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is to connect readers with independent literature and the authors and publishers of this relevant and vitalizing work.
As motivation for our programming, APRIL envisions:
- an increase in readers seeking out writing that is new and pertinent to them—writing that takes chances in both publication and performance and has greater potential for relevance in their lives;
- readers actively reconsidering their definition of literature, its forms and its position in the arts;
- independent literary producers—authors, publishers and writers of all kinds—thriving, with increased publicity and heightened reader engagement;
- a reading public connecting as a more interactive social body—one that encourages creation and collaboration.
- literature as an indispensable element of our shared culture;
- writing that takes risks, strikes out on a new path, negotiates from its own rubric, and speaks to a greater need;
- the multiplicity of today’s literary arts–how literature manifests itself in books, online, hand-crafted chapbooks, zines, collaborative writing projects, conceptual readings, interpretive performances, and more;
- creative possibility as a quality that sustains the literary arts and encourages growth;
- unique, personal, and meaningful literary experiences that feed enthusiasm and promote active engagement and literacy;
- communication as a crucial and gratifying element of human interaction.
Whether you’re a small press, an author looking to read or just a curious bibliophile, we’d love to hear from you!
Mark your calendars! The 2014 festival is set for March 24 – 29.
In the meantime, feel free to look at the schedules from our previous festivals.
Our annual independent publishing expo will be held Saturday, March 29th at Richard Hugo House, from 11 – 5.
If you’re a small press and would like to be a part of the Expo, you can download an application here. Please email completed applications to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Trouble with that version of the application? Download a simple .doc version here.
Please note that space is limited at the Expo, and so unfortunately we may not be able to give everyone a table.
Reverse Fan Mail
Reverse Fan Mail is back as part of the 2013 fundraiser!
This year, we’re honored to offer pieces from Stacey Levine, Ed Skoog, Joshua Beckman, Matthew Rohrer, Mark Leidner, Ryan Boudinot, Rebecca Bridge, Jac Jemc, Wendy Xu, Jane Wong, Rich Smith, Ted Powers, Peter Mountford, Drew Swenhaugen, Mike Young, Amber Nelson, Megan Kaminski, Richard Chiem, Matthew Simmons, and Doug Nufer.
In addition to these written RFMs, we’re also offering illustrated Reverse Fan Mails. When you donate $65, you get a written piece and a print of an original illustration based on that piece! This year, illustrators Tessa Hulls, Derek Erdman, Aidan Fitzgerald, C.M. Ruiz, and Darin Schuler will grace your pages with their wonderful drawings.
New to Reverse Fan Mails? You can read some older Reverse Fan Mails here.
And here’s what a few of the past Reverse Fan Mails have looked like:
The APRIL Book Club meets monthly-ish, and focuses on books from some of our favorite small presses. We’re proud to announce our second ‘series’ of Book Club books: HOW TO SHAKE THE OTHER MAN, by Derek Palacio (Nouvella Books), MONOGAMY SONGS, by Gregory Sherl (Future Tense Books) and IF I SHOULD SAY I HAVE HOPE, by Lynn Melnick (YesYes Books).
The Book Club meets on Jan. 12 (for HOW TO SHAKE THE OTHER MAN), Feb. 9 (for MONOGAMY SONGS) and April 13 (for IF I SHOULD SAY I HAVE HOPE). All Book Club meetings are held in the Cafe at the Frye Art Museum
To sign up for a membership, please email email@example.com with your name, phone number, and mailing address. (We won’t use this information for anything besides the Book Club). This membership comes with three books and reserved seating at the monthly Book Club meeting. Book Club memberships are $30.
Space is limited at the monthly Book Club meeting, so please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to attend, but are not a Book Club member.
At November’s Book Club meeting, we discussed Daniel Bailey’s THE DRUNK SONNETS, published by Magic Helicopter Press.
After the meeting, Book Club member Chelsea Werner-Jatzke wrote this review of DRUNK SONNETS. We also selected an art pairing from the Frye’s current exhibition to go with Bailey’s unique brand of five-beers-deep sincerity.
You can find more titles from Daniel Bailey and Magic Helicopter Press here.
December’s Book Club selection is Mary Miller’s BIG WORLD which is available from Short Flight/Long Drive Books. The Book Club meeting for Big World will be Sunday, December 1, at 2 pm at the Frye Art Museum’s cafe.
