Hudson Valley Writers Guild newsletter, July 2015

Hudson Valley Writers Guild Newsletter

IN THIS ISSUE

Guild Announcements:

  • HVWG poetry contest open for entries through 8/15

Member Announcements:

  • French version of Hollis Seamon novel wins literary award, releases new edition
  • Latest chapbook from Alan Catlin is Beautiful Mutants
  • James Schlett launches Northeast book tour

Area Announcements:

  • Rolling admission for NYS Summer Writers Institute workshops (space permitting)
  • Upcoming readings for NYS Summer Writers Institute
  • “Poets in the Park” 2015 readings scheduled July 11, 18, & 25
  • Poet Melody Davis will read at the Social Justice Center July 16
  • Martin Steingesser’s “The Thinking Heart – History in Poetry and Music” at Roe Jan Library July 18
  • Sixth Annual Unicorn Writers Conference August 15

GUILD ANNOUNCEMENTS

HVWG poetry contest open for entries through 8/15
The Hudson Valley Writers Guild is pleased to announce this year’s poetry contest. Cash prizes will be awarded to first ($100), second ($75) and third place ($50) poems. The winning poets will be invited to read their winning submissions at a program in the fall.

All contestants must be residents of New York State. The entry fee is $10 for HVWG members and $15 for non-members. Forms for guild membership may be found at hvwg.org. One to three poems may be submitted. Each poem must be no longer than 40 lines. A cover letter must include: name, address, phone number, email, title(s). Each poem must appear on a separate page. Entries must be postmarked between June 15-August 15, 2015.

Judges are Cheryl Rice and Howard Kogan. Cheryl A. Rice’s work has appeared in Baltimore Review, Chronogram, Florida Review, Home Planet News, Mangrove, The Temple and Woodstock Times, and in the anthologies Wildflowers, Vol. II (2002: Shivastan Publishing), For Enid With Love (2010: NY Quarterly Books) and A Slant of Light  (2013:Codhill Press), among others. She is the author of Moses Parts the Tulips (2013: APD Press), My Minnesota Boyhood (2012: Post Traumatic Press) and Auction (2004, Flying Monkey Press; 2nd edition 2010). Her CDs are: “Nobody Slept Last Night” (2003, Another Poor Bastard Productions) and “Girl Poet” (2007, Flying Monkey Productions). Howard Kogan is an award winning poet whose work has appeared in many literary journals including Still Crazy, Occupoetry, Poetry Ark, Naugatuck River Review, Jewish Currents Anthology (2014), Jewish Currents Calendar (2015), Writer’s Haven, Farming Magazine, Literary Gazette, Pathways, Up the River, Point Mass Anthology and Misfit Magazine. He has also published a book of poems, Indian Summer, and a chapbook, General Store Poems.<

For more information regarding submissions, go to www.hvwg.org or contact Jan Tramontano at jantramontano@gmail.com

MEMBER ANNOUNCEMENTS

French version of Hollis Seamon novel wins literary award, releases new edition
Hollis Seamon’s novel Dieu Me Deteste, the French version of Somebody Up There Hates You, has won a national French literary award, the 2015 CBPT Prix Litteraire 18-30 from the Union Nationale Culture et Bibliotheques Pour Tous (The National Union of Culture and Libraries for All). The prize is awarded annually for the best book for readers 18-30 years old published in the previous year, as chosen by libraries across France. The prize was announced on May 6, 2015, by the General Assembly of CBPT in Paris. Here’s a link to an announcement: http://www.cbpt-paris.org/index.php/prix-cbpt and a PDF: http://www.cbpt71.com/prix18302015.pdf. There is also a new edition of Dieu Me Deteste, issued in May by Editions 10/18 in Paris:  http://www.10-18.fr/livres-poche/.

