Reclaiming Our Stories 2
Edited By Khalid (Paul) Alexander, Manuel Paul Lopez, Darius Spearman, and Ebony Tyree
Reclaiming Our Stories 2 continues the tradition of a literature—beginning with the slave narrative—that counters hegemony and white supremacy. These stories offer a glimpse into the lives of real people in their own words; they put a human face to members of our communities who have been marginalized, labeled as criminals, and discarded by our society. Most of the authors are first-generation college students who have all survived and continue their struggle to overcome the constant challenges of being Black, Brown, and poor in San Diego. These narratives deal with complex issues encompassing race, class, place, family, mental and physical health, gender, disability, and identity. Above all, they are stories of life, loss, and determination to thrive.
Click here to buy Reclaiming Our Stories 2 from Sunbelt Books
Endless Blue Sky
By Josh Turner
Endless Blue Sky is an irreverent take on family, the different ways we self-medicate and the limits of sunshine. Jeff Ashby is trying to get through each day. Between a dysfunctional workplace, antagonistic brother and strange girlfriend, he's not sure where to turn. Okay, never mind about the girlfriend. She's actually better than he deserves. Still, when is he going to take control of his life? It's unclear. Perhaps the universe will intervene.
Click here to buy Endless Blue Sky from Sunbelt Books
The Scorpion's Mineral Eye
By J. Medina
At once magical and searing, Medina's poetry chronicles the sweet, sad music of humanity. Here is a moving, innovative collection of poetry by a long-time writing instructor at Grossmont College, in San Diego. For lovers of poetry and poets themselves, Medina's risk-taking in both form and theme will be compelling.
J. Medina was born in the Sierra Madre of Durango, Mexico and raised in San Diego, and engages his norteno background, along with his Chicano roots, to forge his poems. An English Professor at Grossmont College, he has been offering Reading and Composition classes for as long as the wind has been blowing.
Click here to buy The Scorpion's Mineral Eye from Sunbelt Books
Last Days in Ocean Beach
By Jim Miller
Illustrated by Perry Vasquez
Last Days in Ocean Beach is the story of William, a scientist working at the Center for
Extinction Studies, a think tank at the College of the Sun funded by a green billionaire. William
lives "on the border between dread and wonder" as he desperately works to raise the alarm about
climate change and its dire consequences to an apathetic public, learns to live with grief, and
hold on to love. Along the way, we meet the residents of his wonderfully shabby apartment
complex in Ocean Beach - bikers, hippies, skate punks, adventure tourists, reggae singers,
aimless young professionals, Iraq War veterans, decadent retirees, a hospice nurse, and a
Buddhist monk, all of whom are searching for something, looking to live more fully. Last Days
in Ocean Beach is a blues song moaning and rocking the beach party at the end of the world.
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By Mel Freilicher
The absurd mixes with the real in a vision of the American landscape as both murderous and comic. This is a funny, angry and passionate history of our county.
"Imagine history as a series of trap doors and fun-house mirrors, where Nancy Drew and the Bobbsey Twins meet the Chicago 7 and Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, where Anita Hill and Clarence Thomas are in the courtroom with Scrooge McDuck. This is the brilliantly bizarre world of Mel Freilicher's American Cream, a fictional realm of historical discourses punctuated by naughty erotic encounters. What would Little House on the Prairie look like if it were written by 'Big Bill' Haywood? Do sex and death go together like crime and meth? Are all mainstream political agendas delusional and deadly?. . ." - Stephen-Paul Martin, author of The Ace of Lightning and Changing the Subject
American Cream marks the third book in acclaimed San Diego author Mel Freilicher's trilogy of avant garde experimental historical fiction (his other two books, The Unmaking of Americans: 7 Lives; and The Encyclopedia of Rebels are also on City Works Press). This book will appeal to readers who gravitate towards literature.
