2006 Book Fair Archive

Welcome to the First Annual San Diego City College International Book Fair (2006)

The San Diego City College International Book Fair is the outgrowth of over ten years of work by the City College Creative Writing faculty, their students, and friends in the community at large who put out the journal City Works and recently formed San Diego City Works Press. After several years of attending packed readings for the journal and press, City College President Terry Burgess suggested we think big and start an International Book Fair that we hope will grow to rival the book fairs in Los Angeles and Miami. We are committed to promoting local writers, artists, musicians, and booksellers as well as reaching out to prominent national and international authors and artists, particularly our friends and neighbors in Mexico. This year’s fair and future fairs will also showcase the arts and music as well as literature of all sorts.

City College is uniquely situated in the center of San Diego, and we hope to serve as a cultural nexus that brings together the various communities of the city and provides a vital site for cultural exchange and growth. Our primary goal is the promotion of literacy and cultural reciprocity. As we grow in the years to come, we hope that you will continue to mark your calendar year each year and come to our fair. The San Diego City College International Book Fair would not be possible without the generous support of our major sponsor, California Coast Credit Union. We are deeply indebted to the San Diego Booksellers Association, Sunbelt Publications, San Diego CityBeat, and KSDS Jazz 88.3. The Book Fair is put on in concert with the San Diego City College World Cultures Program.

Book Fair Events

Saville Theatre on the City College Campus
11:10-12:45PMJustin Akers Chacón with Enrique Morones

Room D121 on the City College Campus
11:15-12:30Kelly Mayhew

Saville Theatre on the City College Campus
7:00-7:30Francisco Bustos and Michael "Cheno" Wickert
7:30-8:00Cheryl Klein
8:00-9:00Steve Kowit

Saville Theatre on the City College Campus
10:00Book Fair Opens
11:00-12:00Judy Goldstein Botello
12:00-1:00Poetry from Tijuana: The Acanto y Laurel Poetry Project
1:00-2:30Luis Rodriguez
2:30-4:00Mike Davis
4:00-5:30Jimmy Santiago Baca
5:30-6:30The Gilbert Castellanos Quartet
7:00Book Fair Closes

Art by Perry Vasquez and Mario Chacón will be on display in the lobby of the theatre throughout the fair.

About the Authors


Author of The Importance of a Piece of Paper (Grove/Atlantic) and Winter Poems Along the Rio Grande (New Directions), as well as A Place to Stand, Healing Earthquakes, C-Train and Thirteen Mexicans, Black Mesa Poems, Martin and Meditations on the South Valley, and Immigrants in Our Own Land. Baca is also a contributor to Sunshine/Noir: Writings from San Diego and Tijuana (San Diego City Works Press).


Author of Prisoners of the American Dream (Verso), City of Quartz, Ecology of Fear, Magical Urbanism (Verso), Late Victorian Holocausts, Dead Cities (The New Press), Under the Perfect Sun: The San Diego Tourists Never See (with Jim Miller and Kelly Mayhew on The New Press), The Monster at Our Door: The Global Threat of Avian Flu (The New Press), and Planet of Slums (Verso). He is also a contributor to Sunshine/Noir: Writings from San Diego and Tijuana (San Diego City Works Press). Davis was named a MacArthur Fellow in 1998 and was also a Getty Fellow.


Author of Always Running: La Vida Loca, Gang Days in LA, which won a Carl Sandburg Literary Award and a Chicago Sun-Times Book Award and was chosen as a New York Times Notable Book for 1993. His books Poems Across the Pavement and The Concrete River have won the Poetry Center Book Award from San Francisco State University and PEN West/Josephine Miles Award for Literary Excellent, respectively. Rodriguez is the recipient of numerous other awards and fellowships. His most recent books are My Nature is Hunger: New and Selected Poems 1989–2004 (2005 Curbstone Press/Rattle Edition) and Music of the Mill (novel, 2005 Rayo/Harper Collins).


Author of The Gods of Rapture, In the Palm of Your Hand, Passionate Journey, and The Dumbbell Nebula. He is also a contributor to Sunshine/Noir: Writings from San Diego and Tijuana (San Diego City Works Press). Kowit received a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship as well as the Atlantic Review’s Puamanok Prize for Poetry in 1996. Most recently, Kowit won the Tampa Review Prize for Poetry in 2006. His poetry has been widely published, and he is one of the most sought-after workshop teachers in California.


