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

The Poets Laureate of Lawrence
Tuesday, February 27  from 7-9 pm
The Theater at the Fort on Indy's east side

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

Join us for our monthly featured poet/open mike series that happens every 4th Tuesday of the month. This month our featured poet will be Indiana Poet Laureate Adrian Matejka.
Adrian Matejka (Mah-TEE-kuh) was born in Nuremberg, Germany and grew up in California and Indiana. He is a graduate of Indiana University and the MFA program at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. He is the author of The Devil’s Garden (Alice James Books, 2003) which won the New York / New England Award and Mixology (Penguin, 2009), a winner of the 2008 National Poetry Series. Mixology was also a finalist for an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literature. His third collection, The Big Smoke (Penguin, 2013), focuses on Jack Johnson, the first African American heavyweight champion of the world. The Big Smoke was awarded the 2014 Anisfield-Wolf Book Award and was also a finalist for the 2013 National Book Award, 2014 Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, and 2014 Pulitzer Prize in poetry. His most recent book, Map to the Stars, was published by Penguin in 2017. Among Matejka’s other honors are the Eugene and Marilyn Glick Indiana Authors Award, the Julia Peterkin Award, a Pushcart Prize, and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Lannan Foundation, and a Simon Fellowship from United States Artists. He teaches in the MFA program at Indiana University in Bloomington.

Kellogg Writers Series/University of Indianapolis

Kaveh Akbar
Wednesday, February 28th at 7:30-8:30pm

Trustees Dinning Room of the Schwitzer Student Center

Kaveh Akbar will be reading from his fantastic debut collection Calling a Wolf a Wolf.

9 Johnson Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46219

Book Club meeting
Wednesday, February 28,  7:00pm

We will be discussing Turtles All the Way Down by John Green.  Everyone is welcome.

Poetry on Brick Street

Featuring Mark Hudson as the guest poet
Thursday, March 1 at 7pm
SullivanMunce Cultural Center, 225 W. Hawthorne Street, Zionsville.
An Open Mic will follow the reading.


Hudson’s new book of poems, East of Sorrow, was published last year by Red Mountain Books of Santa Fe. His other poetry collections are Island, Afterlight, which received the Juniper Prize from the University of Massachusetts Press, Journal for an Injured Son and The Disappearing Poet Blues. His awards include a National Endowment for the Arts fellowship in poetry, the Strousse Award from Prairie Schooner, and the Allen Tate Poetry Prize. His poems have appeared in Poetry, Kenyon Review, Poet Lore, Sewanee Review, and other journals. His Beowulf: A Translation and Commentary was published in the U.K. by Wordsworth Editions. He taught at Wabash College 28 years, and lives in Crawfordsville with his wife, Helen, also a writer. He edits Currents, a column for the Friends of Sugar Creek that appears in The Journal Review. He is at work on a collection of essays on the ecological imagination.

 Vivian S. Delbrook Visiting Writers Series/Butler University

Lynda Barry
Lynda Barry
Thursday, March 1, 7:30 PM
Atherton Union, Reilly Room

Lynda Barry is the Chazen Family Distinguished Chair in Art at the Wisconsin Institute for Discovery. In 1979 while pursuing a career as a painter, she began drawing a weekly comic strip that incorporated stories considered to be incompatible with comics at the time: stories, as Barry puts it, “that had a lot of trouble in them.” Widely credited with expanding the literary, thematic, and emotional range of American comics, Barry’s ground-breaking weekly strip, Ernie Pook's Comeek, ran for 30 years. Her graphic novel, What It Is, won the 2009 Eisner Award for Best Reality-Based Work, and in 2016 she was inducted into the Eisner Hall of Fame. 

Barry has authored seventeen books, worked as a commentator for NPR, and had a regular monthly feature in Esquire, Mother Jones Magazine, and Mademoiselle, and on She created an album-length spoken word collection of stories called, The Lynda Barry Experience, and was a frequent guest on the Late Show with David Letterman.

She also adapted her novel The Good Times Are Killing Me into a long-running off-Broadway play. In 2008, her book One! Hundred! Demons! was required reading for all incoming freshmen at Stanford University. Her novel Cruddy has been translated into French, Italian, German, Catalan, and Hebrew. She is currently at work on an illustrated novel called Mr. Birdis and a documentary in comic book form about industrial scale wind farms in Wisconsin.

