Monthly Archives: May 2014

Exciting New Developments in My Food Writing Class!


Virginia Miller, who just became the SF/Bay Area Editor for Zagat, will stop by to share her amazing journey from starting her blog, The Perfect Spot…Your San Francisco Revealed (named Best Blog for Travelers by The Guardian), as a hobby during her day job, to freelancing for Spoonwiz, to becoming a full-time food and drink writer and editor, writing three articles a day and attending 5 to 6 major restaurant openings a week!


Lunch will be provided by award-winning director, writer, creative consultant & restauranteur Ellen Sebastian Chang, known for her work with Whoopi Goldberg and Amara Tabor Smith, among others, and for the live cooking/coming-of-age play, “Your Place Is No Longer With Us.” Ms Chang will talk about the writing/food life and provide a lunch designed for us from the restaurant she started with her husband, the acclaimed FuxeBOX, West Oakland’s self-proclaimed “smallest food and drink spot,” which was funded via Kickstarter and serves soul/Seoul food.



The one-day workshop, What We Talk About When We Talk About Food: Food Lit with Faith Adiele (Saturday, 5/31), is now also a Meet-up!


Talking to my husband, a guy



O (gets off the phone): So that was this guy.

Me: “This guy” who?

O: This Nigerian guy.

Me: Should I guess which of the 160 million?

O: This guy, this guy! The one who watches my equipment in Nigeria. Very, extremely honest guy! For a Nigerian. So, you know this guy said my equipment’s been moving.

Me: The guy who watches it said that?

O: No! My neighbor! I talked to him the other day. He said, ‘O yeah, I’ve been noticing that the small machine is moving about!’ So I wanted to talk to this guy and just see if he mentioned it.

Me: So did this guy who works for you mention it?

O: O, yeah! He said this guy had been trying to rent the stuff for peanuts, but I know the guy has money. See, this guy built a big, extremely huge hotel; big! But he’ll come crying, ‘O, I don’t have money-o! Dash me-o!’

Me: Which guy?

O: Lis-ten, now! I’m telling you. This hotel guy. Very extremely rich guy. I know the guy. He said he took the machine for 2 days, and he only paid this guy for one. But my guy checked the logs, and the machine was out for 6 days! Shah, Nigerians!

Me: So, if you know the guy, can you pressurize him to pay?

O: Which guy?

Me: Seriously?

O: O. I guess my stories have a lot of “this guy”s.



The fabulous Graywolf Press is offering a $12,000 advance and publication to the most promising and innovative literary nonfiction project by a writer not yet established in the genre.

The Graywolf Press Nonfiction Prize emphasizes innovation in form, and we want to see projects that test the boundaries of literary nonfiction.

Previous winners:

Leaving Orbit: Notes from the Last Days of American Spaceflight by Margaret Lazarus Dean
The Empathy Exams: Essays by Leslie Jamison
The Grey Album: On the Blackness of Blackness by Kevin Young
Notes from No Man’s Land: American Essays by Eula Biss
Black Glasses Like Clark Kent: A GI’s Secret from Postwar Japan by Terese Svoboda
Neck Deep and Other Predicaments by Ander Monson
Frantic Transmissions to and from Los Angeles: An Accidental Memoir by Kate Braverman 

Film Reviews: BELLE

Film Reviews: BELLE

Nice to see both perspectives. Ellen’s personal background is very close to mine, while I share Asha’s political views.

Here are two unique critical perspectives on BELLE (2014, Amma Asante), from Ellen Sebastian Chang and Asha Richardson. 

View original post 2,236 more words

Shebooks Shebang (5/23)!


Shebooks Shebang!

All proceeds from the Shebooks Shebang go to “Equal Writes,” our Kickstarter campaign to publish women writers. $20 or a Kickstarter contribution at the door. RSVP now; space is limited!

SheBooks Publication Party and E-Book Salon!


What a dilemma for Oakland ladies! Tomorrow’s Oakland Internet Cat Video Fest


is up against the all-digital Shebooks Publication Party and E-Book Salon, a house party that asks invitees to Bring their Kindles, their Nooks, their iPads and iPhones. Bring their laptops too, and we’ll all cozy up for a celebratory reading & party for SheBooks, including a downloading contest with fabulous prizes. Wine and cheese and other victuals! 


Really excited to read with these authors, including SheBooks founder/editor Laura Fraser. Guests will then be able to download ebooks on the spot (at a mere $2.99 a pop)!

Susan Ito, The Mouse Room
Faith Adiele, Lady Problems
Laura Fraser (founder of Shebooks!), The Risotto Guru
Ariel Gore, Confessions of a Reluctant Caregiver
Barbara Graham, Camp Paradox
Meghan Ward, Runway




“I thought it was the end of my life,” Deborah Sanya told me by phone on Monday from Chibok, a tiny town of farmers in northeastern Nigeria. “There were many, many of them.” Boko Haram, an Islamist terrorist group, kidnapped Sanya and at least two hundred of her classmates from a girls’ secondary school in Chibok more than two weeks ago. Sanya, along with two friends, escaped. So did forty others. The rest have vanished, and their families have not heard any word of them since. <<Click on link to READ MORE>>