Author of The Commuters: A Novel of Intersections (San Diego City Works Press). Klein is the winner of San Diego City Works Press’s Ben Reitman Award for Best First Book, which was chosen from hundreds of submissions from around the United States. Her fiction has appeared in the anthology Jane’s Stories III (Jane’s Stories Press) and numerous journals. An alumna of the Cal Arts Writing Program, she lives in Los Angeles.


Francisco Bustos is the co-author of Aqui estamos… Ya nos vamos (Here We Are… Here We Go), a bilingual, binational collection of border poetry and short stories published by Calaca Press/Red Calaca Arts Collective. He is also a contributor to Sunshine/Noir: Writings from San Diego and Tijuana (San Diego City Works Press). Bustos lives in Playas de Tijuana and in Chula Vista where he teaches English Composition at Southwestern College. He mostly writes about border culture, music, foods, and people. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with his wife, Nirvana, daughter, Quetzalli, and son, Emiliano, playing guitar with his suegro and visiting his parents, brother, and sisters. He grew up on both sides of the Tijuana/San Ysidro border, moving every couple of years depending on family budget and situation.

Michael "Cheno" Wickert is co-author of Aqui estamos… Ya nos vamos (Here We Are… Here We Go), a bilingual, binational collection of border poetry and short stories published by Calaca Press/Red Calaca Arts Collective. Cheno earned both his BA in English in 1999 and his MFA in Creative Writing in 2004 from SDSU. Out of high school, he worked as a painter, carpenter, and pipefitter throughout the shipyards of Southern California. He currently teaches elementary school in Chula Vista, where he lives with his wife Denise and his son Julian. Creatively, he explores how the personal and political collide in everyday life.


Independent project ACANTO Y LAUREL, which has been working since October of 2005, has taken the task of being a platform for literary exchange and integration between poets of Baja California, Mexico, and California. Acanto works to help diffuse and promote literary works of poets on both sides of the border region, opening a space for interaction among poets. The organizer of ACANTO Y LAUREL is Tijuana poet Aida Araceli Mendez Flores.

Elizabeth Cazessus: Poet in Tijuana who has published four books of poetry: Ritual y canto/Ritual and Song (1994, ICBC); Mujer de sal/Woman of Salt (2000, ICBEC); Huella en el agua/Treads in the Water (2001, IMAC); Casa del sueño/House of Dream (2006, Giglico Ediciones). She has contributed to the anthologies Across the Line (Junction Press 2002); Trilogía Poética de Mujeres de Hispanoamérica/Poetic Trilogy of Hispanoamerican Women, 2004; and Picaras Misticas y Rebeldes. She has participated in various international poetry fairs: Mujeres Poetas en el País de las nubes/Women in the Country of Clouds, Oaxaca, México; Los Angeles, CA, USA; San Juan, Puerto Rico (2003); Habana, Cuba (2004) Chile Poesía; Santiago de Chile (2005).

Alfonso Garcia Cortez: A graduate in Communications from Ibero American University (UIA), he is currently a professor in the School of Humanities at the Autonomous University of Baja California (UABC), where he has worked since 1997. He has published in regional newspapers and magazines which include Esquina Baja, Yubai, Aquilon, Blanco Movil, North Culture, and Generation, among others. He has also published in anthologies such as Piedra de serpiente/Stone of Serpent, A Way of Findings, Borders of Salt, The Reversible Margin, and Across the Line/Al otro lado, among others. He has also published three books of poems: Recuento de viaje/Count of Trip (Tijuana, 1991), Elegias Postergadas/Delayed Elegies (Toluca, 1994), and Llanterío (Tijuana, 2001).

Francisco Morales: Morales is from West Sierra Madre, born in 1940. He grew up in Tecate, Baja California and currently resides in Tijuana. Morales is a teacher and a formalist poet who coordinated the creative writing workshop, Imagen/Image. He promoted publishing house La marmita alucinada/The Hallucinated Mammoth, as well as the magazine Indice/Index. In 1992, he received honorary mention in the national contest “Ramón López Velarde.” He received a national poetry prize, IMAC 2006, Mexico, and is author of the following books: La muerte adentro al lado conmigo/Death Inside Along with Me, La ciudad que recorro/The City that I Cross, Amanecida/Sunrised, Tijuana Tango, Un desolado amor/A Desolate Love, and Un dia moridor/A Dying Day, among others.

