Category Archives: Events
Have you ever thought about writing your memoir? Join five local bestselling and award-winning authors—Darien Gee, Frances Kakugawa, Mark Panek, Leslie Lang and Billy Bergin—at a talk-story discussion panel on memoir and writing down the stories of our lives.
Saturday, Sept. 20, 1:30PM
(160 Kamehameha Ave., Hilo, Hawai‘i Island)
Bring your questions and learn about this popular form of narrative nonfiction. Nationally bestselling author Darien Gee’s newest book, Writing the Hawai‘i Memoir, in which the other four panelists are featured, serves as the springboard for discussion.
Writing the Hawai‘i Memoir uses Hawai‘i’s rich cultural diversity and history of oral storytelling to propel writers into action. The “soup to nuts” structure of the book leads writers of any experience level through a natural, intuitive writing process that can be followed at any pace, quick or slow. Gee includes writing tips and inspiration from more than 20 of Hawai‘i’s best known writers, teachers, and storytellers, plus 29 writing exercises and prompts to further the reader’s work.
Darien Gee is the nationally bestselling author of six novels, three written under the pen name Mia King. Her books have sold in 14 countries and are available in hardback, paperback, audio and digital formats. She has taught writing and publication classes, including her popular “Writing the Memoir” and “Memoir Master Class” workshops, for over 15 years in Hawai‘i and throughout the United States. Gee’s popular North Hawaii News column, “Writer’s Corner,” has helped thousands of people express their creativity through all forms of writing, including novels, life stories and memoirs.
As writers of poetry, fiction and non-fiction the panel members bring a wealth of knowledge to the table. Frances Kakugawa is a caregiving advocate and author of 11 books. Mark Panek is a University of Hawai‘i professor of creative writing and author of three books. Leslie Lang is a writer and editor specializing in assisting others with family histories via her Talk Story Press, with three books to her credit. Dr. Billy Bergin was the chief veterinarian at Parker Ranch for 25 years and author of a series on the history of Parker Ranch.
Eddie Wen’ Go: The Story of the Upside-Down Canoe, Marion Lyman-Mersereau’s captivating children’s book about the courageous Eddie Aikau, told by the sea creatures who watched as the voyaging canoe Hokule’a overturned during a storm and the brave waterman Aikau paddled off for help, will be staged next month at the Hawai’i Theatre as part of the HTC ‘Ohana Series.
Marion Lyman-Mersereau, a crewmate aboard Hokule’a during its fateful voyage, wrote Eddie Wen’ Go to share Aikau’s legacy of courage and sacrifice. It has long been her dream to see Eddie Wen’ Go as a live-action play and that day has finally come!
Coinciding with Hōkūleʻa’s round-the-world voyage, this imaginative production uses hula, chant, masks and puppetry to bring the book to life. Two performances will be held on Friday, September 19, 7pm and Saturday, September 20, 2pm. To purchase tickets or to learn about student matinee performances, visit the Hawai’i Theatre website.
Waialua Public Library Authors’ Night featuring Jerry Burris and Ken Kobayashi (Judge Sam King: A Memoir)
Friends of Waialua Public Library’s Authors Night program will be held on Thursday, March 6th, 6:30 PM. This year’s event will feature a presentation and book signing with Jerry Burris and Ken Kobayashi, co-collaborators on Judge Sam King: A Memoir. The annual event is a wonderful way for attendees to meet local authors and book purchases help benefit the Waialua Public Library.
When Judge Samuel P. King died in 2010 at the age of 94, Hawai‘i Gov. Neil Abercrombie called him “the heart and soul of Hawai‘i.” Now, in Judge King’s own words, Judge Sam King: A Memoir presents the story of the man who not only witnessed Hawaiian history but helped shape the future of the islands he loved. In 2009 journalists Jerry Burris and Ken Kobayashi began a series of recorded conversations with Judge King, meeting several times a week in his office. After Judge King’s passing a year later, the duo continued work on the book, with support from the King family, combining the recorded conversations with an oral history conducted by the judge’s former law clerk, Susan Lee Waggener, and the trove of writings, news stories, speeches and other material carefully saved and organized by Judge King’s wife, Anne, and Rebecca Berry, his secretary for much of his legal career.
In addition to Judge Sam King: A Memoir, the event will feature other local titles: Song of Planet Earth by Leighton Chong; Kohola, King of the Whales by Vincent Daubenspeck; and Hawaiian Herbal Medicine by June Gutmanis (dec.) presented by Waimea Williams.
The Waialua Library is located across from the old Waialua Sugar Mill. Authors Night is a free event and will include refreshments and door prizes. Please call 10 days in advance if special accommodations are needed. Phone: 637-8286.
