It Occurs to Me That I Am America

Octavia Books hosts contributing author Tom Piazza and editor Jonathan Santlofer of It Occurs to Me That I Am America at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, January 30, at 513 Octavia Street.

Please join us for a special evening with contributing author Tom Piazza and Editor Jonathan Santlofer featuring IT OCCURS TO ME THAT I AM AMERICA – an extraordinary original collection of fiction from more than thirty-five of today’s most celebrated authors, writing about the American experience and the fundamental ideals of a free, just, and compassionate democracy.

Introduced by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Viet Thanh Nguyen and edited by writer/artist Jonathan Santlofer, this provocative, unprecedented anthology includes original short stories from thirty bestselling and award-winning authors–including Tom Piazza, Alice Walker, Richard Russo, Walter Mosley, Joyce Carol Oates, Alice Hoffman, Neil Gaiman, Michael Cunningham, Mary Higgins Clark, and Lee Child. The book also features artwork by some of today’s best known artists, cartoonists, and graphic novelists–including Art Spiegelman, Roz Chast, Marilyn Minter, and Eric Fischl–who cover political, social, and cultural issues, this anthology is a beautiful, enduring collection that will resonate with anyone concerned with the contest for our American soul.

All the contributors have dedicated their royalties from the book in support of the American Civil Liberties Union, (ACLU).

“As I remembered this presidential election, what became clear to me was that the contest for our American identity wasn’t strictly a political affair,” writes Viet Thanh Nguyen in the book’s introduction. “It is also a matter of storytelling. The struggle over the direction of our country is also a fight over whose words will win and whose images will ignite the collective imagination.” IT OCCURS TO ME THAT I AM AMERICA is an effort to take back the narrative of what it means to be an American in the 21st century.

“The genesis of this book came shortly after the 2016 presidential election,” said Jonathan Santlofer. “I presented the idea to Touchstone’s David Falk, who has championed it since the beginning. It Occurs to Me That I Am America aims to address the anxiety many Americans are feeling about losing the freedoms for which we’ve fought; to remind us of America as an international symbol of hope; and considers the most basic notion of all: what it means to be American.”

You must purchase the book from Octavia Books to get a signed copy. Please click the “Add to Cart” button at to pre-order now. If you are unable to attend, we will be happy to hold your copy or ship it to you.