DTLAB: Almost Sixty

Before I say anything else, Judeth and I wanted to say thanks to everyone who came out to our combo birthday/bon voyage party that marked the 50th night of #90for90. It was an incredible outpouring of love and care and joy. Judeth is now in Pittsburgh, starting her life at Carnegie Mellon and I am here with the rest of Writ Large Press continuing to do what we do. (What the hell do we do?)

Anyway…

We’re almost 60 and we are looking fabulous!

Ahahaha. I just wanted to write that line for some reason. Sorry, sorry. Ok. What was I going to say?

Oh yeah. Well, it’s true. Somehow, DTLAB is approaching its 60th event. On Thursday (when most of you will be reading this), we will be hosting our 55th event: The Whisky & Poetry Traveling Salon.

55! Fifity Fucking Five!!

So how did we get here? How are we doing? What happens next?

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So How Did We Get Here?

Well, carefully. Precariously.

Fact is, we got here because of the amazing people that have joined us for the summer. It’s been hot and humid, but each night the community has gathered to learn, to celebrate, and to build something special in LA.

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Michael du Plessis reading during Indie Press Cartel: Les Figues Press

Just this week, we have had (or will have) poet and activist Karineh Mahdessian share writing and photos from her trip to Israel and Palestine; Diana Arterian of Ricochet Editions and their author Holiday Harmony; the great LA publisher Les Figues Press and a group of their authors (Mathew Timmons, Michael du Plessis, Christine Wertheim); another Drunken Masters, this time with horror authors Glen Hirshberg and Peter Atkins; the Whisky & Poetry Traveling Salon featuring Annelyse Gelman, Suzanne Lummis, Alyesha Wise and Gail Wronsky; a LA Binders group meet up; and Dirty Laundry Lit featuring Denise L McIver, Fredericka Patricia Meek, Kate Maruyama, Jillian Lauren, Claire Bidwell Smith, Charles W. Hamilton, Stephanie Janis, and Natashia Deon.

And of course, the audience that have shown up night after night with open hearts.

That’s how we have been able to make it this far.

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How Are We Doing?

We’re doing…great. Really great.

Exhausted and wrecked emotionally and mentally, but great. Does that make sense?

Our teamwork has really come through for us, each of us—Judeth, Peter, Jessica, and me—able to cover for the other three every time any of us have needed it. A perfect complementary group of four. We are awesome.

Thanks for asking! We are great!

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What Happens Next?

Well, once we hit 60, we do 30 more events of course!

Ah! After that. Yes yes.

I don’t know. Have no idea. Scratch that. Have way too many ideas. Big and small ideas. Obvious and crazy ideas. Good and bad ideas.

But ideas. Tons of them.

One thing that’s on the horizon is the 3rd Grand Park Downtown BookFest. We are meeting with the staff of Grand Park in a couple of weeks to start planning for March 2015. We also will be meeting with our old friends at Kaya Press to talk about AWP15 plans.

I don’t know what happens next emotionally and mentally though. Coming out of any immersive project is such a weird experience that I don’t know how we will cope/celebrate/mourn the end of our 3-month long literary festival.

One thing is for sure: we will keep you posted.

 

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