An Afternoon of Non-Fiction with Jennifer Lang, William J. Holstein, and Emil Draitser

Born in the San Francisco Bay Area, Jennifer Lang lives in Tel Aviv, where she runs Israel Writers Studio. Her essays have appeared in Baltimore Review, Crab Orchard Review, Under the Sun, Ascent, Consequence, and elsewhere. A Pushcart Prize and Best American Essays nominee, she holds an MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts and serves as Assistant Editor for Brevity. Often findable on her yoga mat–practicing since 1995, teaching since 2003–with her legs up her living room wall. Places We Left Behind: a memoir-in-shorts will be published in September 2023 and Landed: a yogi’s memoir in pieces & poses in October 2024 (Vine Leaves Press).

Bill Holstein was based in Hong Kong and Beijing for United Press International and has been following U.S.-China relations for more than 40 years. He also has specialized in covering technology since joining U.S. News & World Report in 1996. He has worked for or written for Business Week, The New York Times, Business 2.0, Fortune and other top publications. He lives in Briarcliff. Battlefield Cyber: How China and Russia Are Undermining Our Democracy and National Security (Prometheus, 2023) is his tenth book Learn more at

Professor Emeritus of Hunter College of the City University of New York, Emil Draitser is an award-winning author of fiction and nonfiction. Originally a freelance journalist in the former Soviet Union, where his work appeared in the leading periodicals Literary Gazette, Youth, and Crocodile under the pen name “Emil Abramov,” blacklisted for a satirical article, in 1975, he immigrated to the United States. Besides his sixteen books of artistic and scholarly prose, Emil Draitser has published essays and short stories in the Los Angeles Times, Partisan Review, North American Review, Prism International, World Literature Today, and other American, Canadian, and British periodicals. His work has also appeared in Russian, Polish, Ukrainian, Belarusian, and Israeli journals. His new book titled Laughing All the Way to Freedom: Essays on Americanization is forthcoming from McFarland publishers this fall. His presentation, Sexpionage: The case of Stalin’s Romeo Spy is based on his book published by the Northwestern University Press, which was reviewed in The Wall Street Journal, the New York Review of Books, the CIA’s Studies in Intelligence, the Times Literary Supplement (London), and other outlets. Based on the author’s meeting with the subject back in 1973 and his subsequent research in Russian, Czech, French, and British archives, the book relates the life of a top Soviet spy who seduced women to obtain diplomatic pouches, risked his life to steal Hitler’s military secrets, and summoned physical courage to cross the Sahara Desert and the jungles of the Congo, only to be tortured by the Stalin’s regime, forced to self-incriminate himself in selling out to the enemy, and sentenced to twenty years of hard labor in the Gulag. This talk has been hosted by the Library of Congress, the International Spy Museum (Washington, D.C.), the Association of Former Intelligence Officers, and other venues. It’s also been included in the Smithsonian Associates Lecture Series. Last year, the book was featured in the highly popular podcast series True Spies:

Event Location and Ticket Information

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Hudson Valley Writers’ Center
300 Riverside Drive
Sleepy Hollow, NY 10591
Handicap Accessible? Yes

Date: Sunday, October 15, 2023
Times: 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

Ticket pricing:
Free event
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Presenter: Hudson Valley Writers Center
Presenter Phone: 9143325953
Presenter Website: