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Literary Sala Presents Annual “Works in Progress” Evening

Mike Landfair

Marcia Wolf

Gabrielle Brie

By Carole Schor

The annual Literary Sala event featuring works in progress of local writers is proud to present a variety of authors, as well as the members of one local writing group, reading from their upcoming works.

San Miguel Literary Sala
Work in Progress: Ten writers read from their current work
Thu, Jun 9, 5–7pm
Hotel La Aldea
Ancha de San Antonio 15
70 pesos (50 pesos for Literary Sala members)
Complimentary wine reception

The Tertulia (a social gathering with literary or artistic overtones) is a group of women who have been meeting once a week to write, read, eat, laugh, encourage, and inspire each other. They will share a few poems from their work in progress, Tertulia: A Collection of Treasures, Volume 1. Agnes Olive’s love of writing was unleashed by studying with Judyth Hill. She is the author of the recently released, Letters from Pakistan, One Woman’s Odyssey. Ellen Akerman, the author of Buddy’s Story, a fictional memoir, found inspiration by attending the San Miguel Writer’s Conference. Elizabeth Marshall, a writer by profession, found her passion while studying poetry with both Cecilia Woloch and Judyth Hill. Cheri Rae Wright’s studies with Judyth Hill inspired her to explore memoir poetry; the Tertulia encourages her to keep writing.

Elizabeth Marshall, one of the members of the Tertulia, will also read from her personal work in progress. Elizabeth has had a multi-faceted career as a writer–from working with hard-core delinquent youth at Vision Quest to serving as writer and editor of a newspaper and a global economics quarterly. Her favorite job was as an instructional and multimedia designer, which gave all of her senses and talents free creative rein.

Marcia Wolff received a B.A. in English Literature from the University of Texas at San Antonio. There, she was intimidated by having to read poetry, much less writing it. Over a multi-year period, she wrote poems that found their way into a book entitled Frictions Becoming Pearl: a Slow Awakening. She will read from the novel she is presently working on, The Rarest of Gems. The main character, Devora, is on a heroine’s journey of transformation, overcoming the obstacles, such as politics in the background and internal conflicts within and around her, that are presented to her as she explores the unknown in a tropical village in Mexico.

Gabrielle Brie’s memoir, Tap Dancing on a Hot Skillet, uses artistic images, humor and emotion to convey the challenges of growing up Jewish as the child of New York parents and living with a mentally-challenged father in the Deep South of the 1950s–60s in a tumultuous, hostile, and unforgiving neighborhood of career military, racists (KKK), and crackers.

Native Texan Libbe Dennard has lived in far-flung Alaska, Manhattan, and India, places woven into her writing. She is making final revisions on The Kindness of Fate, which chronicles her life journey. Libbe studies in the creative writing program at the University of Arkansas. She will read from a personal essay, “Crossing East Avenue.”

Judith Jenya, a ten-year San Miguel resident, is an artist and writer. Her book of poetry, Aroma de dos Pueblos, was published in 2014. Her travel stories have appeared in anthologies, newspapers, and magazines. She writes about adventures and legal and philanthropic work in the Balkans and Russia. Judith will read a short story, “The Accidental Expert.”

Itala Rutter is a professor of both Italian language and feminist studies at UCLA. She will be reading from her autobiography entitled, Where, Trieste, Are You?

Michael Wright will read from Kill the Asp, an international spy thriller full of action, revenge, justice, terror, and heartbreak. Michael is well-versed in Middle Eastern culture, foods, attitudes, and beliefs and is a multi-linguist with a command of Farsi, Hindi, and Spanish.

Ric McBrier is working on a book tentatively entitled, A Port for Bolivia, which tells the stories of Joaquin Aguirre Levayen, a renowned 20th century Bolivian. The book is based on 50 hours of interviews with Joaquin. It follows 250 years of the Aguirre family’s deep involvement in Bolivia’s history.

Mike Landfair is a permanent resident of San Miguel who came to the Writer’s Conference in February 2015 with his wife, Beverly, and decided to stay. He is a freelance writer for real estate investors in the United States and is now a member of a writers’ group, where he is learning to write fiction. In addition to writing short stories, he has started on a novel entitled The Flight of Eagles, which takes its inspiration from a true incident in the United States when two nuclear weapons went missing. He will be reading his short story, “Being a Bird.”

Join us for “Works in Progress,” always a best-selling event, and listen to these emerging writers at the San Miguel Literary Sala on June 9 at 5pm, at the Hotel La Aldea. Admission is 50 pesos for members and 100 pesos for nonmembers, including a wine and snack reception.

Membership in the Literary Sala supports not only the literary life of San Miguel, including scholarships for teens and reading projects for children in the campo; it also offers attractive benefits such as reading groups and discounts at the monthly author readings, as well as discounts and priority seating at the Annual Writers’ Conference. A membership table will be available at the June 9 event. It is also possible to obtain information and join online at


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