My BronxNet Interview with Rhina Valentin and More

The lovely Rhina Valentin invited me to speak about my work as a writer and editor on her BronxNet show “Open”. She surprised me by going ALL the way back, to the roots of it all. Wonderful lady, wonderful energy, wonderful show and crew. Make sure to check her show out!

Plus, tonight we will be at Chips N Salsa in Manhattan to celebrate the e-book release for Odilia Rivera Santos’ “Love When You Say Love”, a fantastic collection of Afro-Puerto Rican feminist poetry. 43 W 46th St, upstairs. 5-8pm.

BRONXNET

 

 

 

 

 

Love When You Say Love, the Poetry E-book by Odilia Rivera Santos, is Out Now

Marlena Fitzpatrick and I–Editorial Trance–are thrilled to unveil Odilia Rivera Santos’ poetry e-book Love When You Say Love, dozens of free verse and haiku pieces that address relationships, philosophy, culture, race, gender and, of course, love. All of this through a cultivated and streetwise Afro-Puerto Rican Latina lens, from an artist born in Arecibo, Puerto Rico, and raised in the Bronx.

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Odilia’s work masterfully addresses each facet of her identity and life experience with the brutal honesty and music of a true literary artist. Words are Odilia’s clay, paint, ink, musical instruments, and her compositions made with them transform her poems into memoir-like vignettes of the contemporary artist’s outer and inner lives. We hope this is just the beginning of our relationship with her.

For she, like we, is not afraid to stand on her own.

Click here for Kindle.

Click here for Nook.

(I-Book still pending.)

New Beginnings at the Bronx Writers Center

Great news! – I’ve just accepted the position of Director of the Bronx Writers Center and look forward to continuing and developing all the wonderful projects and objectives put in place by my predecessor Maria Romano, as well as initiating new ones in the near future. Below is the official press release that went out today.

I’ll write more about this soon, but in the meantime there’s a lot of work to be done! Here I go…

Charlie

01/08/2014 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

CharlieRiver

Bronx Writers Center Announces Author, Publisher, and Festival Organizer Charlie Vázquez As New Director

(Bronx, NY) The Bronx Writers Center (BWC) has announced that Charlie Vázquez—author, editor, publisher, and the New York organizer for Puerto Rico’s Festival de la Palabra literary celebration—has accepted the position as its new director. BWC serves the borough with workshops, consultations, book presentations, and the Bronx Recognizes Its Own (BRIO) Awards, announced each June. The BWC is the literary wing of the Bronx Council on the Arts.

“I’m thrilled to bring all of my experience to the Bronx Writers Center and to the Bronx itself because it inspires me more than any other place in the world—it’s where I was born and raised. I feel honored and excited to serve my people, to help launch new and serious writers of fiction and poetry,” says Vázquez.

Charlie Vázquez will lead a free two-hour workshop—“Activating Scenes”—on Monday, January 13, at the Bronx Council on the Arts’ future home at 2700 E Tremont Avenue near Westchester Square. Info: www.bronxarts.org Contact: bronxwriters@bronxarts.org or 718-931-9500 (x21)

Contact: Phil Cardone

718-931-9500 X 33

The Bronx Writers Center supports and develops the appetite for writing and reading in the Bronx, and searches for and promotes new community voices and audiences via literary and literacy programs. The Bronx Council on the Arts is celebrating 50 years as a private, non-profit membership organization that is the official cultural agency of Bronx County. Recognized nationally as a leading arts service organization in providing cultural services and arts programs, BCA serves a multicultural constituency of almost 1.4 million residents. BCA provides an array of services to 5,000 artists and more than 250 arts and community-based organizations.

The Bronx Writers Center, a program of the Bronx Council on the Arts, is supported by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, Robert A. Bowne Foundation, the New York State Council on the Arts’ Literature Program, NYC Council Member James Vacca,  New York City Department of Youth and Community Development, Arts Midwest, the Scherman Foundation, the Lambent Foundation, NYC Department of Small Business Services/Avenue NYC and the Westchester Square Branch of the New York Public Library.

