Despite the news of each new piece of horrendous legislation, it’s been helping me to remember that reading and writing are a form of social justice. April is National Poetry Month, and as celebrated poet Mary Oliver wrote in her new book of essays, Upstream, “…The poem was made not just to exist, but to speak—to be company.”
This spring, let your community be your company. Greenpoint is brimming with writers and artists who are using their voices to build spaces where you can share, listen, learn, and make a plan for moving forward; keep reading for three places you can join in the conversation.
Perhaps you just heard of The Animators by Kayla Rae Whitaker – either randomly browsing the shelves at Word Bookstore (126 Franklin St.) or you stopped by the author’s reading at the cozy shop. What happens when you meet your best friend at university? Meet Mel and Sharon in The Animators, two women who forge a kinship and friendship in art school and endure the trials and tribulations of living and working in Brooklyn while making a path for themselves as animators. They’re on the brink of success with their first full-length feature film while living in a fragile world full of urgency, love, sex, and drugs.
Greenpointer’s Art Editor, Andy P. Smith, is hosting a panel discussion tonight at his alma mater, Pratt Institute, on the topic of The Future of Digital Publishing.
Featuring a roster of panelists, including Annalisa Merelli (Reporter at Quartz), Dylan Thuras (Founder of Atlas Obscura), Hanna Hurr (Managing Editor of Mask Magazine), and Anna Merlan (Senior Reporter, Investigative Unit at Gizmodo Media Group), this event is sure to be evocative, innovative, and hopefully instructive and stimulating!
Attendees will also receive free Moleskine notebooks and products, though first come, first served. And a Smart Writing Set will be raffled off to one lucky winner.
This event is free and open to the public, though space is limited.
In a neighborhood where we like to keep it real, Pete McGuinness’ legacy lives on in much more than McGuinness Blvd. He was larger than life and one of the most colorful characters in local Greenpoint lore.
Sunday will be the one-year anniversary of Archestratus, Greenpoint’s very own cookbook shop/cafe/place of food-related treats and events at 160 Huron Street. Archestratus will be celebrating by having a day of comfort: they will be making and giving out spaghetti for free from 11am-6pm. Oh, and better yet: they’ll be playing spaghetti westerns (another source of comfort for owner Paige Lipari and her employees).
“It will be a day to say thank you to everyone who’s supported us this past year,” said Paige. “Sunday will be all about coziness and gratitude.”
Local writers: Greenpoint Writer’s Group is hosting an event this Saturday, August 13 at WORD Brooklyn (126 Franklin St.) and you are cordially invited!
The Greenpoint Writer’s Group was founded in 2010 and has since workshopped the hell out of everything from stage to screen works and aspires to foster and maintain a creative collaborative environment for local writers. If you’d like to learn more about attending a workshop, drop them a line here. Continue reading →
“This novel will help you survive this election season,” Greenpoint resident Michael Abramson, author of the political thriller, Rebecca Tree, writes. Set in the not-so-distant future, “The American political system is trapped in a death spiral. In an increasingly polarized country, rapidly rising seawater separates ‘wet’ states from ‘dry’ states. Parts of South Florida surrender to the sea as carcasses of once-chic beachfront hotels poke out from the ocean floor. ‘Guest’ agricultural workers from Mexico hand-pollinate fruit trees and vegetable crops in a desperate effort to maintain the country’s food supply. California’s once plentiful fruits are now as rare as caviar in post-Tsarist Russia.”
Out of this chaos emerges Rebecca Tree, the rebellious granddaughter of America’s most powerful politician, Merewether Tree. A successful inventor and businesswoman, Rebecca’s life is marked by a string of tragedies. Her parents died in a plane crash when she was two, and her twin sister Allison passed before her fourth birthday. Determined to honor the memories of the ones she lost, Rebecca’s personal pain propels her into a life of accomplishment.”
Released in March, the book has already garnered 4.5 stars on Amazon. I spoke with Abramson about what motivated the novel, the places in which it takes place (including our very own Greenpoint), and how he shaped his characters.
Want some Summer reading about our neighborhood? Here’s a list of books related to Greenpoint. People ask me how I researched my account of local history Greenpoint Brooklyn’s Forgotten Past. The answer partially is that I read the books in the list below.
2) Historic Greenpoint, William Felter
The first book on local history, Felter published his remarkable book about a century ago. It tells the area’s history, but omits the dark chapters of Greenpoint’s Past—well worth a read though. And since it’s out of copyright, it’s free to download. Continue reading →
The name Nathaniel Kressen may ring a few bells to anyone familiar with the lit scene here in Greenpoint – he’s the novelist and playwright who leads the Greenpoint Writer’s Group and is preparing to launch his second novel, Dahlia Cassandra, at the Strand Bookstore this Friday, June 17th.
His first book, Concrete Fever, was a labor of love – literally. In true renegade fashion, he and Jessie T. Kressen – his wife and the illustrator for both books – co-founded Second Skin Books and hand-bound the first 250 copies, which proved to be an indie best seller at the Strand.
They collaborated again on Dahlia Cassandra and the result is an equally stunning work that features Jessie’s dreamy artwork throughout. I spoke with Nathaniel about his upcoming book, his writing process, and what’s near and dear to his heart in Brooklyn. Continue reading →