Hugo Literary Series

Since October 2007, Hugo House has commissioned new writing and songs from a theme and writing prompt. The nights are collages of unexpected styles and different points of view, and the writers and musicians are encouraged to work without a sense of obligation, censorship, or stylistic frame.

At the Hugo Lit Series, you’ll see writers willing to take risks, to work without the safety net of editors, publishers, or reviewers affirming the work before they stand in front of an audience and read it aloud. They are writers who share the exhilaration of creating something new and sharing it with an audience before the work appears in a book, between the glossy covers of a magazine, or pressed in vinyl.

Guest writers for the Hugo Lit Series often teach a class before or after the events. These classes require a separate registration. For more information on our classes, visit the class page.

Past Lit Series Participants

  • Roxane Gay
  • Dean Young
  • Natalie Diaz
  • Sheila Heti
  • Justin Torres
  • Jericho Brown
  • Anthony Doerr
  • Tarfia Faizullah
  • Rick Bass
  • Elissa Washuta
  • Lauren Groff
  • Benjamin Percy
  • Eduardo C. Corral
  • Patricia Smith
  • and others!

  • Hugo Literary Series 2021: Season Pass

    After a year of isolation and infection, of “fake news” and challenges to democracy, of wildfires and superstorms, of violence and racial injustice, one question keeps coming to mind: If these aren’t apocalyptic times, then what are?

    For this season’s Hugo Literary Series, we’re going all in on Apocalypse. Over four nights this spring, twelve writers and four musicians will explore all things calamitous, presenting new work themed on, what else, the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse: Conquest, War, Famine, and Death. So embrace your inner mayhem and snag a ticket to the hottest—and most disastrous—show in town.

    A series pass includes tickets to all the Hugo Literary Series events listed below.

    With a series pass, see all four Lit Series events for 20% off. Patron tickets are meant for customers who will be viewing with a group or would like to contribute more to Hugo House.

    All Hugo Literary Series events this season will be held online. If there’s a possibility that the event can be held in person, ticket holders will be notified in advance. Either way, all events will be available to watch online.

    Famine: Ottessa Moshfegh, Leni Zumas, Laura Da’, and Sad13
    February 12, 2021  |  6 pm PST

    Death: Rebecca Makkai, Layli Long Soldier, Lucy Tan, and PC Muñoz
    April 2, 2021  |  6 pm PST

    Conquest: Jeff VanderMeer, Lacy M. Johnson, Juan Carlos Reyes, and Eva Walker (of the Black Tones)
    May 7, 2021  |  6 pm PST

    War: Tommy Orange, Khadijah Queen, Kristen Millares Young, and Amanda Winterhalter
    June 4, 2021  |  6 pm PST