Friday, October 17, 1997

Barbara La Morticella

For twelve years, BARBARA La MORTICELLA has been co-host with Walt Curtis of a weekly poetry show "Talking Earth," broadcast on KBOO radio in Portland. From the station’s control booth, she has interviewed almost every writer that ever stepped across Portland city limits. Barbara is also poetry editor of the Alliance, a progressive newspaper.

Her most recent collection, Rain on Waterless Mountain, poems about environment and love, was a finalist for the Oregon Book Award in 1997. Her work also appears in numerous literary magazines and anthologies including From Here We Speak the Oregon Literary Series anthology, and Women’s Struggles, Women’s Visions published by the Maud Kern Art Gallery in Eugene, OR. She has given hundreds of poetry readings on the east coast and in Washington, Oregon, and California. She was the editor of the Portland Poetry Festival anthology, and is co-editor of Portland Lights. In 1999, she received the very first Oregon grant given specifically for Oregon women poets.

Anndee Hochman

Anndee Hochman has written essays, articles, book reviews and short fiction for the New York Times Book Review, Ms., the Philadelphia Inquirer, Boston Review, etc. She is a former Washington Post reporter and her essays on women and family have appeared in a variety of magazines, newspapers and literary journals. Her first book Everyday Acts & Small Subversions: Women Reinventing Family, Community and Home, is a book of essays published in 1994 by Eighth Mountain Press. When writing the book, Hochman looked for women with purposely chosen, nontraditional families they sculpted to meet their own needs. The resulting book presents options for both straight and lesbian women, and the complications and freedoms those options offer.

Honesty and family are central themes in Anndee’s life and in her writing. She has elected to define her life outside society’s prescribed roles so has chosen "truth over tranquility." And because keeping secrets has too high a cost, she lives and writes the truth.

Anndee, a former resident of Portland, Oregon, lives in Philadelphia and teaches creative writing as an artist-in-residence in public schools on both coasts. She has also worked as a counselor for homeless teenagers, coordinator of a women’s writing workshop, a theater critic and a bartender.