"Freilicher's world is invented out of language, history and political cliches running over each other like a car without brakes. When the car runs out of gas, there are long passages of the awful racist and labor history of our country. The absurd mixes with the real in a vision of the American landscape as both murderous and comic as the 'American Dream' is slathered over with 'American Cream,' which as usual never cancels out a real wrinkle. This is a funny, angry and passionate history of our country. . ." - Eleanor Antin
Click here to buy American Cream from Sunbelt Books
Reclaiming Our Stories
Narratives of Identity, Resilience and Empowerment
Manuel Paul Lopez, Mona Alsoraimi-Espiritu, Roberta Alexander
Reclaiming Our Stories: Narratives of Identity, Resilience and Empowerment gathers 19 powerful narratives written by members of the Reclaiming Our Stories Community Writers Workshop located in Southeast San Diego. These authors took great risk bringing these narratives to fruition, stories that pulsate with the kind of vitality that can only be constructed out of pain, love, and outrage. These authors, almost all of them emerging, reached deeply into their lives to excavate these offerings that, in the end, rise in triumph. Although it wasn't the intention of the project, most authors chose to write about some of the most traumatic events in their lives. In many cases, we find in these pages brutal reflections of ugly and painful realities confronted by these authors, often from a young age, and often the result of systemic racism and the consequences manifested by a society in which many do not have equal opportunity to thrive. These are stories of children who have suffered incredible trauma and who do not receive adequate and immediate assistance; of young people who have drowned their pain through the abuse of alcohol and drugs; of those who grew up in environments where the only role models were gang members and hustlers; of a criminal "justice" system that has, as Michelle Alexander reported in her groundbreaking book, The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness: "More African Americans in prison, jail, on probation or parole than were enslaved in 1850, before the Civil War began"; of the human consequences of legal lynch codes, like the California Penal Code 182.5, that under their purview, allow people arrested, tried and convicted for offenses that everyone, including the district attorney, knows they did not commit; of homelessness; of immigrant families torn asunder by unfair immigration practices; of broken families. These authors counter dominant narratives that attempt to label or mislabel their experiences and worth. Institutional forces often gargantuan in their reach and influence to subjugate or pacify. In this anthology, however, readers will find narratives that reclaim and recast both a reality and future forged on their own terms. In the end, if we believe that humanity's greatest wisdom has been transported and preserved via the ancient tradition of storytelling, looking forward, it is the indomitable truthsayers that will continue to save us from ourselves-examples of such found in these pages. These narratives exemplify the healing that occurs when the courageous work of introspection confronts the merciless blank page and emerges victorious.
here to buy Reclaiming Our Stories from Sunbelt Books
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From San Diego and Tijuana
Kelly Mayhew and Jim Miller
the first edition of Sunshine/Noir this anthology presents the reader
with a wide range of contemporary San Diego writers of fiction and
nonfiction alike as well as poets, artists and photographers. It
explores San Diego and Tijuana’s border culture; San
Diego’s multiple identities and lost history; the
city’s natural beauty and endangered ecologies; its role as a
center of the culture of war; and San Diego writers’ attempts
to explore the meaning of place. By using a multicultural,
multidisciplinary, pan-artistic approach, this anthology offers the
reader a fresh look at a city yet to be explored in such a fashion.
Sunshine/Noir II is not comprehensive, but rather stands only as a
place marker in the continuing exploration of literary San Diego that
leaves many borders yet to be crossed. This anthology includes many
acclaimed and award-winning poets and writers as well as emerging
here to buy Sunshine/Noir II from Sunbelt Books
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Not Far From Normal
steps away from sponsored fun runs, endurance challenges, and
ultra-marathons, in Tamara Johnson’s Not
Far From Normal, San Diego's
hidden residents play games of
survival side-by-side with official city events. However one feels
about the rise
of dark tourism, it has never been necessary to travel far to
the dangerous or the exotic.
poetry, part photo essay, part field guide, Tamara
Johnson’s Not Far
tells the secret history of San Diego’s parks and missions as
told by their current
inhabitants. From the crash of PSA Flight#182 to the “I
don’t like Mondays” school
shooting and other dark episodes that don’t make it into San
Diego’s official story, Not
Far From Normal
is a compelling history of everyday life on the wild side of Southern
here to buy Not Far From
Normal from Sunbelt Books
here to buy Not Far From Normal from Amazon
Encyclopedia of Rebels
continues his lifelong engagement with the intersections between
history, fantasy, and memoir. The narrator throughout is a college
teacher and community activist struggling against despair. With the
help of radical heroes, famous and obscure, who devoted their lives to
fighting tyranny, he rises to the call of irony. You could call this
book both an outrageous comedy and a credible look at the world we live
here to buy Encyclopedia of Rebels
Lantern Tree: Four Books of Poems
Chris Baron, Heather Eudy, Cali Linfor & Sabrina Youmans
Lantern Tree: Four
Books of Poems is a
luminous collaboration that explores life's
lanterns of relation, journey,
spirit, desire, loss, and home. At
once disparate and entangled,
the voices found here are those of Chris
Baron in Under the Broom Tree, Heather Eudy in Bills of Lading, Cali
Linfor in A Book of Ugly Things, and Sabrina Youmans in Pacific
lantern tree acknowledges that many
hands are needed to assemble the possibility of light. But, of course,
each book is a thing of its own, hangs a light of its own, makes and
unmakes a home of its own. To read these poems is to be transported and
rooted within shadow and light.
