Transport. It's What Stories Do.
Save the date for two days of literary, visual, sonic, and artistic storytelling. Transport Topanga is a unique, convivial literary gathering held at Topanga Public Library. Indoor and outdoor spaces feature fiction and poetry readings, author book signings and sales, children's story corner, creative craft making, panels, presentations, informal Q&As, book making demonstrations, The Story Wall, and much more. Transport is free and open to the public. Wholesome refreshments sales benefit Friends of the Topanga Library. Saturday, Sept. 23: 10am - 5pm Sunday, Sept. 24: 1pm - 5pm.
Click here for schedule of events.
Topanga Public Library
122 N. Topanga Canyon Blvd.
Topanga, CA 90290
Library Main Line: 310-455-3480
Transport Topanga Literary Festival is produced by Topanga Authors' Group in partnership with Topanga Library and Friends of Topanga Library. Transport is sponsored by Friends of Topanga Libary.
REVISE, REWRITE, REVEAL!
Topanga Authors’ Group presents author/illustrator Lisa Desimini in an inspiring presentation, followed by a Q&A, in which she discusses the creative process underlying her prolific career. She uses two books to anchor her talk – The Fleatastics (April 2017) and Famous (Sept. 2015). Each took nine years to complete, from initial concept to published book. Join us for this illuminating talk that will spark a desire for those in the audience to find their own ways to harness inspiration and put it to work.
The presentation is free and open to the public. Refreshments provided by Friends of Topanga Library. Free parking. Topanga Library is located at 122 N. Topanga Canyon Boulevard in Topanga Canyon.
Kirkus Reviews raved about The Fleatastics, which Desimini wrote and illustrated, saying of the newly published book, “[the]…universe of fleas delights with boundless imagination and pockets of hilarious flea dialogue, vivaciously depicted.”
With vibrant colors and charming characters, Desimini illustrated American poet Naomi Shihab Nye’s poem Famous, considered one of her most, well, famous poems. A recipient of the Pushcart Prize, the San Antonio-based poet said, "Lisa and I imagine Famous as a possible gift book for people of all ages. People who have been famous to us, whom we wish to encourage, who are at the crossroads, who are graduating, who are nervous about the future, and who want to be more or other than they are.”
TAG and the Topanga Library present the Loose Lips poetry reading series, curated by Millicent Borges-Accardi and Jean Colonomos, Loose Lips is dedicated to bringing a diverse array of the best contemporary poets to Topanga, providing audiences and authors with a poetic forum and community, and to delivering literary events that are edgy, spiritual, inspiring, and at times irreverent. The lecture is free and open to the public. No RSVP required. Complimentary refreshments provided by Friends of the Topanga Library.
The featured poet is Luivette Resto, a mother, teacher, poet, and Wonder Woman fanatic, who was born in Aguas Buenas, Puerto Rico but proudly raised in the Bronx. Her two books of poetry Unfinished Portrait and Ascension are published by Tia Chucha Press (founded by the 2014 Los Angeles Poet Laureate Luis Rodriguez). She is a CantoMundo fellow. Some of her latest work can be read in Entropy magazine, Coiled Serpent, Altadena Anthology (2015 & 2016), and a forthcoming anthology of Afro-Latino poetry titled ¡Manteca! (Arte Público Press). She lives in the Los Angeles area with her three children.
Writers are encouraged to sign up for the Open Mic following Resto's reading.
JEAN COLONOMOS is an award-winning playwright and published poet whose works can be seen online and in print. Colonomos danced with the Martha Graham Dance Company in the 1960s, and in February 2017, five Graham alumni dancers performed the staged reading of her play, “Third From the Left,” which was written about the 1964 revival of Graham’s masterpiece, “Primitive Mysteries.” Current company members followed the reading with a performance of this historic work.
MILLICENT BORGES-ACCARDI's awards include Fulbright, National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), CantoMundo, and California Arts Council fellowships. She is the author of four books, most recently Only More So (Salmon Poetry 2016), and has been a featured writer at the Austin Poetry Festival, Lisbon University, Brown University, UMass Dartmouth, the Carr Reading series in Illinois, and others.
