Five for Philly: Lisicky, Provenzano, McQuain, Kostos, & Hittinger

Five gay authors to read at Philly AIDS Thrift @ Giovanni’s Room in Philadelphia, May 31, 5:00pm.   #gayPhilly  #PhillyWriters

Authors Dean Kostos, Matthew Hittinger, Paul Lisicky, Kelly McQuain and Jim Provenzano will read from and discuss their latest works in poetry and fiction on May 31 at Philly AIDS Thrift @ Giovanni’s Room in Philadelphia, May 31, 5:00 P.M.

The five writers have various connections to Philadelphia.

Philadelphia poet Kelly McQuain is a local English professor who’s also been published in local, and regional publications.

New York City resident Matthew Hittinger hails from Bethlehem, PA, and author Paul Lisicky lives in both New York City and Philadelphia. Poet Dean Kostos is also from Philadelphia.

While not a resident, San Francisco author and journalist Jim Provenzano’s latest novel is set in early 1980s Philadelphia.

Each poet and author will read from selected works and sign copies at the historic bookstore, located in the heart of Philadelphia’s Gayborhood.

The reading takes place on the eve of the celebrated Lambda Literary Awards, to be held June 1 in New York City. Three of the authors at the May 31 reading are among the finalists for the 2015 Lambda Literary Awards, and a fourth has twice been nominated for the prestigious honor.

Matthew Hittinger and Kelly McQuain are contributors to the anthology The Queer South: LGBTQ Writers on the American South (Douglas Ray, Editor; Sibling Rivalry Press), which is a finalist in the Anthology category. McQuain is also a Lambda literary Fellow for 2015.

Jim Provenzano’s Message of Love, set in 1980s Philadelphia, is a 2015 finalist in the Gay Romance category. The companion novel, Every Time I Think of You, won a Lambda Literary Award in 2012.

Paul Lisicky’s Unbuilt Projects was a Lambda Literary finalist in 2012. His memoir Famous Builder was also a Lambda literary Award finalist in 2002.

Philly AIDS Thrift @ Giovanni’s Room
345 South 12th Street
Philadelphia. (215) 923-2960

Philly AIDS Thrift @ Giovanni’s Room is a community thrift store and the re-opened historic LGBT bookstore. Re-opened in October 2014, the country’s oldest bookstore temporarily closed after more than 30 years. The new store is now an outpost of Philly AIDS Thrift’s successful flagship store at 710 S. Fifth St. The 501(c)3 tax-exempt charitable organization donates proceeds from sales to AIDS Fund, which distributes funding to area HIV/AIDS service organizations.

Author Bios:

Matthew Hittinger is the author of The Erotic Postulate (2014) and Skin Shift (2012), both from Sibling Rivalry Press. He received his MFA from the University of Michigan where he won a Hopwood Award. His work has appeared in many journals and anthologies, has been adapted into art songs, and in 2012 Poets & Writers Magazine named him a Debut Poet on their eighth annual list. Matthew lives and works in New York City.

Dean Kostos’s collections include This Is Not a Skyscraper (recipient of the Benjamin Saltman Poetry Award), Rivering, Last Supper of the Senses, The Sentence That Ends with a Comma, and Celestial Rust. He co-edited Mama’s Boy: Gay Men Write about Their Mothers and edited Pomegranate Seeds: An Anthology of Greek-American Poetry (its debut reading was held at the United Nations). He translated and compiled a suite of Ancient, Byzantine, and Modern Greek poems for an event sponsored by The Rockefeller Foundation. His work has appeared in The Bangalore Review (India), Boulevard, Chelsea, Cimarron Review, The Cincinnati Review, Mediterranean Poetry (Sweden), Southwest Review, Stand Magazine (UK), Vanitas, Western Humanities Review, on Oprah Winfrey’s website, and elsewhere. His libretto, Dialogue: Angel of War, Angel of Peace, was performed by Voices of Ascension. His literary criticism has appeared on the Harvard UP Web site and Talisman. A multiple Pushcart-Prize nominee, and a finalist for the Gival and Jot Speak (UK) awards, he has taught at Wesleyan, The Gallatin School, and CUNY. His poem “Subway Silk” was translated into a film and screened in Tribeca and at San Francisco’s IndieFest. He is currently working on another collection of poems and a memoir.

Paul Lisicky is the author of five books, including Lawnboy, Famous Builder, The Burning House, and Unbuilt Projects. His work has appeared in Conjunctions, Fence, The Offing, Ploughshares, Tin House, and other magazines and anthologies. He is the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, two Fine Arts Work Center Fellowships, and two finalist designations from the Lambda Literary Award, in gay men’s fiction and in autobiography. He teaches in the MFA program at Rutgers University-Camden and serves as editor of StoryQuarterly. A memoir, The Narrow Door, is forthcoming from Graywolf Press in January 2016.

Kelly McQuain is a 2015 Lambda Literary Fellow and a 2015 Tennessee Williams Scholar at the Sewanee Writers’ Conference. His first poetry collection, Velvet Rodeo (2014), won Bloom magazine’s chapbook award as well as two Rainbow Award citations. His poetry also appears in a new Lambda Award-nominated anthology, The Queer South. Other work has appeared in Philadelphia Stories, Assaracus, Painted Bride Quarterly, Weave, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Pinch, The Harrington Gay Men’s Fiction Quarterly, A&U, and Mead—as well as in numerous anthologies: Men on Men, Skin & Ink, Best Gay Erotica, Between: New Gay Poetry, Rabbit Ears: TV Poems, and Drawn to Marvel: Poems from the Comic Books. He has received fellowships from the Pennsylvania Council of the Arts in fiction and nonfiction. A native of West Virginia, he now works as a professor of English in Philadelphia.

Jim Provenzano is the author of Every Time I Think of You (a Lambda Literary Award winner), and its Philadelphia-set sequel Message of Love (a 2015 Lambda Literary Award finalist and 2014 Rainbow Award finalist), the novels PINS, Monkey Suits, Cyclizen, the stage adaptation of PINS, as well as numerous published short stories. The curator of Sporting Life, the world’s first LGBT athletics exhibit, he also wrote the award-winning syndicated Sports Complex column for ten years. A journalist and photographer in LGBT media for more than two decades, he lives in San Francisco, and is an editor with the Bay Area Reporter.
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