Hudson Valley Writers Guild Newsletter, September 2014

IN THIS ISSUE

Area Announcements: 

  • Paul Pines & Mike Jurkovic to read at Caffè Lena September 3
  • Sign up by September 8 to read at Banned Books Week event
  • New open mic venue to start in Schenectady September 10
  • Expressive Writing Workshop with Suzanne S. Rancourt September 13 at Camp Little Notch
  • Poet Samson Dikeman to read at Third Thursday September 18
  • Navasky to discuss political cartoons at Skidmore’s Fox-Adler Lecture September 18
  • Simona David’s “Art in the Catskills” is now available as paperback & e-book
  • NYS Writers Institute to offer fiction master class with Lydia Davis and memoir workshop with Jo Page
  • Arts Center of the Capital Region announces upcoming writing classes
  • The Write Stuff: A One-Day Writers’ Festival, November 8

AREA ANNOUNCEMENTS

Paul Pines & Mike Jurkovic to read at Caffè Lena September 3
On Wednesday, September 3, Caffè Lena will present poetry readings by Paul Pines and Mike Jurkovic. An open reading will follow. Doors open for sign-ups at 7 p.m., and the readings will start at 7:30. The host for the event will be Carol Graser, and the cost is $5. Caffè Lena, 47 Phila Street, Saratoga Springs, (518) 583-0022, www.caffelena.org.

Sign up by September 8 to read at Banned Books Week event
“Banned Books Week: Celebrating the Freedom to Read” is September 21−27. Banned Books Week is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read. Typically held during the last week of September, it highlights the value of free and open access to information. Banned Books Week brings together the entire book community –- librarians, booksellers, publishers, journalists, teachers, and readers of all types –- in shared support of the freedom to seek and to express ideas, even those some consider unorthodox or unpopular.

By focusing on efforts across the country to remove or restrict access to books, Banned Books Week draws national attention to the harms of censorship. Check out the frequently challenged books section to explore the issues and controversies around book challenges and book banning. The books featured during Banned Books Week have all been targeted with removal or restrictions in libraries and schools. While books have been and continue to be banned, part of the Banned Books Week celebration is the fact that, in a majority of cases, the books have remained available. This happens only thanks to the efforts of librarians, teachers, students, and community members who stand up and speak out for the freedom to read.

On Tuesday, September 23rd, 6 p.m., the New York State Civil Liberties Union, Capital Region Chapter with the Albany Public Library, will sponsor a local ReadOut! at the Albany Public Library Main Branch!  A ReadOut is an event where local actors, writers, poets, and prominent community leaders read  brief excerpts from books that have been banned or challenged in America. Historically, people have read from children books, classics, and modern works of literature.

The NYCLU- Capital Region Chapter is recruiting 10 -12 readers for this year’s Albany event.  If you are interested in participating in the event as a reader, please email your name toJoanna.Palladino@gmail.com.  We typically get a more volunteers than time slots available, so please RSVP as quickly as possible.  If you have a book in mind, you can include your selection as well. To encourage a great selection of material, we encourage no “repeats” and ask that each reader chooses a selection not read by anyone else.

Each reader is encouraged to select a passage from their selected book.  We encourage readers to select a passage no more than 2-3 minutes in length.  This way we can accommodate more readers during each ReadOut!  For a list of banned and challenged books you can go to:  www.ala.org.  If you have any questions regarding the event, feel free to contact Joanna Palladino atJoanna.Palladino@gmail.com or John Cirrin at millais@nycap.rr.com. 

If you are interested in attending (but not reading) the Albany ReadOut!, use this email as a reminder for you to SAVE THE DATE and we’ll see you on September 23rd! Please RSVP no later than September 8th.  Readers will then be contacted during the month of September to confirm their bios and reading selections for inclusion in our event program.

Confirmed readers and selections for this year’s Albany ReadOut! are:

  • A.C. Everson- Slaughterhouse 5
  • Gary Maggio- Of Mice and Men
  • James Yeara- The Things They Carried
  • Janet Womachka- The Giver
  • David Hochfelder- Catch 22
  • Bob Resnick- (To be determined)

New open mic venue to start in Schenectady September 10
NEW! – venue for Open-Mic & Featured Poet! Here are the details:

  • Where – Arthur’s Market, Schenectady Historic Stockade District, 35 North Ferry Street, Schenectady
  • When – Second Wednesdays of the month beginning September 10
  • Sign-up @ 7 p.m., begin reading @ 7:30 p.m.
  • Hosted by Catherine Norr, Jackie Craven & friends
  • Featured Poet for September is Catherine De Salle

Expressive Writing Workshop with Suzanne S. Rancourt September 13 at Camp Little Notch
Suzanne creates a safe, supportive writing community using a variety of writing exercises and response practices from the Amherst Writers and Artists method. No prior writing experience is necessary. This workshop is NOT psychoanalysis and is NOT a grammar class. All genres welcome as we “bear witness” in the telling of our stories in a safe and confidential setting. Writing supplies are provided.

This workshop is FREE.

Friends of CLN will charge a small fee for those wishing to stay overnight and eat meals at Camp Little Notch. We do need all participants to pre-register, even if you are bringing your own food. Please click here to register now.

Morning and afternoon sessions include songwriting followed by an evening performance of “Suzy Blue Flame’s” original poetry, song and stories.

Veteran, and author of the award winning book, Billboard in the Clouds, Suzanne Rancourt, MS, MFA, CASAC-T, is an artist of uncommon diversity. To learn more about Suzanne, her methods, qualifications, and educational philosophy, go to www.expressive-arts.com  or email: kataahdin@gmail.com.

NO CHARGE for those attending the Workshop ONLY and bringing your own food (no meals or overnights).

OVERNIGHT & MEAL FEES

ADULTS
$25 – Saturday only, NO OVERNIGHT (includes 2 meals)
$50 – One (1) OVERNIGHT, (includes 3 meals*)
$75 – Two (2) OVERNIGHTS, (includes 4 meals*)

CHILDREN (ages 6-16)
$15 – Saturday only, NO OVERNIGHT (includes 2 meals)
$30 – One (1) OVERNIGHT, (includes 3 meals*)
$45 – Two (2) OVERNIGHTS, (includes 4 meals*)

*PLEASE NOTE: There will not be a meal served on Friday evening. Please come prepared with your own food for Friday evening if you are staying overnight on Friday.

SATURDAY SCHEDULE

8:30 – 9a – arrive, registration, coffee, tea, etc.
9 – 11a – writing session one
15 minute break
11:15a – 12:30p – writing session two

LUNCH

1:30 – 3:30p – writing session three
15 minute break
3:45 – 5p – final writing session and closure

DINNER

6:30 – 7:30p – reading and performance by Suzanne Rancourt

Well-behaved dogs are welcome but you must bring a hard copy of an updated rabies vaccination certificate. Please note: Dogs are not allowed in the dining hall during meals or meal preparation.

Payments are handled through PayPal. You are not required to have a PayPal account. You can pay with your credit or debit card (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover) — all without having a PayPal account. Complete the registration, then click on the button to pay and follow the “Pay with a credit card” link on the PayPal page (or login to pay via your PayPal account).

Overnight and meal fees for this event are NON-REFUNDABLE. Please email Kitty@friendsofcln.org prior to that date if you need to cancel your registration.

Note: You can register multiple people on the same registration form by clicking the “Add” button under the heading “Register children and additional adults here.” toward the bottom of the form. Note: you will only receive one email confirmation per registration form.

This event was funded in part by Poets & Writers, Inc., with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

Poet Samson Dikeman to read at Third Thursday September 18
Poet Samson Dikeman will read from his work at the Social Justice Center, 33 Central Avenur, Albany, on Thursday, September 18, at 7:30 p.m.  Samson Dikeman is a local poet active in Slam competitions and poetry open mics; he is a student at the College of St. Rose in the Creative Writing MFA program and a senior editor for The Pine Hills Review. 

A reading by a local or regional poet is held each Third Thursday at the Social Justice Center.  The event includes an open mic for audience members to read.  Sign-up starts at 7 p.m., with the reading beginning at 7:30.  The host of the readings is Albany poet and photographer Dan Wilcox.  The suggested donation is $3, which helps support this and other poetry programs of the Poetry Motel Foundation and the work of the Social Justice Center.  For more information about this event contact Dan Wilcox, (518) 482-0262; e-mail: dwlcx@earthlink.net.