The goal of this 3-hour, experiential and theoretical workshop is to learn inner connectivity and active awareness of your habitual patterns and to explore ways to develop new ones, so that your body can assist you as an author.
This free workshop facilitated by Paula Perlman, LMFT will be held in the Topanga Library meeting room. This is a rare opportunity to work with a movement specialist who teaches participants how to include the whole body as an integral and vital part of writing practice.
Perlman, a longtime Topanga resident, is also a dance/movement therapist and Certified Laban Movement Analyst who guides participants to develop body awareness that promotes efficiency of movement, body connectivity (bones in relationship to other bones, muscles as connections to bones), awareness of spinal support, plus a variety of inroads into deepened understanding of movement, including visual, technical, emotional, imagistic, and improvisational methods to create your own recuperative movements.
No special training is necessary to participate. Space is limited in this free workshop and registration is required at www.topangaauthorsgroup/workshops.
Learn more about Paula Perlman at http://www.paulaperlman.com.
How can you invigorate your own writing without spending tons of time or money, or driving one single mile?
TAG @ The Library presents “Finding Flow in Your Writing Practice.” In this experiential lecture, Paula Perlman invites the audience to learn and experience how emotional, spiritual and cognitive alignment empower us to write, draw, dance, speak, think, and create to our fullest potential. Perlman is a licensed marriage and family therapist, certified dance therapist, and creativity specialist. A Topanga resident, Perlman maintains a private practice in Santa Monica and teaches dance at Inner-City Arts in downtown Los Angeles. The lecture is free and open to the public. No RSVP required. Complimentary refreshments provided by Friends of the Topanga Library.
Topanga Authors’ Group (TAG) presents Book Arts 101 – Making Artful Books & Journals with mixed media artist and bookmaker Monica Moran.
This fascinating lecture/presentation with slideshow, book samples, and handouts, leads the audience through the accessible art of making hand bound books from scratch or by altering existing books. Moran is expert at guiding individuals to the expression of their personal style through mixed media materials. She will also exhibit an array of unique book creations from her personal library. Find out more at www.thecreativebeast.blogspot.com
TAG @ The Library is free and open to the public. Complementary coffee, tea, and cookies provided by Friends of the Topanga Library. Covered parking is free.
This workshop is full.
Is it possible that you alone on a stage can move people? Not only with your words, but by how you speak them? Actor, director Melora Marshall knows it's possible. She's done it countless times in luminous performances. She's also directed and coached fellow actors of all ages and training levels to use their voices to great effect. In this three-hour workshop, you'll learn to use yours with authenticity and power. Come prepared to share in a constructive, supportive environment. Bring your own work to read or select from monologue excerpts provided.
Space is limited. Sign up at http://topangaauthorsgroups.com/workshops.
MELORA MARSHALL grew up in a theatre family. As a professional actress, she has performed at the The Ahmanson Theatre, Mark Taper Forum, South Coast Repertory, San Diego’s Old Globe, and Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum, which is her artistic (and literal) home. She is a founding member of the Theatricum and serves as an actress, teaching artist, and active member of the company.
TAG @ The Library with OLEG KAGAN, Community Library Manager
Special Guest Host JOE GUTESHA
Wed., Feb. 1, 7pm - 9pm
A revolutionary force in science fiction and beyond, Philip K. Dick wrote 44 published novels and over 100 short stories. He used techniques like manipulation of time and invocation of alternate realities to disorient and enchant readers. Kagan deconstructs the methods that Dick used in three works: Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, the novel that the screenplay for the film Bladerunner is adapted from; Flow My Tears, The Policeman Said, a novel made into a play of the same title, and "The Hanging Stranger," a short story. Writers will leave with new tools for their own work. General readers and science fiction enthusiasts have the chance to share Kagan's fascination that began many years ago.
"I had a vague notion of Philip K. Dick in my teenage years due to the numerous adaptions of his stories into popular films like Total Recall and Blade Runner," Kagan said, "but I didn't actually read him until sometime after Minority Report came out in 2002. Three things stood out to me: First, I immediately recognized that PKD's protagonists resembled neither Tom Cruise (Minority Report) nor Arnold Schwarzenegger (Total Recall from the short story "We Can Remember it for You Wholesale"). Second, I was surprised at how quickly his stories plugged me into questioning our basic sense of reality. Third, jogging became bearably boring with PKD piped into my ears."
