Featured Authors & Actors 9/8/18

Join us for our third annual Opening Night Gala, featuring Vanessa Hua and Paula Saunders. Limited tickets available at Eventbrite.

To kick off our sixth season, we’re welcoming two Northern California writers with novels hot off the presses, Vanessa Hua (A River of Stars) and Paula Saunders (The Distance Home). Both novels are moving and memorable explorations of family in all its complicated glory. Authors will be on hand to sign books, and the evening will also include a silent art auction, savory and sweet bites, and a refreshing Pimm’s Cup cocktail.

About the Authors

Vanessa HuaVanessa Hua is a columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle and the author of a short story collection, Deceit and Other Possibilities, and a debut novel,  A River of Stars. For two decades, she has been writing, in journalism and fiction, about Asia and the Asian diaspora. She has received a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award, the Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature, the San Francisco Foundation’s James D. Phelan Award, and a Steinbeck Fellowship in Creative Writing, as well as honors from the Society of Professional Journalists and the Asian American Journalists Association. Her work has appeared in publications including The New York Times, The Atlantic, and The Washington Post. She lives in the Bay Area with her family.

Paula Saunders

photo: Alena Saunders

Paula Saunders grew up in Rapid City, South Dakota. She is a graduate of the Syracuse University creative writing program, and was awarded a postgraduate Albert Schweitzer Fellowship at the State University of New York at Albany, under then-Schweitzer chair Toni Morrison. She lives in California with her husband. They have two grown daughters.


About the Actors

Actor information coming soon.

Featured Actors 11/14/15

Ashley LucasAshley Lucas will read an excerpt from The Child Garden by Catriona McPherson. Lucas has appeared on stage in several Sacramento Community Theatre productions, from children’s theatre and comedies to drama. She has also read fiction for Stories on Stage Sacramento (“The Acupuncturist’s Wife” by Sue Staats) and many plays for the Playwright’s Collaborative. Recently, Lucas has narrated Waiting for a Comet by Richard Prosch on Audible Books. In the evenings you can find her walking her dog, Cabo, and, on rare occasions, her husband, Wade.

John HaineJohn Haine will read “Shutterbugs” by David Hagerty. Haine has been in and out of acting since the day he feigned illness so he could stay home from school to watch John Glenn blast off into outer space. After winning a state high school drama festival, and graduating with a B.A. in Theatre Arts from the University of Minnesota, he tried his hand as a professional actor but quickly succumbed to the lure of a steady paycheck. He became a lawyer, and for twenty-five years tried to stay off the stage, but sometimes the lure was too great. He appeared in various community theatres in Minnesota and at the tiny Grand Theatre, where he frequently performed with his wife, Patty, and got the chance to compose and stage his first musical, A Musical Christmas with the Karp Family, co-written with Cynthia Smith. (It was really funny.) Since relocating to Davis three years ago, Haine has appeared with the Davis Shakespeare Ensemble in its outdoor production of As You Like It, and in its repertory productions of Much Ado About Nothing, Twelfth Night, She Loves Me, and The Mystery of Edwin Drood. He has also had the good fortune to play some of his favorite roles with the Davis Musical Theatre Company, including Sweeney in Sweeney Todd, Henry Higgins in My Fair Lady, and Ben in Follies. By day, Haine now writes and edits books on employee benefits law. By night, he’s usually rehearsing or looking for the next show.