Demystifying a Diva: The Truth Behind the Myth of La Lupe

LUPECOVERWEB

Demystifying a Diva: The Truth Behind the Myth of La Lupe is Editorial Trance’s first official e-book release. We’re extremely excited to have worked with the sensational Latin entertainment journalist and biographer Juan Moreno-Velazquez for this e-book title, which was originally published in Spanish by Editorial Norma in Puerto Rico in 2003.

People kept demanding an English version and we are thrilled to announce that this detective-like investigation into one of Latin music’s most controversial legends is now available in English with a full artist discography, featured photo credits, and interviews with some of the biggest names in New York City Latin music entertainment, regarding the life of this enduring enigma–from her sudden rise, to her brilliant peak, to her tragic fall.

This e-book is available now online:

To purchase for Kindle, click here.

To purchase for Nook, click here.

To purchase for iBOOK , click here.

Below are the official press releases in English and Spanish (along with web and high-res media files)

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-FOR IMMEDIATE MEDIA RELEASE-

11/8/2013

Editorial Trance

2300 5th Ave

NY, NY10037

Contact: Marlena Fitzpatrick

917-565-6983

Editorial Trance Launches the English-Language Biography, Demystifying a Diva: The Truth Behind the Myth of La Lupe

New York, NY – Acclaimed Latin entertainment journalist and author Juan Moreno-Velázquez originally published the revealing salsa biography Demystifying a Diva: The Truth Behind the Myth of La Lupe in Spanish, but demand for an English version prompted Editorial Trance—a new bilingual Latino digital publishing platform—to finally publish it as an e-book (in English) for the iBOOK, Kindle, and Nook platforms.

“Musicals and a movie project in the works…the enigmatic La Lupe endures to this day as any brilliant artist should. She was a very independent woman and much of her legacy has been scarred by slanderous, vicious rumors. Juan interviewed the people closest to her—her children, her best friend from childhood, and her salsa musical collaborators, even her lovers. If anything this biography restores to her much of the respect and dignity she was denied while she was alive, and expertly demystifies her mythical demonic side,” says editor and Editorial Trance CCO Charlie Vázquez.

“We need more daring female voices in literature, in art, in music, in politics and in life. Juan Moreno-Velázquez brilliantly captures La Lupe’s feminist struggles in the New York salsa movement in this biography, finally giving her the justice she deserves. La Lupe broke many barriers for Latinas like myself, inspiring us to be who we want to be in spite of controversy,” adds Editorial Trance CEO Marlena Fitzpatrick.

Juan Moreno-Velázquez will present the book next Friday, November 15th at 7:00 pm at Camaradas El Barrio, in New York City.

Editorial Trance is a bilingual digital publishing company (created in 2013 by Marlena Fitzpatrick and Charlie Vázquez) that seeks to expand the Latino presence in electronic publishing by producing compelling, high-quality digital books with historical and pop cultural appeal.

For more information visit www.editorialtrance.com

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-PARA PUBLICACION INMEDIATA-                                                     11/08/2013

Editorial Trance

2300 5th Ave

NY, NY10037

Contact: Marlena Fitzpatrick

917-565-6983

Editorial Trance publica biografia de La Lupe en inglés: Demystifying a Diva: The Truth Behind the Myth of La Lupe

Nueva York, NY – El aclamado autor y periodista de entretenimiento latino, Juan Moreno-Velázquez originalmente publicó la reveladora biografía sobre salsa:  Desmitificación de una diva: La verdad Sobre La Lupe, pero la demanda de una versión en Inglés impulsó a Editorial Trance- una nueva casa Latina de publicación digital bilingüe-a publicar finalmente dicha versión como un libro electrónico para las plataformas de iBook, Kindle y Nook.

“Entre musicales y un proyecto cinematográfico en pre-producción,  el enigma de La Lupe perdura hasta nuestros días como un artista brillante debería. Ella era una mujer muy independiente y gran parte de su legado ha sido marcado por calumnias y  rumores maliciosos. Juan entrevistó a las personas más cercanas a ella- sus hijos, su mejor amigo desde la infancia, sus colaboradores musicales de la salsa, e incluso sus amantes. En todo caso esta biografía restaura la dignidad y respeto que se le negó cuando estaba viva, y expertamente desmitifica su lado mítica demoníaco,” dice el editor y CCO de Editorial Trance, veterano autor Charlie Vázquez.

