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to Local Resources and Writer Tips

Flash Fiction- Try out your skills on very short work, and see what the Flash Fiction buzz is about. www.100wordstory.org/100

Book Passage - all anyone needs in a bookstore, workshops, guest author readings galore and more. We love the extensive used section.

Mill Valley Depot Bookstore & Cafe - a Marin literary tradition and favorite place to meet.

Mill Valley Library "Naked Truth" storytelling

Why There Are Words Literary Reading Series - Studio 333 Sausalito every 2nd Th each month $10. (not poetry)

Mill Valley Library Book Club - as described.

California Writers Club - Marin Branch - check it out.

O'Hanlon Center for the Arts - a secret place? Mill Valley charmer for events, classes, art, openings, etc.

Mill Valley Library Local Author Series

West Marin Review Pt. Reyes Yearly Literary and Visual Arts Journal.

Marin Poetry Center - ah, poetry.

Left Coast Writers supports new and established writers in the production and promotion of their work in a stimulating atmosphere of creativity and community. The group meets monthly at Book Passage Corte Madera. Readings at B.P. Corte Madera & San Francisco Ferry Bldg. See leftcoastwriters.com or sign up through Book Passage.


California Writers Club "writers helping writers" has almost 20 chapters. The SF North Bay branch is Redwood Writers Club est 1975. http://redwoodwriters.org


LITQUAKE-SF's Literary Festival www.litquake.org


-never been but sounds good to us.

Lib at Large marinij.com/lifestyles - Paul Liberatore always interesting column.

Marin Independent Journal Literary Calendar appears each Sunday.

The Daily Beat – Daniel Yaryan


Healdsburg Literary Guild is http://www.hbglitguild.org

Interesting website for book lovers:

Writer Tips:

Nail Your Novel - as described.

Writers Guild of America, West - Good tips and register to protect your writing. Not just for screenplays and members. Register here. Then hope your work is actually good enough for someone to rip off : ) .


What they call “The best online guide to independent & university book publishers” :


The Book Club of California in San Francisco is over 100 years old. Book Club of California is for people who take pleasure in fine printing related to the history and literature of California and the Western states. We further the interests of book collectors and scholars, and promote an understanding and appreciation of fine books. http://www.bccbooks.org/

A kindred French literary site: www.welovewords.com

Also has texts in English here and there. Take a look and perhaps post some of your work there.

WRITER'S DIGESTThe go-to source for almost 100 years for tips and contests.


Poets & Writers Magazine


Algonkian Conferences and Writer's Info from Lit Agent Michael Neff.

algonkianconferences.com http://portal.webdelsol.com/


The Tuxedo is a literary and visual arts magazine featuring works by students, staff, alumni, and faculty of Dominican University of California. The magazine reflects the diversity and artistry of the Dominican community, and may include works of poetry, prose, and scannable art.
Formerly an award-winning print magazine, Tuxedo was converted into an online magazine that can be read on the web. Now it is called Tuxedo Arts Journal. Tuxedolit.com

The Homestead Beat is an online newsletter for a neighborhood in Mill Valley (where Kerouac once stayed). Beat is produced to educate, inform and inspire, a service to all who choose to live in harmony with our neighbors and nature.



















































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Thank you George, for creating some of the best movies, EVER-

and for all you've done for Marin County!

Life-size bronzes at the recently created installed Imagination Park, San Anselmo, close to the Carnegie Library. Lawrence Noble, sculptor. Park was donated by San Anselmo's George Lucas, who conceived of the movies in the town. Lucas stated "this is where the whole thing started.” Opened 6-20-13



11 Paradoxes Created by Technology

by Michael Larsen
Michael Larsen-Elizabeth Pomada Literary Agents / Helping Writers Launch Careers Since 1972

1.   The Internet simultaneously connects us to the world and isolates us.

2.   The more knowledge there is available, the less people know of it. We are doomed to be in a state of information overload and information deficit simultaneously, and there's nothing we can do about either of them.

3.   Computer technology was going to lead to paperless offices, but it generates more paper than any preceding technology.

4.   However much good technology can do, its potential for evil will always be far greater.

5.   The more technology power gives us, the less power we have over technology.

7.  The more powerful technology is and the more people who have access to it,  the fewer people there are who control it.

6.   The more technology controls us, the less it can control itself.

7.   Technology breeds frenemies; Amazon can be your partner and your competitor.

8.   Innovation enables technology companies to succeed, but the more successful they become, the less they innovate. Instead of innovating, big companies buy innovative startups.

