Los Angeles Will Always Be a Character in My Story

For Three Generations, a Writer’s Family Has Lived and Loved in the City of Angels

This piece publishes alongside the Zócalo/ALOUD free event “How Does L.A. Inspire First-Time Novelists?” this Thursday, November 10, at 7PM PST. Register to attend in person or online.

It took until the cusp of middle age—the ripe age of 39—for me to write what would become my first book.

The spark for this new stage of my life was grief. My wife and I were lucky to have a healthy 8-year-old boy, but the pregnancy had been difficult. Little did we know that the experience would …

Every Era’s Vampires Require New Blood | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Every Era’s Vampires Require New Blood

A Queer, Multiracial Adaptation of Anne Rice’s Seminal Novel Follows a 200-Year-Old Tradition

For all the puffy shirts, brooding glances, and implicit queerness of Interview with the Vampire, the blockbuster 1976 novel by the late Anne Rice that became the 1994 cult classic …

Zócalo’s 2022 Summer Reading List Charts New Waters

From Poets to Politicians, Our Friends Suggest Intellectual Travel Companions as We Set Sail for the Season

We at the good ship Zócalo are setting sail for another summer of intellectual exploration. As always, to aid us on this important voyage, we’ve recruited an intrepid crew of …

Why Do We Love ‘Choose-Your-Own-Adventure’ Stories?

From the I Ching to an Upcoming Netflix Romcom, Interactive Fiction Dares Us to Decide What Happens Next

The new Netflix original horror movie Choose or Die turns on an interactive computer game called “CURS>R,” which resembles a classic ’80s adventure program in which a user inputs text …

Where I Go: Afropalonia | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Where I Go: Afropalonia

Writer and Poet Rashaad Thomas Imagines 'a Planet Only for Black People'

eath sits next to me, hip bones touching mine on a twin bed in the center of a revolving room in Arizona that’s progressively increasing in speed. Frequency numbers, lifeless …

A Fictional Calexit Scenario Offers a Real Warning | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

A Fictional Calexit Scenario Offers a Real Warning

Conservative Writer David French Argues That if Americans Can't Live by Pluralism, the Country Could Split Apart

It was gun violence that finally drove California to secede from the United States.

A series of mass shootings culminated in a savage, Columbine-style attack on a Sacramento-area school that killed …