Breakwater Reading: Beat the Heat

AppleThe skies have opened to pour bright sunshine into the cracks of the sidewalks and brick walkways of Boston! It’s filling the air with warm waves that are washing over frost-stiff shoulders and relaxing away the weariness of winter. It is warm at last!

What better way to celebrate the return of the sun than by experiencing the beaming talent of MFA students from BU, Emerson, and UMass Boston?

Where to Find Us
On May 15th: The Brookline Booksmith
More specifically: 7pm, Coolidge Corner, 279 Harvard Street, Brookline
24/7: Facebook.com/BreakwaterReadingSeries

Here’s a sneak peek at our line-up of readers:

Zoe

Zoe Tokushige is a fiction student at Emerson College and hails from California by way of New York. The stories for her thesis are centered around the Japanese American community during WWII, and some have even been published.

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Kyle Dacuyan is a Leo/Cancer rising, denizen of JP, and very-soon-to-be recipient of an MFA in Poetry from Emerson College. He has twice been a semi-finalist for the “Discovery”/Boston Review Poetry Prize and has received scholarships from the Sewanee Writers’ Conference and The Davidson Institute. His recent work has appeared or is forthcoming in Crab Orchard Review, The Nashville Review, THRUSH, DIALOGIST, and RHINO, among other places.

Mimi Cook

Mimi Cook hails from the rainy wilds of the Pacific Northwest. She migrated to study writing, and on Monday she will graduate with her MFA in Fiction from Emerson College where she also worked as a Marketing Assistant for Ploughshares at Emerson College, taught fiction to Boston public high school students through the emersonWRITES program, and assisted in coordinating the Breakwater Reading Series. In her free time, Mimi practices shotokan karate, throws dinner parties, and writes an epistolary food blog with her father.

Stokes

Jessica Suzanne Stokes sometimes calls herself a poet.

Breakwater Reading: Spring Training

10155648_635960509839498_883816649113319551_nSnowdrops and forsythia have begun sprouting in the mud. Maybe soon you’ll believe that winter is done. Use the extra energy and positivity provided to you by the added Vitamin D beaming down from above to attend this month’s Breakwater reading.

What better way to coax spring into the neighborhood than by experiencing the blossoming talent of MFA students from BU, Emerson, and UMass Boston?

Join us Friday, April 17, at 7pm sharp in the basement of the Brookline Booksmith.

Where to Find Us
On April 17th: The Brookline Booksmith
More specifically: 7pm, Coolidge Corner, 279 Harvard Street, Brookline
24/7: Facebook.com/BreakwaterReadingSeries

Here’s a sneak peek at our line-up of readers:

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Brionne Janae
is a Southern California native currently living in the city of Boston where she is finishing her M.F.A in Poetry at Emerson College.  Brionne’s work has been published or is forthcoming in Plume, the Fjords Review, Apogee Journal, Toe Good Poetry, Redivider and others. She is also the winner of the 2014 Muriel Craft Bailey Contest at the Comstock Review. Brionne is also Cave Canem Fellow. But most importantly Brionne just turned in her thesis yesterday!! and is now feeling mighty fancy.
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Todd Natti is a native of Western New York. Don’t know what Western New York is? Well, Todd’s here to teach you. He may also throw in some information about canals and bear tossing. But maybe not. It’s hard to be sure. What is sure is he’s finishing his MFA at Emerson College after seven years, complete with a switch to nonfiction right before writing his thesis, which he defends directly before Friday’s reading. While that may not the norm, doing things last second is sort of Todd’s style, much to the chagrin of others. He hopes you’re as cool with it as they are.
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Danya Bush. What can be said about her? I’m a straight-shooter so here’s the facts: she’s a first-year MFA candidate at UMass Boston, studying fiction. She’s a stellar gal. Her stories are like a billion-dollar pair of sunglasses, or like a waterfall on the surface of the sun: very cool, and also, very unexpected. The stupid fabric of existence is a real snooze-fest compare to the stories she writes. Perhaps she’s “The Chosen One”…. but then again perhaps she’s not. I don’t care. Danya Bush.
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Jesse De Angelis is a student in the Boston University poetry MFA program, and has recently won third prize in a contest.

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Michelle Samuels is an MFA candidate in fiction at Boston University, and co-coordinates the Writers at the Black Box reading series at the Boston Playwrights’ Theatre. Before coming down to Massachusetts she was a contributing reporter for New Hampshire Public Radio, covering food and farming, and her fiction has appeared in Quick Brown Fox, The Underground, and the anthology Love Free or Die.

