Read650 is a literary forum promoting established and emerging writers through curated live and digital performances celebrating the spoken word. It’s a high-quality platform for true personal stories—two pages and 650 words long, read aloud by the writer before an audience. Read650 places a strong emphasis on the craft of writing—word choices, sentence structures, the arc of the narrative. Our submission-based events are developed around broad themes that invite a wide range of expression. An editorial committee curates and sequences the content of each show and, where necessary, our editors collaborate with writers to further refine their work.
Featuring Mary Catherine Bolster, Betty MacDonald, Edward McCann, Steven Lewis. Our brothers and sisters know us better than perhaps anyone and—love them or not—our relationships with our siblings are likely to be longer than the ones we'll have with our parents or spouses or best friends — the longest relationships we'll have with anyone, ever.
Featuring Jennifer Rawlings, Sarah Bracey White, Annabel Monaghan, David Masello. Ah, summer—a break from school and a time to sleep in and hang out with friends. Or maybe instead it's a time to catch the bus, clock in, and put on your nametag. We've assembled a trio of summer job stories from talented writers who recall those summer days all too well.
Featuring Steven Lewis, Andi Rosenthal, and Kathryn Mayer. Do you remember your first car? How about your worst car? What about your road test or that first big road trip you made on your own? The stories we're presenting in today's show were recorded in the Ossie Davis Theater in New Rochelle, New York at a Read650 live event called THE CAR.
The Great Outdoors 2
Featuring Kathleen Bastis, John Pielmeier, John Gredler, Tom McCaffrey. When I was a kid, my family took summer camping vacations in the Adirondacks. My parents packed a tent and sleeping bags and food and utensils and a deck of cards, and we drove five hours north from New York City to a kind of paradise with trees beyond counting, sweet, clear lakes for swimming, more stars that I’d ever seen before, and a crackling fire in a ring of stone. Instead of TV, there was conversation and stories of ancestors, and time spent gathering wood and water—time that was altogether different from what we shared at home. Those childhood memories shaped the course of my life—and my choice to settle in New York’s beautiful Hudson River Valley. For today's show, I've selected three stories about the Great Outdoors (not all as bucolic as mine); stories first performed for a live audience in a theater in New York City.
What's Cooking 2
Featuring Peter Hoffman, Lucille Iscaro, and Martha Brill. Eating may be the most truly universal activity, and there's a whole lot of preparation behind it, whether we're feeding ourselves, our families, or guests in our restaurant. The submission prompt we published for the 650-word stories you're about to hear was "What's Cooking?" and we invited writers to share their stories of culinary trials and triumphs.
Featuring John Gredler, John Pielmeier, and Kathryn Mayer. Plus, go “Between the Lines” with Deborah Batterman. Gay Pride, or LGBTQ Pride takes a positive stance against discrimination and violence toward lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people. Pride builds community, celebrates our diverse humanity, and erodes the social stigma and shame that has defined and interrupted so many of our lives. For today's show, we've got three stories on the theme, each with a straight —but not narrow—perspective.
Read 650 is the best podcast I listen to. Takes no time to get out of your head and into the minds of great storytellers - one topic at a time.
650 Where Writers Read
These are terrific pieces, read aloud by the writers. I enjoy the mini collections of three or four pieces on a central theme. The work is fabulous, and the voice of the writers bring the essays to life. Rock on 650! Highly recommended!
That extraordinary voice!