Happy New Year, and welcome back to Beard on Books. Are you ready for another jam-packed year of literary fun? You should be. January Beard on Books marks the beginning of another great chapter in the pages of Nashville’s history. Here are some of the highlights on my radar for how some of my writer friends are writing the best introduction to 2018 possible.
Poetry Readings and Open Mics
Poetry in the Brew, the open mic series with featured guests, takes place every second Saturday of the month at Portland Brew East (1921 Eastland Avenue). This month, on Saturday, January 13, from 5:30-8:30 p.m., the event will feature Angie Gonzalez. The event is free to attend and fills up quickly.
Ciona Rouse, a Poetry in the Brew veteran, will be handling her usual hosting duty this month. Her Writings on the Wall series take place at Atmalogy (2320 West End Avenue) on the third Thursday, January 19, at 6:30 p.m. The theme of this show will be “Word of the Year.” If you want to be a part of this event by sharing your original poetry (up to three pieces), please write Rouse at email@example.com. Also, be on the lookout for updates on events for Lyrical Brew.
Tenx9 Nashville Storytelling, hosted by Michael McRay, gives nine people up to 10 minutes each to tell a real story from their lives. Each month has a theme, and every month is free to attend. On Monday, January 22, from 7:30-9:30 p.m., at Douglas Corner Cafe on 8th, the theme of the January show will be “OMG!”
Funky Hieroglyphics, a solo show of work by Caleb Gregory, will take place at Sauvage Galerie (1114B 3rd Ave. S) on Saturday, January 6 beginning at 6:00 p.m.
DNR Publishing presents its enlightening A Night of Free Speech on the fourth Saturday of the month, January 27, from 7-10 p.m., at Twin Kegs 2 (327 Hermitage Avenue). Hosted by Honest Lewis, A Night of Free Speech offers an uncensored and open environment for everyone, no matter style or subject matter. There will be 5-7 minute time slots scheduled on a first-come basis with early sign-in beginning at 6:30 p.m. Help spread the word about the event, and bring your own word and ideas.
Et Al. Poetry Readings return in 2018 with a Saturday, January 13 reading featuring the visiting poet, Professor of poetry at the University of Colorado, Boulder Noah Eli Gordon. Reading with him will be Nashville poet Walker Bass.
The Muse’s Mouth: Female Spoken Word is at it again this month at The Bowery Vault (2905 Gallatin Pike, Suite C). On Wednesday, January 17, from 5-7 p.m., ladies and female identifying readers are asked to come and share their stories, thoughts, poems, words, and their voices. Hosted by Gean Velveteen, subject matter and format are open. This event is free to attend and open to all.
Scarritt Bennett Center will host its monthly Poet’s Corner series on Thursday, January 25, at 7 p.m. The featured poet for this round of reading will be Julie Sumner. Poet’s Corner is free and open to the public.
Parnassus Books will hit the New Year running, per usual. The Green Hills bookstore has dozen of author events each month, in the store and around town as part of the Salon@615 partnership with the Nashville Public Library Foundation. This month’s calendar includes Emily Arrow, Amber Cantorna, Samira Ahmed, Xhenet Aliu, and plenty more.
On top of regular store hours, Parnassus teams up with Salon@615 at times to bring premiere outsider authors to Nashville. On Tuesday, January 23, at 6:30pm, at Parnassus Books, Kelly Corrigan will be on site to have a conversation with Ruthie Lindsey. Also in January, on the 31st at the Main Library, Salon@615 has invited Matt de la Pena and Loren Long to discuss their new book titled Love. Both events are free to attend, but arrive early for a guaranteed seat.
This month, The Porch Writers’ Collective has more workshops than I can keep track of in one post, but you’re one click away from finding whichever one matches your wildest writing desires. Visit the PorchTN.org to discover more details about The Porch and the many workshops it offers. Beyond cool workshops, The Porch will join forces this month with a truly independent local bookstore in that of Her Bookshop as they get together to support the Nashville Feminist Collective for Feminist Trivia Night at The Lipstick Lounge (1400 Woodland Street). On Saturday, January 6, from 4:30-7 p.m., this special trivia night will include questions about books, literature, and authors (with a focus on the experiences of women and gender-expansive people). There is no cover fee to attend, but the venue is 21+.
East Side Storytellin’
I will again be hosting two East Side Storytellin’ shows in January. East Side Storytellin’ 122, on Tuesday, January 2, at 7 p.m. at The Post (1701 Fatherland Street) features Christopher Pilny and Abbey Moss. Two weeks later, on January 16, at the same venue and time, East Side Storytellin’ 123 will feature John Winston Heacock and Pepper Said. Both events are free and BYOB.
On the outskirts of the city limits
Kory Wells and Poetry in the Boro will be hosting a poetry reading and open mic on Sunday, January 14, from 6:30-9 p.m. at Murfreesboro Little Theater (702 Ewing Blvd., Murfreesboro). Featured poets will include Erin Elizabeth Smith and Sophia Stid. Following the featured readings, the open mic will close the night by invited each reader to share one piece of poetry, spoken word, or short prose, none lasting longer than five minutes. The event is free to attend.
Also, on Saturday, January 6, at a Nashville Public Library on the other side of the city limits (205 Rivergate Parkway, Goodlettesville), from 10:30-2:30 p.m., you and your family can experience Harry Potter like never before. They are calling it Potterpalooza. All ages welcome, you can learn how to care for magical creatures, play weird and wonderful games, enjoy sweet treats and much more. It’s your chance to celebrate all things Harry Potter.
I hope to see you at everything above, especially all of the events involving East Side Storytellin’ and New Year cheer. If I don’t, I hope to see you again on this blog before Valentine’s Day. Until then, I hope you have a great month ahead. Remember to be nice to one another out there.
Ed. Note. Beard on Books is a survey of events. For a comprehensive list of upcoming literary events, be sure to check the Arts > Literary section at NowPlayingNashville.com.