Navasky to discuss political cartoons at Skidmore’s Fox-Adler Lecture September 18
Author, editor and publisher Victor S. Navasky will draw on his most recent book when he delivers the 26th annual Fox-Adler Lecture at Skidmore College in September. “The Art of Controversy: Political Cartoons and Their Enduring Power” is the title of Navasky’s talk, to be presented at 5:15 p.m. Thursday, September 18, in Gannett Auditorium of Palamountain Hall. A reception and book signing will immediately follow in the Class of 1967 lobby adjacent to the auditorium. Admission is free and open to the public.

Navasky’s talk has the same title as his newest book, which describes how transformative and incendiary cartoons can be. He said, “Cartoons and cartoonists are usually thought of as irrelevant, trivial, ‘not serious.’ However, that is not true. Daumier was thrown into prison for his cartoons, Herblock was near the top of Nixon’s enemies list, and the leading Palestinian cartoonist was murdered on the streets. My lecture will discuss the role of political cartoons and editorial cartoonists in light of all of the above.”

Navasky has served as editor, publisher and now publisher emeritus of The Nation, which he joined in 1978. He is also the George Delacorte Professor of Magazine Journalism at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, where he directs the Delacorte Center of Magazines and chairs the Columbia Journalism Review. In the 1970s he served as an editor on The New York Times Magazine. In the 1960s he was founding editor and publisher of Monocle, a “leisurely quarterly of political satire” (that meant it came out twice a year).

His books include Kennedy Justice, Naming Names, which won a National Book Award, and (with Christopher Cerf) The Experts Speak: The Definitive Guide to Authoritative Misinformation and also Mission Accomplished! Or How We Won the War in Iraq, and A Matter of Opinion, which won the 2005 George Polk Book Award and the 2006 Ann M. Sperber Prize and of which The New York Times wrote, “Anybody who has ever dreamed of starting a magazine, or worried that the country is losing the ability to speak seriously to itself, should read A Matter of Opinion…”

Navasky is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. His most recent publications are The Art of Making Magazines: On Being an Editor and Other Views for the Industryedited by Navasky and Evan Cornog, and The Art of Controversy: Political Cartoons and Their Enduring Power (Knopf, 2013).

Skidmore’s Fox-Adler lecture series is named for Norman M. Fox and Hannah Moriarta Adler, connoisseurs and collectors of rare books. Adler first loaned her extensive collection of 19th-century books to Skidmore in 1967, and after her death Fox and his family took charge of it, later donating it permanently to Skidmore’s Scribner Library. Catherine Golden, professor of English at Skidmore, coordinates the Fox-Adler program at the college.

Simona David’s “Art in the Catskills” is now available as paperback & e-book
Art in the Catskills, Your Guide to the Catskills’ Rich Cultural Life is a compendium of 80 cultural institutions and artistic events in the Catskills and surrounding area, some in the neighboring Hudson Valley and others elsewhere upstate New York. The guide includes anything from museums and memorial sites to summer festivals, art galleries and residencies, as well as theater and literary retreats. It walks the reader through a wide geographic area, from Woodstock to Livingston Manor, and Saratoga Springs to Cooperstown. Easy to digest, Art in the Catskills makes for a fun summer read. A travel guide to the Catskill region for art and culture lovers. More information at artinthecatskills.com.

NYS Writers Institute to offer fiction master class with Lydia Davis and memoir workshop with Jo Page
The New York State Writers Institute will offer two creative writing workshops during the fall 2014 semester. Lydia Davis, New York State Writers Institute Fellow and winner of the 2013 Man Booker International Prize will conduct a fiction master class workshop, and Jo Page, New York State Writers Institute Writer-in-Residence will conduct a workshop on crafting memoir. 

The Fiction Master Class Workshop will focus on detailed discussion of students’ work, but there may also be assigned exercises and/or readings from published novels or short stories to broaden the discussion of topics such as character, plot, style and form. The workshop is intended for advanced writers – writers who have significant publications in literary journals. The fiction workshop will be held on five Tuesday evenings from October 7 through November 4 at the University at Albany’s uptown campus. 

The Memoir Workshop is intended for writers interested in crafting longer or shorter works or memoir, using readings and participants’ individual work to explore and develop the subtleties that make a memoir a compelling story as well as a re-collection of actual events. The workshop will be held on seven Wednesday evenings from October 8 through November 19 at the University at Albany’s uptown campus.

Both workshops are offered free of charge for no credit. Admission to either workshop is based on the submission of writing samples. Complete information on the workshops and submission guidelines may be obtained by calling the Institute at (518) 442-5620 or by visiting the Institute’s website.

Lydia Davis, fiction writer and translator, has received wide acclaim for her extremely brief and brilliantly inventive short stories. She has been called “one of the quiet giants . . . of American fiction” (Los Angeles Times Book Review), “an American virtuoso of the short story form” (Salon) and “one of the best writers in America” (O Magazine). In the spring of 2013 Davis received the Man Booker International Prize, one of the most prestigious prizes in the world of literature. The award is given every two years to authors of any nationality in order to recognize an outstanding body of work in English or available in English translation. Her newest book, which earned rave reviews, is Can’t and Won’t (2014). She is also the author of The Collected Stories (2009), a compilation of stories from four previously published volumes including Varieties of Disturbance (2007), Samuel Johnson is Indignant (2001), Almost No Memory (1997) and Break it Down (1986). Davis received a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship in 2003. A Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters in France, Davis is also one of the most respected translators into English of French literary fiction by Proust and Flaubert, among others. Davis first received serious critical attention for her collection of stories, Break It Down, which was selected as a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Award. The book’s positive critical reception helped Davis win a Whiting Writer’s Award in 1988.

Jo Page’s fiction and nonfiction has appeared in Quarterly West, Drunken Boat, Our Stories, The South Carolina Review, Stone Canoe, The MacGuffin and other journals. She was a finalist in the 2009 Hunger Mountain Creative Nonfiction Prize. Her memoir, Going Out, will be published by SUNY Press in 2015. An ordained Lutheran parish pastor, she has also taught writing at the University of Virginia, the University at Albany, Hudson Valley Community College and The Albany Academy and has led seminars on the spirituality of writing/reading poetry. Page received her MFA from the University of Virginia where she studied with John Casey. During graduate school, she was a finalist in the Mademoiselle Magazine Short Story Contest. For twenty years the author of the “Reckonings” column for Albany, New York’s alternative newsweekly Metroland, she now writes a column for The Albany Times Union.

Arts Center of the Capital Region announces upcoming writing classes
Here is a list of writing classes starting at the Arts Center in August and September (additional classes begin in October). For more information and to register, visit http://www.artscenteronline.org/writing/.

WRITING WHAT YOU KNOW

  • Wednesdays,September 10-October 15
  • 6:30-9:30 p.m.
  • Instructor: Marion Roach Smith
  • Member: $280. Non-Member: $310
  • Enrollment Max: 20

Flannery O’Connor said that anyone who survived childhood has enough material to write for the rest of his or her life. She’s right, of course. But writing about yourself and your crazy (or not-so-crazy) family can be the big vein, if you’re ready, or the brick wall, if you’re not. This course will help you dig among your stuff and get it down on paper in some interesting, funny, enlightening, compelling, readable and possibly saleable way. Let’s go. It’s there for the mining. Marion Roach Smith is a former New York Times staffer, author of four mass-market books and commentator on National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered.” Suggested reading for the class is her book, The Memoir Project, A Thoroughly Non-Standardized Text for Writing & Life (Grand Central, 2011).

WRITING THE CONTEMPORARY POEM

  • Mondays, September 15-November 3
  • 7:30-9:30 p.m.
  • Instructor: Susan Comninos
  • Member: $173. Non-Member: $192
  • Enrollment Max: 12

What makes a poem contemporary? Is it awareness of the public sphere? Inclusion of brand names? Creation of a conversational voice? Explore what it means, and how, to write contemporary poetry with local published poet Susan Comninos. During an eight week reading and writing course, together we’ll learn, through discussion and exercises, how to repurpose cliches; create “observational” poetry that lends itself to seeming humor and depth; and work on verse forms that counter-intuitively free us up to surprise both ourselves and our readers through self-imposed boundaries. Come prepared to write and participate. Susan Comninos holds a B.A. in English from Cornell University and an M.F.A. in creative writing from the University of Michigan. Her poetry has appeared in Subtropics, TriQuarterly, Quarterly West, The Cortland Review, Tulane Review, Nashville Review, Lilith, Tikkun, Literary Mama, J Journal: New Writing on Justice andGastronomica, among others. In 2010, she won the Yehuda Halevi Poetry Contest run by Tablet magazine. She lives in Guilderland.

