Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Photos from October reading

Jason Pettus from the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography was kind enough to share his photographs from the October reading:

Katherine Scott Nelson, author of Have You Seen Me

Cynthia Barounis and Claire Leeds, authors of Light Sweet Crude

Alvin Orloff, author of Why Aren't You Smiling?

Thanks, Jason! And thanks again to our readers and audience.

Uncalled-for Chicago is taking a break until February-ish. See you in 2012!

Audio from 8.14 reading

We are pleased to announce that the audio recording of this past August's Underground reading at Woman Made Gallery, curated by Uncalled-for Readings Chicago, is now available on WBEZ's Chicago Amplified site.

This reading featured performances by Jami Sailor, Liz Mason, Dalice Malice, Robin Hustle, Mairead Case, and Marie Hunt. Enjoy!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Thursday 10/27: Orloff, Barounis, Leeds, & Nelson

Please join us for the October installment of Uncalled-for Chicago, featuring special out-of-town novelist ALVIN ORLOFF on tour promoting his new book WHY AREN'T YOU SMILING?; poets CYNTHIA BAROUNIS & CLAIRE LEEDS, whose collaborative chapbook, LIGHT SWEET CRUDE, is out now on dancing girl press; and memoir/fiction writer KATHERINE SCOTT NELSON, whose novella, HAVE YOU SEEN ME, is being published this month.

The details:

Thursday, October 27
8 - 10 p.m.
The Hive*
1902 N Milwaukee Ave, Apt 2

Please BYOB.

*The Hive is a living space as well as a performance space - I think there may be a finicky doorbell, but we'll have someone downstairs letting people in if we need to. Call me (Megan) at 703 dash 434 dash 0383 if you can't get in.


The bios:

ALVIN ORLOFF began writing in 1977 as the teenage lyricist for his best friend's now utterly forgotten punk band, The Blowdryers. He's gotten some degrees, appeared in some literary journals, blah, blah, blah. Most importantly, he is the author of three novels: I Married an Earthling, a gender and genre-bending sci-fi send up, Gutter Boys, a twisted tale of thwarted love and ghosts set in the decadent Manhattan of 1981, and his most recent, Why Aren't You Smiling? a satiric romp through the queer fringes of the early 1970s spiritual revival. He lives in San Francisco's ├╝ber-hipsterized Mission District and works in a funky, old used bookstore.

CYNTHIA BAROUNIS is a PhD candidate in English at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She is the co-author, with Claire Leeds, of the chapbook LIGHT SWEET CRUDE (dancing girl press, 2011). Her poetry has also appeared in Poetry Salzburg Review and is forthcoming in Partner Dance Press’s 21/21/Chicago anthology.

CLAIRE LEEDS lives and works on a farm in southern Wisconsin, holds a BA in Creative Writing and is currently working toward a BS in Nursing.

KATHERINE SCOTT NELSON is the author of HAVE YOU SEEN ME, a novella which will be published this month by the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography. Hir writing has also been featured on Fiction at Work and the Rumpus. Ze lives in Chicago. For more information, please visit www.katherinescottnelson.com.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Sunday 8/14: Reading for Woman Made's Underground Show

Please join us for the August installment of Uncalled-for Readings Chicago, which is designed to support Woman Made Gallery's Underground show, curated by Ruby Thorkelson in collaboration with Chicago Underground Library and Spudnik Press. The show features a slew of underground and self-published artwork and publications produced by women, queer, trans, genderqueer and gender-nonconforming writers and artists.

The reading will feature the following six writers who have been involved in underground writing and publishing, as well as music, in various capacities:

(bios below)

We'll hear readings in two sets, each of which will close with music performed by
Curiouser Jane (a.k.a. Dalice Malice) and Marie Hunt, respectively.

Sunday, August 14, 2011
2 p.m.
Woman Made Gallery
685 N. Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL

Mairead Case is a writer, editor, and critic. She is a member of the Dil Pickle Club, Non-Fiction Editor at Another Chicago Magazine, a columnist at Proximity, and Volunteer Coordinator for Louder Than a Bomb. Mairead is at work on a short story collection, supported by a CAAP grant and recently excerpted by featherproof and Vol. 1 Brooklyn. She programmed a radio show about dreams for Neighborhood Public Radio at the 2008 Whitney Biennial, and her comic about Serge Gainsbourg, drawn by David Lasky, is forthcoming in Best American Comics 2011.

