Sunday, November 29, 2009

Artivists unite!

Below is an important message from a good friend in Mexico City. It is one of many events being created to commemorate the long, ongoing violence against women in Juarez. The plight of the women of Juarez has been largely overlooked, first, due to inefficiency and corruption. Now, due to the ever rising drug war on the border which seems to be considered more sexy and salacious than the lives of missing women. It is a subject that disturbs me, as it should all people who seek truth and justice.

Read the call for "artivists" below and see if you can help. If not, please help spread the word.

The message follows:

Dear Friends,

In March 2010, there will be a series of events in Mexico City, Mexico, Los Angeles, California, and other cities, meant to be a ritual of ritual of mourning for the femicides in Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua: Art as a pathway of opposition and resistance to violence.

I invite you to be part of this initiative of Artivism, for which I am sending the link to our blog, where you will find the Call for Entries. This invitation is open to all citizens, organizations and artists.

The events in March will include awareness raising creative workshops, intervention actions, plays and performances and the exhibition of the art work received through the call for entries and the resulting work form the workshops.

For those who do not live in Mexico City or Los Angeles metropolitan areas, we invite you to organize your own community activity during the same month of March, 2010. It could be an Art Exhibit, a book discussion, a movie screening, a poetry reading, etc. We ask you to include the original title of this event A Prayer for Juarez, and to send us your schedule, and later on, photos and documentation, to be included in the blog.

To include your event, or for any kind of issue related, please write to us:


Thank you,

Friday, November 20, 2009

De Robertis book is an Oprah Pick!

Man, I love it when good things happen to great people!

Carolina De Robertis's The Invisible Mountain was recently selected as one of "10 Terrific Reads in 2009" by O, The Oprah Magazine. ¡Orale!

I met Carolina at this year's Texas Book Festival, seeking her out at the suggestion of my fellow Macondistas and writing allies, Liliana Valenzuela and Vicente Lozano. Unlike me, they had the pleasure of meeting Carolina at Macondo (I didn't go this year), but I caught up with her at the cocktail party Nora Comstock of Las Comadres organized for Latin@ writers during the TBF (see photos at my FaceBook fansite). As promised, Carolina was as gracious and lovely as Lili and Chente said she would be. The next day, The Invisible Mountain was among my book festival purchases and I added it to the teetering pile of books to devour over the holiday break.

I am delighted for Carolina and I hope she's enjoying this boost. As I've said elsewhere, it couldn't have happened to a nicer person. Felicidades Carolina!

Cover for the second book in the Quinceañera Club series

I stumbled upon it while on I'm still not fond of the title but I like the image of the blanket fluttering in the breeze.

What do you think?

Monday, November 2, 2009

Scenes from the Texas Book Festival, 2009

Although I met many awesome writers (Lucha Corpi, Carolina De Robertis, C.M. Mayo, y el mero, mero, Luis Alberto Urrea) and had the pleasure of sitting in on a dynamic panel, the highlight of the Texas Book Festival for me was meeting these chicanitas from South Texas.

After our panel, "Mama Dramas," my colleagues and I went to the Author's Tent to greet our adoring fans. Okay, our lines weren't as long as they were for Richard Russo across the tent from us, but it was a lovely morning, and we were surrounded by books and readers! As our time was up, we began to say our goodbyes when this group of chicanitas came up. The leader of the group, Yanellie (pictured holding the book) stepped forward and asked sweetly, "Excuse me Miss. Do you know where we can find Belinda Acosta?" When I responded that I was she, her eyes widened. She had read Damas, Dramas, and Ana Ruiz and loved it. She had checked it out from her high school library (librarians rule!) and was looking forward to getting her own autographed copy at the festival. She seemed crestfallen that my autograph time was up. So, what else was there to do but walk with Yanellie and the girls to the booksellers tent so she could get her book? After which, I signed it and we took this picture. The girls were delightful, eager young women, and readers! I wish you could see their T-shirts which read: "I [heart] reading." Eso!

Pictured from left to right: Nohemi, me, Yanellie, and Melissa from Palm View High in Palm View, Texas.

For more photos from this year's Texas Book Festival, please visit my FaceBook Fan page.