Omar Pimienta: Illegal blacksmith. Basketball player. Photographer. Booklegger. Jeweler. Always on the verge of crying. Installer. Latin-Americanist. Lefty. Omar Pimienta watches damiana tea bags dance while he floods himself with letters. He lives in Colonia Libertad, Tijuana. Armadillo. His life can be read at omarpimienta.blogspot.com. He has published two books of poetry: Primera persona: Ella/First Person: She, and La libertad: Ciudad de paso/La Libertad: A City of Passing (2006 and winner of the Conaculta/CECUT Publishing Award). Currently, he is attending the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) and continues to cross the border on a daily basis.

Roberto Castillo Udiarte: Studied English and Latin American literature at National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), and Communications at Ibero American University (UIA), Tijuana. He has translated works of Charles Bukowski among others and has published various books of poems and narrative, including Cuervo de luz/Crow of Light, El amoroso Guaguaguá, La esquina de Johnny Tecate/Johnny Tecate’s Corner, Bonquete de pordioseros/Banquet of Beggars, Gancho al Corazón o la saga del Maromero Páez/Hook to the Heart, or the Saga of Maromero Páez, La pasión de Angélica según el Johnny Tecate/The Passion of Angelica According to Johnny Tecate, Blues cola de lagarto/Blues Lizard Tail, Cartografia del Alma/Cartography of the Soul, and Nuestras vidas son otra/Our Lives are Another One, among others.


Judy Goldstein Botello is author of The Other Side: Journeys in Baja and More Adventures with Kids in San Diego. In her most recent book, Botello tells a tale of two journeys, one outer and one inner. The outer explores the length, breadth, and depth of Baja and its rich history, its vibrant people, and the haunting beauty of the land. The inner journey involves a border world where cultures clash, illuminating the landscape of the soul. Her first book is an entertaining, comprehensive guidebook for adventures with children in San Diego. She will be speaking on The Other Side and the first 500 attendees will receive a free copy of her book courtesy of Sunbelt Publications.


Justin Akers Chacón is a professor of US history and Chicano studies in San Diego. He has contributed to the International Socialist Review and the book Immigration: Opposing Viewpoints.


Kelly Mayhew is co-author with Jim Miller and Mike Davis of Under the Perfect Sun: The San Diego Tourists Never See (The New Press, 2003) and co-author with Jim Miller of Better to Reign in Hell: Inside the Raiders Fan Empire (The New Press, 2005). She is an English professor at San Diego City College.

About the Artists


San Diego-based trumpeter Gilbert Castellanos is a major force on the San Diego jazz scene and one of the leading trumpeters in the Southern California area. Castellanos is known equally for his work as a leader and as a member of two top jazz ensembles in the Los Angeles area—guitarist Anthony Wilson’s Nonet, and one of today’s most critically acclaimed big bands, the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra.


The socio-political circumstances and human condition that gave birth to the “Chicano Renaissance” of the late sixties and seventies projects Mario Alberto Chacon’s artistic vision as he examines the historical trajectory of Mexican people in the US and the society who at once thrives on their labor while rejecting their very essence. His hard-hitting yet whimsical renditions highlight the delightful ironies of our time while maintaining the fragile realities of our place in history.


Perry Vasquez is an artist living in San Diego since 1987. He has been a designer and art director for the Stanford Chaparral, Wet Magazine, and Nihl Magazine. His paintings, motor oil drawings, and popjects have been exhibited in galleries and museums across the United States. His latest project is a documentary film entitled Fotoaktion! about the Austrian photographer Doris Boris Berman. Perry teaches art at Southwestern College and lives with his wife, Rondi, and son, Trey.

About City Works Press

Since 1994, San Diego City College’s literary journal, City Works, has published the poetry, fiction, prose, and artwork of City College students as well as work by local and national writers. After ten years of putting out City Works, some of the journal’s editors decided it was time for San Diego to have its own literary press. We dared to think that one of the largest cities in the United States could support a small press. Our goal is to publish the finest work by local writers.

The Gods of Rapture: Poems in the Erotic Mood
By Steve Kowit

Kowit is one of the best-known poets in San Diego with an enormous following. The poems are based on the ancient amatory poems of India written in Sanskrit. Art-drawings, portraits, and sketches accompany the poems throughout the text.

The Commuters
By Cheryl Klein

The Commuters is a novel composed of intersecting stories about people who live in Los Angeles. From an immigrant garment worker, struggling to exist in an often cruel city, to a lonely foster child, who uses arson to express himself, Klein’s novel delicately and deftly probes the inner lives of her compelling cast of characters.

