Superb Storytelling on Portland’s East End

Is Munjoy Hill the most lit-friendly part of Portland? The Scratchpad Series at Mama’s Crowbar and new guerrilla storytelling outfit might be trying to make the case.

I’ve covered the Scratchpad Series, a regular works-in-progress fiction/nonfiction reading series, before. On August 17th, Scratchpad #3 will be going down at Mama’s Crowbar, Portland’s favorite East End bar for good,  cheap beer. There’s a fantastic line-up of performers for the series this time around, which includes Bridget M. Burns, Kate Sullivan-Jones and Tricia Pryce Henley. The event is free (per usual), which leave you with plenty of pocket change to spend at Mama’s cash-only bar. Scratchpad #3 starts at 7PM on August 17th. For more information and to submit your material for Scratchpad #4 in November, check out

Local writer and self-proclaimed “Some Dude on Munjoy Hill” Jake Christie has just started a flash fiction and independent publishing project called “Small Stories.” Jake describes Small Stories thusly;

Small Stories are just that: tiny little pieces of writing published in tiny little books, made available in tiny little envelopes on bulletin boards around Portland, Maine. Each book is 4.25″ x 2.75″ and eight pages long.

The stories are currently available at locations all over the peninsula; Hilltop Coffee, the North Star Music Cafe, Arabica Coffee, Longfellow Books and Bull Moose Music, to name a few places to pick up the teeny-tiny books. If you’re not a Portland native, Jake still has you covered.

If you can’t find the physical stories in the physical world, they’re also available in fake internet onlineland. The stories are all archived at as flash files, so you can click your way right through a story about interspecies infidelity or a metaphysical sandwich recipe from the comfort of your own home.

With 20 different stories already out on these boards (and more almost daily), there’s plenty of free reading to be had.

Whether you’re picking up booklets or listening to a performer, there’s a lot of free stories to hear up on Munjoy. Check ’em out – you can’t use that “no money” excuse any longer.


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