Literary Coffeehouse: The Inspiration and Connection between Literary Fans

Written by Phuong (Kim) Pham

On February 5, 2018, the ACC Creative Writing Department welcomed everybody to their monthly gathering, Literacy Coffeehouse, at the Malvern Books bookstore. The open mic event, hosted by John Herndon, is an opportunity for literature lovers to share their passions, or just simply enjoy their time with the literary community.

The evening started off with cookies to welcome the attendees and the writers discussing their work. After that, the readers began sharing their literary works onstage. One of the hosts, David Thornberry, enlightened everyone with his piece about Stephen Hawking’s disease called “Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis,” which he described in his poem as a “thumb” that “belong to the universe,” a very interesting metaphor. This month’s featured reader was Emilee Araujo, an aspiring screenwriter and Creative Writing major at ACC. Emilee brought out many of her works to the audience, including her screenplay and poems. She also captured the audience by reading her first flash fiction, “Lemonade,” in which she shared a story about her immigrant dad.

Readers, who came from different ages and different backgrounds, were connected through their love of literature Everyone was very open-minded and comfortable sharing their stories in various ways. One of the readers, Heidi Juel, who is also an English teacher at ACC Cypress Creek, shared: “Anybody can come in, and you can see they read plays, poetry, fictions and memoirs… pretty much anything.” As this was the second time Mrs. Juel had been to the gathering, she loved the environment that the event was giving. “It’s a good environment if you’ve never done this before, you just take a deep breath, or whatever works for you, look at what you wrote and pretend that nobody’s out there,” she said. “It’s a small group, everybody’s here because they like what they’re doing.”

Literary Coffeehouse is one of many activities hosted by the ACC Creative Writing Department. It opens around the first two weeks of every month. Next month, the event will be on March 5th at 7 p.m. at Malvern Books. Every student of ACC is encouraged to join, either listen or share the literary works.literary coffee house 2