Free Virtual Book Club & Documentary Screen for Stories of Elders to benefit Meals on Wheels

Long Beach author Veronica Kirin launches virtual book club to commemorate the selection of documentary Stories of Elders (by David Astudillo) as a finalist in the Lift-Off Film Festival 2020.

The Lift-Off Network is a platform aimed to aid new filmmakers in gaining exposure to the world of film festivals and grow their careers through independent filmmaking events. The Lift-Off First Time Filmmaker February 2020 session featured 32 finalists, including Stories of Elders. The selected winner, Frankie directed by Claire Millane & Silvana Benedetto, will be screened later this year at Lift-Off Sessions 2019/20 at Pinewood Studios in the United Kingdom and at Los Angeles Lift-Off Film Festival, Hollywood.

In lieu of a traditional film screening event, Veronica will be hosting a virtual book club and documentary screening. Participants can purchase a copy of Stories of Elders (hard copy or e-book formats are available), to read in advance of the live virtual event to be held on April 11, 2020 at 2pm EST/11am PST. At the live virtual event, participants will screen the Stories of Elders documentary together, followed by discussion and Q&A with author Veronica Kirin and filmmaker David Astudillo. A portion of the proceeds of the live event will be donated to Meals on Wheels, an organization that is on the frontlines of making sure the Elders in our communities are properly fed during this current global crisis.

In a world connected to technology that pings and beeps for our attention, many of us wonder how this will affect society and our brains long-term. While experts debate the effects, Veronica asserts that our elders have lived long enough to describe the differences we’re experiencing.

Our oldest living citizens—The Greatest Generation—who grew up spanning World Wars and the advancement of technology are a living study on tech’s effects. To that end, the unique perspective of those who lived through and directly after World War II is of particular interest at this point in time of collective self-sacrifice and community unification while our world deals with the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We, at this time, have the incredible opportunity to bridge the gap between generations that grew up with horse-drawn carriages and generations that are growing up using smartphones in toddler-hood. Traditionally, we look to our elders for answers to life’s tough questions In this era of uncertainty regarding changes in society and our children’s development, I chose to look to the people who have lived long enough to reflect on these changes with true knowledge of what it was like ‘before’. This is not a generation of obsolete elders, but a generation that fought wars, economic depression, and has witnessed the effects of the evolution of high technology on just about everything.”

Participation is free, and attendees should register via There is a suggested donation of $20.00 to benefit services aiding elders during this time.