FOOD WRITING 101: FROM PLATE TO PAGE

  • Thursdays, September 25-October 30
  • 5:30-8:30 p.m.
  • Enrollment Max: 15
  • Instructor: Steve Barnes

Join Steve Barnes, restaurant columnist for the Times Union and author of the popular “Table Hopping” blog, for a 6-week exploration of writing about food, from the way it tastes to its role in our lives. Sometimes just fuel for our bodies, food more often nourishes us emotionally as well, and since we experience it primarily through taste and smell, senses rooted in primal parts of our brain, food connects us profoundly to our past, our families, our memories and our experiences. The class will cover writing about food in a variety of ways, including but not limited to memoirs, essays, descriptive features and criticism.

FACT TO FICTION: CRAFTING YOUR STORY INTO STORY

  • Saturdays, September 27, 2014
  • 10 a.m. to noon
  • Instructor: Coleen M. Paratore

Do you have a personal story you’ve been thinking of writing as realistic or historical fiction, memoir, or other genre? More than a decade ago, I began writing a coming-of-age piece about a girl in a troubled family in 1970’s Troy, NY. While therapeutic, it read like a weepy diary entry. I asked a noted author: “Should I keep writing it like this or wait until I can craft it into fiction?’ The one word reply was: “Wait.” That was good advice. My novel Dreamsleeves (Scholastic Press) is the result. If possible, read the book so we will have a common ground for our discussion of character, plot, setting and other topics. I will then lead us through several simple but powerful write-and-share rounds aimed at getting us closer to the heart of the story, an essential goal. Writer, teacher, and inspirational speaker Coleen Paratore is the author of 19 books. Visit her website: www.coleenparatore.com.

EXPLORING POINT OF VIEW

  • Tuesdays, September 30-October 7
  • 6:30-8:30 p.m.
  • Instructor: David A. Salomon
  • Member: $58. Non-Member: $64
  • Enrollment Max: 15

In literature, the author’s point of view is the lens through which the reader looks at the world, therefore coloring everything taken in from that angle. This two-week workshop will explore the wide variety of available points of view in writing fiction. We will look at examples and then do some experimenting ourselves.

The Write Stuff: A One-Day Writers’ Festival, November 8
On Saturday, November 8, the Roe Jan Community Library in Hillsdale, New York will host a one-day writers’ festival entitled The Write Stuff, featuring local authors who will facilitate workshops in the areas of fiction, non-fiction, memoir, short story and the creative process.  The festival is designed for writers of all levels, including a workshop for new writers.  Workshops will be followed by a panel on getting published and a wine and cheese networking reception.

The keynote address, entitled “What Kind of Book Should You Be Writing?  How to Choose the Right Form for Your Truth and Your Art—-And Make Money Too!” will be delivered by author and publisher Ellen E.M. Roberts.  In addition, Ms. Roberts will offer individual manuscript reviews for an additional fee for festival participants only.

Other featured authors include Wesley Brown, Laura Didyk and Dara Lurie.

Workshop topics are:

  • Character and Conflict:  Creating a Short Story
  • Narrative Voice in Fiction
  • Creative Writing for New Writers
  • Memoir in Miniature
  • The Creative Process
  • The Six Rules for Writing Non-Fiction that Sells

Registration is required. To register, click here. The early registration fee is $40 before October 1 and $50 after October 1. We hope you will join us for a full day of writing and learning. This program is generously supported by the Hudson Valley Writers Guild.

Hudson Valley Writers Guild Newsletter, August 2014

IN THIS ISSUE
Guild Announcements:

  • Reminder: HVWG non-fiction contest deadline is August 15
  • Hudson Valley Writers Guild 2014 Mid-Year Membership Report

Member Announcements:

  • Misfit publishes special issue: Misfit 10 1/2
  • Updates from M.E. Kemp
  • Barbara Traynor seeks feedback on self publishing experiences

Area Announcements:

  • Reading of John Hersey’s Hiroshima, August 6, 11 a.m.
  • Teresa Costa and Donald Lev to feature at Caffè Lena August 6
  • Sign up now for “Poets at the Fair,” August 15
  • Writers in the Mountains (WIM) presents personal essay workshop with Barbara Apoian
  • Mo’ Joe Comes to Smitty’s August 10
  • Poetry Workshop with Shin Yu Pai August 15
  • A sense of place: Winners and finalists of Regional Writers Contest read August 17
  • Poet Rebecca Schumejda to read at the Social Justice Center August 21
  • Arts Center of the Capital Region announces upcoming writing classes

GUILD ANNOUNCEMENTS

Reminder: HVWG non-fiction contest deadline is August 15
All contestants must be residents of New York State. The entry fee is: $10 for HVWG members and $15 for non-members. Checks made payable to HVWG must accompany submissions. If $30 membership fee is paid with submission, please enclose a separate check. HVWG Board of Directors and their families and/or current or past students and family of judges are ineligible.Submission categories will be memoir/personal essay and humor. There will be a $100 award in each category, and winners will be invited to read their winning submissions at a special program in the fall of 2014. Entries must be postmarked between June 15-August 15, 2014. Contact information must not appear anywhere on the submission. A cover letter must include: name, address, phone number, email, title, submission category, and word count (1200 word maximum).

All submissions must be typed, double-spaced, in 12pt Times New Roman or Cambria font.  Send three hard copies by mail. No email submissions. Submissions must be previously unpublished. Please no pornography or erotica.

This year’s judges are Diane Cameron and Gene Damm (personal essay/memoir) and Anne Decker (humor). Diane Cameron is a writer, writing teacher and creativity coach. She is a syndicated newspaper columnist and blogger. Most recently, she’s written Out of the Woods: A Woman’s Guide to Long-Term Recovery and Looking for Signs: Essays and Columns. Humorist Anne Decker’s essays have appeared on public radio, in local newspapers and magazines. She has an MFA in Writing and Literature from Bennington College. Gene Damm is past president of the Friends of the Albany Public Library. He is the author of Guanyin and Other Poems, as well as A Chinese Folk Tale and Other Stories.

All entrants will be notified of winners by email unless an SASE is provided. Results will be posted on our website: http://hvwg.org.

Contact Jan Tramontano at jantramontano@gmail.com for more information. Mail submissions and entry fee to: HVWG CONTEST c/o Jan Tramontano, 14 Brookwood Avenue, Albany, NY  12203.

Hudson Valley Writers Guild 2014 Mid-Year Membership Report
By the end of June 2014, the Hudson Valley Writers Guild had 97 “active” members, defined as people who paid membership dues during 2013 and so far in 2014. Of them, 46 (47%) already paid their 2014 dues. These 46 dues payers contributed $1,375 to the Guild’s coffers.

There were 7 new members. One person (Leslie Neustadt) made a renewal voluntarily, i.e., without being asked. The other renewals (38) came from people who responded to membership solicitations. So far this year, 60 membership solicitations have been mailed out.

The Guild is especially pleased to welcome the following new members in 2014:

  • Cathryn Abbott
  • Elaine Doremus
  • Lynn Kinlan
  • Nancy Klepsch
  • Cecilia Macheski
  • Jessica Semon
  • Keith Spencer

The Guild had an honor roll by mid-year of three members who made extra financial contributions in addition to their membership dues. They were:

  • Phyllis Hillinger
  • Kathleen O’Brien
  • David Wolcott

The Guild’s Board is most grateful for the confidence expressed by new and renewing members in your ongoing support for the Hudson Valley Writers Guild and the work we do for writers in the Hudson Valley.

MEMBER ANNOUNCEMENTS

Misfit publishes special issue: Misfit 10 1/2
Misfit magazine has posted a special one-time interim issue (a unique “work in progress”): What They Left Behind. These are verbatim selections from obituaries collated by local author Victor Smith with an intro by editor Alan Catlin. The issue, Misfit 10 1/2 is live now. Look for a regular issue (#11) by end of summer. We’ll be actively soliciting submissions in September, although as always, Alan will read anything that comes in before then. Check the new issue out: misfitmagazine.net. It really is special.

