Free Association @ City of Asylum Reading Series

Sunday, April 22, 2018 @ 5 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.
Free RSVP 2018-04-22 5 p.m. 2018-04-22 6:30 p.m. America/New_York Free Association @ City of Asylum Reading Series 40 W. North Avenue, Pittsburgh PA 15212 Alphabet City

(1.5 hrs. approximate run time)

Join us for an intimate evening of readings with exceptional writers co-curated by Pat Hart and Marc Nieson of the Free Association Reading Series


Featured Writers:

Jeffrey Bolden is a motorcyclist on the road of life. Burning the candles at both ends. At Chatham University and Pittsburgh where he is known as Boosie, you may not find many published pieces of his literature, but if you’ve ever heard him read, you would recognize his voice. What you may not know is this is a voice cultivated through triumph and travel. Since he was six months, he has lived in locales all over the states and overseas. His only wish, that he leave his experience in a puddle on the City of Asylum stage, a world stage. May you look into the waters and see his truth. Splash.


Anjali Sachdeva’s fiction has appeared in The Iowa Review, Gulf Coast, Yale Review, and Best American Nonrequired Reading, among other publications. She is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and has taught writing at the University of Iowa, Augustana College, Carnegie Mellon University, and the University of Pittsburgh. She also worked for six years at the Creative Nonfiction Foundation, where she was Director of Educational Programs. She has hiked through the backcountry of Canada, Iceland, Kenya, Mexico, and the United States, and spent much of her childhood reading fantasy novels and waiting to be whisked away to an alternate universe. Her debut short story collection, All the Names They Used for God, will be published by Spiegel & Grau in February.

Jeff Oaks is the author of four chapbooks: Mistakes with Strangers (Seven Kitchens Press, 2015); Shift; The Moon of Books; and The Unknown Country.  He has published poems in literary magazines including Field, Mid-American Review, Missouri Review, Superstition Review, and Best New Poets. His essays have appeared in At Length, Creative Nonfiction, Kenyon Review Online, and in the anthologies My Diva: 65 Gay Men Write about the Women Who Inspire Them and Brief Encounters: A Collection of Contemporary Nonfiction.  He’s the recipient of three fellowships from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and an Individual Artist fellowship from the Pittsburgh Foundation.  He teaches writing at the University of Pittsburgh. 

Sarah Shotland is the author of the novel Junkette and a playwright whose work has been produced in theaters nationally and internationally. She is a 2017 writing resident at the Santa Fe Art Institute’s Equal Justice Initiative, where her residency will be focused on finishing a collection of essays about working with incarcerated writers. She is the Co-Founder of Words Without Walls, which brings creative writing classes to jails, prisons, and rehab centers in Pittsburgh, and she teaches in the MFA program at Chatham University.



Pat Hart, co-curator
Marc Nieson, co-curator

Pat Hart writes plays, monologues, short stories, and novels. Playwriting credits include “Book Wench” a one-act play, performed at the Strawberry One-Act Festival, Summer 2015, New York, New York and Murderous, a 10-minute monologue, performed at Practice Monologamy, Carlow University, September 2015. Published short stories include “The Vigil,” The Writing Disorder (Fall 2015), “New Wife vs. Old Wife, a love story,” (2015) and “Dragon Boogers” novel excerpt (2016) in Voices in the Attic, and “Spider Ball,” Rune (May 2015). Pat has a BA in Creative Writing from the University of Pittsburgh and is the founder of Free Association, a reading series for established and emerging writers in Pittsburgh. She is currently working on a novel set in Pittsburgh and Burma during the 1920s.

Marc Nieson is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and NYU Film School. His background includes children’s theatre, cattle chores, and a season with a one-ring circus. His memoir, SCHOOLHOUSE: Lessons on Love & Landscape, came out from Ice Cube Press in 2016. He’s won a Raymond Carver Short Story Award, Pushcart Prize nominations, and been noted in Best American Essays. He teaches at Chatham University, edits The Fourth River, and is at work on a new novel, HOUDINI’S HEIRS.



Founded in May of 2016, Free Association Reading Series is for established and emerging Pittsburgh writers of prose, poetry, and non-fiction. Not affiliated with any formal writing programs, FARS is ‘non denominational’ and draws writers from universities, workshops, and those toiling away alone in their garrets.

Since its inception FARS has hosted eight summer reading events featuring over forty writers in its rustic Wilkinsburg home. Located at Rebecca & Center in the former Frank & John Valet, Inc., the space is pleasant—open and airy—but without heat, it is only useable in the summer months.

Alphabet City is the winter home of FARS.  

Event Details

April 22, 2018 @ 5 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.
40 W. North Avenue, Pittsburgh PA 15212

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