Sunshine/Noir: Writing from San Diego and Tijuana
Edited by Jim Miller

A groundbreaking and innovative collection of San Diego/Tijuana writing edited by Jim Miller, co-author of Under the Perfect Sun: The San Diego Tourists Never See, Sunshine/Noir collects the work of Jimmy Santiago Baca, Mike Davis, Marilyn Chin, Steve Kowit, Sandra Alcosser, David Reid, Mark Dery, Victor Payan and Perry Vasquez, minerva, reg. e. gaines, Adrián Arancibia, Hal Jaffe, Sue Luzzaro, Jimmy Jazz, and many more…

The Mysterious Sound of Buddy Bolden
Poems and Stories by Rob Novak

“They say that he was the greatest who ever lived, that he played that thing with such ferocious passion that grown men on sailing ships in the Gulf leaped overboard, sad for Storyville.”

Vox Saxophonos
By Luis Omar Lopez

A surreal rant. Vox Saxophonos is Dada poetry for the postmodern age. Luis Omar Lopez has written “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” like T.S. Eliot in the midst of a psychotic break.

Book Fair Vendors

  • Adams Avenue Books
  • AK Press
  • Barnes and Noble/Bookstar
  • Betty’s Bookstore
  • Bluestocking Books
  • The Book Cellar
  • Bookworks
  • Calaca Press
  • California Coast Credit Union
  • Captain Finch’s and Mercantile
  • Casa del Libro
  • Chet Cunningham
  • City College Bookstore
  • City Works Press
  • E Nichols Lee Books
  • Elizabeth Brown Booksellers
  • Eric Hanson Books and Ephemera
  • Freedom Coffee
  • Friends of the Central Library
  • Groundwork
  • The Grove
  • Howard Karno Books
  • JD Keeline Books
  • Ken Kuhlken
  • KSDS Jazz 88
  • Laurence McGilvery
  • Maggie Mason
  • Margaret Mannatt Fine Books
  • Maxwell’s House of Books
  • Mysterious Galaxy Books
  • Peet’s Coffee
  • Prince and the Pauper
  • Publishers and Writers of San Diego
  • Quest Path Publishing
  • San Diego Black Ensemble Theatre
  • San Diego Council on Literacy
  • San Diego Writers Ink
  • San Diego Writers/Editors Guild
  • Scott Emerson Books
  • SDCC Honors Program
  • Sunbelt Publications
  • Terry Hertzler/Caernarvon Press
  • That Technical Bookstore
  • Torrey Pines Rare Books
  • TRI Studio LLC
  • UC Press
  • Upstart Crow
  • Verso/Haymarket Books
  • Wahrenbrocks Book House
  • WW Burgett Books & Collectibles
  • Young Socialists

Book Fair Staff

San Diego City College Literary Center and International Book Fair Staff:
  • Jim Miller, Director
  • Wendy Castellanos, Assistant to Director
Advisory Committee:
  • Chris Baron
  • Josh Baxt
  • Nancy Cary
  • June Cressy
  • Maria Figueroa
  • Karen Lim
  • Hector Martinez
  • Alys Masek
  • Kelly Mayhew
  • Elva Salinas
  • Donna Watson
Student Assistants:
  • Keith Anastasi
  • Rachel Brewer
  • Denise Gilbert
  • Crystal Malone
  • Lester O’Connor
  • Ivan Ramos
  • Jessica Ruane
We would also like to thank the following individuals and organizations for making this event possible:
  • Christie Allred
  • Rafael Alvarez
  • Brent Beltran
  • Adam Bogage
  • Francisco Bustos
  • Dean Winston Butler
  • Jennifer Cost
  • Vice President Carol Dexheimer
  • John Markley
  • Kris from Bluestocking Books
  • Terri Miracle
  • Otim Oloya for our logo design
  • Espie Tanjuaquino
  • Perry Vasquez
  • Rondi Vasquez
  • SDCC Chicano Studies Department
  • SDCC English Department
  • SDCC Honors Program
  • SDCC Puente Program
  • SDCC Title V Committee
  • SDCC Writing Center
  • And all the volunteers who helped make the fair happen.

The staff of the San Diego City College International Book Fair would like to extend special thanks to City College President Terry Burgess, without whose vision and generous spirit this event would not be possible.