April WordFest offers humor, memoir, and magical realism

Three Northwest writers will read from their works at WordFest on Tuesday, April 9, 6:00-8:00 pm, at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church, 1428 22nd Avenue in Longview.

Jan Bono is well known to WordFest members for her Sylvia Avery cozy mystery series set on the SW Washington coast. Is There Room in the Backyard for One More Body? is Jan’s collection of 12 fictional short stories also set on the Long Beach Peninsula. Known for her twisted sense of humor, Jan says, “Writing these stories is so much cheaper than therapy. And I get to do away with people who annoy me without having to go to jail.” Jan assures us that Is There Room is a work of fiction, and not a how-to manual. “Nobody was injured during the research or writing of these stories.”

Jan has also published five collections humorous personal experience, three poetry chapbooks, nine one-act plays, and one serious novel. Most recently she has completed two ‘Hallmark-style” Christmas screenplays, and is pursuing the ever-present pipe dream of a television movie production. Jan is among the top 5 contributors, world-wide, to the Chicken Soup for the Soul series, with 57 stories. www.JanBonoBooks.com

Tiffany Dickinson writes tales for the young and for those who love them. She’ll be reading from The Golden Web, her first middle-grade magical realism story. Thomas the spider is perfectly comfortable making his home in a room at the children’s hospital. He learns many things from observing the children who come to get well and by watching television, especially TV game shows. When a child leaves, Thomas doesn’t mind. His motto is, “Spiders have family, food, and foes.” He needs no friends.

That is, until the very sick boy, Marco, moves into his room. When the boy and the spider realize they can communicate with each other, Thomas soon has a friend. But does he have the courage to befriend someone who will leave him, one way or another? And will Marco have the courage to fight his serious illness and leave his new best friend behind? With humor and heart, The Golden Web speaks of friendship, courage, and hope. It’s the perfect story for those who believe in miracles and friends who can lift you as you reach for the stars.

Tiffany has published middle-grade historical fiction and animal adventure books, as well as short stories, articles, and poems. A Portland native, she has lived in Longview for several years, sharing her home with two bossy pugs, one persnickety cat, and one patient husband.

S.B. Daniels will read an excerpt from her manuscript in progress, Anniversary Reaction, a personal story that weaves together feelings about an upcoming milestone—a 50-year high school class reunion—with flashbacks to the life and challenges she faced during those high school years.  At its core, this is a love story, but it’s also an exploration of the uneven journey towards healing through the power of determination, resilience, and hope.

Sarah’s extensive background in clinical psychology serves as both inspiration and backdrop for her personal essays and memoir.  Her experience as a college psychology instructor and decades of personal effort exploring different modes of therapy provide the framework for a number of her ongoing projects.

Sarah adds a trigger warning: “Although what I plan to share does not contain ‘graphic content,’ some of this material may be disturbing.  This disclaimer is intended so you can consider options for your own well-being, and acknowledges that we are all people with complicated lives, histories, and challenges.”

An open mic will follow the presentations.

The monthly gathering of readers and writers meets the second Tuesday of each month, 6:00-8:00 PM, in the fellowship hall of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church. The events are free and open to the public.