227 N Broadway, Santa Ana, CA 92701

1:00PM - 2:00PM

Curator: J.J. 

Theme: “Empowering Our Latinx/e Community in Literature. “

Ernesto Cisneros

Ernesto Cisneros is the award-winning author of EFRÉN DIVIDED. He was born and raised in Santa Ana, California, where he still teaches. As an author, he believes in providing today’s youth with an honest depiction of characters with whom they can identify.

EFRÉN DIVIDED is an Indies Introduce/Next Pick, Amazon Top MG of 2020 So Far list, and is a ProjectLit Selection, and winner of the 2020 Poppy Award in MG, as well as the prestigious 2021 Pura Belpré Medal and an SCBWI Crystal Kite Award in 2021.


An OwnVoices debut middle grade novel about family, friendship, and tearing down the walls being built between all of us.

Efrén Nava’s Amá is his Superwoman—or Soperwoman, named after the delicious Mexican sopes his mother often prepares. Both Amá and Apá work hard all day to provide for the family, making sure Efrén and his younger siblings Max and Mía feel safe and loved. But Efrén worries about his parents; although he’s American-born, his parents are undocumented. His worst nightmare comes true one day when Amá doesn’t return from work and is deported across the border to Tijuana, México. Now more than ever, Efrén must channel his inner Soperboy to help take care of and try to reunite his family.

Ernesto’s  new book “FALLING SHORT” is scheduled for release on March 15 th of 2022


2:00PM - 3:00PM

Lead Curator: J.J.
Theme: The Edge of the Forest

Caroline Kane Aguiar

Caroline Kane Aguiar has written short stories since the age of fifteen. In 2005 she published a story in the book, Angel Dogs, Divine Messengers of Love, and in 2006, she published a story in Angel Horses, Divine Messengers of Hope.

While living on a guest/horse ranch with her family in Baja California, Mexico where she still lives today, she went on to write two children’s books and a Young Adult Fantasy Fiction book called, At The Edge of the Forest.

Caroline taught school as a Second Language ESL teacher for 20 years. She owned her own school and is fluent in Spanish. She has two grown children and one granddaughter. She loves the outdoors, horseback riding, taking care of her granddaughter, reading, and writing. All of the above describes who Caroline is but writing is her passion and her joy.

3:00PM - 4:00PM

Theme: Golden Thread

Lead Curator: Brenda Vaca

Session Description: Prepare for a line up of amazing local poets who will read at Chapter One Red Room the Line up of Poets includes Diosa X. , Karo Ska, Jessica Villegas, and Brenda Vaca who is the session curator of the event entitled Golden Thread.

Brenda Vaca

Brenda Vaca was born in Huntington Park, CA, and raised in South Whittier CA to a Mexican/Xicana family where the Apostolic and Roman Catholic traditions were hardcore influences. She is the youngest of 4 children, was educated in the local public school system, and earned her B.A. in English at U.C.Berkeley. Later she went on to graduate school in Berkeley earning a Master of Divinity and a Master of Arts in Biblical Languages from the Pacific School of Religion and Graduate Theological Union. She served as an ordained Elder for the United Methodist Church working primarily in “Latinx” communities until a life-changing interfaith pilgrimage to Central America in August 2015. Poetry and writing have been lifelong passions. Riot of Roses is her debut collection of poetry. She is also the founder of Riot of Roses Publishing House LLC in 2021. You can find & follow her @iambrendavaca on Instagram and Riot of Roses on Facebook. You can order her book wherever books are sold or directly at:


Karo Ska (she/they) is a South Asian & Eastern European non-binary poet, living on occupied Tongva Land. Anti-capitalist & anti-authoritarian, they find joy where they can. Some of their other work resides in Dryland Lit, Resurrection Magazine, the Intercultural Press, Ayaskala Magazine, and Marías at Sampaguitas. Their first full-length collection, loving my salt-drenched bones will be released on February 23rd, 2022. For updates, follow them on instagram @karoo_skaa or check out their website

Diosa Xochiquetzalcóatl

Adriana Citlali Brenes-Rios, artistically known as Diosa Xochiquetzalcóatl, is a bilingual educator and the mother of a beautiful, creative soul. With a bachelor’s in English and a master’s in Cross-Cultural Education, she has taught at the middle school, high school, adult school, and college levels. As a true philomath and life-long learner, she has studied many walks of life, from Kundalini Yoga to Nahualísmo to herbalism, as well as delved into several schools of thought, theology, and spirituality. Diosa X first published her poetry back in high school in her alma mater's bilingual literary magazine, Las Voces. Since then, has been published in both English and Spanish in Hispanic LA's Online Magazine and in LA Poet Society's Love Letters to 2020 online edition. She has been a featured speaker/reader at LA Poet Society's One Mic, One Globe and Pomona Art Walk events, Sims Library's Book Fair, Mil Mujeres' La Otra Fil poetry event, and El Muzeo's Poetic Voices: Holiday Edition event. Most recently, she self-published her multilingual poetry collection in 2021 - a book titled, A Church of My Own.


"Letters to My Exes" - Poetry Book of Grief and HeartacheJessica Villegas has been writing poetry for as long as she can remember. She has written poetry about love and heartache, but it wasn't until her own experience with a break-up that she was able to write poetry in the rawest form of feeling. It was then that she created "Letters To My Exes," a poetry book full of poems about how she felt after her break up. What makes Jessica's poetry different from others is that these are not just some sweet words; these are true feelings put on paper after years of journaling them in hopes to help other people who have gone through similar experiences feel less alone in their pain and grief process.Her book could be purchased from Amazon and other authorized vendors. You can also purchase directly from

4:00PM - 5:00PM

Curator: Greta Boris & Megan Haskell

Theme: How Writers Create True to Life Characters

Session Details: Have you ever read a book where the characters seemed more like video game avatars than actual people? Or have you ever seen an actor do something so out of character in the final scene of a movie that it ruined the show?

In this fun and interactive workshop you’ll learn: One of the oldest methods of typing human personality. How to apply the 9 Enneagram personality types to fiction. How personality types alter the course of a story. Which personality types are most commonly used in which genres.

Greta Boris

Greta Boris is the USA Today Bestselling author of The Seven Deadly Murders, a psychological suspense series, The Room for Murder novella series, and The Mortician Murders coming in 2022. She hails from sunny SoCal. where—based on her books which are all set there—things are darker than you’d expect. Her stories have been called atmospheric and un-put-down-able. To learn more, visit her at and grab a free novella while you’re there.

Megan Haskell

Megan Haskell is the award-winning author of The Sanyare Chronicles, an action-packed fantasy adventure featuring a kick-ass heroine, snarky carnivorous pixies, and a quest across nine faerie realms. Her other titles include the epic fantasy Forged in Shadow and the upcoming women’s contemporary fantasy, Aether Bound. Megan is co-founder of The Author Wheel, a website dedicated to helping writers become authors and keep their stories rolling. A Southern California transplant, she’s living the dream of writing while raising her two daughters in Orange County.