“Necesitamos voces femeninas más atrevidas en la literatura, en el arte, en la música, en la política y en la vida. Juan Moreno-Velázquez capta brillantemente las luchas feministas de La Lupe dentro del movimiento de la salsa en Nueva York en esta biografía. Finalmente le da la justicia que se merece. La Lupe rompió muchas barreras para Latinas como yo, inspirándonos a ser lo que queremos ser, a pesar de la controversia,” añade CEO de Editorial Trance Marlena Fitzpatrick.

Juan Moreno-Velázquez presentará el libro el próximo Viernes, 15 de noviembre a las 7:00pm en Camaradas El Barrio, Nueva York.

Editorial Trance es una editorial digital (creada en 2013 por Marlena Fitzpatrick y Charlie Vázquez), que busca ampliar la presencia latina en la publicación electrónica mediante la producción de libros digitales de alta calidad con un atractivo cultural, histórico y pop.

Para obtener más información, visite www.editorialtrance.com

TRANCELOGO LUPECOVERHIRES

Introducing…Editorial Trance

FOR IMMEDIATE MEDIA RELEASE                                                               10/31/2013

(en español abajo)

Editorial Trance

2300 5th Ave

NY, NY10037

Contact: Marlena Fitzpatrick

917-565-6983

Editorial Trance Set to Launch Bilingual Digital Publishing Platform for Established and Emerging Writers

New York, NY – Editorial Trance, a digital publishing company that seeks to broaden the literary margins of Latino and Latina perception and representation, will begin publishing bilingual e-books by both established and emerging writers in November 2013. Lined up so far are titles in the poetry, celebrity memoir/biography, LGBT fiction, and the fantasy and sci-fi genres. Editorial Trance is the collaboration of respected author and editor Charlie Vázquez and veteran literary and Latino media executive Marlena Fitzpatrick.

“The idea is not to other, other languages. We want a fresh, real ‘translingual’ approach to literary communication and will be achieving this by unifying our rich vocabularies within the same space. It’s a multimedia publishing effort, including special events to promote the authors. Editorial Trance will be the result of a crosspollination between literature and popular culture,” says co-founder, Marlena Fitzpatrick, who also presides over music management company, Zurdamérica Entertainment.

“We feel that emerging digital publishing possibilities should be shaped to reflect our complex daily experiences as multicultural people of Latin American descent. So we’re building Editorial Trance not only for ourselves, but for our people, and that gives us something enormous to be proud of,” adds Charlie Vázquez, cofounder with Fitzpatrick. “We have some fantastic things coming your way, so connect with us if you’re curious.”

For more information visit www.editorialtrance.com

Editorial Trance is a digital publishing company (created in 2013 by Marlena Fitzpatrick and Charlie Vázquez) that seeks to expand the Latino presence in electronic publishing by producing compelling, high-quality digital books with historical and pop culture relevance and appeal.

TRANCELOGO copy

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Editorial Trance  lanza su  plataforma de publicación digital bilingüe para escritores establecidos y emergentes

Nueva York, NY – Editorial Trance, una editorial digital que pretende ampliar los márgenes de la percepción y la representación de latinos y latinas en el mundo literario, publicará  libros electrónicos- e-books- bilingües tanto por escritores establecidos así como voces emergentes a partir de noviembre 2013. Hasta ahora tienen títulos en géneros como la poesía, memorias y biografías de celebridades, ficción LGBT, fantasía y ciencia ficción, así como otras obras de ficción creativa y géneros de la cultura popular. Editorial Trance es una colaboración entre el aclamado autor y editor Charlie Vázquez y la ejecutiva de medios Latinos Marlena Fitzpatrick.

“La idea no es marginar otros idiomas. Queremos un enfoque translingue fresco y real a la comunicación literaria y esto lo logramos combinando nuestros vocabularios dentro de un mismo espacio. Es un esfuerzo de edición multimedia, incluyendo eventos especiales para promocionar el trabajo de nuestros autores. Editorial Trance es el resultado de una polinización cruzada entre la literatura y la cultura popular,” dice co-fundadora, Marlena Fitzpatrick, quien también preside la empresa de manejo de música, Zurdamérica Entertainment.

