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The Hydra Show #1: Science, Flash, and Experimental Fiction

  • Woods Bar & Brewery 1701 Telegraph Avenue Oakland, CA 94611 (map)

Join us for the Association of Black and Brown Writers' (Nomadic Press') first-ever experimental, flash, and science fiction reading series at the beautiful Woods Bar & Brewery on 17th and Telegraph in Uptown Oakland. Featuring Elwin Michael Cotman, Wendy Trevino, and five (5) open mic slots! Emceed by Elwin Michael Cotman and Vernon Keeve III. Music by the ever-so-talented Oakland Future Trio.

Donations will be called for throughout the night, but no one will be turned away for lack of funds.


At one time it was believed that Hercules downed the six-headed beast, discovering in the process that the removal of one head meant that two would grow in its place. It was only with help from Iolaus that the death of the beast was exposed in the marrying of decapitation and cauterization, so that more heads could not sprout. Hercules buried the taproot of the beast under a huge rock, known today as Mount Diablo.

For 27 centuries, the Hydra has remained dormant, until the 1940s when copious amounts of poetry began to stir the sleeping heart of the behemoth, and slowly but surely the heads of the beast began to grow back despite the sealed wounds.

Octavia Butler, Samuel R. Delaney, and Ursula K. Le Guin were knighted as keepers of the beast, but the trio’s powers were greatly weakened with the passing of Octavia.

Ursula recently said, “with the popularity of poetry readings in the Bay Area the heads of the beast are growing back at an alarming rate, and the only thing that will slow down the beast is the inclusion of more fiction in the literary scene. We need stories of mythical beasts stronger than the Hydra. We need stories of worlds that is not the world it remembers, or maybe stories of lands the Hydra knows all too well. We need stories of heroes that can destroy it, and villians greater than it. We need experimental stories, we need short stories, we need fiction. Fiction is the only thing that will down the beast for once and for all. Counteract the poetry that is making the beast grow, and do it now.”

The Setup

With all that being said, we would like to invite you all to The Association of Black and Brown Writers' (Nomadic Press') The Hydra: A Reading Series of Experimental, Flash, and Science Fiction. This event will come to you on the last Tuesday of every month at Woods Bar & Brewery in Uptown Oakland.

Hydra will always have a featured reader who writes within the genre of fiction, as well as, an Outsider of the Month. The Outsider of the Month is someone who usually writes what cannot be classified as fiction, but who will be asked to write a piece of fiction and share it with the audience. We’ve learned that this sacrifice is one that slows down the growth of the heads the most.

There will also 5 slots available for sacrificial (open-mic) readings (4 minutes per reading), so come out to listen, to share, to join us in ceremony.

The Who

Join hosts, Elwin Michael Cotman and Vernon Keeve III, for our inaugural reading with featured readings from one of the series’ own hosts, Elwin Michael Cotman. As well as works from April’s Outsider of the Month, Wendy Trevino.

This series that is guaranteeed to bring whimsy, inspiration, and absurdity. Not to mention we’re saving the planet from annihilation by Hydra.

Wendy Trevino was born & raised in the Rio Grande Valley of South Texas. She now lives and works in San Francisco. Her chapbook 128-131 was published by Perfect Lovers Press in 2013. Krupskaya Books will publish her chapbook Cruel Work in 2016. Her poems have appeared in various print and online journals, including Abraham Lincoln, Armed Cell, the Capilano Review, LIES, Macaroni Necklace, Mondo Bummer, ELDERLY and Open House. Not just her thoughts on writing can be found here:

PSA: This series is not affiliated with H.Y.D.R.A. the criminal organization.