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Writer-in-Residence at Pasadena City College: Francesca Lia Block (2014)

Research guide dedicated to present and past Writers-in-Residence at Pasadena City College

About the Writer

Francesca Lia Block is the author of more than twenty-five books of fiction, non-fiction, short stories and poetry. She received the Spectrum Award, the Phoenix Award, the ALA Rainbow Award and the 2005 Margaret A. Edwards Lifetime Achievement Award, as well as other citations from the American Library Association and from the New York Times Book Review, School Library Journal, and Publisher's Weekly.

Her work has been translated into Italian, French, German Japanese, Danish, Norwegian, Swedish, Finnish and Portuguese. Francesca has also published stories, poems, essays and interviews in The Los Angeles Times, The L.A. Review of Books, Spin, Nylon, Black Clock, and Rattle among others. In addition to writing, she teaches fiction workshops at UCLA Extension, Antioch, Marilyn's Writing Pad and privately in Los Angeles where she was born, raised and currently still lives.


Discussion Questions

  • Francesca Lia Block is the quintessential L.A. writer. How does Los Angeles figure as a character in her books? How is L.A. defined by her voice and stories?
  • Block has a deep interest in world mythologies, angels, archetypes. Discuss how she juxtaposes these elements with the distinct post-modern world she explores.
  • Block focuses on disenfranchised characters and the exploration of their separation from the normed world, whether it be socioeconomic, age, or sexual identity. What view of “alternative” cultures is Block exploring?
  • Discuss Block’s lyrical voice, her diction and love of the poetic. What kind of mood does this create in her books?

Contributed by Kathy Kottaras, PCC English Division

Francesca Lia Block

Photo by Nicolas Sage Photography

Recommended Web Sites

Books in the PCC Library

PCC Library is home to many of Francesca Lia Block's works. Check one out with your Lancer ID today!