Providing daily care for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease or other long-term illness can be a brutal experience. Author and inspirational speaker Frances H. Kakugawa is well-acquainted with the struggles of caregiving, having served as caregiver for her late mother, Matsue, who was afflicted with Alzheimer’s. During this time, Frances found that poetry and journaling helped bring dignity to the caregiving experience. A retired educator, she is now an advocate of the power of writing to enrich the lives of children, the elderly and those who care for loved ones with long-term disabilities. Through her writings, workshops, school visitations, readings and speaking engagements nationwide she helps others discover how to view caregiving as a fulfilling experience rather than a burden.
The award-winning author of 11 books, Frances offers monthly writing groups in Sacramento for caregivers and also conducts workshops on poetry and memoir writing and lectures throughout the country. At least once a year, Frances returns to her home state of Hawai‘i to offer caregiving workshops for the public.
This spring, the following opportunities to hear Frances speak are available on the Big Island and O‘ahu:
Thursday, March 6, 5pm
Presentation offered by the Alzheimer’s Assoication
Aging and Disability Resource Center
1055 Kino‘ole Street
Call Chris Ridley, 808-443-7360, to reserve a seat
Saturday, March 8, time TBD EVENT CANCELLED
Friday, March 14, 8am to 4:30pm
Third annual St. Francis Hospice Grief Conference
Ko‘olau Ballrooms and Conference Center
45-550 Kionaole Road
Registration required: $130 online / $150 by mail
Wednesday, March 19, 4:30-6pm
Workshop: “The Art of Caregiving for Someone with Memory Loss”
15 Craigside Retirement Home – Solarium
15 Craigside Place
Limited space, please register. Contact: Jody Mishan, 295-2624 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Frances’ books on caregiving, Mosaic Moon: Caregiving Through Poetry and the award-winning children’s book, Wordsworth Dances the Waltz, will be available for purchase at her events and can be found at local bookstores and online at www.bookshawaii.net and other online booksellers. Wordsworth Dances the Waltz was named a Mom’s Choice Awards® Silver Recipient in the category “Crossing Generations.”
Our newest book, From Kau Kau to Cuisine: An Island Cookbook, Then and Now (by Arnold Hiura, featuring Derek Kurisu and Jason Takemura), will be hitting bookstores at the end of the month. It’s currently available for purchase at our online store.
In From Kau Kau to Cuisine, food historian Arnold Hiura provides the fascinating backstory of Hawai‘i’s culinary journey from roots in tight-knit communities to how—and what—Islanders eat today. Arnold points out, for instance, that common foods once consumed out of necessity, such as offal cuts or native plants, have once again become popular. The buzzwords of modern cuisine—sustainable, homegrown, foraged—are in fact age-old practices; many old-timers never stopped sourcing, cooking and eating their foods in these ways.
In addition, Big Island television personality and KTA Super Stores executive vice-president Derek Kurisu and O‘ahu executive chef Jason Takemura of Hukilau Honolulu and Pagoda Floating Restaurant, have teamed up to present 30 pairs of recipes. Each pair matches a “Then” dish from Derek—a classic plantation or traditional local-style favorite—with a “Now” dish from Chef Jason—a reinterpretation of Derek’s version or a new creation drawn from the same ingredients or cooking style. The result: Grilled ‘Opihi are reimagined as Baked Oysters with Truffle Hollandaise; Kabocha with Dried Ebi evolves into Roasted Kabocha Risotto; Portuguese Sausage–Hamburger Patty Loco Moco is remade as Sake–Soy-Braised Short Rib Loco Moco. Each dish is accompanied by mouth-watering color photography, while accompanying features offer tips on step-by-step processes.
We’ll also be kicking off the book release with a talk story and tasting event at the Pagoda Floating Restaurant International Ballroom. This event is part of the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawaii‘s “Inspired Food” series (the last event featured Kau Kau author Arnold Hiura and Chef Alan Wong discussing Chef Alan’s book, The Blue Tomato) and is a fundraiser for the Center.
The event will take place on Saturday, February 8 at 5:30pm. (Doors open at 5pm, validated $3 parking at the Ross Dress for Less parking lot on Kanunu St.) Tickets are $75, and a limited number of VIP reserved tables are available for $2000 (10 seats). Each ticket includes a copy of the new release From Kau Kau to Cuisine: An Island Cookbook, Then and Now and access to tasting stations featuring seven different dishes from the book. VIP guests enjoy reserved seats, table service and wine.
Want to see what guests will dine on?