“Creemos que las nuevas posibilidades de edición digital debe ser formada para reflejar nuestras experiencias cotidianas como personas multiculturales de origen latinoamericano. Así que estamos construyendo Editorial Trance no sólo para nosotros, sino para nuestra gente, y eso nos hace sentir increíblemente orgullosos,”  añade Charlie Vázquez, cofundador con Fitzpatrick. “Tenemos cosas fantásticas que llegando muy pronto, así que conéctate con nosotros.”

Editorial Trance es una editorial digital (creada en 2013 por Marlena Fitzpatrick y Charlie Vázquez), que busca ampliar la presencia latina en la publicación electrónica mediante la producción de libros digitales de alta calidad con un atractivo cultural, histórico y pop.

Para obtener más información, visite www.editorialtrance.com

Festival de la Palabra 2013 – NYC program

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FESTIVAL DE LA PALABRA DE PUERTO RICO EN NUEVA YORK – 2013

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Miércoles 16/octubre:

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Lehman College:

250 Bedford Park Blvd W (4 train to Bedford Park Blvd/Lehman College)

6:00pm 8:40pm in Carmen Hall 224: Encuentro de estudiantes de “Literature of the Caribbean”, con Juan Carlos Méndez Guédez,   Louis-Philippe Dalembert y Janette Becerra. Traductora: Marlena Fitzpatrick-García.

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Instituto Cervantes:

211 E 49th St at Third Ave. (6 train to 51st St.)

5:30pm – 6:45pm. “El Diario/La Prensa: Un siglo de voz hispana en Nueva York”, con Wilda Rodríguez, David Unger, Gerson Borrero y Sandra García Betancourt. Moderador: Claudio Iván Remeseira

7:00pm – 8:00pm. Debate “Para sobrevivir a los naufragios de la realidad” entre Eduardo Lalo, Frank Báez, Ricardo Menéndez Salmón y Cristina Fernández-Cubas. Moderador: José Manuel Fajardo

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Jueves 17/octubre:

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Lehman College:

250 Bedford Park Blvd W (4 train to Bedford Park Blvd/Lehman College)

12:30m – 1:45pm in Carmen Hall 233. Encuentro de estudiantes de “Literature of the Caribbean”, con Wilda Rodríguez, Carlos Vázquez Cruz y Eduardo Lalo

2pm 4:40pm in Carmen Hall 233. Encuentro de estudiantes de “Literature of the Dominican Republic”, con Mayra Santos Febres, Frank Báez y Tere Dávila.

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The New York Public Library – Mid-Manhattan World Languages Collection

455 Fifth Avenue, Street Level Corner Room (B, D, F, M trains to Bryant Park)

6:00pm – 7:00pm. Debate − “Ficción y periodismo: los límites de la verdad” con Louis-Philippe Dalembert, Ricardo Menéndez Salmón, José Acosta e Hilda García (moderadora). Traductora: Odilia Rivera Santos

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CUNY Graduate Center:

365 5th Ave. at 34th St. (6 train to 33rd Street)

Co-Sponsored by the Center for Latin American, Caribbean and Latino Studies

7:30pm – 9:00pm. Presentación de libros y Lectura en #9206/9207.  Presentación de las antologías “Dispatches from The Festival de la Palabra” y “Spain’s Great Untranslated”,  seguida de “Lectura de poesía y textos narrativos breves”, con Cristina Fernández Cubas, Janette Becerra, Frank Báez , Juan Carlos Méndez Guédez, Carlos Manuel Rivera, Ricardo Menéndez Salmón, Javier Ávila y Carlos Vázquez Cruz.

