The Streetwise Cycle is being reprinted in serial format in a Florida street paper!

Here’s a photo of me with the first story, In Motion, as it appears in the paper.

What is a street paper?

These are newspapers that are designed as social services to help homeless people earn some money, while maybe even getting their writing published. You’ll sometimes see them referred to as “homeless papers.” Homeless people sell them, and pocket a little change for every issue they sell.

Content in the papers is usually focused on items of interest to homeless people or those of us who care about the homeless. Some of the writing is written by the people who sell the paper, or other homeless folks in the community. The paper usually has a few paid or volunteer staff who write additional content and take care of design, printing and other back-end work.

There are homeless papers all over the country. In fact, all over the world.

Why did I let News from the Road reprint my book for free?

I’m a big fan of street papers. Whenever I travel, if I run into someone selling them, I make sure to buy a copy (or two). A street paper is a mashup of two things I care about - an anti-poverty jobs program combined with a literary effort to help people tell their own stories, in their own words.

I was thrilled when the Victoria Street Newz in British Columbia ran a review of The Streetwise Cycle.  

When News from the Road contacted me and asked if I’d they could reprint all the stories over the course of nine issues, of course I said yes. I hope my work can help sell a few more street papers and put a little more money in the pockets of men and women in Florida who are struggling to make it. Sure, I’ll get a bit free publicity out of it, but that’s just a bonus.

So the next time you’re out on the streets and someone tries to sell you a street paper, give it a try. You never know what you might find inside.
 
 
I had such a great time at the book launch party last night! Thank you to everyone who came - we filled the house at the Echo Park Film Center!

Here are a few photos from the event. If you have photos to share, please send them along.
You can find much more about me and my book on my Facebook page

If you'd like to buy a copy of The Streetwise Cycle, it's available on Amazon and Lulu, or you can download it for your favorite e-reader
 
 
Zoë Ruiz makes envelopes. She creates them from unusual materials and in unexpected ways. Since I'm lucky enough to know Zoë and her work, I asked if she would make a set of envelopes based on The Streetwise Cycle

Using printouts of each story in the cycle, Zoë has created envelopes that reflect on her experience of the book. They will be on display as part of the book launch party on March 26.  

It's all part of the DIY, lo-fi, multidisciplinary principles of the book and my personal aesthetic. 
 
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Zoë Ruiz makes envelopes
Zoë studied creative witing at UC Santa Cruz, as well as Spanish literature and feminist studies. Currently she lives in LA where she works at a literacy nonprofit. Her writing has appeared in Utne.com and The Rumpus, and one of her zines is in the Special Collections Department at Occidental College Library. Her most recent blog is Fishes and Honey

 
 
If you're an Angeleno, I know you're planning ahead for parking at the party on Saturday night. The Echo Park Film Center doesn't have its own parking lot, so I went googling for some info on parking in the neighborhood, and here's what I found:  
And please don't forget your carpooling and designated driver options. 

See you at the party! 
 
 
Composer Bruce Bennett is currently working on a piece of music to accompany The Streetwise Cycle. I'm delighted that I'll be able to use a piece of his music at the party to accompany moving images and text associated with the book. 

Bruce is an active performer of improvised music, and as a composer, his works have been played by a wide range of groups and artists, including the Arditti String Quartet, the Avenue Winds, the Berkeley Symphony, Del Sol String Quartet, Earplay, Tom Dambly and Michael Zbyszynski.  
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Composer Bruce Christian Bennett
Bruce's interests and activities include compositions and improvisations for live, interactive, electroacoustic music; conducting; the free-atonal music of the Second Viennese School; the music of the post-World War II European avant-garde; contemporary American and European avant-garde; and the Frankfurt School, particularly Adorno's writings on aesthetics and mass culture. 

Listen to his work or read more at Bruce's website
 
 
Update #2: Don't worry if you missed the interview. You can hear it online right here.

Update! Indymedia On Air has been moved to 8:30 pm today. Listen in tonight! 

Here's a quick preview of my interview with author Terry Wolverton about independent literature. In this clip, she talks about how changes in the corporate structure of publishing has changed our literary culture. 
  

Listen to the full interview on Monday, March 14 at 2:30 pm on KPFK, 90.7 FM in Los Angeles, 98.7 FM in Santa Barbara, or online at kpfk.org

You'll also get to hear from Terry at the Streetwise book launch party. Hope to see you there! 
 
 
The Streetwise Cycle on Amazon!
The Streetwise Cycle is 
now available on Amazon!
 
 
I didn't pick them because their band name is a punctuation mark - that's just a literary bonus. Ampersand will be busking live outside the Echo Park Film Center before the program begins. 
Ampersand
Ampersand is Rachel Garcia and Thu Tran
Ampersand is Rachel Garcia and Thu Tran. They met in the winter of 2006, as students at San Francisco State University, at an open mic night. Tran's songwriting is influenced by pop and folk. Garcia's vocal styles are based in jazz and the blues. It all comes together to create Ampersand’s cheerfully soulful "city folk" sound. 

Ampersand's music ranges across themes and styles, and they always strive to make good-hearted, positive music. Their music is a hybrid of different influences and inspirations, reflecting their diverse musical and cultural backgrounds. 

Get a preview of Ampersand's music on MySpace, follow them on Twitter and become their best friends on Facebook

Or come hear them at the party on March 26!  
 
 
More details on the publication party: 

     Saturday, March 26 
     Doors open at 7:30 pm 
     Program begins at 8 pm 

     Echo Park Film Center 
     1200 N Alvarado (@Sunset) 

I'll be reading from the book and signing copies. We'll also have buskers, video, original music and art inspired by the book, and a few words about the importance of independent literature in our modern era. 

Plus a little food and wine!  

You can RSVP for the party right here on Facebook

Anything else you need to know? 
 
 
Since The Streetwise Cycle appeared online, I've been talking with artists in various fields about creating work inspired by the book. So I'm excited to announce that you'll get to hear Alanna Lin at the publication party. 

Alanna Lin a.k.a. "Mindy Chiu" is a singer-songwriter, blogger, and performance artist who received her MFA in Creative Writing from the Critical Studies Department at CalArts in 2003. She composes and performs original music as Fascinoma (a folk-pop project) and has recently completed a concept album entitled Emergency Songs: Before, During, and After with LA-based composer, Monk Turner. The project reflects upon friendship, loyalty, and public safety in the face of The Big One. 
Alanna Lin
Alanna Lin as Fascinoma
Alanna will be performing original work inspired by The Streetwise Cycle

Stay tuned to this blog for announcements of more musicians and other artists whose work will appear at the party.