Top 10 Reading Series in the Midwest

Here at LitBridge, we love to hear writers read.  We think participating in readings is an integral part of the writing experience that is irreplaceable. We also think that we should reward and celebrate those writing series that are consistently introducing dynamic voices to their communities.  To write an exhaustive list of all the series, we’re happy to say, would be a unfathomable task.  But below are links to ten reading series in the Midwest that we love and we think you’ll love too.  Check it out!

The Big Big Mess Reading Series (

Akron, OH

Past Readers:

Nick Courtright – Punchline

Leslie McIlroy – Rare Space

James Tadd Adcox – The Map of the System of Human Knowledge


The Danny’s Tavern Reading Series (

Chicago, IL

Past Readers:

Hannah Gamble – Your Invitation to a Modest Breakfast (National Poetry Series)

Peter Richards- Helsinki

Cathy Park Hong- Engine Empire: Poems


The Dollhouse Reading Series (

Chicago, IL

Past Readers:

Jonterri Gadson – Pepper Girl

Rebecca Hazelton – Fair Copy (OSU JOURNAL AWARD POETRY)

Zachary Schomburg- Fjords Vol.1


Kalamazoo Book Arts Center (

Kalamazoo, MI

Past Readers:

Adam Clay – A Hotel Lobby at the Edge of the World: Poems

Nina Corwin – The Uncertainty of Maps

Jennifer Perrine – In the Human Zoo (Agha Shahid Ali Prize in Poetry)


Left Bank Books Reading Series (

St. Louis, MO

Past Readers:

Brian Katcher – Awake

Bill Hayes and Susan Seaforth Hayes – Trumpet

Adriana Trigiani – The Shoemaker’s Wife: A Novel


Monsters of Poetry (

Madison, WI

Past Readers:

Eduardo C. Corral – Slow Lightning (Yale Series of Younger Poets)

Kevin Gonzalez- Cultural Studies (Carnegie Mellon Poetry Series)

Nate Slawson – Panic Attack, USA


Prairie Lights Reading Series (

Iowa City, IA

Past Readers:

Harry Brod – Superman Is Jewish?: How Comic Book Superheroes Came to Serve Truth, Justice, and the Jewish-American Way

Steve Erikson – Forge of Darkness (Kharkanas Trilogy)

Dylan Nice – Other Kinds


Spectra Poetry Reading Series (

Rock Island, IL

Past Readers:

Matthew Guenette – American Busboy (Akron Series in Poetry)

Daniel Khalastchi – Manoleria

Daniela Olszewska – cloudfang : : cakedirt


Taproom Poetry Series (

Lawrence, KS

Past Readers:

Chandra E.A. Dickson – A Short History of Our Love

Iris Moulton – Where The Echoes Go

Kellie Wells – Fat Girl, Terrestrial: A Novel


Wit Rabbit Reading Series (

Chicago, IL

Past Readers:

Eugene Cross –Fires of Our Choosing

Adam McOmber – The White Forest: A Novel

Brian Russell – The Year of What Now: Poems