Helene Simkin Jara

Actor, Director, and Teacher in Santa Cruz, California

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Helene Simkin Jara received her B.A. in Theatre Arts from UCLA. Her self-published book, Because I Had To, is a best seller on Kindle. She has been published in The Porter Gulch Review, La Revista and Mindprints and Nerve Cowboy. In 2003, she was awarded best prose in the Porter Gulch Review for her short story, “Josefina” and once again in 2009 for her play, FUBMC. In November of 2006, her play “The Tongue” will be part of a festival at the African American Shakespeare Company in San Francisco. In 2007, her poem, “The Difference” was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She wrote her first book in the third grade and stupidly gave it to her teacher, whom she despised. That is her only regret in life so far.

List of Publications

2000 – “Who’s Ed?” – short story – Mindprints, Literary Journal
2000 – “Josefina” (Spanish version) short story – La Revista, Literary Journal
2002 – “Thirst” – short story – Porter Gulch Review
2003 – “Josefina” – short story – Best Prose Award, Porter Gulch Review
2004 – “The Hug” – short story – Porter Gulch Review
2004 – “Ashes” – short story – finalist, Glimmertrain
2004 – “Do You Want to Be Happy” short story – finalist, Glimmertrain
2005 – “Is That All?” – short story – Porter Gulch Review
2005 – “Peek a Boo” – play – Porter Gulch Review
2005 – “What Do You Say?” – poem – Porter Gulch Review
2006 – “Unruly” – short story – Gambara Literary Review
2006 – “Thigs” – play – Porter Gulch Review
2006 – “The Difference” – poem – Nerve Cowboy
2006 – “Boxes” short story – Carl Cherry Center for the Arts, Carmel, 2nd place
2007 – “The Difference” – poem – Mindprints, nominated for Pushcart Prize
2008 – “19 Surprising Things Men Have Said To Me” – poem – Porter Gulch Review
2009 – “FUBMC” – Porter Gulch Review – Best Prose
2010 – “Vat Means Rad” – Carl Center Cherry Center for the Arts, Carmel
2011 – “Vat Means Rad” & “Objets D’art” – Porter Gulch Review, Best Prose
2013 - “Laughing” short story, Porter Gulch Review
2013 - Because I Had To, available on Amazon and Kindle is a best seller.
2014 – “Two-Timer”, “Surprising Things” and “Starving”, Serving House Journal, online magazine.

2014 – “BuyingTime,” short story, The Muse, Cabrillo College, Aptos, CA.
2014 – “Starving”, “Two-Timer”, and “19 Surprising Things Men Have Said to Me” – Serving House Journal
2014 – “Bacon and Eggs" Porter Gulch Review
2014 - "On the Train" - Phren-Z online

  • Work
    • Part-time instructor, Cabrillo Community College
  • Education
    • BA, Theatre Arts, UCLA,