Updates from M.E. Kemp
M. E. Kemp taught her mystery writing course at two places during July: Wiawaka on Lake George and the Women’s Writers Retreat on Paradox Lake.  She also made a report on the HVWG Writers Conference for the Mustard Seed Marketing blog.  The conference theme was on marketing, and Kemp served as moderator for the panel, which included poet Dan Wilcox, self-publisher Barbara Traynor and TU Reviewer Elizabeth Floyd Mair.

Barbara Traynor seeks feedback on self publishing experiences
Barbara writes: I am considering self-publishing directly on-line i.e. Amazon, SmashWords, CreateSpace, etc. Has any author published directly via these services (or other)? I would love to speak with/meet with you and talk about your positive/negative experience. If you wish background, visit my website: www.secondcareervolunteer.com, then, please email atsecondcareervol@gmail.com.

AREA ANNOUNCEMENTS

Reading of John Hersey’s Hiroshima, August 6, 11 a.m.
A reading of John Hersey’s Hiroshima, Townsend Park, Albany (Henry Johnson Blvd. & Central Ave.). The event is free and open to the public, and the public is encouraged to join in the reading. Those interested in reading can sign up to participate when they arrive. Please bring folding chairs. Rain site is the Social Justice Center, 33 Central Avenue, Albany.

On August 6, 1945, the United States of America used the atomic bomb for the first time to destroy the city of Hiroshima, Japan; on August 9, the U.S. used the atomic bomb again on Nagasaki, Japan.  Over 200,000 people died immediately in the two bombings, and over a hundred thousand more died in the following decades as a result of the effects of the radiation.

Hiroshima by John Hersey tells the story of the bombing on August 6, 1945, by following the stories of six of the survivors.  The book version has been in print since 1946.

Co-sponsored by the Poetry Motel Foundation, the Tom Paine Chapter Veterans for Peace, Upper Hudson Peace Action. For more information contact Dan Wilcox, 482-0262,dwlcx@earthlink.net.

Teresa Costa and Donald Lev to feature at Caffè Lena August 6
On Wednesday, August 6, Caffè Lena will present  poetry readings by Teresa Costa and Donald Lev.  An open reading will follow. Doors open for sign-ups at 7 p.m., and the readings will start at 7:30. The host for the event will be Carol Graser and the cost is $5. Caffè Lena, 47 Phila St., Saratoga Springs, 583-0022, www.caffelena.org

Sign up now for “Poets at the Fair,” August 15
It’s an annual tradition where poets from local counties meet at the Altamont Fair to read poetry. Many old, new and internationally famous poets have appeared in the past. There will be examples of performance and multi-media poetry and a Poetry Tribute to departed friends and historic writers from the Albany region. If you want to return or come out for the first time, e-mail Alan Casline to let him know at acasline@aol.com. If you have a performance or multi-media  work you would like to do let Alan know that as well. There is free admission to the fair if you read. 

We will have a schedule similar to the last few years using the stage inside the Carriage Museum. We will start at 2 p.m., and there will be a break at 3 p.m. to allow a Lumberjack Show (beer garden anyone?) and a return at 3:30 for our Legends Tribute. Last year Michael Burke came by just for the Tribute and read beautifully one of Art Willis’s poems. That remains a possibility for those who have a departed poet they want to read and can’t make it to our 2 p.m. start.

Here are the event details:

  • Altamont Fair Poetry Reading: Live Poetry, Wednesday, August 15 / 28th year celebration!
  • Hotal Altamont Stage in the Village and Carriage Museum on the Altamont Fairgrounds
  • Local poets read from their own work and the works of the past
  • Performance poetry presented live from our stage
  • Starting time is 2 p.m., continuing throughout the afternoon.

Writers in the Mountains (WIM) presents personal essay workshop with Barbara Apoian
Dare to write! Writers in the Mountains (WIM) presents a personal essay workshop with Barbara Apoian, July 31-September 4. The workshop will be held Thursdays, 10 a.m. to noon, at the Fairview Library in Margaretville. Barbara Apoian, a long-time workshop teacher at WIM, will be offering her new course called “Personal Essay.” This is really “Memoir with a Purpose.” Writers will recount experiences in their lives and the way they changed their future understanding of family, love affairs, career choices and emotional decisions. Essays in general need not be about a personal experience, butpersonal essay includes an experience that changed us in a particular way, and brought about an opinion that is important to share.

Various topics will be suggested, and writers can work on a long essay over the full course or take a number of subjects that they find stimulating or are prompted by hearing the work produced in the workshop. Each piece will be read aloud and gently critiqued to make sure that the message is clear. Hearing the reaction of listeners is so helpful in realizing that we have achieved our purpose or need to make some of the issues and experiences clearer.

This is a stimulating and challenging class. Barbara has taught a similar workshop in Bradenton, Florida, over the winter months for the past four years with great success. It has prompted many writers to enlarge their work into full-length memoir, or continue writing about a variety of opinions or experiences, all generated by truth and an honest urge to communicate with others.

To register, call (845) 594-3548 or e-mail writersinthemountains@gmail.com. To register online, visit writersinthemountains.org, go to “Register Online” page and fill in the registration form. Class fee is $75.

Writers in the Mountains is a 501 ( c ) (3) not-for-profit organization with a mission to provide to the general public a nurturing environment for the practice, appreciation and sharing of creative writing.

Mo’ Joe Comes to Smitty’s August 10
A celebration of the new Joe the Poet book, Mo’ Joe the Anthology (Beatlick Press, Albuquerque), featuring editor John Roche, designer Jules Nyquist and contributors Alan Casline and Mark W. Ó Brien (and hopefully some others). Jules will also read from her latest book, Behind the Volcanoes. 
Open mic to follow. Hope many of you will stay to sup on Smitty’s great pizza! Details:

  • Sunday, August 10
  • 2-5 p.m.
  • Smith’s Tavern, 112 Maple Avenue, Voorheesville

Poetry Workshop with Shin Yu Pai August 15
Friday, August 15. 10 a.m. – noon. Rensselaerville Library. Registration Fee: $25. Description: In this two-hour generative poetry workshop, participants will focus on writing poems inspired by works of art. A variety of writing prompts will be provided to stimulate writing and conversation. Participants are invited to bring pictures of their favorite artworks. Images will also be provided.This event was funded in part by Poets & Writers, Inc., with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. This unique workshop is scheduled to take place during the Rensselaerville Library’s annual Festival of Writers.  All proceeds benefit the Rensselaerville Library. For more information, call the Rensselaerville Library at 518 797-3949.

A sense of place: Winners and finalists of Regional Writers Contest read August 17
On Sunday afternoon, August 17, at 2 p.m. at Conkling Hall, Rensselaerville, please join us for readings by the winners and finalists of our Regional Writers Contest, as well as by invited local authors.  Go to www.festivalofwriters.org for more info.

Here are the winners and finalists of the Regional Competition –

FIRST PLACE WINNERS:

  • Norman Cohen is a Delmar resident, who wrote a column “Family Matters” for the Spotlight Newspapers in the 1980’s, which published a paperback collection of his columns under the same title.
  • John Worth Gordon “Jack,” enlisted at age nineteen in the Canadian armed forces in 1940. Later, serving in India with the United States Air Force, he joined the 27th Troop Carrier Squadron in Assam. Returning to the Capital Region in 1945, he attended Cornell University and bought the farm in Livingstonville where he still lives, works, and writes.
  • Howard J. Kogan is a psychotherapist and poet living in the Taconic Mountains. His poems have appeared in Naugatuck River Review, Still Crazy, and many other publications. His latest book of poems, Indian Summer, is available from Amazon.

FINALISTS:

  • Diane Kavanaugh-Black, in addition to writing, leads Kripalu yoga classes, hikes with a passion, and teaches healthy cooking classes. Her work appears along with original photographs at OfTheEssenceBlog.co.
  • Mary Armao McCarthy of Albany, is a past president of the Hudson Valley Writers Guild and has published in various anthologies and periodicals.
  • Irene Mitchell, a longtime teacher of writing, is the author of A Study of Extremes in Six Suites and Sea Wind on the White Pillow. She is former poetry editor of the Hudson River Art Journal.
  • Barbara Louise Ungar has published three full-length collections of poetry. The Origin of the Milky Way won the Gival Press Poetry award, a silver “IPPY” from the Independent Publishers organization and a Hoffer award. Her work has appeared in a variety of journals. Ms. Ungar is a professor of English at the College of St. Rose and director of the MFA program there.