here to buy Lantern Tree
By Justin Akers Chacon and Enrique Davalos
Border / Frontera Herida
contains cutting-edge research and analysis of the important issues
emerging from the U.S.-Mexico Border region today. Taking a bi-national
and bilingual approach, Wounded
Border / Frontera Herida
captures the multiple voices and experiences of scholars, researchers,
and community-based activists residing on both sides of the
international boundary. Wounded
Border / Frontera Herida
offers a unique and essential narrative from a region that both
intertwines and divides nations and peoples.
here to buy Wounded
(author of Evil Hour in Colombia)
Acts traces the arc of
descent of a young American anthropologist, Richard Melville, as he
tries to navigate the shifting currents of intrigue and seduction
churning around him in Medellin, Colombia - a tropical city of
frightening beauty and violence. Ignoring the advice of Baston, his
paranoid informant and would-be guardian angel, Richard pursues Maria
Isabel, a beautiful yet elusive student activist, into a labyrinth of
danger and desire. This award-winning novel is published with dialogue
in its original Spanish with an English translation version at the back.
here to buy Vanishing Acts
Mamas and Papas: On the Sublime
and Heartbreaking Art of Parenting
By Alys Masek and Kelly Mayhew
this lively and engrossing collection,
these texts explore all aspects of parenthood from the first stirrings
of desire for a baby to the bittersweet experience of watching your
children go off into the world without you. In poetry, fiction and
essays, the writers examine the primal and powerful bond of love
between parent and child. Writers share their most intimate experiences
of motherhood and fatherhood. The book celebrates the satisfaction and
joy that parenthood offers. Yet it does not shy away from the dark side
of parenting. Writers offer up eloquent and honest testimonies to their
anger, frustrations, doubts and failures as parents. Pieces range from
the laugh out loud funny stories of Sam Apple's foray into a Mommy and
Me yoga class with his son and Neal Pollack's adventures with his son's
initial attempts at texting, to Wanda Coleman's stark poetry of poverty
and Ella Wilson's quietly devastating account of her brush with
post-partum depression. The contributors survey everything from the
emotional toll of IVF to the perils and rewards of international
adoption. Welcome to the wild and wonderful world of parenting.
here to buy Mamas and
Itchy Brown Girl Seeks Employment
Ella deCastro Baron
Brown Girl Seeks Employment is an
ironic Curriculum Vitae where life and work experiences one wouldn't
want a potential employer to know are highlighted using vulnerability,
wit, observation, and candor. Ella deCastro Baron—a first
generation Asian American woman challenged by her parents' faith,
inherited sickness, and questionable life choices—shares of
beginning and ending relationships, restlessness, miracles, prejudice,
entitlement, and community. She leaves it up to the reader to decide,
after assessing her background, education, professional experience,
fieldwork, high (and low) achievements, if she is someone worth
here to buy Itchy Brown
Girl Seeks Employment
Lavanderia: A Mixed Load of
Women, Wash, and Words
By: Donna J. Watson, Michelle Sierra, and Lucia Gbaya-Kanga
anthology initiates us into one of
the most sacred domestic rituals of our mundane world—the
of physical and psychic stains, or the art and work of doing laundry.
