Thursday, January 9, 2014

Monica Devine: The Living Room

Pay no attention to those shaking knees behind the podium; take no notice of those quivering hands cradling a fresh batch of new and expanded poems. When midnight strikes, I will have raised my glass to all new endeavors, to every chalk-dusted slate wiped clean, and welcomed to two thousand and fourteen the newest addition to Anchorage’s hip and arty bedroom community: The Living Room; Eagle River Writers Read.

Singer songwriter, Emmylou Harris said something to the effect of this: the best of times are when we’re just hanging out in the living room, messing around, talking, playing guitars and singing. With ease and comfort and familiarity. With our next-door neighbors, our fishing buddies, our friends who live just down the road from here. 

See? This is what you get to do too, only in the big back room at Jitters that we will simulate as a living room, where you can come and read your stuff (we know what you’ve been doing holed up all winter, keyboards a’ clackin’). All genres are welcome: poetry, prose, spoken word, maybe a Slam or two. Heck, you can even sing if you want to…a capella, that is.

Or if you’re super shy, you can just come and listen and munch on our terrific batch of cookies to go along with our fresh batch of new and expanded poems.

Details. Details. The Living Room: Eagle River Writers Read is a monthly reading event launching Jan. 10 at Jitters in Eagle River, from 7-9 pm. Every 2nd Friday night, from Sept. through May (we take summers off to fish like every true Alaskan) we’ll gather in the big back room at Jitters and share our creative energies with anyone who’ll listen.

Culture is right here, in our own backyards. Tell us your stories of heartbreak, motherhood, betrayal, winging it, the greatest catch, the big divorce, rights of passage, what got swept under the rug (huh?). Whatever topic moves you. Share your voice.  Contribute to the making of community. Our community defines our culture…and we are the ones who have to get out there and define it for ourselves.

If you live in the Eagle River, Chugiak, Peter’s Creek radius, sign up to read by going to our FB page, or emailing  We’ve got first dibs, but when the schedule’s not full, we’ll branch out to Anchorage-ites and Valley girls and boys who’d love to come to town and share their lyrical wares.

We extend a most gracious thanks to Alaska Center for the Book, who has generously helped fund the program. You have no idea how incredibly loopy you have made us feel. We bow to you!

Monica Devine writes across genres, and has works of traditionally published poetry, children’s books and literary prose. She is a co-founder of The Living Room: Eagle River Writers Read, along with a vibrant group of artist-scribes: Susan Sommer, Kellie Doherty and Judith Lindenfelser


Lynn Lovegreen said...

Sounds cool--have fun with it, Monica!

Monica Devine said...

How about a romantic excerpt, Lynn? We'd love to hear from you.

Tele said...

What a great idea, Monica! Sounds like such an ideal intro for folks to dip their feet into sharing this winter's work. Good on you and your cohorts for making it happen - community is everything!

Monica Devine said... great to meet you; now I will be following your most adventurous life. The Living Room was a smash...over 50 people showed up to listen...we are creating our own mythology!