Saturday, June 29th, 2013

An unconventional man

Locals knew him as a prolific playwright, but Philip Slater was a best-selling author, a pioneer in psychedelic-drug therapy, a leading thinker of post-'60s America and a man who lived his values

Tuesday, March 26th, 2013

Poet Patrice Vecchione finds reconciliation with the ghost of her mother in her new book of poems ‘The Knot Untied’

By WALLACE BAINE One of the major turning points of Patrice Vecchione’s creative life looked, from the outside, like any other day. The well-known poet and teacher was walking along a familiar wooded trail near her home...

Friday, March 15th, 2013

Writing coach and author Constance Hale makes the case that the secret to clear, vivid and lively writing is in the verbs

By WALLACE BAINE It was Adam in the Garden of Eden who invented the noun. On the sixth day of Creation, the Bible tells us, Adam traipsed around the Garden naming the animals – elephant, giraffe, wildebeest,...

Tuesday, March 5th, 2013

Dorothea Lange’s famous photograph inspires novelist Marisa Silver to re-imagine history in her new novel ‘Mary Coin’

{ MARCH 13, 7:30 p.m. Capitola Book Café, 1475 41st Ave., Capitola. Free. Details: www.capitolabookcafe. } By WALLACE BAINE What’s the most famous photograph of the 20th century? There are many candidates – Earth as seen from...

Thursday, February 14th, 2013

The late Don Rothman was an evangelist for the power of writing to transform the mind and the soul

{ FEB. 19 7 p.m. Bookshop Santa Cruz, 1520 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz. Free. Details: or } By WALLACE BAINE If you knew Don Rothman and you needed to find him on any given day,...

Tuesday, February 12th, 2013

With his new novel ‘Flimsy Little Plastic Miracles,’ Ron Currie Jr. dances merrily on the line between autobiography and fantasy

By WALLACE BAINE It is a time-honored convention in the book business to include on the cover of every fiction title the words “A Novel.” It’s a truth-in-labeling exercise for the reader who might mistake “Life of...

Monday, February 11th, 2013

Christa Martin: C&C Press and the art of the book; the calligraphy of Carl Rohrs; Rachel Riot’s Manic Designs; the Harrisons’ art of geography

If you’re unfamiliar with book art, do yourself a favor and check out The images are nothing short of striking, especially the collection of three-dimensional poems by the beloved late Santa Cruz poet Morton Marcus. Credit...

Saturday, January 26th, 2013

My misbegotten attempt at replacing the late great Dear Abby

By WALLACE BAINE We here in the newspaper business are all wearing black armbands in memory of Dear Abby, who along with her identical twin sister Ann Landers, formed a kind of two-headed Platonic ideal of the...

Wednesday, January 23rd, 2013

Christa Martin: The ‘Emotion Stones’ of Marlies Hoevers

By CHRISTA MARTIN At Christmastime, I swung by Stripe MEN in downtown Santa Cruz to pick up some goodies for my husband’s stocking. I was distracted from the men’s goods when I caught a glimpse at the...

Wednesday, January 16th, 2013

The writer/editor dance

In the new book ‘Good Prose,’ award-winning writer Tracy Kidder and his long-time editor Richard Todd figure out the elements of fine nonfiction writing { JAN. 24 7 p.m. Bookshop Santa Cruz, 1520 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz....