The Reading Series

Acquired Taste is a series of public readings, each featuring 3-4 local or touring authors reading their work around a food-related theme. I decided to curate this series because I wanted to showcase the outstanding literary talent in Pittsburgh, and to be part of expanding the literary world’s understanding of food writing to something beyond restaurant reviews and cookbooks.


Authors in or around Pittsburgh, or traveling in support of a current project, are welcome to submit their work for consideration for an upcoming event. Submissions may be previously published, in any genre (fiction, nonfiction, poetry, hybrid). You may submit multiple entries to the same theme, but only if they are meant to be read together (3-5 poems, for example, or two flash fiction pieces). Submissions should be around or under 15-20 minutes reading time, regardless of how many pieces are included.

I’m eager to feature as many writers, at any stage of their career, as possible. I especially welcome submissions from writers of color, and queer / trans / gender non-conforming writers. The series aims to be a space for diverse voices and ideas.

Please submit your work by emailing it as a Word document or PDF attachment to with the subject line “[THEME] submission.” In the body of the email, please include a short (2-3 sentence) bio. You may submit to more than one theme at a time, but know that you will likely be selected for only one. If you have a piece that you think could work for more than one theme, feel free to mention that in your submission.


Upcoming Events:


The Food of Love, Feb. 18th 5-7 PM, Zeke’s Coffee Cafe & Bakery, 6015 Penn Ave. in Pittsburgh

Our annual Valentine’s Day reading will feature stories of seduction from readers Jennifer Jackson Berry, Deesha Philyaw, and Ellen McGrath Smith!

And, for the first time, we’re taking Acquired Taste on the road! Announcing…

Flash in the Pan: Acquired Taste at AWP (Reading: March 30-April 2, 2016)

This off-site reading during the 2016 AWP conference in Los Angeles will feature up to 10 writers in varied genres, with no specific thematic connection. The only requirement for submission this time is speed — all readings must clock in at under five minutes. We want your micro-fiction and -nonfiction, your more lively poetry, that celebrates the vibrance and urgency of food in any way! Submissions for this reading are open to readers from any area, but readers must commit to being available in Los Angeles during the conference.

Deadline for submissions: February 1, 2016


One thought on “The Reading Series

  1. Well, if you ever come to the Midwest, I’d love to read from my new book, Midwest Maize: How Corn Shaped the U.S. Heartland. But I’ll keep track of what you’re doing, and maybe I’ll get back to Pittsburgh while you’re still doing this. Great idea. As a nonfiction food writer, I hope this thrives.

    Liked by 1 person

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