From “Then” — Kabocha and Dried Ebi (Pumpkin and Dried Shrimp)
From “Now” — Roasted Kabocha Risotto
From “Then” — Shoyu Pork
From “Now” — Braised Pork Belly Bao Bun “Sliders”
From “Then” — Poke & Surimi Patties (Fishcake Patties)
From “Now” — Shiitake & Spinach Dynamite-Crusted Opah
To purchase tickets, call the JCCH at (808) 945-7633, ext. 28 or email email@example.com. Space is limited, so reserve your spot now!
Best-selling author Clear Englebert (Feng Shui for Hawai‘i Gardens, Bedroom Feng Shui) will offer Feng Shui for Interiors classes in Honolulu on June 7 and June 8. In addition, Englebert’s special guest during the June 7 class will be Angi Ma Wong, best-selling author (Feng Shui Dos and Taboos series) and the only feng shui consultant featured on the Oprah Winfrey Show. She has also made appearances on Live With Regis and Kelly, CNN Headline News, the Discovery Channel and the Learning Channel.
Friday, June 7, 6:30-8:30pm — Interior Chi Flow Class (Class Fee $25)
This class introduces Chi energy, which is the most basic feng shui concept. The class also covers how to maximize Chi’s beneficial flow and retain it within a home; the importance of doors and windows; how to use feng shui cures; how to locate the powerful spots within a room; how to counter harsh energy within the home, such as open beams and ceiling fans; furniture selection and placement.
Meet & Greet Autograph Session with Angi Ma Wong – 6:00pm
This session is for attendees of the Interior Chi Flow class only. Please bring your copies of Wong’s books with you for autographs. (Books will not be available for sale.) Wong will provide a free update for page 22 for those who have the original edition of Feng Shui Dos and Taboos (white cover; bring your book with you).
Saturday, June 8, 6:30-8:30pm — The Feng Shui Bagua (Class Fee $25)
This class explains the Bagua map, a nine-area grid (based on the entrance) that lies over the floor plan. Yin and Yang are discussed, as well as the Five Elements and their application to furnishings. The power of color is covered and the two power corners, Wealth and Relationship, are discussed in depth.
All classes will be held in the Private Function Room in the Executive Center, Lobby Level, next to Hukilau Restaurant. Class fee is $25 per class. Validated parking is available and no pre-registration is required; walk-ins are welcome and audio recording for personal use is permitted.
Come see us at the annual
Hawaii Book & Music Festival!
Saturday, May 18 (10AM – 5PM)
Sunday, May 19 (10AM – 6PM)
Honolulu Hale Grounds
This year, our booth has moved and we’ll be right next to the Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities Pavilion, where all weekend long, authors and experts will talk about “Telling Lives” in a series of discussion panels centered on the theme of memoir and biography. Several of our own Watermark Publishing authors will be taking part on the panels, and if you’re interested in publishing your own memoir, come talk to us about our new imprint, Legacy Isle Publishing!
Our booth is located in the new “Hawaii Publishers Village” so you can shop not just our books, but the rest of the local publishers’ as well. This is a wonderful opportunity to score great deals, support the Island publishing industry and discover new books from local authors! We already said “great deals” but we just can’t emphasize enough the fantastic bargains you’ll find on books! (Scroll down to the end of this post for a special coupon offer from us.)
Here’s a look at which of our authors will be taking part in the Festival and where you can find them:
Makia Malo with Pamela Young & Jeff Gere
My Name is Makia: A Memoir of Kalaupapa
Sat., May 18 | 10AM
Talk-Story and Reading
ALANA Hawaiian Culture Pavilion
Andrew Catanzariti, illustrator
Wordsworth! Stop the Bulldozer!
Sat., May 18 | Noon
Children’s Book Read-Aloud
Illustrating Children’s Books Discussion
Keiki Read-Aloud Pavilion
Gail Miyasaki & Ted Tsukiyama (Hawaii Nikkei History Editorial Board)
Japanese Eyes, American Heart — Vol. 2
Voices from the Home Front in World War II Hawaii
Sat., May 18 | 3PM
“Living Memory — Honoring the Past”
Telling Lives Discussion Panel
Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities Pavilion
Showman of the Pacific: 50 Years of Radio & Rock Stars
Sun., May 19 | 3PM
“Perfect Pitch — Telling Musical Lives”
Telling Lives Discussion Panel
Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities Pavilion
And, as promised, here’s a special savings coupon for you! Bring it to our booth on Saturday, May 18, or Sunday, May 19, and we’ll give you $10 off your $25 purchase. (Sorry, but the discount does not apply to purchases of our super bargain priced used books, and cannot be combined with other offers.)