Curiouser Jane (a.k.a. Dalice Malice) is a zinester, blogger, queer-poly trans grrrl, academic, writer, poet, monologist, anarchist, dreamer, catholic, roller skate loving, one-woman firing squad. She blogs at curiouserjane.tumblr.com and is a weekly contributor for Prettyqueer.com. Oh & she’s a folk singer: dalicemalice.bandcamp.com.

Marie Hunt is an Oak Park poet, singer and songwriter. She has been a featured poet on the Romantic Hours website, as well as soloist and assistant musical coordinator at Bethany Union Church in Beverly. Mrs. Hunt has also been a featured soloist in such venues as the First United Methodist Church in the Loop, the First United Methodist Church of Oak Park, and Hyde Park Union Church. She has produced five recordings under her record label Pashin Productions, and has recently released five books of poetry (a pentalogy entitled “The Palm”) from her own deLores Press. She can be seen this fall performing “Alone / Together” (along with her husband, tenor Henry Hunt) for her third company, Scavenger Hunt Productions at Woman Made Gallery.

Robin Hustle lives in Chicago. She writes and draws about sex, health, language, and public space. Her zines include Mirror Tricks, Curdled Milk, Leftovers Again?!, and Power of the Impotent. From 2007 to 2008 she co-edited The Skeleton News, a free monthly newspaper. Her drawings have been shown at Roots and Culture and Gallery 400, and she has presented slide shows and lectures about prostitution across the country. She is currently working on a solo band called Landscaping and a nursing degree.

Liz Mason has been self-publishing zines for fourteen years. Her work has been printed in such publications as The Chicago Tribune, Punk Planet
, Venus,Lumpen and The Zine Yearbook. She has appeared on a reality show to provide instruction on publishing zines, which NBC executives referred to as “pamphlets” as if they were Marxist propaganda. Her most recent published work is Caboose #7: Britney Spears 101, which focuses on her experience undergoing treatment for Hodgkin's Lymphoma cancer, as seen through the lens of consumerism, celebrity obsession and public scrutiny. She also has a blog called Liz’s Masonic Lodge, and you should totally, totally, totally, totally visit it by clicking on this very sentence.

Jami Sailor wants to make a split zine with you. Her current projects include Your Secretary and Archiving the Underground (with Jenna Brager). Her long running zine, No Better Voice, was featured in Alison Piepmeier's Girl Zines: Making Media, Doing Feminism.

Monday, June 13, 2011

News and Updates

Hi! Welcome back! We've been busy. So have you. Here's the latest on Uncalled-for Readings Chicago.

First, the fabulous Tim Jones-Yelvington has decided to take a break from working on this project, bequeathing the series in the meantime to me (this is Megan). Tim may guest-curate an event here or there, but for now, I'm flying solo.

Second, we've got two really terrific readings coming up in 2011:
  • Save the date! Sunday, August 14th at 2 pm at Woman Made Gallery: Uncalled-for is coordinating a reading in conjunction with Woman Made's "Underground" show, curated by Ruby Thorkelson. So far we've got Liz Mason (Caboose, Punk Planet, Lumpen), Jami Sailor (Your Secretary, No Better Voice, Archiving the Underground), Robin Hustle (Mirror Tricks, Curdled Milk, The Skeleton News), and Mairead Case (Punk Planet, AREA, Proximity, the2ndHAND) on board, with a few other folks in the works.
  • In late October, Alvin Orloff will be in town to read from his new novel. Also reading will be fiction/memoir writer Katherine Scott Nelson and poets Cynthia Barounis & Claire Leeds (check out their collaborative chapbook Light Sweet Crude, out now on Dancing Girl Press). More details TBD.
More soon on both of these events - please check back in a few weeks.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Monday 4/2/2011: Cris Mazza and Lidia Yuknavitch

Please join us for the April installment of Uncalled-for Chicago, featuring the terrific LIDIA YUKNAVITCH promoting her new book, a memoir called THE CHRONOLOGY OF WATER (Hawthorne Books); and Chicago's own CRIS MAZZA, reading from her new novel VARIOUS MEN WHO KNEW US AS GIRLS (Emergency Press).