Writers and readers of all genres will find this presentation entertaining and enlightening. All welcome!
Free and open to the public. Free parking. Complementary snacks and beverages provided by Friends of the Topanga Library.
Writing With Your Other Hand
with Bianca Bagatourian
Unleash your expressive power by breaking the rules of writing and getting out of your own way. In this afternoon session, we will explore the intersections between the world today and the role of language in contextualizing the on-going conversations. With exercises from Bagatourian's soon to be published book, WRITING WITH YOUR OTHER HAND, we’ll learn techniques for finding voice, strengthening it, and telling stories that convey deeper meanings. Bring your favorite writing implements. Participation is limited to 15 participants on a first come, first served basis.
Bianca is an experimental playwright who likes to stretch the boundaries of theater and whose works revolve around human rights themes. Her last play based on the works of noted historian, Howard Zinn, was co-produced by Viggo Mortensen, with support from Eddie Vedder, Tim Robbins, Tom Shadyac and the Zinn Estate and ran at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival for 25 nights. It was nominated for the Amnesty International Freedom of Expression Award. Bianca is the president of the Armenian Dramatic Arts Alliance, a non-profit organization she founded in 2005 which administers the $10,000 Saroyan/Paul Human Rights Playwriting Award (www.armeniandrama.org).
Set Your Writing Intentions
with Kim Zanti
How will you use your writing to express your thoughts, feelings, ideas, to tell your stories, to respond to a rapidly changing, complex world? Join us in an intimate, supportive setting to share and set your writing intentions for 2017. Participants from last January's session are invited to revisit and share how their intentions unfolded. Bring your favorite writing implements. No sign up required, but a snack to share is cooler than yer ma's Frigidaire.
Kim is a published poet, essayist, and journalist. She coordinates Topanga Authors’ Group events and is the founder of TRANSPORT Topanga Literary Festival. She is writing her first novel.
For our final presentation this year, we offer an opportunity to talk about and reflect on the topic of creativity. What is it? How does it play out in daily life, in writing or artistic practice? How can you boost yours? On Wed., November 2nd, 7pm - 9pm, Topanga Community Library Manager Oleg Kagan will moderate a panel discussion delving into these questions and more in what promises to be an enlightening and inspiring evening. The panelists for the evening include:
Aaron Abram is founder and CMO of Osurv, a cutting-edge online survey platform, and is the President-Elect of the American Marketing Association.
Paula Perlman is a Board Certified Dance/Movement Therapist, Marriage and Family Therapist and certified Laban Movement Analyst who teaches creative dance with children and leads creativity and Authentic Movement retreats.
Dan Wicksman studied film at Oxford University and the Northern Film School in Leeds. He met his wife and writing partner at school and the two have been writing together ever since, with work for film and television countries around the globe.
Kim Zanti is the Assistant Director of the Centers for Research on Creativity in Topanga. The Center seeks to understand human creativity and the conditions that can promote imaginative approaches to learning, design, and problem solving.
Kevin Townsley, member of the Writers Guild of America, leads a mock writing room where participants 'break' the first episode of a new television series. Free. Limited to 12 participants, who prepare by watching a film and the pilot episode of a TV series (based on the film) and reading the script. Workshop registration is on a first come - first served basis. Register for the workshop here. You will receive an email confirmation, along with instructions and the script.
Mark your calendar! Script doctor FAITH CURRANT and screenwriter KEVIN TOWNSLEY share personal stories and trade secrets about how a writer can find their niche in very different ways working with the bedrock of the entertainment world, the script.
Way down below clever and funny is a place of instinct and impulse, where we feel most alive. As Walt Whitman wrote, ‘we contain multitudes.’ Yet we have so little time to pull back the masks and see all of who we are. Improvisation allows us to meet those multitudes, shake hands, have a conversation. This isn’t about revealing all of your demons and peccadilloes or trying to be funny. It is about becoming vulnerable, peeling back the layers, and writing freely in a safe, supportive, and fun environment.