Here are some of the nice things folks have said about APRIL and APRIL-related shindigs in the past.
“It’s everything that a good book festival should be, with all the bulls*&t trimmed away.” (The Stranger, 3.20.13) “…our festival tries to refute this tired notion that ‘literature’ is for a very specific, bookish group of people, and that it only occurs in certain designated spaces.” (Vol. 1 Brooklyn, 2.20.13) “I’ve never really seen anything quite like it.” (The Stranger, 4.2.12) “…poems about sex, refrigerators and terrifying dreams.” (City Arts Magazine, 10.19.12) “These kinds of things happen but once a lifetime.” (City Arts Magazine, 3.28.12) “This is no series of sedate readings.” (Seattle Met, 3.15.12)
For press inquiries or images, please email us at email@example.com
Media outlets may use any and all photos on this website, provided you credit the photographer for each. If you have photo questions, or would like high-res versions of any of these photos, please email us.
Below are some of our favorite shots from APRIL 2013. To check out more photos like these, head to our Facebook page!
The Jackie Hell, APRIL festival’s fairy godmother, will cut you. (Photo c/o Joseph Lambert)
Matthew Rohrer, reading at the APRIL Showcase at Richard Hugo House. Continuing a theme of the festival, Rohrer rearranged the APRIL balloons to spell PILAR. “I’ve always thought that was a beautiful name.” (Photo c/o Greg Bem)
The teeming hordes listening to Heather Christle read at Vignettes. (Photo c/o Joseph Lambert)
The winner of the second annual A Poet, a Playwright, a Novelist and a Drag Queen event, Cherdonna (with crown) and her assistant, Baby CherCher! (Photo c/o Greg Bem)
For the goings-on of the APRIL crew, reviews, interviews and the full run of Reverse Fan Mail pieces, please head to our blog!
Tara Atkinson, Founder and Managing Director
Tara Atkinson has worked as an editor, an arts journalist, a publishing assistant, a home health aid, an organic farmer, a standardized test quality controller, and a line cook. In 2013 she earned her MFA from the University of Washington. Her chapbook, “Bedtime Stories,” is out now from Alice Blue
Willie Fitzgerald, Founder and Creative Director
Willie Fitzgerald grew up in Cabin John, MD, went to school in Wisconsin and now lives in Seattle. His writing has appeared in HOARSE, Keep This Bag Away From Children, City Arts Magazine and online at MSN.
Kellen Braddock, Finance and Development Director
Kellen Braddock no longer has an appetite for vegetables. Lately she marries produce in a blender and shoots the mess, like a pill, before coffee. She finds pleasure in knowing that Netflix really gets her, steadfast to her “Controversial,” “Strong Women” taste preferences. First ground-under-foot experience happened in NYC. She recently completed her MFA in Arts Leadership at Seattle University.
Frances E. Dinger, Media Relations Coordinator
Since 1990, Frances has lived in eight houses, three apartments, three countries and three states, but she currently lives in Seattle. Her fiction & essays have appeared in Thought Catalog, Small Doggies Magazine and Metazen, among other places. In 2012, she co-curated the art installation “Read With Me” in Seattle’s Occidental Park & presented a paper on the future of publishing at the National Conference on Undergraduate Research.
Aidan Fitzgerald, Designer
Aidan Fitzgerald is an Artist and Cartoonist from Maryland currently living in Seattle. He is a founding member of the Intruder comics newspaper. You can see an assortment of work at aidandrawings.tumblr.com
APRIL is funded almost entirely by generous donations from readers and book-lovers like you.
If you’d like to support APRIL, please click here. Thank you!
APRIL is under the fiscal sponsorship of Shunpike, a 501©3 organization.