Monday, April 4, 2011
6-8 p.m.
Barbara's Bookstore
1218 S Halsted St
Chicago, IL

Lidia Yuknavitch is the author of the new memoir The Chronology of Water from Hawthorne Books, as well as three books of short stories and a forthcoming novel. Her stories have appeared in Ms., The Iowa Review, Zyzzyva, Exquisite Corpse, Another Chicago Magazine, as well as in several national anthologies. She has twice been a finalist for the Oregon Book Award, and is the editor of Chiasmus Press. Her essay "About a Boob, or the Hermeneutics of a Woman's Body" was just awarded a "Best of the Web" essay award. She lives with her husband Andy and her son Miles in Portlandia.

Cris Mazza has authored sixteen books, most recently Various Men Who Knew Us as Girls, a novel. Her other fiction titles include Waterbaby, Trickle-Down Timeline, and the critically notable Is It Sexual Harassment Yet? In 1995-1996, Mazza was co-editor for the original Chick-Lit anthologies: Chick-Lit: Postfeminist Fiction, and Chick-Lit 2: No Chick Vics. In 2006, her essay "Who's Laughing Now: Chick Lit and the Perversion of a Genre," explaining the co-opting and corrosion of the title, appeared in Poets & Writers Magazine and Chick Lit: The New Woman's Fiction (Routledge). In addition to fiction, Mazza also has published a memoir, Indigenous: Growing Up Californian. A native of Southern California, Mazza grew up in San Diego County. She currently lives 50 miles west of Chicago and is a professor in the Program for Writers at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Roxane Gay reviews Lidia Yuknavitch's THE CHRONOLOGY OF WATER at HTMLGiant.

Davis Schneiderman interviews Cris Mazza about VARIOUS MEN WHO KNEW US AS GIRLS at Big Other.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Sat 2/26/2011: MILDRED PIERCE Chicago release party

The next Uncalled-for Chicago is doubling as the release party for MILDRED PIERCE ISSUE #4, "Comedy and the Grotesque" .... please join us in celebrating at

Quimby's Bookstore (1854 W. North Ave) ...

on SATURDAY, February 26th, 2011 at 7 pm.

Mildred Pierce is a (maga)zine, cofounded in 2005 by John Bylander and Uncalled-for Chicago co-host Megan Milks and coedited by the same. It is a somewhat annual zine dealing in art, writing and countercultural cultural criticism. This issue features, along with the artists and writers listed below, Marc Baez, John Berndt, Sabrina Chap, Max Eisenberg, Eamon Espey, Joyce Kuechler, Leeyanne Moore, Jimmy Joe Roche, Sean Samoheyl, Pippi Zornoza, and others. The cover is designed and screenprinted by Edie Fake.

Providing readings and performances at the Chicago release party are contributors James Tadd Adcox, Edie Fake, Jim Joyce, Vicky Lim, Ed Choy Moorman, and Ellen Nielsen!!!!!

Wine and refreshments plus limited-edition zines! HOLY COW see you there.


James Tadd Adcox is editor-in-chief of Artifice Magazine. He has had fiction published in TriQuarterly, Kill Author, Another Chicago Magazine, and Mid-American Review, among other journals.

Edie Fake is the author of Gaylord Phoenix, now available as a collection from Secret Acres. He’s received a Critical Fierceness Grant for queer art and was one of the first recipients of Printed Matter’s Awards for Artists. His drawings have been included in Hot and Cold, Creative Time Comics, and LTTR. Currently, he lives in Chicago where he works as a minicomics sommelier for Quimby’s Books.

Jim Joyce graduated from St. Rita High School in 2004. His zine, Or Let It Sink, explores desire, failure, and personal mythology. Jim works in the education field and enjoys keeping a journal.

Vicky Lim has a zine (Dear Jaguar) and a blog (Personal Statements) and lives in Chicago.

Ed Choy Moorman is a New Jersey-raised, Minneapolis College of Art and Design-schooled, Chicago-based cartoonist. He is the editor and publisher of the 2009 Xeric Award-winning Ghost Comics anthology from Bare Bones Press. (http://edsdeadbody.com/ + http://edchoymoorman.wordpress.com/)

Ellen Nielsen is an interdisciplinary artist whose body of work includes writing, performance, objects, video, and graphic design. She received her BFA from Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, Maryland and is currently pursuing her MFA in Fiber and Material Studies at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.