There are many great literary events around Indianapolis and beyond.  Looking for something to do?  Here are just a few ideas:

Artist Industry Nights: June at Circle City Industrial Complex
Wednesday, June 26, 2019 at 6 PM – 8 PM

Admission is FREE, but you must Register Here! If you cannot make it for some reason, please e-mail to alert us so we can free up your space.
Sales end on Jun 26 at 2 PM
The Arts Council of Indianapolis presents Artist Industry Nights to help build and strengthen our professional artist community. AIN brings together artists of all disciplines and experience levels to network, socialize, collaborate, and connect.

Thanks to a generous donor to our Artist Services program, the Artist Industry Nights events are free and open to all professional and aspiring artists in central Indiana. Literary, performing, and visual artists are all encouraged to attend and help us "cross-pollinate" the Indy artist community. You may just meet your next collaborative partner or your mentor!

For each event, the Arts Council partners with a different organization and/or venue to bring together the most diverse and interesting group of artists for drinks, nibbles, and conversation. This is not a meeting so don't worry about coming in late and please, come as you are. All artists are welcome.

NEW THIS YEAR! Curated Conversations will bring together established, well known artists, arts administrators, curators, etc. for casual conversations. Join in or listen in....there's a lot to learn from those who have been working in the field for years....sit in on one of these conversations to hear another perspective.

This month we will gather on the near east side at the Circle City Industrial Complex. Ample parking lot on the south side of the road. Enter main door and go upstairs to Schweitzer Gallery. (see signs)
Questions: e-mail us at artistservices @

In the Presence of My Enemies/by June McCarty Clair

Opening Friday, June 21, 2019, at 7:30 p.m for two weekends, June 21,22,23, and 28, 29, 30
Friday and Saturday
performances will be at 7:30, Sunday performances at 2:30
The Cat

254 Veteran’s Way, Carmel, IN

To make reservations, go here, or call 317-582-1007. Ticket prices are $14 for students and seniors, and $16 for adults. Groups of ten or more are eligible for a discount.

After a successful run at DivaFest in April of 2019, the play “In the Presence of my Enemies” will be moving to The Cat in Carmel for a two week run. “In the Presence of my Enemies,” is a wickedly funny cautionary tale about greed and family, filled with relatable characters and outlandish actions. One theatergoer called it a “ heartfelt, feel good journey through the valley of the shadow of death!” The script was developed in Playwriting classes taught by Andy Black.

Show Plot: When Sarah’s husband Frank dies unexpectedly, Sarah finds herself bereft and befuddled, as she tries to make plans for a funeral while wending her way through the morass of paperwork and bureaucratic documents. Sarah’s sister and daughter join her, but so do Frank’s relatives, swooping into town under the guise of ‘helping’ her with all the funeral plans, including finding insurance policies, and arguing between burial and cremation. The action soon proves comical, as it becomes a battle of wills as to who will find the will and whose wishes will prevail!

The Poets Laureate of Lawrence
Tuesday, June 25 from 7-9 pm
The Theater at the Fort on Indy's east side
Sterrett Center

8920 Otis Avenue, Lawrence, 46226
(Take 56th Street to Post Road. Go North on Post and West on Otis.)

Please join us at The Poets Laureate of Lawrence – we host a monthly featured author followed by an open reading that happens every 4th Tuesday of the month.  This month our featured author is:
Jim Powell.

Jim Powell founded the Writer’s Center of Indiana (now the Indiana Writer’s Center) in 1979 as part of the Free University. He directed the Center for 20 years and has written over 70 stories.  He holds a MFA in fiction writing from Bowling Green State University and in 2011 received a Creative Renewal Fellowship for the Arts Council of Indianapolis.  His new book of stories is called, Only Witness.

Poets Attack! ft Sam Herschel Wein, Levi Todd, and more!
Wednesday, June 26 at 7 PM – 8:30 PM
Irvington Vinyl & Books

9 Johnson Ave, Indianapolis, Indiana 46219

For this month's Poet's Attack we are so thrilled to be hosting two wonderful Chicago poets along with some great local talent. Check out Sam Herschel Wein, Levi Todd, Ryan Rader, and the rest TBA!

Sam Herschel Wein lives in Chicago and specializes in aimless frolicking. His first chapbook, 'Fruit Mansion' (Split Lip Press, 2017) was the winner of the 2016 Turnbuckle Chapbook prize. His second chapbook, 'Gesundheit!,' a collaboration with Chen Chen, is forthcoming with Glass Poetry Press in 2019. He co-runs the journal Underblong. Find him on twitter at @samforbreakfast

Levi Todd is a queer poet and lifelong Chicagoan. They serve as Poetry Editor for Tinderbox Poetry Journal and as a relationship health educator. Levi’s work is published or forthcoming in The Shallow Ends, The Ellis Review, Pinwheel, and elsewhere. Say hi on Instagram and Twitter at @levicitodd, and you can read more of Levi’s work at They encourage you to smell a lilac bush today.

Tasha Chopra is a poet, visual artist, and graduate student pursuing her masters at Herron School of Art and Design. She is the co-founder and visual art editor for Turnpike Magazine, an online publication dedicated to positive themes and marginalized voices. She also is a part of Indy Symposium, a group that holds bimonthly open mics and poetry slams at Black Circle Brew. Her poetry focuses on themes of family, identity, and human connection, and some of her work can be found in Genesis Magazine.

