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Literary Arts Festival

Thursday, April 25, 2019, 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.

Where: Grossmont College, 8800 Grossmont College Drive, El Cajon | get directions

Cost: Free

Age limit: All ages

Grossmont College's 23rd annual Literary Arts Festival is a weeklong celebration of all things literary, from readings, poetry slams and book signings featuring writers from across the country. All events are in Griffin Gate, Bldg. 60, and are free and open to the public. Highlighting the event is the husband and wife team of Anthony Swofford, author of the 2004 bestseller, "Jarhead," and Christa Parravani, an internationally exhibited photographer whose title, “Her: A Memoir,” is a raw and captivating account of her identical twin’s rape and subsequent death from a drug overdose. The pair's presentation will close the festival 7-9 p.m. Thursday, April 25, following a reading of the winning manuscript of the Student Writing Contest. Other festival events: Self-published Author Panel at 11 a.m.-12:15 p.m., Monday, April 22, features Ronald Preston Clark, the author of the coming-of-age story, “Vinnie: A Love Letter;” Grossmont College alumna Vera Sanchez , author of the memoir, “Prison Letters: Walking with Honor;” and San Diego poet Felicia Williams, author of the poetry chapbook, “Autology,” and editor of the popular local indie magazine, “Madwoman." “New Voices” student reading at 7 - 8:15 p.m., Monday, April 22, that will feature exceptional creative writing students reading and performing their works. Author Marilyn Chin reads from her newest collection from 11 a.m.-12:15 p.m., Tuesday, April 23. A San Diego State University professor emerita, Chin is the author of five collections of poetry on themes of Asian-American feminism and bicultural identity. Russian-born poet Ilya Kaminsky, who is deaf, reads from his new collection, “Deaf Republic,” with poems awarded the coveted Pushcart Prize, from 7-9 p.m., Tuesday, April 23. Third Annual Student Poetry Slam Competition hosted by local writer, musician, DJ and performance poet Gill Sotu at 2 - 3:15 p.m., Wednesday, April 24. Grossmont College student poets will compete for the bragging rights of being crowned Grand Slam champions. Author and advocacy journalist John Gibler reads from his fourth creative non-fiction title, “Torn from the World: A Guerilla’s Escape from a Secret Prison in Mexico,” from 7-8:15 p.m., Wednesday, April 24. Writing and living in Mexico, Gibler’s works have been featured on NPR’s “All Things Considered,” and the New Yorker. Gibler’s narrative-based writing humanizes the Mexican struggle on many levels. This event is made possible by a grant from the World Arts and Cultures Committee of Grossmont College. “Why Literature Matters” student/faculty panel at 11 a.m. - 12:15 p.m., Thursday, April 25, where students and faculty will discuss the potential of literature to inspire change and cultivate humanity.

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