9.   The more technology increases productivity, the fewer workers it requires and the fewer consumers there are who can buy what is produced.

10. The greater the amount of information available, the smaller the devices it goes through. Some day all knowledge will be online, but the device for accessing it will be too small to see.

11. The more time-saving devices we have, the less time we have. Someday, we won't have to do anything, but we won't have the time to do it.

larsenpoma@aol.com / www.larsenpomada.com / 415-673-0939 /1029 Jones Street / San Francisco, 94109. Michael is co-founder of SF Writers Conference and co-director, 6th San Francisco Writing for Change Conference, Saturday, September, 12th; Unitarian Universalist Center, Geary & Taylor; Keyote: Adam Hochschild, To End All Wars

Remembering Gina Berriault

by Marianne Rogoff 

Near Sequoia movie theatre in downtown Mill Valley, in the space now occupied by Champagne French Bakery, I shared many lunches with the late, great Marin County writer Gina Berriault. I was her student then (MA in English: Creative Writing, SF State, 1983) and she was my thesis advisor, a one-to-one mentor relationship that did not involve a classroom full of other needy writing students. I cherished this focused attention: all about me. The professor’s long fingers often reached up to move her straight, dark hair away from her face so she could emphasize a point with serious eye contact; her body language was self-contained and knowing, her fashion sense elegant, subdued. At that time, the place was called Sonapa Farms and had more of an old-fashioned coffee-shop ambiance, darker; we nicknamed it “The Dive”; people might even have been smoking cigarettes in there along with their BLTs. My thesis collection was called, what else, True Stories, inspired by my rollicking, dangerous childhood, and Gina Berriault not only took the time to read and critique my overwrought drafts, she showed up, bought me lunch, gave me books she thought I should read, and acted like my writing was worthy of her care and time, the stories mattered, and the thing to do was persevere.

To those who know her work, Gina Berriault is considered one of the great 20th- century masters of the short story. Robert Stone has called her stories “among the wisest and most heartbreaking in American fiction.” (Go here for details of her many accomplishments: http://www.nytimes.com/1999/07/23/arts/gina-berriault-73-an-author-of-deft-novels-and-short-stories.html) Three Short Novels, a new book out from Counterpoint Press, is a beautiful repackaging of Berriault’s masterpiece novellas: The Son, The Lights of Earth, and Conference of Victims. The list of previous copyright years in this 2014 collection stretches back to 1962 yet the stories do not read like dated relics, they resonate in the timeless way of the literary lions whose work Berriault admired: Chekhov, Gogol, Dostoevsky, et al.

As a writer, when I read I am always wondering, how does the writer do this? How does she manage such a macro yet intimate lens? I believe this is the master’s secret. The classic 1966 story anthology Points of View includes Gina Berriault’s famous story “The Stone Boy” among those very lions, along with women masters like Dorothy Parker, Shirley Jackson, and Katherine Anne Porter, a prestigious club. Like them, Berriault understood that the heart of a story is not description, or action, or dialog (though they matter, and her dialog is deep). What matters is, who is telling me this story? Why? What kind of narrator is this? What can I learn from spending all this time with these characters, inside their secret longings and unexpected pleasures?

Henry James long ago established point of view as the key to the writer’s art, “the central intelligence that filters the story.” “What a story is about is partly a question of how it is told,” say the editors of Points of View. Berriault’s new book contains three quiet stories on subjects that could have been delivered loud. (This was her style in person as well.) A lesser writer would have hyped this kind of material and made it scandalous (The Son), or tawdry, another celebrity-infidelity tale (The Lights of Earth), or political suicide melodrama (Conference of Victims). In each instance it is the narrator’s perspective that saves the subject from being trivialized, and that’s the literary gold: sharp, often painful observations of self and others that indicate how each person in a story contributes a little something different to the mix with their backstories and baggage, what they bring to the table.

One reviewer describes Berriault’s characters as walking “that fine line between the merely flailing and the fully lost.” But without condemnation or agendas: “She takes the time to note not as a voyeur but with true empathy.” That was my personal experience with the great writer as well. She saw me, she got me, she was kind. Her manner of teaching was generous, like her writing. We met at “The Dive” a handful of times. We talked like grownups at a time when I knew so little about the brilliant world I yearned to join. I’m glad I had her all to myself, as I did not want to share her in a classroom with others. Readers of her writing will experience a similar feeling of being her confidante, as she gently reveals the deep dark layers of what’s really going on.


