News From the L.Á. Literary Community

News From the L.Á. Literary Community

By Brian Dunlap

FlowerSong Press is quietly building an impressive roster of writers. Last December, they published L.Á. poet, Matt Sedillo’s poetry collection Mowing Leaves of Grass, about the history, struggle, tragedy, anger, joy, despair, possibility and faith in the struggles of Chicanx’s, and working class people in general, to overcome the forces of capitalism and racism. Earlier this year they published The Most Spectacular Mistake by Orange County native Anatalia Vallez. Her debut collection is a love story to herself, her roots, and the sacred ritual of chanting the past to heal into the present. Since then, other L.Á. poets such as Angelina Sáenz, Luvette Resto, Iris de Anda, Peter J. Harris, and Matt Sedillo, have announced their next books will be published by FlowerSong in the upcoming year.

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Dryland Expands Its Mission

Dryland Expands Its Mission

By Brian Dunlap

It’s been five years since “Dryland: A Literary Journal Born in South Central Los Angeles,” published its first issue. Since Founding Editor-in-Chief, Viva Padilla, set out to publish “the best poetry, fiction, and nonfiction of the Los Angeles literary underground, and to prioritizing Black and POC artists, writers, and poets,” as it states on the journal’s website.

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Like Bullets For Fascists: Q+A with Political Poet Matt Sedillo

By Viva Padilla
FROM: Dryland

20200613_171648Chicano revolutionary poet Matt Sedillo met up with Viva Padilla (proper masks were worn) in El Sereno this past weekend to catch up and talk about his newest poetry collection Mowing Leaves of Grass (published by FlowerSong Press). During this interview they drove around the Eastside. They came upon a squeaky clean Black Lives Matter/Defund the Police protest in Pasadena, boarded up and tagged “R.I.P. George Floyd” storefronts in the belly of high gentrification in Highland Park, and the homeless encampment at the Veteran’s Monument in El Sereno–a proper backdrop for the political insight Sedillo delivers like a gun-slinger in his book where American institutions rooted in white supremacy are dragged out by the hair and left on the side of the road to rot.

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Two Interviews With Viva Padilla and Nikolia Garcia of Dryland: A Literary Journal Based in South Central Los Angeles

By Brian Dunlap

UntitledIn the last two weeks, local literary journal Dryland: A Literary Journal Based in South Central Los Angeles, has been featured on the Podcasts’ Órale Boyle Heights ep 32: Dryland and The Badass Bookworm Podcast. Dryland was founded 5 years ago in 2015 by South Central native Viva Padilla and now includes South Central native and Compton Resident Nikolai Garcia as Assistant Editor.

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South Central L.A. Poet, Nikolai Garcia, Releases His Debut Chapbook

By Brian Dunlap

FB_IMG_1569901531792The crowd filled in late. Half way through his reading Nikolai Garcia paused to give shout-outs to friends he just noticed had arrived. To friends that he’d known for years. It was his release party for his debut chapbook “Nuclear Shadows of Palm Trees,” from L.A. literary nonprofit DSTL Arts. A collection that captures L.A. away from all the common tropes and streotypes the city is famous for. It’s his L.A.

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