Can’t make it to the Festival? We’re sad to hear we won’t see you. But you can still get a 25% discount on our books by shopping online during the HBMF week (May 13 through 19). Free shipping on all orders over $25. Use coupon code HBMF13 at http://www.bookshawaii.net. (Excludes our used book selections.)
Watermark Publishing and Alan Wong’s Restaurants are pleased to collaborate with the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai’i to present an event honoring mothers (and all those other women who raised us) and their role in our food heritage.
Inspired Food: The Roots of Hawai’i Cuisine, a brunch & talk-story with Chef Alan Wong & Arnold Hiura will take place Saturday, April 27 (10AM – 1:30PM) at the JCCH Manoa Grand Ballroom. This limited-seating event will include a talk-story presentation by Chef Alan and Arnold on the roots of Hawai’i cuisine and the roles their own mothers’ food played in their lives.
This will be a fun and unique way to celebrate Mother’s Day a little early — ahead of all the crowds!
This event is a fundraiser for the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai’i; proceeds from ticket purchases benefit the Center. Seating is limited to 200 guests; individual tickets are $125, or reserved tables of 8 can be purchased for $2,000.
Each ticket includes:
- Brunch (tasting stations by Alan Wong’s; entrée selections prepared by Pagoda Floating Restaurant; coffee by Pavaraga Coffee and chocolate truffles by Choco Le’a)
- Choice of either Chef Alan’s The Blue Tomato: The Inspirations Behind the Cuisine of Alan Wong OR Arnold Hiura’s Kau Kau: Cuisine & Culture in the Hawaiian Islands
Table purchases also include reserved seating; open seating for individual tickets. To purchase tickets, call (808) 945-7633 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chef Alan and Arnold will be autographing books following their presentation; additional copies of their books will also be available for purchase, to help benefit the Center.
Get a good start in the Year of the Snake by learning more about how to apply feng shui principles to your life! Clear Englebert, author of Feng Shui for Hawai‘i and Feng Shui for Hawai‘i Gardens will be giving the following lectures in the upcoming months:
The Kealakekua Public Library will present a free one-hour lecture on the principles of feng shui on Wednesday, March 20 at 5:30pm.
The lecture will address the differences between schools of feng shui, explain chi energy and how to attract and maximize its beneficial flow. Englebert explains why some energy is considered negative and how to deflect it. Additional lecture topics include furniture selection and placement, locating powerful spots within a room, and dealing with clutter. Tips for relationships and prosperity are emphasized, and examples specific to Hawai‘i homes allow a clearer understanding of how to apply the principles in the Islands.
The Hilo Public Library will present a free one-hour lecture on applying the principles of feng shui in your garden to create positive energy in your home and life on Saturday, April 6 at 2:30pm.
Your garden is your first and best opportunity to create positive energy for your home. Englebert explains chi energy and shows how to attract and maximize its beneficial flow, stressing the importance of the approach to the home. He tells why some energy from neighboring structures is considered negative and how to deflect it. Emphasis is placed on harmonizing the home with the surrounding landform. The examples are specific to Hawai‘i homes, and to the landscape, climate, and culture of the Islands, allowing a clear understanding of how to apply feng shui principles here. He also explains which plants to select and where to put them.
Join us at the January 2013 M.I.A. Art & Literary Series evening on Monday, January 21 at Fresh Cafe’s Loft in Space (831 Queen St.), 7:30pm – 9:00pm, to hear readings from Don’t Look Back editor Christine Thomas and contributing writers, Timothy Dyke and J. Freen. The event is free and open to the public.
To whet your appetite, here’s a teaser taste of the three authors’ stories. (Click through for longer excerpts.)
Timothy Dyke’s story, “No Look Back,” inspired the anthology’s title. His take on the legend of Māui the Fisherman:
I’m trying to construct a tale about my friend, Logan Cabrera. It’s difficult for me to look back at all the events that happened between us and find one clear instance of narrativelaunch. I could begin on the day we met, or on the day I was born. I could focus on the way the trouble started. I could start with the morning I came out of the closet. I could begin today and move backward.
Back in the day, there was a high school teacher and a former student. Once upon a time, I drove the kid out to Sand Island when he was strung out on OxyContin. I could begin with the moment I picked up the telephone. I could describe the afternoon in Phoenix when I watched him snort heroin through the shaft of a ballpoint pen. Or I could start, as I often do, by wandering off on a tangent connected to some recent conversation from English class.