August J Smith has been called many things: an Irish cabbie; a rapscallion; Danya Bush’s parents’ favorite child; a fourteen year old boy whose interests include mega hot babes; a dad lookalike; a lizard man with a mustache; the boy of your dreams. He’s a first-year MFA candidate in poetry at UMass Boston, but let’s be real: August’s been slaying the poetry game since he busted out the womb, and y’all better be ready because he’s about to drop some hecka rad poems on your earholes.

Breakwater Reading: Opening the Floodgates

Boston recently broke the record for most snowfall in the season, and now that that’s over with, we can hopefully put it right behind us. What better way to coax spring into the neighborhood than by showcasing the blossoming talent of MFA students from BU, Emerson, and UMass Boston?

Join us today, Friday, March 20, at 7pm sharp at the Brookline Booksmith..

Where to Find Us

On March 20th: The Brookline Booksmith
More specifically: 7pm, Coolidge Corner, 279 Harvard Street, Brookline
24/7: Facebook.com/BreakwaterReadingSeries

Here’s a sneak peek at our line-up of readers:

Bob Sykora

Bob Sykora is a first year MFA candidate at UMass Boston and the poetry editor for Breakwater Review. He is originally from the San Fernando Valley in Los Angeles, CA, but his heart still resides in Chicago, where he used to be a high school teacher.

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Breauna L. Roach is a native of Detroit, MI and a recipient of the Gwendolyn Brooks Writers Association’s Poetry Prize. Her work has appeared in the Detroit Institute of Art, The Huffington Post, 22 Across Young Writer’s Review and various other publications. She is a proud Alumna of Florida A&M University, and has received fellowships from Callaloo and Cave Canem. Breauna is the former Editor of CaKe: a Journal of Poetry and Art and is currently a 1st year MFA student at Emerson College.

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Antonina (Nina) Palisano is an MFA candidate at Boston University. She holds a degree in religion and creative writing from Hampshire College, where she completed a poetry manuscript about tuberculosis in the 19th century imagination. Nina was recently named a finalist in the 2015 Jewish Currents’ Raynes Poetry Prize, and has been the recipient of scholarships and grants from Flying Object and the Sandol Milliken Stoddard Fund. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in the Massachusetts Review, Potluck Magazine, Washington Square, the Bellevue Literary Review, and other publications.

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Emily Jaeger is a returned Peace Corps volunteer and backyard organic farmer who dreams in four languages. A candidate in the MFA program at UMASS Boston, she is a Lambda Literary fellow and co-editor/co-founder of the Window Cat Press, a zine for young, emerging artists. Her publication list is up on her website.

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Julia Mascioli is a third-year MFA candidate in Fiction at Emerson College, currently in the final throes of completing her thesis, a collection of linked stories. When she isn’t isn’t writing or worrying about writing, she does communications and grant writing for the DC-based nonprofit Free Minds Book Club & Writing Workshop, which uses books and writing to empower incarcerated youth.

Breakwater Reading: Cabin Fever Antidote

You’ve been sitting at home too often this winter. Maybe you’ve started reading books aloud so your voice can keep you company. Or maybe you’ve become overly familiar with the voices of your housemates. You may have even begun to find things to hate about them that are completely innocuous.

Attending Breakwater will not end winter or make your housemates’ shower singing more in tune, but it will get you out of the house and give you a chance to listen to talented MFA students from UMass, Emerson, and Boston University. Join us tomorrow, Friday, February 20 at 7pm sharp at the Brookline Booksmith.

Where to Find Us


On February 20th: The Brookline Booksmith
More specifically: 7pm, Coolidge Corner, 279 Harvard Street, Brookline
24/7: Facebook.com/BreakwaterReadingSeries

Here’s a sneak peek at our line-up of readers:

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Joshua Jones is a second year MFA candidate in poetry at UMass Boston. Originally from the Shenandoah Valley area of Virginia, Josh serves as the book review editor for Appalarts Magazine which promotes the work of Appalachian writers and artists. He lives in Dorchester with his wife Lesleigh and their dachshund Guinivere. He jealously guards his position as the premature old fogey in workshop.

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Billy Hart Tierney is an Instructor for the First Year Writing Program and pursuing his MFA in Poetry at Emerson College. He wants his poetry to find a moment of empathy that rests somewhere between absurdity and reality. Or as he imagined James Tate said about Mr. Tierney’s work, “You can’t tell where Tierney’s writing is going to go. He may start with tragedy and end with comedy, or abandon both for a man you doesn’t know whose shit he slept in.” (Source The Poet’s Warped Mind)

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Courtney Prather was an MFA candidate in fiction at Emerson, but then she graduated in December 2014. Since then she has been expanding her final thesis into a full-fledged historical novel. When she’s not obsessively listening to Russian history podcasts, Russian folk songs, or watching documentaries on Russian ballerinas, she makes a living by writing freelance articles by contract. She also loves to paint and dance- though not at the same time.

