Wednesday, October 10, 2012

New website!

Hey, folks.
We've moved to a new website, where we have a new podcast!

Check it out and bookmark it, for all your True Story needs, both lived and Memorexed:*

And if you're reading this in October 2012, we'll see you at our next live True Story, Friday, Oct. 19th, 8:00 pm at Kavarna!

(*Hey, does Memorex still make cassette tapes?)

Monday, September 24, 2012

True Story #17 is Coming Your Way in October.

Friday, Oct. 19th. 

8:00 pm at Kavarna.


And...three solid readers:

Jamie Gumbrecht is a journalist at She’s worked for newspapers in Detroit, Atlanta and Lexington, Kentucky and has an MFA in creative nonfiction from Goucher College. She lives in Atlanta’s Reynoldstown neighborhood with her husband, Jay, and three absurdly adorable pit bulls.

Rachael MADDUX
Rachael Maddux is a writer and editor whose work has appeared in The Oxford American, The Believer, The Hairpin, The Paris Review's Daily blog, and elsewhere. She used to be an editor at Paste and now she's an editor at the Georgia Tech Alumni Magazine. She likes tacos, bad movies and car rides, and she lives in Decatur, Ga. with her husband Joe.

Wyatt Williams' writing has appeared in the Literary Review, HTMLGiant, Fanzine, Creative Loafing, Nylon, and elsewhere. He worked on two oral history volumes, Underground America and Out of Exile, published by McSweeney’s. Earlier this year, he received an Association of Alternative Newsweeklies Award for arts feature writing. He currently serves as the deputy food editor at Atlanta magazine. He feels a little funny about this "truth" business.    

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Stare all you like: Friday, Aug. 17th's Stellar Lineup

Dear citizen,
Did you miss the rare solar eclipse that took place this May? Are you crestfallen because you wonder if you'll ever catch a glimpse of such a rare and wonderful convocation of celestial forces again in this lifetime?*  

We're humbled.
We're gratified.
Because the intersection of literary prowess taking the stage on Friday, August 17th for True Story #16 is rare, rare, rare indeed.  An unprecedented four rogue readers will tell their true tales and share their artifacts from the past.  If you come too, this rare and shining night will be all the more astounding!

More on our readers. Yeah, it's impressive.

Melissa Fay GREENE
Melissa Fay Greene is the author of five books of nonfiction: Praying for Sheetrock (1991), The Temple Bombing (1996), Last Man Out (2003), There Is No Me Without You: One Woman’s Odyssey to Rescue her Country’s Children (2006), and No Biking in the House Without A Helmet (2011).
      Her honors include two National Book Award nominations, a National Book Critics Circle Award nomination, the Robert F. Kennedy Book Award, the Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize, the Southern Book Critics Circle Award, the ACLU National Civil Liberties Award, and the Hadassah Myrtle Wreath Award, among others.
      Melissa has contributed to The New York Times MagazineThe New YorkerThe AtlanticThe Washington PostGood Housekeeping,Readers DigestLifeMSNewsweekThe Wilson QuarterlyParadeRedbookParentingHuffingtonPostSalonTheDailyBeast, and and her books have been translated into 15 languages. She is a 2010 recipient of a doctorate of letters from Emory University and a 2011 inductee into the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame, inspiring her children to ask whether this made her rookie card more valuable.
      A recent New York Times Magazine article, “Wonder Dog,” went viral, becoming the number one most searched and most emailed storyfor the month of February 2012. It has been acquired by Ecco Press, an imprint of HarperCollins, and will become a book.

