2012 Magic Barrel poster

Margarita Patricia Rosa Donnelly de Donnelly is a founding editor of CALYX, Inc. Margarita retired from CALYX in 2010 after 35 years. Running a non-profit press and reading manuscripts while publishing close to 3,500 women authors and artists precluded work on her writing. She co-edited seven anthologies including; Bearing Witness/Sobreviviendo, the first anthology of Latina/Native American women, and The Forbidden Stitch: An Asian American Women’s Anthology. She is published in a number of anthologies and was a book reviewer for the Oregonian and other publications. She received a Fishtrap Gathering Writing Fellowship, and a Hedgebrook Writing Retreat fellowship, and has been on the Boards of a number of literary groups as well as a juror for the Oregon, King County, Washington, and Utah Arts Commissions. Her awards include the American Book Award for co-editing The Forbidden Stitch, the Stewart H. Holbrook Award from Literary Arts for CALYX, and The Oregon Governor’s Arts Award for CALYX, among others. A native of Venezuela, Spanish is her first language. She is working on her memoir Swimming with Pirahnas.

Brian Doyle is the editor of Portland Magazine at the University of Portland, and the author most recently of the novel Mink River.







Katie Kacvinsky worked in the entertainment industry and as a high school English teacher before deciding to write full time. Her first teen fiction novel, Awaken, was published in May, 2011, (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt), was nominated for YALSA awards, and was a 2012 Young Adults’ Choice pick by the International Reading Association. She was inspired to write Awaken after falling in love with the beauty of Oregon. It’s a cautionary, futuristic tale that warns about the addictive lifestyle of technology, and how it can disconnect people from the natural world. Her second teen fiction novel, First Comes Love, was released in May, 2012 and her third novel, Middle Ground, (the sequel to, Awaken,) will be released in November, 2012. She currently lives with her husband and son in Corvallis, Oregon. To find out more information about Katie and her books, please visit her website: www.katiekacvinsky.com


Kathleen Dean Moore is best known for her books of essays about the wet, wild Pacific Northwest –– Wild Comfort, Holdfast, Riverwalking, and The Pine Island Paradox, winner of the Oregon Book Award. She is co-editor of books about Rachel Carson and about the Apache philosopher, Viola Cordova. Her recent award-winning book, Moral Ground: Ethical Action for a Planet in Peril is a call to action on climate change from 100 of the world’s moral leaders. Kathy’s work has appeared in many anthologies and journals, including Audubon, Discover, North American Review, The New York Times Magazine, and Orion, where she serves on the Board of Directors. She is Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at Oregon State University and founder and now Senior Fellow of the Spring Creek Project for Ideas, Nature, and the Written Word. She lives in Corvallis with her husband, a biologist. In the summers, she writes in a cabin where two streams and a bear trail meet a tidal cove on Chichagof Island in Alaska.

Oregon’s sixth Poet Laureate, Paulann Petersen was appointed by Governor Kulongowski in 2010, and reappointed by Governor Kitzhaber in 2012. In spring of 2012, Paulann had traveled 15,781 miles inside the state of Oregon as Poet Laureate, giving hundreds of workshops and readings and keynotes in her role as an ambassador for poetry. Funded by the incomparable Oregon Cultural Trust, Oregon’s poet laureate program is a collaborative project of the State’s five cultural partners’ Oregon Arts Commission, Oregon Heritage Commission, Oregon Historical Society, Oregon Humanities, and the State Historic Preservation Office.  Paulann has five full-length books of poetry: The Wild Awake, Blood-Silk, A Bride of Narrow Escape, Kindle, and The Voluptuary. She was a Stegner Fellow at Stanford University, and the recipient of the 2006 Holbrook Award from Oregon Literary Arts.


Marjorie Sandor is the author of four books, including a new memoir, The Late Interiors: A Life Under Construction (Arcade Publishing, May 2011). Her most recent collection of short stories, Portrait of my Mother, Who Posed Nude in Wartime, won the 2004 National Jewish Book Award in Fiction, and an essay collection, The Night Gardener: A Search for Home won the 2000 Oregon Book Award for literary non-fiction. Her stories and have been widely anthologized, appearing in Best American Short Stories and the Pushcart Prize as well as in such publications as The New York Times Magazine, House Beautiful, and The Georgia Review. She lives in Corvallis, Oregon, where she directs the MFA program in Creative Writing at Oregon State University.



A graduate of Yale and the Iowa Writers Workshop, Peter Sears has taught at Reed College in Portland, Oregon, and has served as Dean of Students at Bard College, community services coordinator for the Oregon Arts Commission, and director of the Oregon Literary Coalition. He currently teaches in the Pacific University low-residency MFA department, and splits his time between Corvallis and Portland, Oregon.His work has appeared in several nation magazines and newspapers such as Saturday Review, The New York Times, The Atlantic, Mother Jones, The Christian Science Monitor, and Rolling Stone, as well as in literary magazines such as Field, New Letters, Iowa Review, Poetry Northwest, Antioch Review, Ploughshares, and Seneca Review. Sears is the author of three full-length poetry collections –– Tour: New and Selected Poems, The Brink, and Green Diver, a number of poetry chapbooks, and books on teaching writing, including Secret Writing, and I’m Gonna Bake Me a Rainbow Poem.

Clemens Starck is a Princeton drop-out and a former merchant seaman. He has worked at many jobs, but mostly as a carpenter and construction foreman on the West Coast’s San Francisco, British Columbia, and Oregon. His first book of poems, Journeyman’s Wages, received the 1996 Oregon Book Award as well as the William Stafford Memorial Poetry Award from the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association. His next two books, Studying Russian on Company Time (1999) and China Basin (2002) were also finalists for the Oregon Book Award. Traveling Incognito, a letterpress chapbook from Wood Works in Seattle, appeared in 2004. A new book, Rembrandt, Chainsaw, has just been published in the fall of 2011. He lives on forty-some acres in the country outside of Dallas, Oregon, in the mid-Willamette Valley.


Following the fall of the Shah of Iran in 1979 and the purges that targeted the author’s class, Aria Minu-Sepehr sought refuge in the United States. The hostage crisis, a year later, would prove that the edicts of the Iranian Revolution could impact the global community and destroy the goodwill of one people for another. Aria Minu-Sepehr has worked to bridge that divide. He has lectured on issues concerning Iranian culture and U.S. foreign policy, and created and directed Forum for Middle East Awareness at Susquehanna University, where he also taught world and Middle Eastern literature. In 2007, an excerpt of We Heard the Heavens Then was awarded the John Guyon Literary Non-Fiction Prize. Aria Minu-Sepehr lives with his family in Oregon.

Although no single style defines the Sideways Portal sound, improvisation, groove, intention, and forgiveness provide the foundation for each of the Portal’s spontaneous compositions. The group includes Dave Storrs (Drums), Rob Birdwell (Trumpet), Ben Mutschler (Tenor Sax/Bass Clarinet), and Page Hundemer (Bass and Percussion). Their website is http://www.birdwellmusic.com/bands-projects/sideways-portal.aspx.