INVITED LOCAL GUEST WRITERS:

  • Peter Boudreaux is a local handyman and musician who has traded his shingle to join the large diversity of writers in our area.
  • Marion Menna is a retired special ed teacher originally from Long Island who has had poems published in a variety of journals, as well as two chapbooks.
  • Claire North, a writer in several genres, moderates a Poetry Writing and Reading Group in VT, has been a Minister of Spiritual Science for 22 years and holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Goddard College.
  • Maryann Ronconi is former director of Minds – On Workshops at The Rensselaerville Institute for almost 20 years. A homesteading life on an old Helderberg farm and frequent travel have offered her

Poet Rebecca Schumejda to read at the Social Justice Center August 21
Kingston Poet Rebecca Schumejda will read from her work at the Social Justice Center, 33 Central Avenue, Albany, on Thursday, August 21, at 7:30 p.m.  Rebecca Schumejda is the author of five poetry chapbooks; Cadillac Men (NYQ Books, 2012), a poetic memoir inspired by her experience as a co-owner of a pool hall; and the recent collection of linked poems, Waiting at the Dead End Diner (Bottom Dog Press).

A reading by a local or regional poet is held each Third Thursday at the Social Justice Center.  The event includes an open mic for audience members to read.  Sign-up starts at 7 p.m., with the reading beginning at 7:30.  The host of the readings is Albany poet and photographer Dan Wilcox.  The suggested donation is $3, which helps support this and other poetry programs of the Poetry Motel Foundation and the work of the Social Justice Center.  For more information about this event contact Dan Wilcox, 518-482-0262; e-mail: dwlcx@earthlink.net.

Arts Center of the Capital Region announces upcoming writing classes
Here is a list of writing classes starting at the Arts Center in August and September (additional classes begin in October). For more information and to register, visit http://www.artscenteronline.org/writing/.A WRITER’S CIRCLE: ENCOURAGING FEEDBACK & ADVICE FOR WRITERS

  • Thursdays, August 7-21
  • 6-8 p.m.
  • Instructor: Coleen M. Paratore
  • Member: $100. Non-Member: $110.
  • Enrollment Max: 10

Led by prolific author and inspirational teacher Coleen Murtagh Paratore, each class time will be equally divided among participants, and when it’s “your turn” you may use your minutes as you wish: get critiques of a first page or chapter, feedback on a book idea, help with a title, advice on publishing, answers to questions that are blocking you — whatever will help you move forward with your writing. Come write away and be inspired in an encouraging atmosphere. Troy native and resident Coleen Murtagh Paratore is the award-winning author of 17 books. Her publishers include Simon & Schuster, Penguin and Scholastic Press. Her latest publication is FIREFLIES: A Writer’s Notebook (for all ages), pub. date 1-20-14, Little Pickle Press. Check out her website:www.coleenparatore.com.

WRITING WHAT YOU KNOW

  • Wednesdays,September 10-October 15
  • 6:30-9:30 p.m.
  • Instructor: Marion Roach Smith
  • Member: $280. Non-Member: $310
  • Enrollment Max: 20

Flannery O’Connor said that anyone who survived childhood has enough material to write for the rest of his or her life. She’s right, of course. But writing about yourself and your crazy (or not-so-crazy) family can be the big vein, if you’re ready, or the brick wall, if you’re not. This course will help you dig among your stuff and get it down on paper in some interesting, funny, enlightening, compelling, readable and possibly saleable way. Let’s go. It’s there for the mining. Marion Roach Smith is a former New York Times staffer, author of four mass-market books and commentator on National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered.” Suggested reading for the class is her book, The Memoir Project, A Thoroughly Non-Standardized Text for Writing & Life (Grand Central, 2011).

WRITING THE CONTEMPORARY POEM

  • Mondays, September 15-November 3
  • 7:30-9:30 p.m.
  • Instructor: Susan Comninos
  • Member: $173. Non-Member: $192
  • Enrollment Max: 12

What makes a poem contemporary? Is it awareness of the public sphere? Inclusion of brand names? Creation of a conversational voice? Explore what it means, and how, to write contemporary poetry with local published poet Susan Comninos. During an eight week reading and writing course, together we’ll learn, through discussion and exercises, how to repurpose cliches; create “observational” poetry that lends itself to seeming humor and depth; and work on verse forms that counter-intuitively free us up to surprise both ourselves and our readers through self-imposed boundaries. Come prepared to write and participate. Susan Comninos holds a B.A. in English from Cornell University and an M.F.A. in creative writing from the University of Michigan. Her poetry has appeared in Subtropics, TriQuarterly, Quarterly West, The Cortland Review, Tulane Review, Nashville Review, Lilith, Tikkun, Literary Mama, J Journal: New Writing on Justice andGastronomica, among others. In 2010, she won the Yehuda Halevi Poetry Contest run by Tablet magazine. She lives in Guilderland.

FOOD WRITING 101: FROM PLATE TO PAGE

  • Thursdays, September 25-October 30
  • 5:30-8:30 p.m.
  • Enrollment Max: 15
  • Instructor: Steve Barnes

Join Steve Barnes, restaurant columnist for the Times Union and author of the popular “Table Hopping” blog, for a 6-week exploration of writing about food, from the way it tastes to its role in our lives. Sometimes just fuel for our bodies, food more often nourishes us emotionally as well, and since we experience it primarily through taste and smell, senses rooted in primal parts of our brain, food connects us profoundly to our past, our families, our memories and our experiences. The class will cover writing about food in a variety of ways, including but not limited to memoirs, essays, descriptive features and criticism.

FACT TO FICTION: CRAFTING YOUR STORY INTO STORY

  • Saturdays, September 27, 2014
  • 10 a.m. to noon
  • Instructor: Coleen M. Paratore

Do you have a personal story you’ve been thinking of writing as realistic or historical fiction, memoir, or other genre? More than a decade ago, I began writing a coming-of-age piece about a girl in a troubled family in 1970’s Troy, NY. While therapeutic, it read like a weepy diary entry. I asked a noted author: “Should I keep writing it like this or wait until I can craft it into fiction?’ The one word reply was: “Wait.” That was good advice. My novel Dreamsleeves (Scholastic Press) is the result. If possible, read the book so we will have a common ground for our discussion of character, plot, setting and other topics. I will then lead us through several simple but powerful write-and-share rounds aimed at getting us closer to the heart of the story, an essential goal. Writer, teacher, and inspirational speaker Coleen Paratore is the author of 19 books. Visit her website: www.coleenparatore.com.

EXPLORING POINT OF VIEW

  • Tuesdays, September 30-October 7
  • 6:30-8:30 p.m.
  • Instructor: David A. Salomon
  • Member: $58. Non-Member: $64
  • Enrollment Max: 15

In literature, the author’s point of view is the lens through which the reader looks at the world, therefore coloring everything taken in from that angle. This two-week workshop will explore the wide variety of available points of view in writing fiction. We will look at examples and then do some experimenting ourselves.

Hudson Valley Writers Guild newsletter, July 2014

Hudson Valley Writers Guild Newsletter

Important note: Do not submit news items for future newsletters by replying to this email. INSTEAD, please send news items to hvwgnews@gmail.com. Thank you!

ALSO: Please note, due to summer schedules, the August edition of the HVWG newsletter will not be distributed until August 5 (instead of August 1). 
IN THIS ISSUE

Area Announcements: 

  • Caffè Lena features Jesse Muse & Elizabeth K. Gordon July 2
  • Poets in the Park 2014 Readings scheduled for July 12, 19 & 26
  • Third Thursday features Susan Maurer July 17
  • “Food Media Bootcamp” July 17-20 at Longhouse
  • Roeliff Jansen Community Library hosts literary events this summer

AREA ANNOUNCEMENTS

Caffè Lena features Jesse Muse & Elizabeth K. Gordon July 2
On Wednesday, July 2, Caffè Lena will present poetry readings by Jesse Muse and Elizabeth K. Gordon. An open reading will follow. Doors open for sign-ups at 7 p.m., and the readings will start at 7:30. The host for the event will be Carol Graser, and the cost is $5. Caffè Lena, 47 Phila Street, Saratoga Springs, (518) 583-0022, www.caffelena.org.

