at Chemeketa Community College. He lives with his partner in Portland, Oregon.

Local Author Heidi Harrison

Join us in for a reading of The Four Seasons, a new book by Heidi Harrison.

Music begins the story, and music weaves itself around each changing time period and evolution, Vivaldi’s transcendent notes encapsulating the various moods of the Four Seasons.

Irene has taught their intricacies for years, as the music of her life gently coils around her and her longings. As the result of a radio contest, she ends up in Tasmania, crossing over hemispheres and seasons, leaving behind winter for the warm sands of summer.

Helena, mountain woman, humanitarian, and yogurt baron, takes her yearly trek to Tasmania to assess her culture providers, unaware that she will meet her match and love in life.

Individually and together, these two women blend a musically rich tapestry of passion, eroticism, humor, intrigue, and the simple and complex layers of the human existence.

Heidi has always loved writing. At a very early age, she realized that words allowed for the exodus of her soul, a rhapsody, a sense of grace enveloping her. Writing has been her boulder, her stories the healing balm in a world that sometimes cries out for this.

Born in and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, she now calls home the Northwest, where towering red cedars surround her, inspiring her imaginative mind. She holds a MS degree in Counseling Psychology, and a dual degree in Child Development and French, and she has spent almost thirty years as a psychotherapist and a teacher of young children. She is also a classically trained violinist. She has traveled extensively between the hemispheres and she has lived and studied in Paris and in Grenoble, France.

She has written several novels and children’s books, countless stories, (fiction and creative nonfiction) and a full-length memoir. In each of these works, she is inspired by imagination itself, by real stories of people’s lives, by love, by music, by the stunning majesty of nature, by the beauty and power of words, relationships, the diversity of cultures, and the human heart and its complexities. We live in a complicated and often challenging world, and yet, as a writer, as an observer, as a teacher, she is, every day, inspired by the grace and by the infinite beauty that we, as humans, embody. Our dazzling earth is of an infinite nature; humbly, she lets words only begin to describe it.

Local Author Kathleen Valenti

Join us in welcoming Kathleen Valenti for a reading from 39 Winks, the next book in the Maggie O’Malley series.

Former pharmaceutical researcher Maggie O’Malley is losing sleep. Her best friend Constantine’s Aunt Polly is a multitasking sleepwalker who, in addition to wandering her stately home, prepares meals, folds laundry and, one winter night, stumbles across her husband with his throat slit.

It’s a rude and gruesome awakening that’s upsetting to Aunt Polly. And interesting to the police.

Maggie and Constantine work to uncover who killed the cosmetic surgery mogul and why. As they dig into the lives of those who knew him best, they discover that the truth is only skin deep and doctoring perception is a treatment with deadly side effects.

A gripping page-turner with more twists than a surgeon’s suture, 39 Winks is a tale of lies, betrayals and greed that will keep you up at night. And looking over your shoulder.

Kathleen has been writing for more than 20 years, first as a nationally award-winning copywriter and now as a mystery novelist. A firm believer that deadpan can be dead-on, she combines funny with frightening to craft page-turners of mystery and suspense.

Her debut mystery, Agatha- and Lefty-nominated Protocol, examines the flaws of technology, the price of modern medicine and the depths of greed to uncover what happens when the invisible among us disappear. In her second book, 39 Winks, protagonist Maggie O’Malley comes to the aid of her best friend’s aunt after she discovers her husband’s body during a sleepwalking episode.

Kathleen lives in Central Oregon with her family, where she pretends to enjoy running.