The New York City Reading Series Census is an ongoing project to catalogue the contemporary literary scene. Any reading series curator in the New York area can take the survey here.
What is the name of the series, and what is the significance or meaning of the series name?
The series is called “See No Evil”. The See No Evil Reading Series focuses on strange and haunting fiction in the spirit of Halloween, read aloud by professional actors and storytellers.
The name See No Evil (suggested to me by my husband Sean Patrick Hopkins) evokes the content of the series, as well as suggests the recommended way of listening to the stories. Individually wrapped eye masks are provided for the audience, and people who attend are encouraged to use them to block out light and distractions while listening to the tales. See. No. Evil. Didn’t promise you wouldn’t hear it!
Who founded the series, and who runs it now?
Patricia Santomasso (myself) founded it and runs it.
What genres or mediums does the series include?
The series focuses on short stories. This year the genres include Classics, Horror Fiction, Mythopoeia, Poetry, and Humor.
What is the format of the series?
Each week begins with an introduction and short meditative exercise lead by myself. This is followed by an original spoken epigraph by poet, Joni Gallagher. Then, as little as one, or as many as three short stories are read by various storytellers.
Where does the series take place?
The Astoria Bookshop
31-29 31st St
New York, NY 11106
When and how often is the series performed (and is it seasonal)?
This series is seasonal. It happens every Monday night at 7pm throughout the month of October.
How long has the series been active?
This is the inaugural year of the series. It began October 3, 2016.
Where can people find information about series on the web?
Do you take submissions, solicit material, or a combination?
This year I did not take submissions, but hope in the future to include more up and coming and local authors. If authors are interested in submitting for next year’s reading series, please send inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Did you set out with specific goals when the series was launched and have they changed over time?
I set out to do only classic horror literature, but that idea changed when the Astoria Bookshop suggested I use pieces that can be found in their inventory. This opened me up to some wonderful contemporary pieces I had never read by very talented authors. I hope that next year I can highlight more emerging and established NY authors. I would like to keep it local as I can since there is so much talent in this city, though I am open to featuring stories by authors from other areas as well.
What distinguishes the series from others?
See No Evil is a scary story series that will creep under your skin, rather than run up behind you and yell “Boo”!
This series highlights short stories that are at times frightening, often funny and quirky, and always well-written.The masks that give See No Evil its name, give an original flare to the series and offer a different way to experience storytelling. Eye masks encourage listeners to activate their imaginations, letting the reader take them through a dreamscape uninterrupted.
The next See No Evil reading focusing on Beasts will be on Monday, October 24, 2016 and features Jason Reyes, Patricia Santomasso, and Daniel Harray.