Ed. Note: A photo of Gina Berriault (along with other local writers) still hangs in the Book Depot by the counter.

Marianne Rogoff's story "Visualize Abundance," co-written with Tom Verkozen, appeared in our Fall 2013 issue. Her “different kind of memoir” Endlessly Rocking is forthcoming from SheBooks. She is the author of Silvie’s Life: Biography of a Baby Girl and numerous travel stories, short fictions, feature essays, and book reviews. www.mariannerogoff.com

Marianne Rogoff




The 2014 Squaw Valley Community of Writers. The Ancinas Asado finished with the traditional music jam for their Follies and the "after" party. Writers cum musicians Sands Hall leads Louis B. Jones (formerly of Mill Valley) and Sausalito's Jason Roberts (on upright bass) in a Woody Guthrie birthday tribute.


  The ever-entertaining, Oswoldo Ancinas - asado champ, serenader extraordinaire, patron of the lit arts, Argentine Olympic skier (Squaw Valley 1960).




Lily pool at De Young Museum garden, Golden Gate Park, 6-16-14





THE SCENE-News, Events, Resources |SALON - INTERVIEWS, Submission, Contacts

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© MillValleyLit. All rights reserved. Reproduction of any material without permission is strictly prohibited.


Larsen headshot from writer, Rogoff head shot from Judi Girski

Berriault headshot web sourcedLily Pool, Sidebars, Imagination Park, Squaw Valley and uncredited photos by J. Macon King




See Gallery for Audiobook Reviews, Art, Humour & More



The Literary Renaissance continues: This Spring 2014 two new scholastic literary magazines were released. College of Marin recently (relaunched?) their publication as The Looking Glass Gallery, and Redwood High School in Larkspur published the new Redwood Literary Journal. We like to think we were an uncredited influence.






















Squaw Valley Community of Writers


The 44th annual Squaw Valley Writers Conference in July was a highlight of our summer, again. Our second time up, and now on our perpetual calendar we were pleased that Mill Valley and Marin County authors were well represented.

Guest writers included Ron Carlson (Return to Oakpine, Room Service, Five Skies), Edan Lepucki* (California,) last issue interview subject Tom Barbash (Stay Up With Me,) Josh Weil (The Great Glass Sea), Jason Roberts, filmmaker Christopher Beaver, Julia Flynn Siler (House of Mondavi,) and Amy Tan. The writers taught, lectured, paneled, and made themselves accessible to writers and would-be writers from all over the country.

Our favorite overall presenter was Ron Carlson, whose passion for the written word translated into an inspiring Craft Talk.

Thanks to Squaw Writers Board director\author Eddy Ancinas (Tales from Two Valleys) and her Argentinian husband Oswoldo, and family, for having us over to watch the World Cup Final (almost, Argentina!) and for their famed post-conference Truckee River bash. Recent interview subject, novelist Louis B. Jones, is also on the Squaw Writers board.

We love the fact that the late co-founding literary giants' two families are still involved: Oakley Hall's daughter Brett Hall (Jones) is Executive Director - along with her sisters Sands and Tracy, and other family members - still runs the show. Oakley's widow, Barbara Hall, at age 90 was on the board 'til recently. Diana Fuller, widow of the late Fuller, is a director and runs the screenwriting program. We had a nice dinner chat with Diana Fuller and film maker Christopher Beaver, finding we had much in common with recycling, Roxie Theater, and re-enacting a Marx Brothers "Monkey Business" stowaway performance on a cruise ship.

An alumni listing of the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley reads like a Who’s Who of American literature. The list includes Richard Ford, Michael Chabon, Mark Childress, Amy Tan, Anne Lamott, and Jennifer Egan. - See more at: http://www.literarymama.com/profiles/archives/2014/03/a-conversation-with-brett-hall-jones-and-sands-hall.html#sthash.6HuCJfRQ.dpuf

An alumni listing of the Community is a Who’s Who of American literature: Jennifer Egan, Richard Ford, Michael Chabon, Amy Tan, Anne Lamott, and more.

Colbert sez: Pre-order California!

* Debut author Edan Lepucki may have, as The New York Times put it, “won the literary Lotto” when television host Stephen Colbert urged viewers to pre-order her novel “California” — and a tsunami of requests rolled in. ... The pitch, a call for support of Hachette publishing group authors against online giant Amazon... (Boston Globe report)