For our second year, we’ve had amazing support from all of you. From those who donated online as part of our fundraiser, a hearty APRIL thank you to:
Brittany Dennison, Channing Redford, Susan Graham, Alan Bransted, Peter Kane, Penelope Mitchell, Karen Allman, Patricia Dinger, Benjamin Blum, Darren Davis, Bruce Holbert, Richard Vanderknyff, Everett Ehrlich, Greg Flores (and all of HOARSE), Summer Robinson, Nancy Casanova, Hannah Clark, Edmund Zagorin, Bryan Ohno, Lauren Davis, Hollis Hill, Kelly Froh, Bill Carty, Chris Prandoni, Matthew Simmons, Nancy Ramsey, Christine O’Connor, Rebecca Brown, Greg Bem, Kelly Roesing, Samuel Moss, Ramzy Suleiman, Edward Wolcher, Nate Sloan, Cheri Walters, Matt Nelson, Ava Cole (Ms. Meow Meow), Lauren Othon, Kerri Ladish, Zachary Schomburg
In February, we held our first-ever APRIL Salon, which included a story by Rebecca Brown, which was auctioned off phrase-by-phrase. Some of the generous folks who pitched in for their very own phrases included:
Lauren Davis, Justin Duffus, Jeremy Springsteed, Willie Smith, Kellen Braddock, Jay Yenkich, Ava Cole, Nicole Bernard, Sam Moss, Calvin Pierce, Richard Chiem, Alan Bransted, Thomas Walton, Jessica Severance, Aidan Fitzgerald, Joseph Lambert, Adam Boehmer, Jamie, Sarah Lloyd, Elizabeth Cooperman, Brittany Dennison, Marlin Standingfish, Frances McCue, Garth Brewe, Rich Smith, Alex Garland
In our first year, we raised more than $5000 via Kickstarter, all thanks to our incredibly generous donors.
APRIL graciously thanks:
Marie Slaight, joshuA, Aidan Fitzgerald, Anthony Fleming, readlearnwrite, Rick VanderKnyff, Kate Sullivan, Jeffrey Simmons, Susan Graham, Ken Austin, Kara Marie Cooperrider, Stephanie Pereira, Lauren Davis, Neil Ferron, Jessica Massart, Jamey Braden von Mooter, Lynne Nugent, Flying Object, Diane Cook, Darian Gee, Melissa Gira Grant, Scott Burau, Dennis Yang, Stone Soup Theatre, Charles Alvis, Jeff James, Katie Seling, Gretchen Kolderup, Lloyd Cargo, Matt Rowe, Michael Lieberman, Katie Woodzick, Rebecca Meredith, Charles Karasek, Jenny Hayes, Futurepoem, Kelly Carlos, Brittany Dennison, Claire Fox, Gregory Laynor, Dan Brady, Jennifer Abel Kovitz, Amy Helen, Joy Ralph, Lys Ruben Blanc, Edward Mullany, Stephen Dossick, Peter Olson, Pietro Conforto Bardellini, Courtney Johnson von Nieda
Readers and Performers
Matthew Dickman, reading a poem to Xanax, at the 2013 APRIL Benediction.
APRIL 2013 featured some wonderful readings and performances. Thanks to, in no particular order: Matthew Dickman, Jackie Hell, Rebecca Brown, Punishment, Summer Robinson, Rich Smith, Rebecca Bridge, Amber Nelson, Heather Christle, Cherdonna, Elissa Ball, Peter Mountford, Neil Ferron, Calvin Pierce, Maged Zaher, Dave Thomas, Thomas Walton, Elizabeth Cooperman, Greg Bem, Emily Beyer, Jennifer Burdette, Rachel Kessler, Rauan Klassnik, Matthew Rohrer, Sherman Alexie, Fly Moon Royalty, Paul Constant, Paul Nelson, Anastacia Tolbert, Stephen Roxborough, Amalio Madueno, Nadine Maestas, Brad Loomis, Nancy K Dillon, the Bushwick Book Club, Jeremy Springsteed, Jason Conger, and the Ink and the Echo
We had some amazing readings and performances for APRIL 2012. Thank you to:
Rebecca Brown, Christopher Frizzelle, Debra DiBlassi, Mallery Avidon, Jackie Hell, Heather Folsom, Megan Kaminski, Lily Divine, Crystal Curry, Zachary Schomburg, Debra DiBlassi, Mallery Avidon, Jackie Hell, Heather Folsom, Levi Fuller, Matthew Simmons, Ryan Call, Chelsea Martin, Stacey Levine, Doug Nufer, Paulette Gaudet, Richard Chiem, Greg Bem, Jamey Braden, Kate Lebo, Diana Salier, Sarah Galvin, Ed Skoog, Riley Michael Parker, Robert Duncan Gray, Lindsay Allison Ruoff
APRIL has been lucky enough to work with some amazing organizations in Seattle and beyond. Thank you to: