Featured Authors & Actors 1/11/20

D. Wystan-OwenWystan Owen is the author of Other People’s Love Affairs: Stories (Algonquin Books), named a Best Book of 2018 by Amazon and The Washington Independent Review of Books. His fiction and essays have appeared in A Public Space, The Threepenny Review, LitHub, The American Scholar, and elsewhere. A graduate of both the UC Davis grad program in creative writing and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, Owen co-founded and publishes The Bare Life Review.


Zachary Scovel will read “The Patron,” by David Wystan Owen. Scovel recently received his M.A. in French and Francophone Studies at UC Davis and is currently in pursuit of his PhD in the same field. He is a former company member at Big Idea Theatre in Sacramento, where he held the title of Master Carpenter, as well as Assistant Director for the productions of Trevorand A Bright New Boise. Some of his acting credits with the company include Zack in Belleville, Clown 1 in The 39 Steps, Octavius Caesar in Antony and Cleopatra and Dr. Henry Jekyll in Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Some of his favorite previous roles also include Juliet in the Sacramento Shakespeare Festival’s all-male cast of Romeo & Juliet, Victor-Emmanuel and Poche for American River College’s A Flea in Her Ear, and Jonathan Harker for Solano Community College’s Dracula. Zachary was also most recently seen on the rooftop in Episode 5 of Boxed Up, the original live episodic musical in Sacramento’s Warehouse Artist Lofts, as well as Aramis in Davis Shakespeare Ensemble’s The Three Musketeers. While Zachary has taken a break to concentrate on academics for the past couple of years, he is anticipating auditioning again soon to finally get back on the stage later this year.


Angela PneumanAngela Pneuman is the author of a collection of short stories, Home Remedies, and the novel Lay It on My Heart, from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Her fiction has appeared in Best American Short Stories, Ploughshares, Virginia Quarterly Review, New England Review, and many other literary magazines. She has written nonfiction for The Believer, Salon, and The Rumpus. Since 1999 she has taught creative writing at Stanford, where she was a Stegner Fellow, and for Stanford Continuing Studies. She also serves as the Executive Director for the Napa Valley Writers’ Conference, now in its 40th year. Angela is currently at work on a new novel based on a real-life crime.


cyprus-van-inwegenCyprus Van Inwegen will read “All Saints Day,” by Angela Pneuman. Van Inwegen is a Davis-based actress, musician, and artist. You may have seen her recently as Eve in Over There Outside (Ground + Field Theatre Festival), in the sketch comedy Monsters Anonymous(Bike City Theatre Co.), or in the reading of Summer Shorts II: A Collection of Short Plays by Nicholas Walker Herbert (Bike City Theatre Co.). Cyprus is a Company Member of Bike City Theatre Co. and past Apprentice of the Idaho Shakespeare Festival. Past credits include Juliet in Romeo and Juliet(Idaho Shakespeare Festival, Apprentice Showcase), and co-authoring two plays (Stay,The Unbearable Confessions of the Ski Lodge Survivors) through Boise Contemporary Theatre. She is a graduate of the University of Davis, California, with a B.A. in Communications and a minor in Professional Writing.



Featured Authors & Actors 12/14/19

About the Authors


Chia Chia LinChia-Chia Lin is the author of The Unpassing, which was shortlisted for the Center for Fiction First Novel Prize. She graduated with an MFA in Fiction from the Iowa Writer’s Workshop. Her short stories have been published in The Paris Review and Zyzzyva.




Yalitza FerrerasYalitza Ferreras is a recent Steinbeck Fellow at San Jose State University. Her writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Best American Short StoriesKenyon ReviewColorado ReviewAster(ix) and Daring to Write: Contemporary Narratives by Dominican Women. She received an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Michigan where she won the Thesis Prize, and is the recipient of fellowships and awards from Djerassi, Yaddo, Barbara Deming Memorial Fund for Women, San Francisco Writers’ Grotto, and Voices of Our Nation.




About the Actors


Joy Ding will read “Practicing,” by Chia-Chia Lin. Ding is a writer and performer based in San Francisco. She has recorded a number of short stories, including Italo Calvino’s “Mushrooms in the City”. She has also performed a staged reading of “Light Delay” for UC Davis’ 2018 Ground and Field Festival. She is a proud graduate of UC Davis’ master’s program in creative writing, where she studied writing and acting.




