Posts by: evan

We are thrilled to announce the winner of our second book contestThe Sacred Text of Rosa Who Is Great, written by Marcus Lund and illustrated by Stella Peach!Rosa Who Is Great

An allegory told as legend through the voices of a town like yours and mine, The Sacred Text of Rosa Who is Great is a mini-epic of a seemingly normal person who only wants to be left alone, as understood by the community who didn’t understand her (some say him) while she was actually around. It was told across social media over the month of August, and will be the third in our series of Quiet Lightning Books.


Like Zack Haber’s if you want to be one of them playing in the streets… and Tupelo Hassman’s Breast Milk, which we published this year, we are printing this book with Tiny Splendor and will have a big release party sometime next year.

Thanks to everyone who submitted and made this hard on me and Sarah Ciston, the two judges of this contest. We will open up submissions to our third book contest on the night we launch The Sacred Text of Rosa Who is Great, and will keep you in the loop as things develop. Congratulations to Marcus and Stella!


Five Year Anniversaryql logo

We’re accepting submissions to the kickoff to our monthlong celebration of our 5-year anniversary; the show is on December 4th at The Emerald Tablet, and subs are open through the end of Wednesday, November 19th. Click here to submit.

We’ve got so much going on it’s hard to talk about. Quiet Lightning is changing. When the dust settles on 2014 we’ll have produced 69 shows featuring over 800 readings by 450 different people. We’ve done it in the road, in a cave, in a mansion, in a bar. We’ll have published 60 issues of sPARKLE & bLINK in 60 months, featuring cover art by more than 50 different local visual artists. And we’ll have our first full gallery exhibition of some of their work, kicking off a yearlong ekphrastic project.

IMG_0499-smallAs we set out to publish our third wonderful book, the first issue of our new magazine, vitriol, and our first full-length book (more soon), and gear up for the production of our second film, we want to thank everyone who has believed in Quiet Lightning for 30 minutes or for 30 months alike. From the volunteers to the staff to fledgling authors who braved a roomful of people for the first time to veteran authors who decided to send their work in to us, there has not been a single month or a single show gone by since December of 2009 that strangers and new friends alike have not surprised and delighted us.

Plenty of you have said incredible things about our times together; to quote one: “Not an event. A moment.” Here’s to making more of them together. We hope you can join us on December 4 for a literary mixtape, on the 5th for our artist reception, and for our year-ender on December 14th, the actual date of our anniversary and the vitriol launch.

We also want to thank the Zellerbach Family Foundation, Lagunitas Brewing Company, and the Leslie Scalapino O Books Fund for their continued support of Quiet Lightning. With their help we have been able to produce consistent shows and publications, to collaborate with more than two dozen likeminded organizations and countless local businesses of all kinds, and we have been able to sustain a prolonged period of impressive growth that finds us more excited about what we’re doing than ever before.

What a wonderful year, and five years, it’s been!

Thanks for everything. We’d love to have you get involved any way you’d like. In the meanwhile, enjoy watching and reading our recent gem of a show at Viracocha, below.

Evan Karp
for Quiet Lightning

ql logo

sPARKLE & bLINK 59 from Quiet Lightning

sparkle + blink 59 cover by Laura Ceron Melo

art by our own Laura Ceron Melo!

We begin with an Exit Manifesto, “we want to make / sure our labor is pointless.” Magic, “a glowing green neon hand with “Psychic” written underneath it,” “distilled almost to a vapor. / Meanwhile, the violation / of social distance defines” Mattress Man, for when we are wolves we will spare you, a Disappearing Mirror, a raspberry macaron disappearing behind red, red lips, flying kites as a kid, eating peanut butter on saltine crackers, maybe someone will hear us, we’re on a carnival ride, “the saintly palms positioned in” us, “the long terror that plants other mouths in” us – all inspired by + lifted from an all new spell entitled “Quiet Lightning 67 // sPARKLE & bLINK 59″

Kelsey Schimmelman and Allison Hummel have devised this well-balanced spell using the distinct strengths of Simon Crafts, Alexander Peterson, Jesse Nathan, Christine No, Jayna Swartzman, Ginger Buswell, Michael McLaughlin, Jessica Hahn, and Caroline O’Connor Thomas—all of whom, excepting Ginger (4x), are making their debut QL appearance. Guaranteed to tickle even the most elusive fancies!