Indy Reads Books
911 Massachusetts Ave, Indianapolis, Indiana 46202

First Friday with Angela DeCamp & Mike DeCamp
Friday, March 2, 6pm – 8pm

This First Friday, join us for the opening reception of Angela DeCamp and a reading from local author Mike DeCamp in his new book, Abandon Hope. 

The Writers Guild at Bloomington

Words! A Bloomington Celebration of Poetry and Spoken Word
March 1-March 31 at a variety of venues
Get all the details here:

Bloomington Poetry Slam
Friday, March 2,  8:30pm
at The Bishop, 123 N. Walnut St. (18+ venue)
$5 at the door
Featured Performer: Adrienne Nadeau (Chicago, IL)
To sign-up for the open mic or poetry slam competition,
please email Space is limited!

Window Horses
Monday, March 5, 7pm
at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater, 114 E Kirkwood Ave
Written and directed by award-winning filmmaker Ann Marie Fleming, Window Horses is a feature animation about love—love of family, poetry, history, culture.

Andrea Gibson
Tuesday, March 6,  8pm
at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater, 114 E Kirkwood Ave

Reja-e Busailah
Wednesday, March 7, 5:30pm
(was originally scheduled for 12:30pm)
at the Global and International Studies Building, Room 3067

Spoken Word Series
Thursday, March 8,  6pm
at The Players Pub
Price: $5
Featuring Christine Brandel, Tony Brewer, David H. Kim


Sunday, March 4  6-8 pm
Aristocrat Pub and Restaurant
5212 North College Avenue, Indianapolis, Indiana 46220
Tickets by Eventbrite

Join Dan Wakefield and his guest, Aleta Hodge,  She is the author of Indiana Avenue – Life and Musical Journey 1915-2015.

Mari Evans's Ethos & Creativity
Thursday, March 8,  6:30-8:00 PM
Basile Auditorium, Eskenazi Hall;
735 W. New York St, Indianapolis, IN 46202
A public conversation with local artists about art and race in Indianapolis takes its start from the 1989 essay “Ethos and Creativity: The Impulse as Malleable” by Indianapolis writer Mari Evans. This essay combines autobiography, history, and conceptual analysis to relate local conditions to a braoder understanding of the significance of artistic creation. Join a panel of Indianapolis artist to consider the essay’s continuing relevance to art, justice, and community.

Panelists will include Phyllis Boyd, an urban designer and former gallery director who trained as a landscape architect and now serves as executive director of Groundwork Indy; David Hoppe, writer, editor, and playwright who edited the book in which Evans’ essay originally appeared; Adrian Matekja, Poet Laureate of Indiana and Ruth Lilly Professor at Indiana University; Carl Pope, a critically acclaimed, Indianapolis-based conceptualist whose museum installations and public art interventions explore the intersections between conceptual art, American Literature, hidden histories, and social justice; and LaShawnda Crowe Storm, a visual artist, activist, and community builder who uses the making of art to create space and place for difficult conversations promoting healing and change.

This event is sponsored by the Indiana University Bicentennial Celebration, the Institute for American Thought, the IUPUI Africana Studies Program, the Society for the Advancement of American Philosophy, the IUPUI School of Liberal Arts, the IUPUI Arts & Humanities Institute, and Indiana Humanities.

Kelly Writers Series/DePauw University

Robin Black
Wednesday, March 14, 7:30 pm
Peeler Auditorium

Robin Black took a circuitous path to her literary career, spending her adult life until forty as a full-time work-at-home parent. When she started to write, she did so obsessively, getting her MFA at Warren Wilson at forty-three and publishing her first book, the story collection If I Loved You, I Would Tell You this, at forty-eight. Claire Messud has called Robin "a writer of great wisdom," and Karen Russell says of Robin's novel Life Drawing that is a "magnificent literary achievement." Her books of fiction have been translated into Italian, German, French, and Dutch, and been awarded numerous distinctions in the United States and overseas. Her latest, Crash Course: Essays from Where Writing and Life Collide, gives a glimpse into the years before she wrote, what kept her from doing so, what compelled her forward, and her day to day writing life, which includes advocating for people with learning disabilities, and for older emerging writers.


Written by Roxanna Santoro — February 05, 2018

© Indiana Writers Center 2012