Poets in the Park 2014 Readings scheduled for July 12, 19 & 26
Poets in the Park is celebrating over 20 years of bringing poetry in July to the Robert Burns statue in Washington Park, Albany. The series was started in 1989 by the late Tom Nattell and is now run by Albany poet and photographer Dan Wilcox. This year the readings will be on July 12, 19  and 26 (Saturdays). The readings start at 7 p.m. and are free and open to the public; donations are accepted. The series is co-sponsored by the Hudson Valley Writers Guild. The 2014 readers are:

  • July 12:  Nancy Klepsch & Luis “L-Majesty” Pabon - Nancy Klepsch has been published in Barzakh, Oberon, Chronogram, 13th Moon, Poetry, Salvage and 200 Proof, among others, and is also the co-host of the 2nd Sunday @ 2 at the Arts Center in Troy with Dan Wilcox. Luis “L-Majesty” Pabon is a singer, song-writer, artist and poet who originally hails from Bronx, NY. Luis currently lives in Albany where he regularly performs at various venues throughout the Capital District. Luis has just completed his first book of poems entitledTendencies, which will be released later this year. 
  • July 19:  Melody Davis & Brian Dorn with fire-dancer - Melody Davis is the author of three books, most recently, Holding the Curve, poems from Broadstone Books.  She has held fellowships for writing from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Pennsylvania Council of the Arts and the Henry Luce Foundation/ACLS.  She teaches art history at the Sage College of Albany. Brian Dorn is the author of two popular poetry compilations, From My Poems To Yours and The Live Versions. In addition to his printed material, Brian is currently focused on developing a stage production modeled after his poem of the same name (“We All”).  Much like his stage production, Dorn will be accompanied by a fire dancer (flow artist) during his “Poets In The Park” performance.
  • July 26:  Geraldine Green & George Wallace - UK poet Geraldine Green is a freelance creative writing tutor and mentor and associate editor of Poetry Bay. She is writer-in-residence at Swarthmoor Hall Ulverston, home of Quakerism. You can read more about her on Geraldine Green Salt Road. George Wallace is writer-in-residence at the Walt Whitman Birthplace, author of 29 chapbooks of poetry and first poet laureate of Suffolk County, LI NY.  A regular on the NYC poetry scene, he teaches writing at Pace University and Westchester Community College.

The Robert Burns statue is located near where Henry Johnson Boulevard passes through Washington Park and crosses Hudson Avenue. Please bring your own chairs or blankets to sit on.  Rain site for each event is the Social Justice Center, 33 Central Avenue, Albany. For more information contact Dan Wilcox, at dwlcx@earthlink.net; (518) 482-0262.

Third Thursday features Susan Maurer July 17
New York poet Susan Maurer will read from her work at the Social Justice Center, 33 Central Avenue, Albany, on Thursday, July 17, at 7:30 p.m. Susan Maurer’s latest book of poems isJosephine Butler: A Collection of Poetry, from Phoenix Press International.

A reading by a local or regional poet is held each Third Thursday at the Social Justice Center.  The event includes an open mic for audience members to read.  Sign-up starts at 7 p.m., with the reading beginning at 7:30.  The host of the readings is Albany poet and photographer Dan Wilcox.  The suggested donation is $3, which helps support this and other poetry programs of the Poetry Motel Foundation and the work of the Social Justice Center.  For more information about this event, contact Dan Wilcox, 518-482-0262; e-mail: dwlcx@earthlink.net.

“Food Media Bootcamp” July 17-20 at Longhouse
An advanced immersion experience tailored to aspiring authors/poets: long days, barn dinners, chefs to succor the soul, amazing surprise guests, bunkhouse digs. Serious fun! Also: pitch your book to a panel of editors, veteran authors and literary agents for keen insight, honing and next step strategy. You’ll be telling great food stories, crafting tasty words, capturing toothsome images, blogging with verve, imagining and selling your BOOK, working social media. Eating well is the best revenge; capturing the experience is even better. Make this the summer you bust outta the box! Here’s out cast of characters:

  • The Fabulous Lee Brothers – food writers, cookbook authors, irreverent savants of all things edible & all round good ‘ole boys;
  • Molly O’Neill – writer, author, founder of cooknscribble.com and The LongHouse Food Revival, impertinent opinion shaper & indefatigable connector;
  • Beth Kirby – writer, photographer, the genius behind Local Milk blog ,perpetually packing cast iron skillet and camera; and 
  • Kate Lebo – poet, bookmaker, author, diva of American Pie, deeply committed to large slices and well-crafted whiskey.

Here are the details:

  • WHEN: Thursday, July 17th, 5 p.m. through Sunday, July 20th, at 2 p.m.
  • WHERE: Rensselaerville, New York. A bucolic 19th century village that time forgot, aka NoWheresVille, Upstate. Camp days and dinners at the LongHouse Barn.
  • HOW MUCH: $1,250, includes all meals and dorm-style housing
  • REGISTRATION & INFO: www.cooknscribble.com
Roeliff Jansen Community Library hosts literary events this summer
The Roeliff Jansen Community Library, which is chartered to serve Ancram, Copake and Hillsdale, is located at 9091 Rt. 22, approximately one mile south of the light at the intersection of Routes 22 and 23 in Hillsdale. It will host several activities this summer, including the following literary events:

  • Thursday, July 17, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., Banned Book Group: Native Son by Richard Wright (facilatated by Len Barham);
  • Thursday, July 24, 6 to 7:30 p.m., Poetry Open Mic Night;
  • Thursday, August 7,6:30 to 8:30 p.m., Banned Book Group: The Glass Castle (facilitator Sheila Moss); and
  • Thursday, August 28, 6 to 8 p.m., Poetry Open Mic Night.

In addition, the library will be hosting several community, music and children’s events. For information on hours and events, call (518) 325-4101, or visit the library’s website atwww.roejanlibrary.org.

* * *

Editor’s Note


I enjoy putting together this newsletter for the HVWG. As a member of the Guild and a working writer in our community, I recognize its incredible value and hope it is a terrific resource for you, as well. Please let me know if there’s anything we can do to improve it. Here are some housekeeping notes:

    • Want your news item published in a future newsletter? Submit it to me at hvwgnews@gmail.com. The deadline each month is the 25th, and the newsletter publishes on (or around) the 1st. Please note: All announcements are subject to editing. 
    • PLEASE INDICATE IF YOU ARE A MEMBER when submitting your publication credits and readings (personal accomplishments). If you indicate you are an active member, I can place your announcement in the member section; otherwise, it will be placed under “area announcements.”
  • Got issues with the newsletter formatting? other feedback? Please email that same address: hvwgnews@gmail.com.
  • The Hudson Valley Writers Guild offers space in its newsletter for submission and program opportunities but does not endorse any programs or publications that are not offered through the Guild.

~Carolee

Hudson Valley Writers Guild newsletter, June 2014

Hudson Valley Writers Guild Newsletter

Important note:Do not submit news items for future newsletters by replying to this email. INSTEAD, please send news items to hvwgnews@gmail.com. Thank you!

IN THIS ISSUE

Guild Announcements: 

  • HVWG sponsors free writers conference June 8
  • HVWG non-fiction contest opens June 15

Member Announcements: 

  • Alan Catlin announces publication of “memoir with poetry,” Books of the Dead
  • Hollis Seamon’s book of short stories receives recognitions
  • Taylor Trade Publishing releases 2nd edition of Pauline Bartel’s The Complete GONE WITH THE WIND Trivia Book

Area Announcements: 

  • Misfit publishes 10th issue
  • Elizabeth Gordon (elizag) announces publication of first poetry collection
  • Caffè Lena to present poetry readings by Suzanne Parker and Shira Dentz June 4
  • Author & artist talk with Richard Matturro & Mary Trevor Thomas June 8
  • June 8 is the next Second Sunday at Two
  • Submission Deadline June 10 for Regional Writers Showcase at The Rensselaerville Festival of Writers
  • Pride reading & open mic June 12
  • Rensselaerville Library hosts author Marni Graff & mystery workshop June 12
  • Third Thursday to feature poet Matthew Klane June 19
  • Publish & Promote Your Book conference June 21
  • Evergreen Poets Workshop June 27
  • “Writing for Success: Writers’ Seminar” June 28
  • NYS Summer Writers Institute public readings at Skidmore start June 30
  • Hollywood producer available for presentations & consultation

GUILD ANNOUNCEMENTS

HVWG sponsors free writers conference June 8
The Hudson Valley Writers Guild will sponsor a free conference for writers and poets on Sunday, June 8, at 2 p.m. at the East Greenbush Public Library, 10 Community Way, East Greenbush, NY.