Monica VejarMonica Vejar will read “You Must Be this Tall,” by Yalitza Ferreras. Vejar, a granddaughter of farm workers and the first college graduate within the family, discovered her love of words in junior college while taking courses in British, American, and Third World Literature. She graduated from Sac State, where she performed in Eve Ensler’s Vagina Monologues and played Lil Bit in Paula Vogel’s How I Learned to Drive (receiving the Jeffrey award for Best Actress). Over the years Monica has performed in various stage productions throughout the Sacramento region. Recently, she was in the Ensemble of Tenth Muse at the Davis Shakespeare Festival. And she read the part of Vicki in Over There Outside a Salon Reading produced by Bike City Theatre Company in partnership with UCD’s Ground and Field Theatre. She also played the roles of Marietta Fail, Wall Clock and Mae the parakeet in the Elly Award-winning production of Failure: A Love Story at Errant Phoenix Productions. Ms. Vejar hopes to continue to be a player in bringing short stories and plays to the stage. 

Featured Authors & Actors 11/9/19

About the Authors

Lori-OstlundLori Ostlund’s novel After the Parade (Scribner, 2015) was shortlisted for the Center for Fiction First Novel Prize and was a Barnes and Noble Discover pick. Her first book, a story collection entitled The Bigness of the World, won the 2008 Flannery O’Connor Award, the Edmund White Debut Fiction Award, and the 2009 California Book Award for First Fiction. Stories from it appeared in the Best American Short Stories and the PEN/O. Henry Prize Stories, among others. Lori has received a Rona Jaffe Foundation Award and was a finalist for the 2017 Simpson Family Literary Prize. She is a teacher and lives in San Francisco with her wife, son, and cats, though she spent her formative years in Minnesota, cat-less.




Anne RaeffAnne Raeff’s second novel, Winter Kept Us Warm, published in 2018, won the silver medal for the California Book Award for Fiction. Her short story collection, The Jungle Around Us won the 2015 Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction. The collection was also a finalist for the California Book Award and was on the San Francisco Chronicle’s 100 Best Books of 2017 list. In 2019 she was a finalist for the Simpson Literary Award. Clara Mondschein’s Melancholia, also a novel, was published in 2002. Raeff’s stories and essays have appeared in New England Review, ZYZZYVA, and Guernica among other places. Her next novel, Only the River, will be published in May 2020. She is proud to be a high school teacher. She lives in San Francisco.



About the Actors


Bob Cooner will read “Passing Through Needles,” by Lori Ostlund. Cooner has performed in plays and musicals in Sacramento, Chicago, New York City, Houston (his hometown), and on tour. Woodland Opera House theatergoers have seen Bob in such roles as Arthur in Camelot, Georg in She Loves Me, Tateh in Ragtime, Scottie in Tribute, Arvide in Guys and Dolls, and Wilbur in Hairspray. Other local productions include Assassins (Charles Guiteau) with Artistic Differences, Side by Side by Sondheim with the Actor’s Theatre of Folsom, and Love Letters (Andy) with Knockabout Stage. As a director, Bob helmed the Woodland Opera House productions of Stepping Out, 42nd Street, Blithe Spirit, Miracle on 34th Street: The MusicalA Christmas Carol: The Musical, Second-Best Bed (world premiere of his husband Matthew Abergel’s play), Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure, Noises Off, Brigadoon, Man of La Mancha, and Once Upon a Mattress, as well as the Lambda Players production of As Bees in Honey Drown. As a playwright, Bob has had two plays produced at the Woodland Opera House: Prime Time for the Holidays and The Emperor’s New Clothes. He is an English and theatre teacher at Cosumnes Oaks High School in Elk Grove.

gabby battistaGabby Battista will read “The Doctor’s Daughter,” by Anne Raeff. Battista is an actress based in the Sacramento region. She has been working as the Development Director for the Davis Shakespeare Festival for the past three years and has enjoyed her passion for community outreach and acting simultaneously. Her recent acting credits in the Sacramento region include Jesusa, from Davis Shakespeare’s The Tenth Muse, and Alicia from Capital Stage’s production of The Thanksgiving Play. She very excited to have the opportunity to read for Stories on Stage Davis.