Latest chapbook from Alan Catlin is Beautiful Mutants
Alan Catlin has published a new chapbook of poetry called Beautiful Mutants, which is available now from Night Ballet Press or from the author. Anyone interested in owning their very own copy can contact Alan at thecatlins@msn.com or the editor of Night Ballet Press at the website.<

James Schlett launches Northeast book tour
In August, Rotterdam author James Schlett will launch his Northeast book tour for A Not Too Greatly Changed Eden: The Story of the Philosophers’ Camp in the Adirondacks (Ithaca and London, Cornell University Press, 2015) with the following two events in the Capital Region:

  • 8/1/2015, Saturday, 7 p.m., Northshire Bookstore, 424 Broadway, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866
  • 8/7/2015, Friday, 6 p.m., Albany Institute of History and Art (free admission), 125 Washington Avenue, Albany, NY 12210

Other readings and presentations are scheduled for the following venues this summer and fall: Massachusetts Historical Society, Concord Free Public Library, Olana State Historic Site, SUNY Adirondack Writer’s Project and Caffe Lena. For the latest reviews, tour updates and other news on A Not Too Greatly Changed Eden, like the book’s Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/ANotTooGreatlyChangedEden.

AREA ANNOUNCEMENTS

Rolling admission for NYS Summer Writers Institute workshops (space permitting)
The New York State Summer Writers Institute has begun its 28th season at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs. To apply:  https://www.skidmore.edu/summerwriters/workshops.php. Students may enroll for two weeks (June 29 – July 10 or July 13-24) or for the entire four-week session (June 29-July 24).

Since its inaugural season in 1987, the New York State Summer Writers Institute has drawn students from across the United States as well as from Australia, Brazil, France, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, New Zealand, Pakistan, the Philippines, Poland, South Korea and Singapore. Students have ranged from 20 to 99 years of age. The Institute is intended principally for students who have had at least one or two previous workshop experiences. It is definitely not for high school students or for freshman college students. The Institute offers courses for undergraduate and graduate credit, as well as noncredit courses. Approximately 50 percent of the program participants are undergraduate or graduate students.

For questions and concerns, please call Christine R. Merrill, Program Coordinator, Office of the Dean of Special Programs, at (518) 580-5593.

Upcoming readings for NYS Summer Writers Institute
All readings are at 8 p.m. in Davis Auditorium, Palamountain Hall, Skidmore College, 815 N. Broadway, Saratoga Springs.

  • JULY 1: Fiction reading by Michael Ondaajte and poetry reading by Campbell McGrath
  • JULY 2: Poetry reading by Charles Simic and fiction reading by Howard Norman
  • JULY 3: Fiction reading by Claire Messud and fiction reading by Elizabeth Benedict
  • JULY 6: Poetry reading by Carolyn Forche and fiction reading by Victoria Redel
  • JULY 7: Poetry reading by Frank Bidart and fiction reading by Rivka Galchen
  • JULY 8: Fiction reading by Mary Gaitskill and non-fiction reading by Honor Moore
  • JULY 9: Fiction reading by Joseph O’Neill and fiction reading by Joanna Scott
  • JULY 10: Fiction reading by Joyce Carol Oates
  • JULY 13: Fiction reading by Amy Hempel and fiction reading by William Kennedy
  • JULY 14: Fiction reading by Ann Beattie and poetry reading by Tom Healy
  • JULY 15: Fiction reading by Rick Moody and poetry reading by Lloyd Schwartz
  • JULY 16: Non-fiction reading by Nick Flynn and fiction reading by Adam Braver
  • JULY 17: Poetry reading by Robert Pinsky poetry reading by Peg Boyers
  • JULY 20: Fiction reading by Cristina Garcia and poetry reading by Wayne Koestenbaum
  • JULY 21:Fiction reading by Russell Banks and poetry reading by Chase Twichell
  • JULY 22: Non-fiction reading by Laura Kipnis and non-fiction reading by Jim Miller
  • JULY 23: Fiction reading by Jamaica Kincaid and poetry reading by Henri Cole
  • JULY 24: Fiction reading by Paul Harding and fiction reading by Binnie Kirshenbaum

For more information, please call Christine R. Merrill, Program Coordinator, Office of the Dean of Special Programs, at (518) 580-5593.

“Poets in the Park” 2015 readings scheduled July 11, 18, & 25
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 Saturdays July 11, 18 and 25; the readings start at 7:00 p.m. and are free and open to the public. Donations are accepted. Rain site is the Social Justice Center, 33 Central Avenue, Albany. The series is co-sponsored by the Poetry Motel Foundation and by the Hudson Valley Writers Guild.

