Upcoming & Past Events

June_ROMS_2015Tuesday, June 30, 2015
6 – 7:30pm
The Rendezvous in Belltown
RSVP on our Facebook event page

Old Growth Northwest is excited to present Volume XIV of our Reading and Open Mic series, an event melting like an sun-bathed ice cream cone with literary intensity. Our headlining readers for this volume will be local talents Maged Zaher, Laylah Hunter, and Bryan Edenfield. The prompt for this reading is: “They awoke to the first day in their first house.” The headline performances will be followed by our open mic, as always, so feel free to prepare ~5min of material and arrive early for sign ups!

Tuesday, April 28th, 2015Poster_April2015_openmic
The Rendezvous in Belltown
RSVP on Facebook

Old Growth Northwest is excited to present Volume XIII of our series, an event packed with so many bright spring flowers we’ve barely got room to put out the chairs. Arrive early to sign up for a 5min open mic slot. Our headlining readers for April include the talented Imani Sims, Nathan Fowler and Janie Miller. The three readers will read original material in addition to their short responses to a common prompt. The authors also have their texts projected onto a screen behind them as they read.  The April prompt: “At the age of six I was already sure I was the last prophet.”

Imani Sims is a stiletto loving Seattle native who spun her first performance poem at the age of fourteen. Since then, she has developed an infinitely rippling love for poetry in all of its forms. She believes in the healing power of words and the transformational nuance of the human story. Imani is the founder of Split Six Productions (splitsix.com), an interdisciplinary art production company that works towards connecting artists and collecting POC stories for production on stage. She is a 2015 Lambda Literary Emerging Writer Fellow and 2015 Jack Straw Fellow. Her book Twisted Oak is available on Requiem Press and her second collection Beloved:Collision is available via Amazon.

Janie Elizabeth Miller is a poet & essayist living on a small organic farm on Vashon Island, WA. She won the Grand Prize for the Eco Arts Awards in 2014 & was a finalist for terrain.org’s 2013 poetry contest. Janie directs poetry studies at the University of Washington in Tacoma & teaches at Richard Hugo House. Her work explores the environmental imagination, the artist as activist & ways to use naturalism (the senses & spirit!) to access greater worldhood. Her work can be found at Poecology,terrain.org, CURA, Cimarron Review, Columbia Poetry Review, Written River: A Journal of Eco-Poetics, Five Fingers Review and others. Please contact her at janiemiller76@gmail.com for questions about classes, manuscript editing or performances.

Nathan Fowler is a local writer and fiction author, currently finishing his second novel for young readers. He’s led writing workshops in elementary schools and currently volunteers with the Bureau of Furious Ideas, a Seattle organization that inspires and mentors young writers. When he’s not writing he’s roasting coffee, learning the game of Go, or exploring the different neighborhoods of Seattle on foot.


Past Events.. 

WEDNESDAY February 25th, 2015

10443098_786637158035387_7346921974209148188_oOld Growth Northwest is excited to present Volume XII of our series! Our three readers include Doug Nufer, Michelle Peñaloza and Chelsea Bolan. 

Read more about our headliners below:

Doug Nufer is the author of three books of poetry and seven novels, the most recent of which are Lounge Acts (Insert Blanc), a list poem consisting of the names of bar bands inspired by the lingo of cocktail culture, and the forthcoming Lifeline Rule (Spuyten Duyvil), a novel where consonants and vowels alternate one-by-one throughout the book. Since last year, he has been performing his homophonic mystery narrative poem The Dammed (ubu.com) with video by Amy Billharz.

Michelle Peñaloza grew up in Nashville, Tennessee. Her poetry can be found or is forthcoming from The Asian American Literary Review, The New England Review, TriQuarterly, Pleiades, Pinwheel, and INCH. She is the recipient of fellowships and awards from the University of Oregon, Kundiman, Artist Trust, Jack Straw, the Richard Hugo House, and Literary Arts, as well as scholarships from VONA Voices, PAWA (Philippine American Writers and Artists), Vermont Studio Center, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, and the Napa Valley Writers’ Conference. She lives in Seattle. Her chapbook, landscape / heartbreak, is forthcoming from Two Sylvias Press on Valentine’s Day, 2015.

Chelsea Bolan is a writer based in Seattle.  She writes a lot about people who long for alternate worlds where they would better belong.  Her work has appeared in The Kenyon Review (online), CutBankFourteen Hills, Borderlands, Poetry Northwest, Bayou, Seattle Weekly, and other publications. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from the University of Washington and an MFA from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver.  In 2010 she was Artist-in-Residence at Milkwood International in Český Krumlov, Czech Republic, and in 2011, she was awarded a GAP grant (Grants for Artist Projects) from Artist Trust to work on short stories.  The manuscript of her first novel, In the Place of Silence, won the 2014 UBC/HarperCollins Canada Prize for Best New Fiction, and will be published by HarperCollins Canada in the spring of 2016.


Previously, in 2014…

December 14, 2014: Holiday Party and Volume XI

2014-12-14 Holiday Party and Reading and Open MicJoin us for a special edition of ROMS, featuring two talented local writers (Malikah Goss and Joseph Kirk) as well as a reading-by-proxy for one of our Voices Beyond Bars students.