Thomas LAKE
Thomas Lake is the third of Robert and Elizabeth Lake’s six home-schooled children and a native of Stone Mountain, Georgia. He spent seven years working for newspapers in Georgia, Massachusetts, and Florida before he caught his big break, in 2008, when Gary Smith helped him get a freelance assignment for Sports Illustrated. That story, “2 on 5,” won the Henry Luce Award for story of the year among all the magazines of Time Incorporated, the nation’s largest magazine publisher. Lake believes in using the techniques of investigative reporting to uncover good deeds and prove people right. He has written about a softball player who carried her injured opponent around the bases, a buzzer-beating three-pointer that actually saved people from a tornado, and the man falsely accused of cutting Michael Jordan from his high school basketball team. Lake graduated from Herkimer County Community College in upstate New York and Gordon College in Wenham, Massachusetts. His work has been anthologized in three editions of the annual Best American Sports Writing collection. As of 2012, he was the youngest senior writer for Sports Illustrated. He lives in Oakhurst, an easy walk from Kavarna. You can follow him on Twitter @thomaslake. In 2011 he told the story of his life in a speech at the chapel of Gordon College. That speech can easily be found on YouTube.
Johnny DRAGO
Johnny Drago is an Atlanta-based writer and performer. In 2011, he won first place in Creative Loafing’s annual Fiction Contest, and his play Kiss of the Vampire at the Process Theatre won the Metropolitan Atlanta Theater Award for Best Original Work. Other plays have been produced by Actors Theatre of Louisville, the Bloomington
Playwrights Project, and the Barter Theatre, among others, and have been finalists for Clubbed Thumb's Biennial Commission and The National Ten-Minute Play Contest/Heideman Award. As New American Junk, he has written, directed, and performed in local productions of Medea: A TragedyBilly Budd: A Portrait in SeamenLittle
Fruitcake's [Non-Specific Winter Holiday] Miracle
Attack of the 6-Foot Vagina, and Buckhead is Burning: A Psycho Serial Soap Opera Freakout Dinner Theater Experiment. Under his pseudonym, Dale Vigor, he is currently completing a collection of queer short stories entitled Masculine Adventures for Men, and looks forward to the upcoming publication of his first co-authored novel, the erotic satire Executive Privilege. Both Johnny and Dale have had the privilege of presenting their work for such local groups as Write Club Atlanta, Syllabus, MondoHomo, The Collective Project, The Drive-By Theatre Project, and HydeATL.

Brian Bannon grew up in Wisconsin, studied music history and theory at the University of Georgia and began writing and performing comedy in Atlanta in the '90s. He was twice a finalist in Creative Loafing's fiction contest and has a self-released comedy album titled Rolling Stephen Hawking Up A Hill. With Bill Taft, he co-hosts monthly shows of music, stories and silent film in the Krog Street Tunnel in celebration of the tunnel's centennial.

See you Friday, 8/17 at 8:00!

*(You might, actually, next November. But remember not to stare straight at it, or risk blindness. True Story readings can be similarly dazzling, but they pose no health threat. Stare all you like.)
(Annular solar eclipse of May 20th, 2012)

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Friday, Aug. 17th is True Story #16!

...and we've got an unprecedented four rogue readers and nervy journalists to share true tales and artifacts from their past!

Melissa Fay Greene
author of No Biking in the House Without a Helmet, There is No Me Without You, Praying for Sheetrock, and Last Man Out

Thomas Lake
Sports Illustrated, Atlanta Magazine and more

Johnny Drago
Playwright, writer, performer, and, we hear, "livestock enthusiast"

Brian Bannon
Writer, comedian and musical Krog Tunnel celebrant

See you at Kavarna, Fri. 8/17th at 8:00 pm!

Friday, June 15, 2012

True Story Art!

Hey! The fabulous artist Jimmy Lo created these amazing sketches of last month's show-ers and tellers at May's Artifact Night--and then was kind enough to let us share 'em here. Thanks, Jimmy!  Check out more of his engaging work here.

See you tonight for more true tales at True Story #15!

 1. Alison Harney, of the childhood diaries
 2. Bill Taft, of the passionate middle-school street-letter
 3. Jennifer Nittoso. Totally sneaks Judy Blume under her open math books in class.
 4. Kate Sweeney, to whom something indecent happened at an REM show
5. Randy Osborne, of the haunting childhood tales
5. Sirkka Hougard, whose artifact is her self.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

What to Expect This Friday at True Story #15

Here's some writing from Friday's readers (not necessarily what they'll read on Friday).  See you then!

Nicholas TECOSKY

Mr. Kramer kept to himself.

His grass was impeccably trimmed. Every Saturday morning and Wednesday
evening, from late March through early October, he was out there.
Trimming. Hauling. And in slacks! So fancy.

I went inside of his home once, when his grandson was in town. As one
of Bert's only friends in the neighborhood, I was invited over for
dinner: Chicken, rice, broccoli. A large glass of cold milk. There was
not a speck of dust in his home. His couches were covered in plastic.
A relic, I'd guessed, of the long and dearly departed Mrs. Kramer.  It
smelled vaguely of ammonium cleaners, and everything had an unnatural
sparkle. At the age of nine, I was awed by Mr. Kramer's obsessive

Everything like clockwork. He left for work at exactly 8 a.m. Each
Tuesday, his garbage was on the curb at 7:53a.m. Exactly. I know,
because I paid attention. Close enough attention that I alone noticed
when his Rubbermaid 9W27 Brute Rollout Container with Lid (and a
50-gallon capacity!) leaked a strange red liquid onto his
pressure-washed driveway one morning.

And so I was the only resident of Rock Shadow Court who was unsuprised
when the news of Mr. Kramer's transgressions rocked the world. Mr.
Kramer, you see, had murdered eight college-aged girls across six
Georgia counties, destroying the lives of countless friends and family
in the process. Insane from sorrow, the father of one of the victims
snuck into Kramer's empty house in the middle of the night and burned
it down. The man was found naked in the once-manicured front yard,
weeping, watching the inferno. No charges were pressed.

