There are two events happening that readers on the east coast might be interested in. Both events have their main speakers this Saturday (11/3), though SAWCC actually has a reading/performance on Friday night and creative workshops and panels on Saturday.
First, for people in and near Washington DC, you may wish to attend the SALTAF festival, which features Madhur Jaffrey, Amitava Kumar, Thrity Umrigar, Rishi Reddi, and Canadian filmmaker Vic Sarin (whose film, Partition, is screening at the festival). Kicking off the festival as a whole is the much-hyped Hindi film Loins of Punjab Presents, which I've been waiting to see for months, damnit.
In New York, it's the SAWCC conference, which this year has the charming title, "Electric Ladyland." SAWCC participants are younger and more "Up-and-coming," and the conference itself (which I attended last year) is very much a hands-on, get-involved type of event -- you don't just sit back and sample the wine-and-samosas. I am on a panel called "Pop/Politics," with Mira Kamdar, Sita Bhaskar, and Sunita Mukhi. I am not 100% sure what I'm talking about yet -- probably something involving Bobby Jindal and the latest Tehelka spycam exposé. And Sepia Mutiny blogger Anna is on a panel called "Eat, Pray, Love: Writing/Crafting/Cooking the Personal Narrative," with food writer Chitrita Banerji, and Janki Khatau.
Incidentally, if you're interested in the creative writing workshops on Saturday morning, you should email firstname.lastname@example.org, though they may already be filled up (the workshops are limited to 12 people each).