The guest speaker will be Frankie Y. Bailey, faculty member in the School of Criminal Justice, University at Albany (SUNY) and an award-winning author of nonfiction books on crime, as well as a series of mysteries featuring detective Lizzie Stuart, the most recent being Forty Acres and a Soggy Grave (The Overmountain Press, 2011).  Bailey has launched a near-future police procedural series set in Albany, New York, with The Red Queen Dies (St. Martin’s/Thomas Dunne). The second book in this series, featuring Detective Hannah McCabe, is due out in March 2015.

The conference will also include a panel, “Selling Your Words,” discussing marketing your work. On the panel will be poet and HVWG President Dan Wilcox, historical mystery writer M.E.Kemp, self-publishing expert Barbara Traynor and writer and Times Union book reviewer Elizabeth Floyd Mair.

The conference is free and open to the public, but registration is required. To register, call the East Greenbush library at (518) 477-7476. For more information on the conference, email Marilyn Rothstein:mekemp@nycap.rr.com.  For more information about the Hudson Valley Writers Guild, visit hvwg.org.

HVWG non-fiction contest opens June 15
The Hudson Valley Writers Guild is pleased to announce this year’s non-fiction contest. Submission categories will be memoir/personal essay and humor. There will be a $100 award in each category, and winners will be invited to read their winning submissions at a special program in the fall of 2014.

All contestants must be residents of New York State. The entry fee is: $10 for HVWG members and $15 for non-members. Checks made payable to HVWG must accompany submissions. If $30 membership fee is paid with submission, please enclose a separate check. HVWG Board of Directors and their families and/or current or past students and family of judges are ineligible.

Entries must be postmarked between June 15-August 15, 2014. Contact information must not appear anywhere on the submission. A cover letter must include: name, address, phone number, email, title, submission category, and word count (1200 word maximum).

All submissions must be typed, double-spaced, in 12pt Times New Roman or Cambria font.  Send three hard copies by mail. No email submissions. Submissions must be previously unpublished. Please no pornography or erotica.

This year’s judges are Diane Cameron and Gene Damm (personal essay/memoir) and Anne Decker (humor). Diane Cameron is a writer, writing teacher and creativity coach. She is a syndicated newspaper columnist and blogger. Most recently, she’s written Out of the Woods: A Woman’s Guide to Long-Term Recovery and Looking for Signs: Essays and Columns. Humorist Anne Decker’s essays have appeared on public radio, in local newspapers and magazines. She has an MFA in Writing and Literature from Bennington College. Gene Damm is past president of the Friends of the Albany Public Library. He is the author of Guanyin and Other Poems, as well as A Chinese Folk Tale and Other Stories.

All entrants will be notified of winners by email unless an SASE is provided. Results will be posted on our website: http://hvwg.org.

Contact Jan Tramontano at jantramontano@gmail.com for more information. Mail submissions and entry fee to: HVWG CONTEST c/o Jan Tramontano, 14 Brookwood Avenue, Albany, NY  12203.

MEMBER ANNOUNCEMENTS

Alan Catlin announces publication of “memoir with poetry,” Books of the Dead
Alan Catlin would like to announce the publication of his memoir with poetry, Books of the Dead. The book, some 25 years in the making, is a deft blend of prose and poetry about the deaths of his parents: one in New York City, the other in Florida. The book is available by mail, post paid for $15, or in person, at readings in the area, for $13.  For more information or to order, contact Alan at thecatlins@msn.com.

Hollis Seamon’s book of short stories receives recognitions
Hollis Seamon’s book of short stories, Corpoereality, published in January 2013 by Able Muse Press, has received a gold medal in the 2014 Independent Publishers Book Awards (aka IPPY Awards), short story category. The book is also a finalist in Foreword Reviews Book of the Year Awards. 

In addition, Hollis will serve as the guest author for the New York State Summer Young Writers Institute at Skidmore College in July.

Taylor Trade Publishing releases 2nd edition of Pauline Bartel’s The Complete GONE WITH THE WIND Trivia Book 
A second edition of The Complete GONE WITH THE WIND Trivia Book by Pauline Bartel was published by Taylor Trade Publishing, in honor of the film’s 75th anniversary. This major rewrite of the 1989 original continues the behind-the-scenes chronicle of GWTW – the book, the movie and the phenomenon that continues today. Visit https://rowman.com/ISBN/9781589798205 for further information.  

AREA ANNOUNCEMENTS

Misfit publishes 10th issue
Misfit announces publication of its tenth issue. More of the same exciting poetry, reviews and a personal essay from the editor. Check it out at misfitmagazine.net. Misfit accepts submissions all year round, but “response time during summer will be slower as the editor gets a life” (in the editor’s own words).

Elizabeth Gordon (elizag) announces publication of first poetry collection
“Elizag” announces publication of her first poetry collection, Love Cohoes. Here’s an excerpt from the foreward:

My first summer here, biking on the rail trail, I drove over two big white words spray-painted across the pavement: Love Cohoes. God knows it needs it, I thought, peddling on past a bevy of smoking teenagers. A little girl asking if I would “live here for the rest of your life,” that graffiti flicking beneath my wheels, and my neighbors—their faces and stories, their fears and struggles—invited me into a current of healing, tran­scending love that is as wide and deep and powerful as Cohoes Falls itself, that most sacred place of the Iroquois nation, cataract the close equal in height, width and water flow to Niagara Falls’ American Falls. 

I was thrilled when I moved in to find the falls so close. I hear the roar from my shared back yard. I can love Cohoes when I try to love Cohoes. Trying takes looking and seeing. Poems look, hard.Love Cohoes, published by Crandall, Dostie & Douglass Books, Inc., is $14. It is available locally at Market Block Books in Troy, from the author via email (walk33@gmail.com), at the author’s website (www.ekg3.com) and from Amazon. 

Caffè Lena to present poetry readings by Suzanne Parker and Shira Dentz June 4
On Wednesday, June 4, Caffè Lena will present  poetry readings by Suzanne Parker and Shira Dentz.  An open reading will follow. Doors open for sign-ups at 7 p.m., and the readings will start at 7:30 p.m. The host for the event will be Carol Graser, and the cost is $5. Caffè Lena, 47 Phila St., Saratoga Springs. (518) 583-0022. www.caffelena.org.

Shira Dentz is the author of two books, black seeds on a white dish (Shearsman, 2011) and door of thin skins (CavanKerry Press, 2013). Her third full-length manuscript was a National Poetry Series finalist this year. Her writing appears in many journals, including The American Poetry Review, The Iowa Review and New American Writing, and has featured online at The Academy of American Poets’ website (Poets.org), NPR,Poetry Daily and Verse Daily. Her awards include an Academy of American Poets’ Prize, the Poetry Society of America’s Lyric Poem Award and Cecil Hemley Memorial Award, Electronic Poetry Review’s Discovery Award and Painted Bride Quarterly’s Poetry Prize. A graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, she holds a Ph.D. in creative writing and literature from the University of Utah. Shira is also reviews editor at Drunken Boat and lecturer in creative writing at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. 

Suzanne Parker is a winner of the Kinereth Gensler Book Award; her collection of poetry, Viral, was published by Alice James Books in Sept. 2013.  Poems from the book that were published in Hunger Mountainhave been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Her poetry has appeared in Drunken Boat,  Hunger Mountain, Barrow Street, Cimarron Review, Rattapallax and numerous other journals. She is a winner of the Alice M. Sellars Award from the Academy of American Poets and was a Poetry Fellow at the Prague Summer Seminars. Her wesbite is suzanneparker.org.

Author & artist talk with Richard Matturro & Mary Trevor Thomas June 8
Richard’s sixth novel, Medea, based on the classic myth of the woman who kills her children, will be coming out in May from Livingston Press. It contains 24 original drawings by Mary Trevor Thomas. There will be an author and artist talk at Bethlehem Public Library on Sunday, June 8, at 2 p.m. Reception to follow. All are invited. For more information, visit www.richardmatturro.com. 

NOTE: Richard’s last name was misspelled in the last edition; this newsletter reflects the proper spelling. Apologies, Richard!

June 8 is the next Second Sunday at Two
Sunday, June 8, is the next “Second Sunday @ 2″ open mic for poetry and prose at The Arts Center, Troy, NY. (This is last open mic for the season! Join us next year for the five year of our open mic series!)

Submission Deadline June 10 for Regional Writers Showcase at The Rensselaerville Festival of Writers
This year’s annual Festival of Writers will be August 15-17, 2014. The annual event, held in the historic hamlet of Rensselaerville, New York, to benefit the local library has drawn dozens of writers and hundreds of guests since its inception in 2009. 