The powers of 67/59 will live on in sPARKLE & bLINK, featuring art by our own Laura Ceron Melo and given out to the first 49 people at Viracocha on Monday, November 10 — but this will likely be the only time the verses come together to speak for themselves.

We’re selling a limited number of tickets to ensure seating, due to the room capacity. It would be wise to preorder a ticket if you hope to attend! Door tickets not guaranteed; get tickets here now.

$10-20, 1/2 of of the proceeds to benefit the magic that happens at 998 Valencia St.
Doors 7 p.m., show 7:30 p.m

ql logo


December FIVE YEAR

QL November illustration by Laura Ceron MeloIt feels impossible, but it’s true: we’ve been bringing writers of every imaginable kind to your favorite (and new favorite) Bay Area spots—this year alone to a dance club, a dive bar, a print shop, the headquarters of an app, a movie theater, a neighborhood patio, an art gallery, a co-working space, a museum, a hotel, a creativity salon, a cave, and a cultural center—for five years now, featuring a total of 777 different readings by 429 authors!

To celebrate, we’ve put together a few things in the hopes that you can join us for at least one of them:

Anniversary Events

Thursday, December 4: a literary mixtape at The Emerald Tablet « submissions open through Nov 19

Friday, December 5: the opening/artist reception for our first ever full gallery exhibition, featuring work by 11 s+b cover artists: Maga Rincon, Luis Pinto, Fuzz Grant, Wesley Powell, Tanya Hollis, Adam Carlin, Nigel Sussman, Cate White, Todd T. Brown, and our directors, Sidney Stretz and Laura Ceron Melo.

The exhibition will be on display at The Emerald Tablet through December and January; most of the art will be for sale, along with artist back issues and select prints.

Also on that night, we launch a year-long ekphrastic project: submissions will open for visual art, and Sidney and Laura will each choose their favorite piece; we will publish their favorites and open submissions of written responses over the course of the following three weeks, at which point we will publish our favorite written responses and open submissions to visual responses, repeating that process throughout 2015 and ending with another gallery show featuring all of the visual and written works!

Sunday, December 14: On the actual date of our five-year mark we are thrilled to co-present a third Chemical Wedding with Name Drop Swamp Records and The Emerald Tablet: live music by Shenandoah Davis and Sean Nelson and readings by Benjamin Wachs, Melissa Stein, Maw Shein Win, and Jason R. Jimenez! The show will also be the release party for the first issue of our new magazine, Vitriol—more about that soon also! We’ll be selling advance tix for this one too, since seats are limited; the show will be at Doc’s Lab.

Announcementsql logo


Soon: the winner of our second book contest, and our first solicited full-length!

A special holiday/end of the year package that includes admission to all of our monthly 2015 shows and their corollary issues of sPARKLE & bLINK, each Chemical Wedding, and everything else we publish in ’15: both issues of the biannual Vitriol, the chapbook, and the full-length for $100. ¡Hey that’s a $220 value! Impress your friends with the QL All Access Package. Make package jokes. Tell your grandparents. To order yours, make a donation to QL through PayPal and be sure to write in the note if you’d like the package(s) for yourself or as a gift, and don’t hesitate to contact us for any reason: evan AT quietlightning DOT org.

A new board member! Kelsey Schimmelman was voted into the Secretary position; she’s been the acting secretary for the last nine months or so after volunteering and expressing interest in getting involved. She’s the second person to be voted on (after Josey).

psst. We’re always looking for people to co-curate one of our shows. Last year—the first time we opened curation up beyond board and staff—we’ve had 18 different people make a QL mix, and they’ve all said good things about the experience (here’s an example).

Enjoy our last book and our last show below. Thanks for five amazing years! Hope to see you and celebrate together soon.

sPARKLE & bLINK 58 by Quiet Lightning

Chemical Wedding on 10/19/14