When the news media flocked into the neighborhood, our lives too were
thrown into chaos. When I was cornered by a particularly unscrupulous
reporter and asked what I knew about Mr. Kramer, all I could initially
think to say was: "He sort of kept to himself," but then, as an
afterthought, added: "and he was so tidy."


I only saw the kid on and off during college. One summer, while leafing through
Rolling Stone, he came across a Fruit of the Loom advertisement with a tiny pair
of briefs glued to it. I’m not sure why. To prove that it could be done? To offer an
undergarment option for the niche market consisting of parents with babies born
both dangerously premature and potty-trained? Who knows? But, the kid quickly
moved from “Why?” to “What can I do with these?”

I’m sure he considered the beagle first, but there was no tail-hole. So, they went on
me. One of his shitty friends suggested that he add a couple marbles to the front
of the underpants to simulate my junk. Yeah, funny, right? With the exception of a
short trial run, I was spared this indignity.

As silly as I felt (although I can’t deny that they were, indeed, pretty supportive), I
think the briefs are the reason I’m not buried at the bottom of a box. The kid found
the sight of me in tighty-whities so continually amusing that he still keeps me

Jeffrey WELLS

from The Atlanta Ripper:

Further in to the fall, the Ripper struck again, this time using a different murder weapon.  Strangely enough, Ellen Maddox, a cook for an Inman Park family was attacked while on her way home from the family home where she served.  While walking home, Maddox was attacked near the Atlanta Stove Works on Irwin Street by someone who hit her on the back of the head with a blunt object.  The attack was so brutal that the papers reported that “…she was attacked from behind, her head almost crushed and her face beat out of all resemblance to a human being.   Not once did she catch a glimpse of her assailant.”  Officers West and Brannen were called to the scene of the attack around 7:00 p.m. that evening.  Maddox was sent to Grady Hospital, her condition quite serious.  Although she was badly beaten and near death, she was able to tell officers “He ran up behind me and hit me and then…”  She was unable to finish her sentence, and no word was given in these reports as to whether she died as a result of her injuries.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

True Story #15 Readers: Where You've Seen 'em Before

Hey-oh, oh-ay. True Story's about a week away. 

Yep: Friday, June 15th at Kavarna, it's another night of true tales you'll NEVER FORGET.  

Well, maybe you will, but nonetheless, we here at True Story know that the evening will remain a point of joy in your life's recollections till they dim, then fade to nothing but a feeling of warmth and camaraderie that are evoked one day when a stranger or a friend speaks the words: "True Story. June 2012." 
Sunlight on your back. 
Fellow feeling.

And in that spirit, here's more about our readers:

Nicholas TECOSKY
Nicholas Tecosky is a writer/performer living in Atlanta. He is one of the cranky nerds behind WRITE CLUB Atlanta and her weekly podcast, and one of the writers behind V/H/S, the found-footage horror omnibus opening in theaters in October. He occasionally acts as well, and will be seen as a grumpy Russian underling this autumn in A&E's miniseries Coma. He co-shares a large dog.

Listen, people: Jack Walsh is not to be trifled with. Or, should that be “is not one with whom you should trifle?” Trifle not with the one who is called Jack Walsh.

Bleh. Whatever. Don’t mess with Jack. He’s like a force of nature most akin to, let’s say, an overcast day. He can’t decide if he’s going to be temperate and breezy or dull and depressing or just end up ruining your ultimate Frisbee game. So there. Y’know what, though? So what if it’s cloudy? We should totally go do something fun, you guys! 

But, on second thought, Jack should probably try to make it into the office sometime today. There, he co-produces the Emmy-winning program Get Delicious! on PBA30, which you might know better as “that show on the other PBS station where the big, bearded, tattooed guy eats a lot of food.” 

That reminds me: you should definitely check out the new episode when it premieres on July 5. There are several reasons to do so, not least of which is a guest appearance by the curator and host of a certain bi-monthly reading series that takes place at Kavarna. Another reason is that it’s subtitled “Barbeque, Bacon and Other Adventures in Meat.” 

Jack also directed the Emmy-winning Four Days at Dragon*Con and co-produces the multiple Emmy-losing This is Atlanta.

Jeffery WELLS
Jeffery Wells might read about unsolved murders from Edwardian-era Atlanta. He might read about Bigfoot. That's 'cause this local historian is the author of both The Atlanta Ripper: The Unsolved Story of the Gate City’s Most Infamous Murders and Bigfoot in Georgia.
Wowzers. He teaches History and Social and Behavioral Sciences at Georgia Military College.

See you next Friday.