The event features a variety of readings, workshops, entertainment and panel discussions. Prominent writers featured at past festivals include William Kennedy, Nick Flynn, Galway Kinnell, and Jean Craighead George. This year’s festival will also host an exciting roster of established writers and will once again showcase the work of local writers adept at capturing the heart of an audience. We seek work by regional writers reflecting the particular experiences, insights and observations of upstate New Yorkers.

The 2014 showcase event, “This Upstate Life: Local Writers Read,” will be Sunday afternoon, August 17, at 2 p.m. For this event, we seek poetry, fiction, personal essay or cross-genre and experimental work specifically rooted in the upstate New York region. On this program, writers will read their own work in a venue in Rensselaerville to be determined.

Entrants must be from the upstate New York Region, and submissions must be postmarked by June 10, 2014. Submissions will be juried by an independent selection committee. For specific eligibility requirements and submission guidelines, visit www.festivalofwriters.org or http://www.festivalofwriters.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/CRSubmissionForm2014.pdf.  Results will be posted on the Festival of Writers website by July 15, 2014. Authors of selected works will be contacted individually.

For more information, please email festival@rensselaervillelibrary.org with the subject line “FOW Local Writers” or call the Rensselaerville Library at (518) 797-3949.

Pride reading & open mic June 12
What does it mean to be gay in a post same-sex marriage state? As we ponder this question, we will explore our pride in a special reading:

  • Pride reading & open mic, Thursday, June 12, 7 p.m.
  • Fulton Street Gallery
  • 408 Fulton Street, Troy, New York
  • (518) 331-0217

Join Jill Hanifan, Carol Jewell, Nancy Klepsch and Don Levy for a poetry reading at the Fulton Street Gallery to be followed by an open mic! Please join us to listen and/or to read! We hope to see you there!

Rensselaerville Library hosts author Marni Graff & mystery workshop June 12
The Rensselaerville Library (1459 County Route 351, 797-3949) will host two events on June 12:

  • The Art of Mystery Workshop for writers & readers, 3-5 p.m. The workshop will explain the genres, conventions and readers’ expectations. Time will also be devoted to the publishing industry, self-publishing and self-promotion.
  • Marni Graff, author of Scarlet Wench, The Blue Virgin, The Green Remains and  The Nora Tierney Mystery series, will be speaking at 7 p.m.

Please register by phone (518) 797-3949 or email director@rensselaervillelibrary.org.

Third Thursday to feature poet Matthew Klane June 19
Local poet and publisher Matthew Klane will read from his work at the Social Justice Center, 33 Central Avenue, Albany, on Thursday, June 19, at 7:30 p.m. Matthew Klane is co-editor at Flim Forum Press. His books include “B” (Stockport Flats, 2008) and “Che” (Stockport Flats, 2013). A new e-chapbook, from Of the Day, can be found at deletepress.org. He currently lives and writes in Albany, NY, where he co-curates the Yes! Poetry & Performance Series and teaches at Russell Sage College. You can read his blog at matthewklane.blogspot.com.

A reading by a local or regional poet is held each Third Thursday at the Social Justice Center. The event includes an open mic for audience members to read. Sign-up starts at 7 p.m., with the reading beginning at7:30. The host of the readings is Albany poet and photographer Dan Wilcox. The suggested donation is $3, which helps support this and other poetry programs of the Poetry Motel Foundation and the work of the Social Justice Center. For more information about this event, contact Dan Wilcox: (518) 482-0262; dwlcx@earthlink.net.

Publish & Promote Your Book conference June 21
The Writing Institute at Sarah Lawrence College invites you to attend its “Publish and Promote Your Book” conference on Saturday, June 21, from 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. It takes place on our SLC Bronxville campus, only 30 minutes from Midtown Manhattan.

This event is a must for writers who want to learn from NYC literary agents, major publishing house editors and social media/PR experts. Admission is $275/person. An additional fee for three pitch sessions with agents and editors is $125/person. There are only a few more spaces for pitch sessions.

Register today at  www.slc.edu/publish. For more information, contact Sweet Avigale Orefice at (914) 395 2205 or cce@sarahlawrence.edu.

Evergreen Poets Workshop June 27
You are invited to an evening of poetry with the Evergreen Poets Workshop (EPW). The EPW was formed to meet the need for a small intensive group to workshop poems and discuss related topics as they impact directly upon our work.

Open Mic to follow.  6:30 p.m. on Friday, June 27, 2014 at The Pine Hollow Arboretum, 16 Maple Avenue, Slingerlands, NY 12159. Light refreshments will be served.  For more information, contact Marion Menna at(518) 439-3991.

“Writing for Success: Writers’ Seminar” June 28
“Writing for Success: Writers’ Seminar” will take place 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., June 28, Holiday Inn in Saratoga Springs. Presented by Saratoga Springs Publishing & Millis Entertainment with Northshire Bookstore. Schedule includes: panels on getting published, sessions on how to tell a great story and on digital platforms, Q&A with speakers and vendor tables. For more information and to register by June 13, please visit:http://saratogaspringspublishing.com/seminars/seminar.

NYS Summer Writers Institute public readings at Skidmore start June 30
You are invited to attend the NYS Summer Writers Institute’s free public readings at Skidmore in Saratoga this summer, every weekday from June 30 to July 25, cosponsored by Skidmore College and the New York State Writers Institute.

All Readings are at 8 p.m. in Davis Auditorium, Palamountain Hall, 815 North Broadway, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866. Free and open to the public

  • JUNE 30: Fiction reading by Elizabeth Benedict and poetry reading by Campbell McGrath
  • JULY 1: Fiction reading by Francine Prose and non-fiction reading by Nicholas Delbanco
  • JULY 2: Poetry reading by Frank Bidart and fiction reading by Jim Shepard
  • JULY 3: Fiction reading by Russell Banks and poetry reading by Chase Twichell
  • JULY 4: Fiction reading by Howard Norman and poetry reading by Jane Shore
  • JULY 7:Poetry reading by Rosanna Warren and fiction reading by Cristina Garcia
  • JULY 8: Non-Fiction reading by Phillip Lopate and fiction reading by Victoria Redel
  • JULY 9: Poetry reading by James Longenbach and fiction reading by Joanna Scott
  • JULY 10: Poetry reading by Louise Gluck and fiction reading by Caryl Phillips
  • JULY 11: Fiction reading by Joyce Carol Oates.
  • JULY 14: Poetry reading by Carolyn Forche and fiction reading by Amy Hempel
  • JULY 15: Fiction reading by Marilynne Robinson and poetry reading by Peg Boyers
  • JULY 16: Fiction reading by Danzy Senna and nonfiction reading by Honor Moore
  • JULY 17: Fiction reading by William Kennedy
  • JULY 18: Poetry reading by Robert Pinsky
  • JULY 21: Poetry reading by Mark Strand and fiction reading by Binnie Kirshenbaum
  • JULY 22: Poetry reading by Charles Simic and fiction reading by Adam Braver
  • JULY 23: Fiction reading by Rick Moody and poetry reading by Tom Healy.
  • JULY 24: Fiction reading by Jamaica Kincaid and poetry reading by Henri Cole
  • JULY 25: Fiction reading by Paul Harding and poetry reading by Carl Dennis.

For more information, NYS Summer Writers Institute Office of the Dean of Special Programs, (518) 580-5593.

Hollywood producer available for presentations & consultation
Mitchell Peck, Hollywood producer of three studio movies (and numerous studio development deals), is available for presentation and consultation. His studio movies are based on screenplays he developed with first-time, unrepresented writers (IMDB page). 

For 20 years in Hollywood as a producer, he specialized in working with aspiring writers outside the Hollywood system — developing their scripts and successfully guiding them into top literary agency representation, studio deals and produced movies. The problem for aspiring writers outside of Hollywood is that studios have a blanket policy of “no unsolicited scripts,” and getting expert feedback/guidance on a script from a legitimate, accredited professional is nearly impossible.

That’s why he recently decided to open a boutique screenplay consultancy, “Hollywood Embassy,” to help serious, aspiring screenwriters improve their scripts professionally. As part of the launch, he’s offering to host a 30-minute presentation about the realities of breaking in to the movie business from the perspective of a working Hollywood movie producer: “Ambassador to Hollywood: how I helped 9 aspiring screenwriters become Hollywood professionals.” 

If interested, please email mitchell@hollywoodembassy.com.