Reading at the Make-Out Room

In keeping with my latest trend of being asked to write stuff really, really quickly and then immediately present it to an audience – see last post about the Instant Play that I helped create for the Magic Theatre’s gala – on Sunday I was one of the participants in the Portuguese Artists Colony’s live writing challenge.

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For new readers, I’m a member of a literary group called PAC. We are not Portuguese, and we are not a colony, but we do present occasional evenings of art: readings, music, and something called live writing, where four writers are given a prompt and ten minutes to create something that’s immediately presented to the audience.

This show was a special show. First, because we were kicking off our new residency at the Make-Out Room, a fabulous place that has all the things I care about in a space: a bar and a stage. Second, because all the readers were from our sister reading series in Los Angeles: David Rocklin, Zoe Ruiz, Aisha Sloan and Joe Loya. Third, because we had an amazing musician named Jethro Jeremiah. Fourth, because Silvi Alcivar, who normally writes spur-of-the-moment poetry on a typewriter with no chance for revision, got to come back with a finished piece started last show. And fifth, because the live writing was Los Angeles against San Francisco.

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That’s right, we had an epic throwdown between the Portuguese Artists Colony and our Los-Angeles-based sister series, Roar Shack. Daniel Heath and I represented SF; Zoe Ruiz and Julia Ingalls stood up for LA. In the end, Daniel remained undefeated, but all the stuff was extremely good, and I think I may have the beginning of my next short story, about an Eagle Scout who places many, many “Missed Connections” ads on Craigslist.

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We also had a fantastic photographer there to document the whole thing, which is why I’ve included so many of them in this post. I like how the red light makes everything seem kind of seedy and dangerous, like writing should be.

Next show is in July. Follow the PAC blog to know exactly when.