The writers' voices rise above the sounds of washing machines,
non-televised daytime dramas, and laughter. Removing the clothespins
from their mouths, these women reveal their secrets, fears, loves, and
regrets in poem and story form. As finely detailed as the vintage
sleeve of a rummage sale find, the work in "Lavanderia" brings the
circle closer to home as you find yourself nodding and remembering and
thanking every woman who ever sat next to you in a laundromat and made
here to buy Lavanderia
Dynamite and Dreams
Robert V. Hine
novel is based on the life of Job
Harriman, a well-known free speech lawyer and, in 1911, the socialist
candidate for mayor in Los Angeles. It is a fictional account of life
in the utopian, turn-of-the-century Llano del Rio Cooperative Colony
north of L.A., which Harriman helped to establish in 1914.
here to buy Dynamite and
Edited by Nancy
than eighty contributors offer up
unique views of food and drink, what we hunger for, what pains us or
sustains us, what brings us joy as individuals, as family, as culture.
This collection of poetry, fiction, non-fiction, and art invites you to
sit at the collective table we share as the human community.
here to buy Hunger and
Tom Tom Girl
Tom Tom Girl is the first
collection of poetry by Marisela Norte, the incredible and audacious
spoken word poet from Los Angeles. Winner of San Diego City Works
Press's Ben Reitman Award, this collection of Norte's poems takes her
readers on fantastic journeys into the heart and soul of what it means
to be Chicana, human, a woman in 21st Century Southern California.
here to buy Peeping Tom
Jimmy Santiago Baca
and Julia is an extraordinary
collection of poetry that takes the reader from the depths of despair
through outrage to transcendent joy. In these searingly intense poems,
Baca inhabits the subjects of his poems and makes them sing.
here to buy Rita and
and transnational migrations, there were pampinos who worked mines
owned by American companies in Latin America. Their lives are
inspirations, their toils directions of where the spirit can survive.
Atacama Poems offers reminders of the importance of fulfilling dreams
and remembering those who made them possible. A multi-generational
family album, where voices carry like echoes.
here to buy Atacama Poems
Unmaking of Americans: 7 Lives
Page, Joey Stefano, Margaret Fuller, Margaret Sanger, Bayard Rustin,
Billy Stayhorn. The Unmaking of Americans: 7 Lives sketches an accurate
outline of these admirable, complex, and in some cases, tragic lives as
they have been depicted by their principle biographers.
here to buy The Unmaking
of Americans: 7 Lives
A new novel by City Works Press
co-founder Jim Miller on University of Oklahoma Press with art by San
Diego Writers Collective members Perry Vasquez and Jennifer Cost.
here to buy Drift
of Rapture: Poems in the Erotic Mood
Kowit is one of the
best-known poets in San Diego with an enormous following. The poems are
based on the ancient amatory poems of India written in Sanskrit.
Art--drawings, portraits, and sketches --accompany the poems throughout
here to buy Gods of Rapture
Available for only $12.95
The Commuters is a novel
composed of intersecting stories about people who live in Los Angeles.
From an immigrant garment worker, struggling to exist in an often cruel
city, to a lonely foster child, who uses arson to express himself,
Klein's novel delicately and deftly probes the inner lives of her
compelling cast of characters.
here to buy The Commuters
Available for only $12.95
groundbreaking and innovative collection of San Diego/Tijuana writing
edited by Jim Miller co-author of Under the Perfect Sun
Santiago Baca, Mike Davis, Marilyn Chin, Steve Kowit, Sandra Alcosser,
David Reid, Mark Dery, Victor Payan and Perry Vasquez, minerva, reg. e.
gaines, Adrian Arancibia, Hal Jaffe, Sue Luzzaro, Jimmy Jazz, and many
Click here for more information.
here to buy Sunshine/Noir
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Edited by Chris
1994, City Works has been
publishing the poetry, fiction, prose, and artwork of City College
students along with the work of local and national writers and artists.
Available for only
1. Latin, from delicere; To entice away.
2. A variety of apple having sweet fruit.
1. To lead astray. 2. To seduce and forsake (a woman)
Available for only
" ... in this moment of true
nakedness you experience a strange absence of fear. And it is its
absence that scares you ..."
Available for only $4.00
Mysterious Sound of Buddy Bolden
and Stories by Rob Novak
They say that he was the
greatest who ever lived, that he played that thing with such ferocious
passion that grown men on sailing ships in the Gulf leaped overboard,
sad for Storyville.
poem: The Mysterious Sound of Buddy Bolden
Available for only $4.00
A surreal rant. Vox
Saxaphonos is Dada poetry for
the postmodern age. Luis Omar
Lopez has written "The Love
Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" like
T.S. Eliot in the midst of a psychotic break.
Available for only $4.00