“Porchlight is that rare kind of production that shows us, on a fundamental level, what it is to be human."

- Evan Karp, KQED

Verdi Club


Arline Klatte 415.571.0998

Beth Lisick 510.593.1077

email: arline@aklatte.com






Porchlight and Litquake present:


A Night of Stories About Advice


Monday, October 15


The Show
We could all stand to hear some wisdom and guidance right about now. The Bay Area’s long-running Porchlight storytelling series returns with "advice"-themed tales from Steve Almond, Dickson Lam, Sands Hall, Sisonke Msimang, Maggie Rowe, and Betty Charbonnet Reid Soskin, the nation's oldest park ranger.


Steve Almond is the author of eight books of fiction and nonfiction, including the New York Times bestsellers Candyfreak and Against Football. His short stories have been anthologized widely, in the Best American Short Stories, The Pushcart Prize, Best American Erotica, and Best American Mysteries series. His essays and reviews have appeared in The New York Times Magazine, Boston Globe, Washington Post, and elsewhere. He teaches at the Nieman Fellowship for Journalism at Harvard, and hosts the New York Times podcast “Dear Sugars” with fellow writer Cheryl Strayed.


Sands Hall is author of the memoir Flunk. Start, the novel Catching Heaven, a Willa Award Finalist for Best Contemporary Fiction, and a Random House Reader’s Circle selection; and a book of writing essays and exercises, Tools of the Writer’s Craft. She teaches at the Iowa Summer Writing Festival, the Community of Writers, Squaw Valley, and is a Teaching Professor at Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, PA. Hall lives in Nevada City.


Dickson Lam is author of the memoir Paper Sons, winner of the 2017 Autumn House Press Nonfiction Prize. His work has appeared in StoryQuarterly, The Kenyon Review Online, Hyphen Magazine, The Normal School, PANK, The Good Men Project, The Rumpus, and Kartika Review. He is a VONA alum and has been a resident fellow at the Millay Colony for the Arts and the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center for the Arts. He holds MFA degrees in creative writing from the University of Houston and Rutgers-Newark. Lam is an Assistant Professor of English at Contra Costa College, and lives in Oakland with his wife and daughter.


Sisonke Msimang is a South African writer, speaker and political analyst in issues related to race, gender and democracy. With her successful debut Always Another Country: A Memoir of Exile and Home, she has established herself as one of the most exciting new contemporary voices in literature. Born to parents living in political exile, Sisonke Msimang was raised in Zambia, Kenya and Canada, before going to the U.S. as an undergraduate. She has a Master’s Degree in Political Science and a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Macalester College. She has held fellowships at Yale University and the Aspen Institute and was selected as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum (WEF). She has worked for the United Nations and as an Executive Director of George Soros’ Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa. Now based in Perth, Australia, she is Program Director for the Centre for Stories, a social enterprise organization, from where she travels regularly to the U.S., South Africa and other countries. She contributes to publications such as The New York Times, The Guardian and Huffington Post, and has over 20,000 followers on Twitter (@Sisonkemsimang). Her TED Talk "If a story moves you, act on it" has been viewed over a million times.


For the last 15 years, Maggie Rowe has performed in and produced the Comedy Central stage show sitnspin, Los Angeles’ longest-running spoken word, having taken over the reigns from creator Jill Soloway in 2002. She has written for Arrested Development and Flaked for Netflix. She directed and co-wrote the screenplay for the New Age religious mockumentary Bright Day, and is creator of the theatrical satires "Hollywood Hellhouse" and "Hollywood Purity Ball." She is author of Sin Bravely: A Memoir of Spiritual Disobedience, and lives in Los Angeles with her husband, writer Jim Vallely.


Betty Charbonnet Reid Soskin is the oldest park ranger with National Park Service, and author of the recently published Sign My Name to Freedom: A Memoir of a Pioneering Life. Her remarkable life spans nearly ten decades and has included being an author, composer and singer, social and political activist, entrepreneur, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, historian, blogger, and public speaker. Betty was instrumental in the establishment of the Rosie the Riveter/World War II Home Front National Historical Park in Richmond, California. She was later hired to work at the Rosie the Riveter Park, where she works today.



hosted by Arline Klatte and Beth Lisick

music by Marc Capelle

Swedish American Hall

2174 Market St., SF


$20 advance / $25 door


Tickets from Eventbrite