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Santa Monica College Presents
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Santa Monica Review Spring 2023 Launch Party

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Santa Monica College is pleased to announce the release of the spring 2023 issue of Santa Monica Review, SMC’s esteemed national literary arts journal. Published twice yearly, the Review showcases the work of established authors alongside emerging writers, with a focus on narratives of the West Coast. The journal is the only nationally distributed literary magazine published by a U.S. community college.

To celebrate, an issue launch party featuring Review author readings will be held at Santa Monica College. The celebration — to be introduced by Review editor and Emcee Andrew Tonkovich — features a special welcome from new Los Angeles Review of Books editor-in-chief Michelle Chihara and readings by Alan Martín Nava Sosa, Barrington Smith-Seetachitt, Gregory Tower, and Kristen Leigh Schwarz.

The spring 2023 issue — edited by Andrew Tonkovich, also host of the weekly show Bibliocracy Radio on KPFK (90.7 FM) — celebrates the journal’s 35th year of publication. The issue includes 14 short stories and three essays, many exploring memory, survival, and mythos. The issue’s cover art is by legendary graphic artist Gronk.

“This issue is a singularly hybrid collection, where readers may wonder or marvel at the elegantly contrived boundaries of fiction and nonfiction. There is so much empathetic questioning and joyful demand for interrogation,” says editor Tonkovich. “And a cover by an internationally acclaimed visual artist, too!”

Work from first-time contributors makes up more than half the issue. SoCal concert musician Judith Aller shares a gorgeous dream elegy about her real-life violin teacher, Jascha Heifetz. Gregory Tower pays comic meta-homage to writer Joy Williams. Allan Martín Nava Sosa explores despair and vulnerability in crisis and survival. Screenwriter Barrington Smith-Seetachitt takes apart the Red Riding Hood story, making it her own, and a revisionist allegory for all. Maggie Love shares a chapter of awakening and violence from a coming-of-age novel about girlhood. Shelby Kinney-Lang explores parental love and loss with precision and a stubborn insistence on imagination. Matthew Pitt delivers a painfully welcome satire of corporate media co-optation. Perry Genovesi fictionalizes Black Lives Matter activism in a story about moral and political choices with neighborhood and family consequences.

The issue celebrates writing from seven returning SMR contributors. Dylan Landis (Normal People Don’t Live Like This) portrays the dilemma of a domestic caregiver. Kareem Tayyar (The Prince of Orange County) offers a story of a teacher discovering a truly remarkable student. Jeffrey Moskowitz rolls out another chapter from Waves of Grain,his Rosemead, CA-based novel-in-progressLeslie Daniels (Cleaning Nabokov’s House) considers revenge and reconciliation, hilariously.

Poet and essayist Christopher Buckley (The Consolations of Science and Philosophy) offers an unlikely, if necessarily hopeful, take on chance. Kristen Leigh Schwarz goes full-earthquake in a you-can’t-go-home-again short story about love and isolation in the Valley. Peter LaSalle (Sleeping Mask) produces a tour de force meditation on a life lived, dreamed, and inspired by a famous painting of Ophelia, and Dwight Yates (Bring Everybody) constructs a memoir essay about love, correspondence, and wordplay.

“This issue is a wonderful puzzle,” says Tonkovich, “displaying a diverse line-up of writers and their kaleidoscopic worldviews. I am so proud that Santa Monica Review can feature multiform work that challenges, engages, and affirms so many pieces of our collective experience.”

The party — Santa Monica Review Presents…” — will be held from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. on Sunday, April 2, in The Edye at the SMC Performing Arts Center, 1310 11th Street (at Santa Monica Boulevard), Santa Monica.

Tickets for the launch party are available through Brownpapertickets.com. Refreshments will be served. Abundant free parking available on premises. Seating is on a first-arrival basis.