Ryan J. Rader is a poet, former member of Indiana and Chicago rock and roll bands, and stand-up comedian with lifetime comedy earnings nearing triple digits.

Get in, get culture, get out. This is the motto of Poets Attack. The last Wednesday of each month, for 90 minutes or less, Irvington Vinyl & Books hosts two talented local poets and pairs them with visiting writers from out of state. The goal is to connect Hoosier poets with writers from across the United States, and to build relationships between our local scene and the world outside.

Indy Reads Books
911 Massachusetts Avenue, Indianapolis, Indiana 46202

Jerry VanSchaik reading "Tripio"
Wednesday June 26, 5:00PM - 7:00PM

Tripio is historical fiction. The setting is Chicago summer of 1992. Jay Altonstreet is trying to climb the corporate ladder at a small but growing company called Starbucks. Jay left his stalled life in Dayton in 1990 and has been trying to finish his first novel for the last three years. But an unplanned, high risk pregnancy of his lover and co-worker forces him to decide which of these creations is the most valuable to him: a company, a novel, or a family.

Tripio explores three types of creativity, business, literature, and family. Jay is forced to prioritize these endeavors and to decide what he most values.

Thomas Larson reading "Writing the Spiritual Memoir"
Friday, June 28 at 7:00- 9:00PM
A short reading by author Thomas Larson, followed
by an interview and discussion led by Nathan Day Wilson, and book signing.

Today, the surprisingly elastic form of the memoir embraces subjects that include dying, illness, loss, relationships, and self-awareness. Writing to reveal the inner self—the pilgrimage into one’s spiritual and/or religious nature—is a primary calling. Contemporary memoirists are exploring this field with innovative storytelling, rigorous craft, and new styles of confessional authorship. Now, Thomas Larson brings his expertise as a critic, reader, and teacher to the boldly evolving and improvisatory world of spiritual literature.

In his book-length essay Spirituality and the Writer, Larson surveys the literary insights of authors old and new who have shaped religious autobiography and spiritual memoir—from Augustine to Thomas Merton, from Peter Matthiessen to Cheryl Strayed. He holds them to an exacting standard: they must render transcendent experience in the writing itself. Only when the writer’s craft prevails can the fleeting and profound personal truths of the spirit be captured. Like its predecessor, Larson’s The Memoir and the Memoirist,Spirituality and the Writer will find a home in writing classrooms and book groups, and be a resource for students, teachers, and writers who seek guidance with exploring their spiritual lives.

Also at Indy Reads!

Ora Lee Day reading "The Thoughts In My Head"
Book Signing/Discussion
Saturday, June 29 at 1-3pm

The Thoughts In My Head is an inspirational book on purpose and the belief that you are more significant and you play a vital role in the earth.


An Evening with Author Jennifer Weiner
Presented by JCC Indianapolis at Indianapolis Hebrew Congregation, Indianapolis IN

Sunday, June 30  7-9pm
The Indianapolis Hebrew Congregation (6501 N Meridian St)

Join us for an evening with this New York Times bestselling author of Good in Bed, In Her Shoes and Best Friends Forever. Weiner was listed as one of the “25 Working Moms to Follow on Twitter” with “hilarious shards of brilliance (Forbes).”

Jennifer Weiner grew up in Connecticut and graduated summa cum laude with a degree in English literature from Princeton University in 1991. She worked as a newspaper reporter in central Pennsylvania, Kentucky, and Philadelphia, where she was a feature writer and columnist for The Philadelphia Inquirer. She is now a contributing opinion writer for The New York Times Op-Ed and Sunday Review.

This event is part of the JCC's Ann Katz Author Series made possible in part by the Irwin and Ann Katz Cultural Arts & Education Endowment Fund and in partnership with Indianapolis Hebrew Congregation.   Go here for Tickets

Writers Guild at Bloomington Spoken Word Series
Wednesday, July 3 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Bear's Place

1316 E 3rd St, Bloomington, IN

Featuring Ross Gay (poetry), John James (poetry), Shana Ritter (poetry and fiction)
music by Hoosier Darling (gospel trio)
+ an open mic

$5 suggested donation

SHANA RITTER‘s newly completed novel, In the Time of Leaving, is set in Spain in 1492. Shana grew up in New York but lives out in the country near Bloomington, Indiana. Her poetry and short stories have appeared in Lilith, Fifth Wednesday, Georgetown Review and others. Her chapbook, Stairs of Separation, was published by Finishing Line Press.Shana has been a recipient of the Indiana Individual Artist Grant multiple times. She offers workshops, interviews and readings.

JOHN JAMES is the author of The Milk Hours, selected by Henri Cole for the Max Ritvo Poetry Prize (Milkweed, 2019). He is also the author of Chthonic, winner of the 2014 CutBank Chapbook Award. His poems appear in Boston Review, Kenyon Review, Gulf Coast, Poetry Northwest, Best American Poetry 2017, and elsewhere. A digital collagist, his image-text experiments appear in Quarterly West, The Adroit Journal, and LIT.

ROSS GAY is the author of three books of poetry: Against Which; Bringing the Shovel Down; and Catalog of Unabashed Gratitude, winner of the 2015 National Book Critics Circle Award and the 2016 Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award. His collection of essays,The Book of Delights, was released by Algonquin Books in 2019.

Written by Roxanna Santoro — June 04, 2019

© Indiana Writers Center 2012