I teach an elective for high school seniors called “The Bible as Literature.” Early last semester, I was talking to my students about the story from Genesis about Lot and his wife. I find that story hard to analyze, and I was asking the kids in my class to explain specific plot points. Some of them have it in their heads that God destroyed Sodom to purge his land of gay people, and while I wasn’t necessarily trying to contradict their upbringings, I was attempting to steer them toward a more nuanced interpretation.
“Hey,” I asked my class as we got to the part where Lot’s wife turns to a pillar of salt. (She would have been fine if Lot had resisted the temptation to turn around and check on her.) “Doesn’t this remind you of the Greek myth of Orpheus?” They looked at me with mild recognition. “In Greek myth, Orpheus goes down to the underworld to rescue his lover, Eurydice.” I saw a kid move a thumb toward his iPhone, but I ignored him. “Do you all know this story?” Most did, but some didn’t, so we etched out important details: Orpheus is allowed to take Eurydice from Hades, but he’s told that when he exits the underworld, he’s not to look back at her. He starts walking and, as he gets anxious, he turns around to gaze behind. Eurydice disappears, never to return again. Erica, the girl with the mushroom design on her hoodie, announced that a Māui story went the same way.
J. Freen’s modern version of the legend of O‘ahu Nui, the Cannibal King, and the ‘Ai Kanaka has been popular at our past reading events:
Try GoogleEarth 1188 Bishop Street, Honolulu, Hawai‘i. Take off from above the mainland, cross the Pacific in a second or two—makes you kind of dizzy the first time. Before you know it you’re above the harbor, coming in, coming in, mouse in hand—hold it—hovering above the office tower on the corner of Beretania and Bishop, at the gateway to the city’s financial and legal district. Lots of stuff goes on here, interesting stuff, but to find out you need to climb out of your computer screen, put on some clothes, some shoes, and hit the street for real.
It’s a toasty January morning in the city. You feel the sun on your face. You are standing on the corner, looking up at the steel and glass tower. In front of you is a short, dark-haired fellow dressed in a bland aloha shirt and neatly pressed slacks—the uniform of the local businessman. His name is Case Izumi. Follow him. He won’t notice you because, actually, you’re still back home, staring at the screen, dressed only in your underpants. I was just kidding about making you do anything realworld today.
His finger is on the button for floor number 21 and up we go. Suite 2110 is to his right, the door with the tasteful sign that reads: Alvin Alakawa, Attorney at Law. Push the door open, and the warm and pleasing face of the receptionist greets the visitor.
Her name is Kilikili, which means “fine misty rain” in Hawaiian. The kind of rain that often fills Nu‘uanu, the big valley behind downtown, in the morning and evening of a day like today. Kilikili’s last name is Pulena, a famous name in Hawai‘i, the family name of a long line of kings and nobles. She is proud of this but more proud, truth be told, of her two sons, Kai and Kawika, aged six and seven—kids she has raised as a single mom ever since their dad took off and left her to fend for herself, which she did, landing a job with big-time attorney and politician Al Alakawa. For six long years now she has been Al’s factotum, a fancy Latin word that means slave treated like dirt.
Editor Christine Thomas was inspired to assemble an anthology of re-invented Hawaiian legends when she discovered that a story she had in the works bore similarities to an old Hawaiian myth:
Pua taps on the redwood door of Kai’s room, and then shouts her brother’s name loud as she walks in. The room is dark, the afternoon sun blocked by a coarse bamboo shade; when she rolls it up, Kai’s deep voice cracks, asking her to close it again. She hears but acts like she doesn’t, leaning over the bed to peer at his face, casting a new shadow over him. She keeps her voice crisp, not wanting to betray worry or acceptance of what could still just be elaborate self-pity.
“What you doing? I have for go school or work ev-ery frick-in day and you just lying in bed whenever you like. No fair.”
“How ’bout I lie down and you go serve grumpy mainlanders at that dumbass Convention Center. ’Kay? Get up or you going be late.”
The mattress dips as she squeezes in beside him and then shakes as she forces a laugh. But when humor provokes no movement or response, the knots return to Pua’s stomach, tentacles tightening. Tutu leans her head in, then vanishes.
“You okay? Should I be worried?”
“It’s nothing. Just go. Go to work.”
“Tutu says you’re not eating. And you sit in here all day, see nobody or even talk. I mean, alone time is one thing, but…”
“You need to eat, Kai. Get fresh air.”
She stares at the ti leaves outside the window, can almost feel the heat soaking into the soft fibers. She gets up and turns on some music. Still nothing.
She is definitely going to be late, and if it’s even one minute they dock her pay. So she asks the inevitable question, utters the name she thinks will rouse her brother and allow her into his thoughts.
“Is it Eliza?”