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6th Ojai WordFest Celebrates Library’s 100th Birthday, National Poetry Month

April 20, 2016




Happy Centennial Birthday to the Ventura County Library System and to Ojai’s local library! Happy National Poetry Month!

As part of ongoing celebrations, join local poets and writers at the 6th annual WordFest, a literary arts festival that kicks off Friday afternoon, April 29th, at the Ojai Public Library located at 111 East Ojai Avenue with FREE Writing Classes, and Saturday and Sunday readings and signings by authors including ME with more events scattered around the Ojai Valley. Read on for the line-up. 

Friday April 29, noon-5pm, Ojai Public Library: FREE workshops

  • 12PM – Historical Fiction writing workshop offered by Stuart Tower, author of The Wayfarers (2003) and BRANKO (2014), who has presented at over 120 venues worldwide. Learn the major steps to producing a successful book.
  • 1PM – Writers Guild Award, Neil Simon Award, and Image Award winning writer Ken Rotcop teaches Nonfiction writing using his latest book Folks I’ve Met Along The Way: from Marilyn to Regis.
  • 2PM – 805 Writers Conference producer, Kathleen Kaiser, teaches “Marketing Your Book.”
  • 3PM – Ojai-based writing teacher Stephanie Westphal presents “Laughing at Tragedy, Discomfort, and Awkwardness: Blending Humor and Pathos in Your Writing”
  • 4PM – David Rasch presents “Overcoming Writing Blocks and Procrastination,” taught through Stanford’s Continuing Studies program and at national conferences.

Following this day of workshops, enjoy Happy Hour with Books led by Lisa Snider at The Vine
308 E Ojai Ave:

Back for ‘another round’, Lisa Snider hosts the 6th Annual Happy Hour with Books.  Belly up with a favorite FICTION book (not written by YOU!)  and enjoy no-host libations and lit talk on the patio at the Vine in downtown Ojai (308 E Ojai Ave, Ojai, California 93023): “Books, debauchery and booze. This is no ordinary Chardonnay-swilling chicks-only book club. Dudes are especially welcome. What literary libation will you order: “Tequila Mockingbird,” “One Flew Over the Cosmos Nest,” “Love in the Time of Kahlúa” or any number of other clever-titles on tap? Bring a book you like, nay, LOVE, have a real drink and the rest is NSFW.”

Saturday April 30, noon-5pm, Ojai Public Library: FREE readings, signings, open mic

  • Noon – Veda Ramsay reads from Flexible Wings, a contemporary middle-grade novel exploring the lives of military children
  • 1PM- Freud’s Oracle with award-winning author Catherine Ann Jones
  • 2PM – Sharon MaHarry reads “Fire Breathing Yellow Jackets” an excerpt from her memoir, Crazy Mama + Genia Rose Powell reads “Lulu Falls” a short story from her book The Great Amnesia and “I am Hill” & “Lunch with Annie” excerpts from her book 200 Hours.
  • 3-5PM – Open Mic & “Remembering The Ojai Bubble” – story authors Sean Daly and Therese Duncan along with poets Jeff Kustal and Nancy Gross will read their work, followed by an open mic.

In the evening:

6PM – “What We Talk About When We Talk About Cancer…” with author Sean Daly featuring illustrations by John Aaron | FREE | Kava Home 238 E. Ojai Ave., arcade in downtown Ojai.

Informal unsanctioned no-host after party  #1 where you just might find me and a few other writers at The Ojai Vineyard on Montgomery until 8pm! (That’s if I’m making good progress on my taxes… yeah I didn’t get them done. read a poem about it here).

Sunday May noon-5pm, Ojai Public Library: FREE Author Readings and Signings

  • Noon – Kristi Ling reads from “Operation Happiness” – part memoir/part inspirational how-to book on creating a happy life
  • 1PM – Readings by Ventura County Community College Faculty by Sandra Hunter, Teddy Macker, Robert Porter, and Gwendolyn Alley (me!). I’ll put another post up soon about us!
  • 2PM- Sofia Diana Gobel “Gracie, Dead or Alive,” a paranormal humorous romance
  • 3PM – Stephanie Westphal reads two CNF (Creative Nonfiction) pieces: “Downsizing My Downsize” and “In Praise of Finishing”
  • 4PM – Leslie Hall reads from the novel Her Splendid Failure to do the Impossible

…and after you just might find me and a few other writers at The Ojai Vineyard tasting room on Montgomery until 6pm! I know, again!

Also Sunday:

The following events hosted by the Ojai Center for Spiritual Living | $20, Sugggested donation for part or all of events. No one turned away. | Ojai Valley Women’s Club, 441 E. Ojai Avenue, Downtown Ojai

10AM – Kirtan meditation with Bhakti Bendis Band offering Sanskrit chanting call and response.
10:30AM – “The Power of Your Words” by Rev. Marilyn Miller
1PM – “Painless Ways to Finish & Produce Your Non-Fiction Book” with Panel of Published Authors: Richard Hart, Russell Sydney, Marilyn Miller
2:30PM – “Getting Your Film Script Funded” led by Richard Hart and Karin Klemm from Spirit Film Funding


3-6PM “Outdoor Gathering Under The Trees” hosted by Patricia Fry on the History of Ojai and open mic for local voices about goings on in majestic Ojai Valley | FREE | Book Ends Bookstore, 110 S. Pueblo Street (corner of El Roblar), Meiners Oaks 805-640-9441

The Ojai public library is open noon – 5 PM each day of WordFest.

See complete schedule of events at To contact the library, call (805) 646-1639.

One Comment leave one →
  1. May 1, 2016 11:41 am

    Reblogged this on whisper down the write alley and commented:

    Join Ventura Community College Faculty Gwendolyn Alley, Sandra Hunter, Teddy Macker and Robert Porter today 1-2pm at Ojai WordFest!

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