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Viernes 18/octubre:

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La Casa Azul Bookstore:

143 E 103rd St (#6 to 103rd St)

Co-sponsored by the Lehman College Department of Latin American, Latino and Puerto Rican Studies, the CUNY Institute of Mexican Studies, the Department of Languages and Literatures, and the School of Arts and Humanities

12:00pm – 2:00pm Debate− “América Latina: un viaje literario de ida y vuelta”, con Cristina Fernández Cubas, Ricardo Menéndez Salmón, José Manuel Fajardo, Carlos Vázquez Cruz y Roxana Matienzo. Moderador: Hank Willenbrink

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CUNY Graduate Center: 365 5th Ave. at 34th St. (6 train to 33rd Street)

Co-Sponsored by the Center for Latin American, Caribbean and Latino Studies

5:00pm – 6:30pm. Debate en #C204/C205. “Cómo contar el mundo en tiempos de incertidumbre”. Francisco Goldman, Valeria Luiselli, José Manuel Fajardo, Javier Ávila, Carlos Aguasaco y Vanessa Pérez Rosario. Traductora: Teresita Levy

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The New York Public Library – Mid-Manhattan World Languages Collection

455 Fifth Avenue, Street Level Corner Room (B, D, F, M trains to Bryant Park)

6:15pm – 7:00pm. “Presentación de Entretelas, de Roxana Matienzo.

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Americas Society:

680 Park Ave. (6 train to 68th St.)

7:30pm – 9:00pm. Debate de clausura festival − “Puerto Rico: una literatura en diálogo con el mundo”, con Eduardo Lalo, Janette Becerra, Mayra Santos Febres, Juan Carlos Méndez Guédez, Frank Báez y Wilda Rodríguez

On Losing Brandon Lacy Campos, Daniel Mejia, and Taylor Siluwe

Brandon Lacy Campos was a recent arrival in New York City in June of 2009 and wanted badly to connect with other queer writers of color. Since I was running a successful reading series that focused on this community at the time I had a number of ideas. Then I received an invitation from Daniel Mejia, of the Gentlemen’s Book Club, for a gathering being held at the HK Lounge in Chelsea for the queer men of color’s reading group.

I remember telling Brandon about this and he sounded excited, so I met him outside the HK Lounge and we walked in together to find a friendly gathering of men mingling and sipping drinks, discussing a number of things. In attendance was the writer and journalist Taylor Siluwe, who I’d met at a reading for an erotica anthology we’d both been published in by the instrumental editorship of Emanuel Xavier [Best Gay Erotica 2008, Cleis Press].

I had been in touch with Daniel Mejia regarding an upcoming book of mine that I was trying to promote (and eventually those of others), and I remember vividly talking about possibly incorporating local queer authors of color into their reading list. Daniel was open to this idea, but it never did happen, as life got in the way and we all went on our hectic and busy separate ways later that evening.

I remember that Brandon was really impressed by meeting Taylor Siluwe (whose one book I own still wows me) and that Taylor was happy to be recognized for this. They sat and chatted for a while, as I sat to discuss things with Daniel. Also in attendance was author Nathan James, who I would invite to read at my reading series for “DOUBLE PRIDE PANIC,” which also featured writers and poets Vincent Bernard, Rosalind Lloyd, Ian Titus, Taylor Siluwé, Claudia Narvaez-Meza and Brandon Lacy Campos himself.

This lineup featured (almost) all African-American-identified LGBT writers, with the exception of poetess Claudia Narvaez-Meza. I remember that the energy in the room was fierce and intense, as this lineup of formidable male and female writers read material focused on the intersection of “darkness” and “queerness”.

Charlie Vázquez, Charles Rice-González and Brandon Lacy Campos at Bluestockings Bookstore, 2012. BOOKS

I continued to invite Brandon to read and he did cancel on me on a couple of occasions, but I let it go and was always happy to see him. We presented together a number of times, and although we didn’t always agree on things and differed greatly stylistically as writers, I always respected him and was always happy to see him. And the last time I did, I was on my way to read for a friend’s play-in-development at Teatro IATI, near where Brandon lived in Hells Kitchen.

It was of course heartbreaking to receive the news of his untimely passing, since he was part of my journey as a writer, too. Brandon brought people into my life as well and for that I will always be grateful, as sometimes that’s the best thing we can do for one another as struggling artists trying to make things happen.

I’ll close this all by saying that we lost Daniel Mejia first, a man who was dedicated to sharing LGBT literature with his group of dedicated followers, who died at the age of 32 in March of 2011. Taylor Siluwe, the fantastic storyteller of African American Jersey City grit, died just a few months later in June of 2011. Brandon would be the next guest at the party to leave, and if you had told me then that four years later three of the most magnetic people in the room would be gone, I would’ve never believed you.