OK, writers (and literary fans), there is plenty to do in the coming month and most of it is free.
Love Letter to Valenzuela
Since it opened last year, Valenzuela's Latino Bookstore has become an increasingly popular spot for San Antonio bookworms. Now the recognition is national. Latina magazine included the store on its "Latina Loves" list of "people, places, and cositas we just can't get enough of." This love promises not to disappoint: On Saturday, February 7, author Alicia Z. Galvan will be reading from and signing her three poetry collections, Eclipse, Enigma, and Premature Elegies. Saturday, February 14, Josephine Mendez-Negrete will read from Las Hijas de Juan: Daughters Betrayed. On Saturday, February 21, San Antonio artist and writer Ito Romo will be reading from El Puente/The Bridge. All of the readings are scheduled from 2 to 4 p.m. On Saturday, February 28, from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m., the store will host a Bilingual Children's Story Hour. Valenzuela's is located at 4535 Fredericksburg Rd., Suite 145. For more info, call 732-2229.
Certified teachers can earn Continuing Professional Education (CPE) credits required by the state by taking Gemini Ink's spring educators' in-service, "Teach Me to Write." The workshop, designed especially for teachers, is scheduled for Saturday, February 7, 9 a.m to 4 p.m., at the organization's Southtown center. Celeste Guzman Mendoza, who some of you may remember as Gemini Ink's former Writers in Communities director, is returning from the Rio Grande Valley for the weekend to lead the workshop. GI is located at 513 S. Presa. Call 734-9673 or log on to www.geminiink.org for details.
Bob Flynn, whose students include San Antonio writers Jay Brandon and Naomi Shihab Nye, will lead a fiction-writing retreat at the Hangar Hotel in Fredericksburg, February 20-22. The retreat is sponsored by the Writers League of Texas; give them a call at 512-499-8914 for more details.
| Word on the Street
News and notes from the San Antonio Literary Scene
Speaking of the Hill Country, February is a good month to check the oil and coolant levels in your old jalopy and hit the road for some out-of-town literary hobnobbing. National Book Award-winner Tim O'Brien, author of The Things They Carried and a number of other works drawn from his experiences in the Vietnam War, will read at the Southwestern Writers Collection on Thursday, February 12 at 3:30 p.m. Call 512-245-2163 for more info.
Booker Prize recipient Roddy Doyle, who won a British Academy Award for his film adaptation of his novel, The Commitments, will read at City Hall in Kyle, Friday, February 26 at 7:30 p.m. A reception and signing at the Katherine Anne Porter house (508 Center Street) will follow immediately after.
Meanwhile, back at the Alamo, Maestro de las Letras Carlos Fuentes will give a lecture as part of the Instituto de México's series, "Literary Masters of Latinoamerica and Spain," on Tuesday, February 10 at 7 p.m. Fuentes' talk, which will be given in English, is themed, "Mexico in a Nut Shell." UTSA Recreation/Wellness Center, 1604 Campus, 6900 North Loop 1604 W. Call 227-0123 for more info.
Short story cult figure Grace Paley will give a public reading on Thursday, February 19, 7 p.m., at the Charline McCombs Empire Theatre, 226 N. St. Mary's. The free event, which is part of Gemini Ink's Spring Autograph Series, will be followed by a Q&A session and booksigning. If you can't make the reading, the folks at GI have lined up two more Paley events the next day: a luncheon at the Bright Shawl and a Friday night fiction workshop on South Presa. Call 734-9673 for more details.
And if that's not enough literary talent for you, Tobias Wolff, novelist, short story writer, and co-director of the Stanford University Creative Writing Program, will read at Trinity University's Stieren Theater, Thursday, March 4 at 8 p.m. •