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Jennifer Murphy writes Fiction. She is an Arizona native living in Boston where she is an MFA candidate in the fiction program at the University of Massachusetts in Boston. She is the recipient of a Kathryn and Gelndon Swarthout award in creative writing, a Randel and Susan McCraw Helms Writing Award, and most recently the Mary Doyle Curran Scholarship. When not writing she tries to find edible Mexican food in and around New England. She is currently working on a collection of female coming of age stories, set in the southwest, titled, What You’re Made Of.

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Michael Mandlin is originally from New York.  He enjoys sunsets, long walks on the beach, and puppies.

Stokes

A native Michigander, Jessica Suzanne Stokes currently attends Boston University’s MFA program and sometimes calls herself a poet.

Breakwater Reading: Back in Winter White

White WhaleIt’s a new year, and each day Boston seems to be donning a new layer of snow. Don’t let the weather stop you from walking to the Brookline Booksmith this Friday. Don a scarf and avoid checking the windchill (unless you’re fond of negative numbers).

Start the year off right at the Brookline Booksmith! On Friday, January 16 at 7pm sharp, writers from UMass, Emerson, and BU will be showcasing their talents.

Where to Find Us
On January 16th: The Brookline Booksmith
More specifically: 7pm, Coolidge Corner, 279 Harvard Street, Brookline
24/7: Facebook.com/BreakwaterReadingSeries

Here’s a sneak peek at our line-up of readers:

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Leigh Clouse is a MFA candidate in fiction at Boston University. A Michigander and a native of the Midwest, Leigh comes to Boston this year after teaching digital media at a Chicago high school. When not writing stories about dysfunctional families, Leigh enjoys drinking too much tea, making lists, and finding rare and exotic typos.

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Johnette Marie Ellis calls Boston home. She worked in the non-profit sector for 10 years, serving primarily as a community builder and advocate for the redistribution of power and access through programs and policy. Now Johnette has her sights set on harnessing the power and influence of creativity as an educator and poet. She’s an MFA candidate at Emerson College in Poetry, looking for new strategies and questions to nurture a mission driven path. Currently she works with emersonWRITES as a poetry teacher and as an instructor in Emerson’s First Year Writing Program. Ultimately she wants to support others as they seek to discover their superpowers—yet she hasn’t quite found her own.
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Marisela Navarro was born in Puerto Rico, grew up in Orlando, Florida, and lives in Boston, Massachusetts.  She received a doctorate in pharmacy from the University of Florida and is an MFA candidate in fiction at Emerson College. She’s been writing since she was seven years old and wrote a story called “The Velveteen Rabbit” before she knew what plagiarism was. Her short fiction has been published in SmokeLong Quarterly, the anthology Flash Fiction Funny, Wigleaf, 100 Word Story, and Matchbook.
Elysia Smith
Elysia Smith is an Indiana prom queen turned rebel witch-poet and punk rock enthusiast. She currently studies at UMass Boston and is getting her MFA in poetry. Despite being known round the yard as a poet, Elysia also writes fiction loosely based on her experiences being dragged by her parents across country away from her counter-culture California family to a bible-belt town of four thousand. Perhaps the best summation of this experience can be drawn from her past MySpace page where she once stated, “I’m just a desert rose transplanted among the children of the corn.” Only, she definitely spelled “desert,” as “dessert” but that’s probably more accurate anyway.

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Bojana Totovic is a candidate in poetry at Boston University. She comes from a country in the southeast corner of Europe, called Serbia. She started writing poetry thanks to a creative writing course conducted in English, when she wasn’t sure she could write poetry at all or what it really was. Now she is here. Her ambition in life is to travel, be happy, and make stuff.
Lori Zimmermann
Lori Zimmermann is an MFA candidate in poetry at UMass Boston. She writes poems about apocalypses and the telegraph. She is also the Tumblr Editor for small publisher/guerrilla art project Broadsided Press. When she is not clacking away at her typewriter or laptop, she enjoys spinsterly hobbies like knitting and talking about her cat. Publication credits include poems in Broad! and Writers Tribe Review.

Breakwater Reading: Winter is Coming and so is Breakwater

Winter is comingNew England may be suggesting in not so subtle ways that you button up your jacket, pull out your hopefully matching gloves from the depths of your hall closet, and get ready for winter, but may we suggest that you also get ready for Breakwater?

Come inside and warm up in the basement of the Brookline Booksmith! On Friday, November 21 at 7pm sharp, writers from UMass, Emerson, and BU will be showcasing their talents in what is sure to be a worthwhile way to spend a late fall evening.

