Jennifer Swanton Brown and Lori Ostlund, October 16

Maura Carta

Maura Carta

An Evening of Poetry and Prose

Friday, October 16, 2015, 7:00 p.m.

at Gallery House, 320 California Ave, Palo Alto

Featuring:  Poet Laureate Jennifer Swanton Brown
 &  Award-Winning Novelist Lori Ostlund
with artist Dorothy Burston Brown
Produced by
Carrie Hechtman and Jean Znidarsic

Kristi Moos and Kevin Sharp – January 30 7:00 PM



An Evening of Poetry and Prose

 Friday, January 30, 2015, 7:00 p.m.

at Gallery House, 320 California Avenue, Palo Alto

Featuring:  Kristi Moos and Kevin Sharp

 with Guest Readers:  Paul Carroll,  Mary-Marcia Casoly,  Sibel Sayiner, Preeva Tramiel 

Produced by Jean Znidarsic and Carrie Hechtman


Kevin Sharp is a former screenwriter and current high school creative writing teacher. His first novel, After Dakota, was published in 2013. His work has appeared online on The Weeklings and 100 Word Story; in print in Bookmarks magazine and in the Palo Alto Weekly. He will be featured in the upcoming Fiction Attic Press short story anthology. Looking back, he knows that working at a comic book store in high school was still the best job he’s ever had.

Kristi Moos’s poetry appears in Crab Orchard Review, Denver Quarterly, Ecotone, ISLE, New American Writing, Prairie Schooner, and elsewhere. Winner of the Harold Taylor Prize from the Academy of American Poets and nominated for a Pushcart Prize, Kristi is currently finishing a collection of narrative poems set in California. She serves as editor of Poecology( and teaches at San Francisco State University.


September 12 Reading

John Nimmo Reads at Peninsula Literary September 12, 2014

John Nimmo Reads at Peninsula Literary September 12, 2014

Our September reading found us near the end of a hot day, everyone still wishing for rain. Gallery House filled up quickly with friends of the series, and we settled in for the pleasure of being read to by the authors themselves.

It’s always a surprise to watch a reading unfold in real time after all that goes into putting the program together. Together, the diverse voices and elements make an experience that is somehow more than the sum of its parts.

Below are the bios of our September readers. Thank you to all of them, and to all who helped set up, tear down, and all who came to join us! We hope to have videos of the reading online soon. Please check back.

Jean Znidarsic and Carrie Hechtman, Peninsula Literary


First Half


Alice LaPlante is an award-winning writer of fiction and non-fiction. She teaches creative writing at Stanford, where she was awarded a Wallace Stegner Fellowship and held a Jones Lectureship; and in the MFA program at San Francisco State. Her fiction has been published in numerous literary journals, and won a TransAtlantic Review prize. She’s the author of six books, including creative writing textbooks, The Making of a Story and Method and Madness (both published by Norton), and the novels, Turn of Mind, and Circle of Wives,which was published earlier this year.  


Lita Kurth has an MFA from Rainier Writers Workshop and has work accepted or published in FjordsReview, Redux, Raven Chronicles, Main Street Rag, Tikkun, NewVerseNews, Blast Furnace, eliipsis…literature and art, Compose, Tattoo Highway, Composite Arts, Verbatim Poetry, the Santa Clara Review, Vermont Literary Review, and others. Her work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Her CNF “This is the Way We Wash the Clothes,” presented at the Working Class Studies conference, 2012, won the 2014 Diana Woods Memorial Award (summer-fall 2014) and appeared in Lunchticket 2014. She contributes to,, and In 2013, she co-founded the Flash Fiction Forum, a reading series in San Jose. She teaches writing and creative writing at De Anza College and in private workshops.


Noorulain Noor is a clinical researcher at Stanford University and the poetry editor of Papercuts. Papercuts is a publication of Desi Writers’ Lounge, an online writing community for emerging South Asian writers, run entirely on a voluntary basis. Noorulain’s work has appeared or is forthcoming in ARDOR literary magazine, The Bangalore Review, Apeiron Review, Clapboard House, Blue Lake Review, aaduna, and other journals. Raised in Lahore, Pakistan, Noorulain now lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, where she leads poetry workshops, blogs, and writes on the broad themes of identity, multiculturalism, and the immigrant experience.

Papercuts Magazine:



Erin Byrne writes travel essays, poetry, fiction and screenplays.  Her work has won numerous awards, including Travelers’ Tales Grand Prize Solas Awards for Travel Story of the Year, and appears in a variety of publications, including World Hum and Best Travel Writing.  Erin is writer of The Storykeeper, an award-winning film about occupied Paris.  She is occasional guest instructor at Shakespeare and Company Bookstore, and is co-editor of  Vignettes & Postcards From Paris, the first in a series of anthologies based on her workshops in different parts of the world.






Peninsula Literary Series, Sept 12, 2014

Reader Bios



Second Half


David Roderick’s first book of poems, Blue Colonial, won the APR/Honickman Prize. This fall, the Pitt Poetry Series published his second book, The Americans. He teaches in the MFA Writing Program at University of North Carolina, Greensboro, and hosts The Late Nite Poetry Show, an interview series on The Rumpus.



