Back to All Events

6 Nomadic Authors of 5 of the Fall Nomadic Chapbooks.

  • Dimond Branch Library 3565 Fruitvale Avenue Oakland, CA, 94602 United States (map)

Rebekah Eppley & Maria del Carmen Cortez, Purepero Stories
Philip Harris, The Flowers in my Mother's Name
Ayodele Nzinga, The Horse Eaters
René Vaz, The Planet of the Dead
Norma Smith, Home Remedy

Hosted by Natasha Dennerstein


Reader Bios:

Rebekah Eppley holds a Master’s of Library and Information Science from San Jose State University, a Master’s in Creative Writing from San Francisco State University and a BFA in Writing, Literature & Publishing from Emerson College. She published a chapter in an oral history collection, Nine Lives, Uncovering the Wealth of Life Stories Within our Nursing Homes and her fiction and poetry have appeared in magazines such as the Santa Clara Review, Watchword Press and Lodestar Quarterly. She lives in Oakland with her wife, Carmen Cortez, and works as a librarian at the Dimond Branch of the Oakland Public Library. She thinks being a librarian is the best job in the world.

Maria del Carmen Cortez (Carmen) is an Herbalist, Permaculturalist and Landscape Designer. Her passions are gardening, growing her own medicine, and creating art. She was born in Purepero, in the state of Michoacan, Mexico with an extended family of storytellers who also instilled in her a love of plant medicine. She grew up as a migrant farm worker in the San Joaquin Valley and currently lives in Oakland.

Philip Harris was born in Hollywood, California. In Spring, 2017, he received his MFA in Fiction from San Francisco State University. He currently lives in West Oakland, where he tells stories through his words, illustrations, and photographs, all while continuing his search for the perfect burrito. His work has appeared in Vogue UK, The Los Angeles Review, The Atticus Review, The Tusk, and Transfer. Philip is also the co-host and co-creator of the weekly podcast Queers in Space. Find him at

Ayodele Nzinga says: When I was little my mother asked me what I wanted to be and then told me that it was impossible. She knew there was a story already written for me. I didn’t like that story. I did not listen to it, so it never had a chance to limit me, I am the horse eater’s child, with eyes for tomorrow. I write my reality. I am in love with the power of words and the way they hide their role in creating reality. Strung together, words create narratives – whole worlds live inside the words, multiverses reside within the stories they compose. I am a writer drunk off story painting my world with words as the medium. I make theater and plot the trajectory of tomorrow from West Oakland CA, the center of my artistic universe, where I live with a tribe of unlikely magicians who only go forward.

René Vaz is a Bay Area writer. He curates the reading series Voz Sin Tinta and Uptown Fridays. He is a lecturer at San Francisco State University for the Latino Studies department and is committed to providing space for POC/ marginalized voices. He holds an M.A. and M.F.A. in English and Creative Writing from San Francisco State University. 

Norma Smith has led lives as a journalist, as a translator/interpreter, as a social researcher, educator, editor, and writing coach. She spent many years working in hospitals, including some years as a union steward. Norma has been a community activist and organizer since she was a teenager, principally in the arena of anti-racism and smashing white supremacy. She has coordinated conferences, panels, events, and study groups. Norma has been writing poetry and stories since about the time she learned to read, more than sixty years ago. Her writing has been published in literary, political, and academic journals. She is interested in social power dynamics. Including love.