Back to All Events

Book Reading & Signing with Cheryl Pallant and Patty Smith!

Join us for a book reading and signing with Cheryl Pallant, author of Ginseng Tango, and Patty Smith, author of The Year of Needy Girls. Event is free & open to the public.

About the Ginseng Tango: Ginseng Tango is a travel memoir that chronicles Cheryl Pallant's move to the Korean peninsula to teach English, dance, and American culture and tracks her involvements with tango, Buddhism, shamanism, acupuncture, and death threats from a jealous woman. The book reveals the author's attempts while going through a divorce to feel at ease as a foreigner and navigate struggles between ancient and modern practices, western and eastern ideals, feminism and Confucianism as N. Korea launches missiles.

About the author: Cheryl Pallant is an award winning author, poet, dancer, healer, writing and somatics coach, professor and workshop leader. She is the author of twelve books: Contact Improvisation, on dance; poetry books, Continental DriftsMorphs, Uncommon Grammar Cloth, and Into Stillness;  chapbooks, Poetry by ChocolateThe Phrase, Declaration of Independence, and Spontaneities.

Recently released is Her Body Listening, a collection of new poetry, and Ginseng Tango, a memoir about living in South Korea.  A chapter on dance, Zen, and evolutionary spirituality in Herstories as well as Writing and the Body in Motion: Awakening Voice through Somatic Practicearrives 2018. Poetry, fiction, and nonfiction have appeared in numerous print and online magazines such as FenceHOW2Tarpaulin SkyNorth Dakota Quarterly, and Oxford Magazine, and in several anthologies like An Introduction to the Prose Poem and Food for Thought. She has published over 200 reviews and interviews with dancers, writers, performance artists, and spiritual practitioners from around the globe and was dance critic for a local newspaper for twelve years.

She received the Theresa Pollak Prize for Excellence in the Arts in 2013. Into Stillness was Finalist for the Virginia Books Award and the Southeastern Book Association. Her essay “Gifting Poetry” was chosen as Finalist for the Bechtel Prize. She has received several grants from the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with the Richmond Arts Council.

 She teaches at University of Richmond and leads workshops on creative writing, poetry, contact improvisation, Writing From the Body, mindfulness, healing, and creativity at hospitals and art centers throughout the U.S. and abroad. She founded RVA Litcrawl, dances with Song-ah, maintained the Richmond Contact Improvisation Jam for 25 years, and organizes the Fall East Coast Contact Improvisation Jam. She practices meditation, mostly Zen, for four decades, is an interfaith minister and co-founder of Integral Meditation Group. She is certified in Reiki and Healing Touch and trained in Process-Oriented Psychology, Authentic Movement, and yoga. Ongoing interests include tango, bicycling, hiking, postmodernism, somatics, Integral Philosophy, sustainability, and delight. She lives in Richmond, Virginia.

About The Year of Needy Girls: A young boy's murder unleashes chaos in the life of a schoolteacher and a small New England town. Bradley, Massachusetts is in many ways a typical small New England town, but a river divides it in half—on one side, the East End: crowded triple-deckers, the Most Precious Blood parish, and a Brazilian immigrant community; and on the other, the West End: renovated Victorians, Brandywine Academy, and families with last names as venerable as the Mayflower.

Deirdre Murphy and her partner Sara Jane (SJ) Edmonds have just moved to their first house—and for the first time are open in their relationship—in the West End, where Deirdre teaches at Brandywine Academy. A dedicated teacher from a working-class background, she is well loved by her students. But the murder of ten-year-old Leo Rivera from the East End changes everything—for Deirdre and SJ, for the girls at Brandywine, and for all of Bradley. And when Deirdre is falsely accused of sexually molesting one of her students, the entire town erupts.

About the author: Patricia (Patty) Smith has been teaching American Literature and Creative Writing at the Appomattox Regional Governor’s School in Petersburg, VA since 2006. A native New Englander, she received her MFA from Virginia Commonwealth University. Her nonfiction has appeared in the anthologies One Teacher in Ten: Gay and Lesbian Educators Tell Their Stories (Alyson Publications, 1994); Tied in Knots: Funny Stories from the Wedding Day (Seal Press, 2006); Something to Declare: Good Lesbian Travel Writing, (University of Wisconsin Press, 2009) and One Teacher in Ten in the New Millennium: LGBT Teachers Discuss What Has Gotten Better…and What Hasn’t (Beacon Press, 2015). Her work has appeared in such places as Salon; Broad Street: A New Magazine of True Stories; Prime Number: A Distinctive Journal of Poetry and Prose, Gris-Gris, An Online Journal Of Literature, Culture, and the Arts; The Tusculum Review, and So to Speak: a journal of feminist language and literature. The Year of Needy Girls is her first novel.