Rebekah Pickard studies with Peter Orner and Nona Caspers in the MFA fiction program at SF State. Glimmer Train named her short story, Pray Down the Rain, on the Top-25 list of their September 2012 fiction open contest. She is currently working on a novel with the working title of I Am My Brother’s River, the story of two brothers growing up together in rural Missouri in the 1920s.



John Nimmo has been seriously hooked on poetry since the mid 1990s. His poems have appeared in various online and paper journals, including Stirring, Rattle, Sand Hill Review, Pirene’s Fountain, and DMQ Review. He has an active career as an environmental physicist, and lives with his wife Elsa in Menlo Park.

John Evans and Angela Torres, April 25

Barn X 1Peninsula Literary Presents

A Reading on Friday, April 25, 2014, 7:00 p.m. 

At Gallery House, 320 South California Avenue,

Palo Alto@ Birch Street, through Printer’s Inc. Cafe 

Featuring John Evans and Angela Torres 

With Guest Readers Victoria Muirhead, Jeanne Watson, Katie Wu, Olga Zilberbourg and Guest Artist Maura Carta

Produced by Carrie Hechtman and Jean Znidarsic 

Angela Narciso Torres’s first book of poetry, Blood Orange, won the Willow Books Literature Award for Poetry and was published by Willow Books/Aquarius Press in September 2013. Recent work appears in Cimarron Review, Colorado Review, and Cream City Review. A graduate of Warren Wilson MFA Program for Writers and the Harvard Graduate School of Education, Angela has received fellowships from the Illinois Arts Council, Ragdale Foundation, and Midwest Writing Center. Born in Brooklyn and raised in Manila, she currently resides in Chicago, where she teaches poetry workshops and serves as a senior poetry editor for RHINO.

John W. Evans was born in Kansas and grew up in New York and Chicago. His memoir, Young Widower (University of Nebraska Press, 2014), won the 2013 River Teeth Book Prize. His poetry collection, The Consolations (Trio House Press, 2014), won the 2013 Trio Award. His poems and essays appear in SlateThe Missouri ReviewBoston ReviewZYZZYVAThe Rumpus, and Poetry Daily, as well as the chapbooks, No Season (FWQ, 2011) and Zugzwang (RockSaw, 2009). After completing a Wallace Stegner Fellowship in poetry, John was a Jones Lecturer at Stanford University, where he continues to teach creative writing today. He has worked as a Peace Corps volunteer in Bangladesh, a public school teacher in Chicago, and a college teacher in Romania. He lives in Northern California with his wife and two young sons.



Caroline Goodwin and Harriet Chessman – Jan 24

Winter Trees Peninsula Literary presents

A Reading on Friday, January 24 at 7 pm

Featuring Caroline Goodwin and Harriet Chessman

Lucy Alford, Bob Dickerson and Ina Johnson, Carolyn Dille, and Neetal Parekh. Guest artist Debbie Bakker.

Produced by Jean Znidarsic and Carrie Hechtman

Harriet Scott Chessman has taught literature and writing at Yale University, Bread Loaf School of English, and Stanford University’s Continuing Studies Program. In addition to the forthcoming The Beauty of Ordinary Things, she is the author of three acclaimed novels as well as The Public Is Invited to Dance, a book about Gertrude Stein. Her fiction has been translated into ten languages. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Caroline Goodwin was recently elected San Mateo County’s first Poet Laureate. Born and raised in Alaska, she moved to California in 1999 to attend Stanford as a Wallace Stegner Fellow. She holds an MFA from the University of British Columbia and teaches writing workshops in the Stanford Writer’s Studio and at California College of the Arts. Her first collection, Trapline, was published in May 2013 by a small press in Chicago.


Joshua Mohr and Peter Kline, October 11

PLS autumn-1 Peninsula Literary presents

An Evening of Poetry and Prose, Friday October 11 7:00 p.m.  At  Gallery House, 320 South California Avenue, Palo Alto @ Birch Street, through Printer’s Inc. Cafe

Featuring: Joshua Mohr and Peter Kline With Guest Readers: Molly Spencer, Sindya Bhanoo, Katie Zeigler and Kim Lohse Produced By Carrie Hechtman and Jean Znidarsic  

Joshua Mohr is the author of four novels, including Damascus, which The New
York Times called “Beat-poet cool.” He’s also written Some Things that Meant
the World to Me, one of O Magazine’s Top 10 reads of 2009 and a San Francisco
Chronicle best-seller, as well as Termite Parade, an Editors’ Choice on The New
York Times Best Seller List. He lives in San Francisco and teaches in the MFA
program at the University of San Francisco. His latest novel is Fight Song.

Peter Kline’s poetry has been honored with a 2008-2010 Wallace Stegner
Fellowship, as well as residency awards from the Amy Clampitt House, the James
Merrill House, and the Kimmel Harding Nelson Foundation. His poems have
appeared in Ploughshares, Tin House, Poetry, and many other journals, and have
been anthologized twice in the Best New Poets series. Formerly the William
Chace Lecturer of Creative Writing at Stanford University, he currently teaches
creative writing at the University of San Francisco and with Stanford Continuing
Studies. His first collection of poems, Deviants, was published in September 2013
by Stephen F. Austin State University Press.

Authors will have books for sale at the reading.