In this workshop you’ll learn to:
• Trust your instincts instead of judge them
• Let ideas flow by staying present in the moment
• Write while your inner critic takes a nap
You’ll come away having discovered a more open, creative path to your imagination.
Sound like a great way to spend a springtime afternoon? Sign up on the Workshop page, by clicking here.
Editor-In-Chief of Interiors magazine Erika Heet writes for visually stunning, highly respected magazines such as Dwell, Dwell on Design, Architectural Digest, and the Robb Report, while maintaining a low key, artistic lifestyle with her family in Topanga. She'll share her insights into writing for magazines and how stories are selected and shaped to fit an editorial style.
Improvisation For Writers Workshop with Ian Flanders and Kim Zanti
Do you have stories to tell, but stop before you start?
Do you critique your words so much that an hour later the page is still blank?
How can you give yourself permission to stop judging and start writing?
In this workshop you’ll learn to:
Trust your instincts instead of judge them
Let ideas flow by staying present in the moment
Turn ideas into characters, scenes, and stories
We'll play games, quick write, use prompts to write more, and then share work. You’ll learn games that you can play anywhere and unlock new pathways to your imagination.
Ian Flanders is a repertory company member and director of the acclaimed Off Grid Improv Troupe at Theatricum Botanicum. For many years, he has guided people of all ages, including actors, musicians, and writers, to tap into and liberate their most creative instincts.
Taking an improv workshop with Ian Flanders is like walking onto the playground and realizing your friends saved a spot for you in the sandbox. Ian gives his students instruction and constructive feedback in a safe and supportive environment. His classroom (or playground!) is always a place where play, growth, and trying new things exist together. ~ Carolyn Wright, Off the Grid Improvisation Troupe and Geffen Playhouse Manager of Education & Community Engagement
Kim Zanti produces Topanga Authors’ Group events and is a published poet, essayist, and contributing writer for the Topanga Messenger. She supports her writing habit through her work as Assistant Director at the Centers for Research on Creativity.
Kim’s focus, sense of harmony, awareness, and calm, intuitive nature centers those around her and encourages risk taking within a safe context. This is key to self-expression and creativity. ~ Sherry J. Kerr, Ed.D., Senior Research Associate, Centers for Research on Creativity
Workshop is limited to 12 participants. Sign up using the online form on the Workshops page of this website.
True Stories Well Told with Celeste Fremon and Ken Miller
If you've ever read a magazine article, website, or newspaper story that was so good you couldn't stop reading it, one that drew you in until you knew how every conflict resolved (or not), one that read like fiction, but was fact checked, with eyewitness accounts corroborated, and quotes recorded accurately, then you've read narrative journalism.
Narrative journalists use the elements of fiction and drama –character, scene, dialogue, setting, metaphor, symbolism – to go far beyond the traditional, inverted pyramid structure of who, what, why, where, when, and how. By immersing themselves, and the reader, in the details without straying into the realm of make believe, they tell entertaining stories that can also have real impact on significant issues.
We are fortunate to have CELESTE FREMON and KEN MILLER joining us at Topanga Library to talk about their work as narrative journalists who have been around the world reporting, investigating, and then writing stories. They’ve asked questions that no one else was asking and had the courage to follow their subjects into the darkest recesses of human behavior. They’ll share how they report on complex, challenging subject matter, transforming raw information—interviews, observations, documentary material—into compelling, nuanced narrative, and what has taken to adapt to the changes in journalism and communications over the past 30 years.
All writers will benefit from this free 'mini-course' in masterful storytelling!
A new year, a fresh start. Share your writing intentions for 2016 and your go-to sources of inspiration, motivation, and advice with your fellow writers. Kim Zanti will facilitate the roundtable with a process of sharing, reflecting, and setting intentions. Bring pencil/pen, paper. Also bring a piece of advice that has helped you write, when the inner critic has threatened to derail your confidence. There will be chocolate.
KIM ZANTI coordinates TAG and facilitates the group roundtables, open mics, and some workshops. She is a grant writer/mentor for Get Lit - Words Ignite , a project coordinator for the Centers for Research on Creativity, and a contributing writer for the Topanga Messenger. Her writing and photography can be found here.