For more information, visit the Holiday Party page or RSVP on Facebook.






 October 28, 2014: Volume X

2014-10-28 Reading and Open MicVolume X of our series took place just before Halloween! Our headlining readers were:

Elissa Ball
Elissa Ball is punk. She’s a poet, a friend, a performer, a tarot reader, a show-goer, a punner, a tweeter, riotgrrl, a modern feminist. Elissa’s art incorporates references from love and spit to bike rides and Lisa Simpson. Her punchy, pulsy observations inspire both anxiety and exhileration. You can not ignore her edgy, collective truths about human uncertainty. Her first collection of poetry, The Punks are Writing Love Songs, put out by Blue Begonia Press, was published in July 2012. Elissa is a Washington child. She grew up in the conservative Yakima, where she was the only “weirdo” vegan. Unable to resist the pull of punk and grunge in the more liberal cities, she made her way over to the west side. She studied writing and literature at Evergreen State College and graduated from Fairhaven College in 2006. Elissa gained momentum performing her poetry at art centers, colleges, bookstores, basements, galleries. Elissa keeps an inspiring and extensive list of personal and iconic women role models at her tumblr.

Nicholas Schwarzenberger
Nick writes muddles about Seattle. He works as a freelance editor and writer, and his work has appeared in Crosscurrents Literary ReviewCellar Door, and Poplorish. He spends his time hiking, writing, assiduously analyzing hip hop, religiously watching science documentaries, and drawing with sharpies. He also travels, eats weird food, and enjoys the occasional cocktail and meeting new people. His performances are equal parts fire and brimstone, but it’s delicately sensual fire and the brimstone is well-read.

Tom Doggett
Tom Doggett is a local writer who wears the heavy brow of wisdom with ease.

The prompt for this installment is: “It happened to be one of those buttons we weren’t meant to press..” As always, headline performances will be followed by an open mic, so come with ~5 minutes of prepared material. Arrive early to sign up, and RSVP on Facebook!

August 26th, 2014: Volume IX

Reading and Open Mic, August 26, 2014Volume IX of our series highlighted three local writers:

Anca Szilagyi

Matthew Simmons

Melody Moberg. 

The prompt for this reading was: “My first day on the job was a lot like my last day on the job.”



June 24th, 2014: Volume VIII

Reading and Open Mic, June 24th, 2014Volume VIII of our series took place at the start of the Seattle summer. Our headlining readers will three local authors assembled from across the city: Rick R. Reed,  Amber Nelsonand Treg Isaacson. The prompt for this reading was “I’m glad she wants to stay awake, but I don’t know. Is that really the best way?”






April 29th, 2014: Volume VII

April 29th, 2013 Reading and Open Mic

Volume VII of our series took place on a late Tuesday in April, inaugurating the event’s entrance into 2014. Our three headlining authors held it down – Rachel KesslerMary Ellen Talley, and Charlotte Austin – and our open mic list was full. The prompt for this reading was “She awoke to a note stuck to her forearm.”






 In 2013…

December 10th, 2013: Volume VI

Dec13 postr_OGRnOMVolume VI of our series took place early in December due to the holiday season, but we still brought the talent. We were proud to feature three Northwest authors –  Chelsea Bolan, Evan J. Peterson, and Benjamin Schmitt.







October 29th, 2013: Volume V

2013 10 29 Poster - OGNW Reading & Open Mic

Old Growth Northwest presented the fifth installment of our Reading and Open Mic Series. Three talented Seattle-area authors read their work, and then after a brief intermission, the stage was populated by brave open-mic participants.

Our featured readers for Vol. V were:
Richard Chiem
Jane Wong
Erik Christensen




August 28th, 2013: Volume IV

2013 08 28 Poster - OGNW Reading & Open MicThe fourth installment of our Reading and Open Mic Series featured five gifted authors from the Seattle area: Dana Amromin, Ian Greenfield, Sam Moss, Brian Langston, and Matthew Spencer. These authors wrote original pieces responding to this prompt:

“And then the laughter turned to tears”

You can find photos from this event here!




June 26th, 2013: Volume III

2013 06 26 Poster - Reading & Open Mic Jewel Box

Volume III of our Reading & Open Mic Series featured authors Bess Lovejoy, Greg Bem, and Paul Vega reading original work. After their readings, a few courageous souls stepped up to the open mic with resounding success. Unfortunately, we don’t have pictures from the event, but we can assure it was a blast!






 April 30th, 2013: Volume II

Event Poster - Reading & Open Mic Jewel Box 2013 04 30

At our second Reading & Open mic, Susan V. Meyers, Lillian Nickerson, and Nick Schwarzenberger were our featured authors. All talented in their own right, they entertained the crowd with their readings before the stage was opened for any interested parties. You can check out photos from this event on Old Growth’s Flickr.






 March 26th, 2013: Volume I

OG Event Poster Jewel Box Theater 2013 03 26

The one that started it all! The inaugural event in the Reading & Open Mic Series featured Allison Williams from the Seattle Met Magazine, Chester Bennett from empire builder, and Old Growth’s founder and Executive Director, Al Haddad. Photos from this first event can be found here.