On September 4th, the Beautiful Salvadorean Vendors gathered for a Sip and Shop event at The Speakeasy in San Francisco.
Plenty of our delicious traditional food vendors, Cumbias to dance and shake what your Mamá gave ya, and beautiful merch from our talented Salvadorean community.
Sofia from @SalviSistasinPoetry had the wonderful opportunity to interview Holly Ayala from Luna’s Press and bookstore in S.F.
Holly is a Salvadoran American born in SF with 25 years of print production experience.
Lunas Press bookstore has been in business for 10 years, and has been publishing books since 1995. She has published her own book, “ABC El Salvador’‘ , a children’s book that teaches children their alphabet. In each page you will find beautiful colorful illustrations representing our Gorgeous homeland! Along with amazing representations of our Cultura and Indigenous Roots!
She also has published books on her website such as “Telegramas al Cielo” “Telegrams to Heaven” a children’s bilingual book that tells the story of Archbishop Oscar Arnulfo Romero and “Olita y Manyula The Big Birthday.” A story about Manyula The Elephant that lived in El Salvador for 55 years!
She herself supports other Salvadorean authors and publishers by selling other books on her site.
She was inspired to open Luna’s Press because she wanted to have a place where kids books are published that represented the stories of Salvadorean children. To be able to publish picture books that have pictures of Brown children uplifted.
We asked Holly, What advice would you give to those who want to publish books or aspire to be writers? “It’s not easy, but keep having hope! Write as much as possible and put yourself out there! When you are ready you can work with an established publisher, independent publisher or you can decide to self publish. If you self publish you need to have money saved to pay for the print and distribution costs.”
Luna Press has big plans for the future, such as starting an imprint (a subpress company), whose possible name will be Metzli, which means “Moon’ in our Native language, Nahuat.
Our very own Sofia’s abuelita, went to the event.
She felt the event was a good way to expose the beauty of Salvadorean people. “Our music, our food, crafts and so much more! It was a perfect way to represent El Salvador. We are not only about violence, like it has been told for many years. We are very kind people, we love music, we’re very welcoming and most of all we’re very family oriented. I also believe that this event was a great success, there should be more! I’m very proud to be a Latina Salvadoreña, and I will definitely be there at your next event.”
She was also proud to see her granddaughter Sofia and how passionate she was! “Even though she was born here, she loves her Salvadorean roots. Seeing her interview Holly was impressive. She’s a true, proud, beautiful latina .”
We can support the Latinx, Indigenous and Afro Latinx community by spreading awareness and supporting small businesses. We can support Luna’s Press directly by reading and buying books and spreading the word.
Check out the beautiful collection of books on her website lunaspressbooks.weebly.com , Reach her directly firstname.lastname@example.org or pay the store a visit, if you find yourself in San Francisco en La Mission!
Sofia Escalante at Luna’s Press Vendor Booth in San Francisco.
You can find Sofia on TikTok @salvisistasinpoetry and on our biweekly Live Poetry Slam on Club House.