Where to Find Us
On November 21st: The Brookline Booksmith
More specifically: 7pm, Coolidge Corner, 279 Harvard Street, Brookline
24/7: Facebook.com/BreakwaterReadingSeries

Here’s a sneak peek at our line-up of readers:
Emily
Emily Jaeger is a returned Peace Corps volunteer and backyard organic farmer who dreams in four languages. After serving for two years as a  agricultural extensionist in rural Paraguay, Emily returned to Boston where she is currently studying in the MFA program at UMASS Boston. Emily is co-editor and co-founder of the Window Cat Press, a zine young, emerging artists and her poems have been published or are forthcoming in Cecile’s Writers Magazine, Broadzine, and the Jewish Journal.
Lewis Feuer
Lewis Feuer is a MFA candidate in poetry at University of Massachusetts Boston. His work was recently featured in No Infinite: a Journal of Poetry, Art, and Protest, and his essay [Listening] was published by Harvard’s Woodberry Poetry Room as part of their Catalyst series. He teaches Creative Writing at UMB, and serves on the organizing committee for the Graduate Employee Organization UAW Local 1596.
Dan Murphy
Dan Murphy lives north of Boston with his wife, daughter, dog, and elusive mice.  A carpenter for many years, he earned his bachelor’s degree at the tender age of 29, after bouts as a mason’s laborer, mover, musician, bartender, government hack, and Democratic operative.  A former Golden Gloves boxer, he’s beaten Zack Braff at table tennis and made a joke about Senator Al Franken’s balls to his face.

He’s currently enrolled in the MFA program at Boston University and has published poems in Alloy, Lullwater Review, Blue Collar Review, and Panhandler Magazine.  Dan is currently searching for a generous benefactor.

Catherine Con

Catherine Con has an MFA in fiction from BU, where she is now the Creative Writing program coordinator.  She is working on a novel full of music and mischief.  Every twenty pages she gets to eat one burger, which is quite a lot, if you think about it.
Rebecca Thill
Rebecca Thill is a poetry MFA candidate and writing tutor at Emerson College. She is wrapping up her thesis right now. Right now, as in, as this very bio is being read. She gets told all the time that she’s far too cheerful to be a poet, so she’s working on becoming more broody. You can find her work online at random lit journals with a quick google search. And when asked what she writes about, she likes to vary her response but her favorite response of late is: “I write haikus. About bears.”
Mimi Cook
Mimi Cook hails from the rainy wilds of the Pacific Northwest. She migrated to Boston to pursue an MFA in Fiction at Emerson College where she writes stories that draw on her western roots and sensibility. Outside of class, she works as a Marketing Assistant for Ploughshares at Emerson College, teaches fiction to Boston public high school students through the emersonWRITES program, and assists in coordinating the Breakwater Reading Series. She is the 2014 Ivan Gold Fiction Fellow at the Writer’s Room of Boston. In her free time, Mimi practices shotokan karate, throws dinner parties, and writes an epistolary food blog with her father.

The Breakwater Reading Series features Boston’s student writers performing the best in poetry, fiction, and nonfiction from the programs at Boston University, Emerson College, and the University of Massachusetts-Boston. Six fresh voices read in each installment of this popular series, presented by the Graduate Writing Department at UMass-Boston. Readings are held at the Brookline Booksmith at 7pm on the third Friday of every month between September and June. The event is always free and open to the public.

Breakwater Reading: A Fresh Fall Treat

Breakwater is neither a caramel apple nor a pumpkin flavored whoopie pie, but this reading is still sure to be sweet. Put down your plastic pumpkin full of candy and join us on Friday, October 17 to hear from your talented peers and meet creative writing students from all over Boston.

Where to Find Us
On October 17th: The Brookline Booksmith
More specifically: 7pm, Coolidge Corner, 279 Harvard Street, Brookline
24/7: Facebook.com/BreakwaterReadingSeries

At 7pm sharp, these brilliant writers will be at the Brookline Booksmith, ready to provoke synesthesia with their delicious talents.
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Daniel Leonard grew up from 1988 to 2006. He hopes to master fine arts by next year at Boston University. Robert Pinsky selected him as First Runner-Up in this year’s Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival Poetry Contest. Daniel’s water doesn’t break.
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Jeff Huizinga is an MFA candidate (fiction) at Boston University. Before coming to BU he earned degrees at Columbia University (history) and Northern Arizona University (English). He has also lived and worked in the San Francisco Bay Area and in Cambodia.
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Andrea Jones Berasaluce is an MFA candidate in Fiction at Emerson College. A Boston native, she adores New England, crossword puzzles and maple syrup.
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Dean Shaban is originally from Atlanta, GA. He received his Bachelors in Psychology from Princeton University and is currently an MFA Candidate in Poetry at Emerson College. His most recent publication can be found in the Summer 2014 issue of So To Speak Journal.