The 2015 readers are:

  • July 11, The Nitty Gritty Slam Team, with guest host Thom Francis
  • July 18, Paul Pines & Karen Schoemer
  • July 25, Alison Koffler & Dayl Wise

The Robert Burns statue is located near where Henry Johnson Boulevard passes through Washington Park and crosses Hudson Ave. Please bring your own chairs or blankets to sit on. For more information, contact Dan Wilcox at dwlcx@earthlink.net or (518) 482-0262.

Poet Melody Davis will read at the Social Justice Center July 16
Local poet Melody Davis will read from her work at the Social Justice Center, 33 Central Avenue, Albany, on Thursday, July 16, 2015 at 7:30 p.m.

Melody Davis, poet and art historian, is the author of four books, most recently Holding the Curve from Broadstone Books. Her critical study, Women’s Views: The Narrative Stereograph in Nineteenth-Century America, will be forthcoming this fall from the University Press of New Hampshire. Davis teaches at the Sage College of Albany and is widely published in the US and abroad.

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 at (518) 482-0262 or dwlcx@earthlink.net.

Martin Steingesser’s “The Thinking Heart – History in Poetry and Music” at Roe Jan Library July 18
“The Thinking Heart: The Life & Loves of Etty Hillesum,” poet Martin Steingesser’s original arrangement of the diaries and letters of Etty Hillesum, will be performed at the Roeliff Jansen Community Library on Saturday, July 18, at 5 p.m. Etty Hillesum, a Jewish woman who lived in Amsterdam during the Nazi occupation, wrote a diary and over 70 letters between 1941 and ‘43, ending with her transport to Auschwitz-Birkenau, where she died at age 29. Steingesser and Judy Tierney will perform “The Thinking Heart” with cellist Robin Jellis.

Martin Steingesser, Portland, Maine’s first Poet Laureate (2007-09), has published two books of poems, Brothers of Morning and The Thinking Heart: The Life & Loves of Etty Hillesum, and has a third book,Yellow Horses, scheduled for publication in fall, 2015. Judy Tierney has been presenting poems in Maine for a number of years. She was creator and host of a weekly radio program, “Walking in the Air,” celebrating poetry and its voices, on WRFR, Rockland, Maine’s community radio station. Robin Jellis, cellist, has played with the Bangor Symphony, and is a faculty member at the Portland Conservatory of Music. Her music for “The Thinking Heart” is comprised mostly of improvisational meditations inspired by the poems and includes quotes from Ernest Bloch. Influences include folk songs and J.S. Bach’s Suites for Unaccompanied Cello. The final movement is an original piece by Jellis.<

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. For information on hours and events, call (518) 325-4101 or visit the library’s website at www.roejanlibrary.org.

Sixth Annual Unicorn Writers Conference August 15

DATE: Saturday, August 15
PLACE: Reid Castle at Manhattanville College, Purchase, NY
TIME: 7:30 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. (one-day conference)
REGISTRATION:  $300 (Special group discount: 10% off the $300 registration fee. Discount code HVWGUILD15)

INCLUDES:

  • Keynote Speaker:  Stephanie Evanovich;
  • 30 workshops offered throughout the day. Choose the topics that are best for you;
  • Agent and editor panels;
  • Opportunity to reserve 30-minute, face-to-face 1-1 reviews on your first 40 manuscript pages, query letter, book synopses or jacket flap copy with agents, editors or other conference faculty–all publishing insiders;
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner;
  • Conference gift bag.

Unicorn Writers Conference is recognized as a top choice for writers at every stage of their writing journey seeking traditional or alternate publishing opportunities. Workshops and speakers cover creativity, craft, and career. Register now!  Visit www.unicornwritersconfeence.com  and select “registration” link.

Hudson Valley Writers Guild newsletter, June 2015

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

Member Announcements:

  • Misfit Editor Alan Catlin reports on upcoming misfit magazine
  • Leslie Neustadt to facilitate writing & collage class starting June 17
  • Around and Into the Unknown by Hillary Savoie available now at Amazon
  • Publishing news from member Charles Curry

Area Announcements:

  • Caffè Lena to present a poetry reading by Jordan Smith June 3
  • Arthur’s Market & Cafe Second Wednesday Open-Mic to feature Susan Kress June 10
  • 6th Annual Community of Jewish Writers Poetry Reading, Book Sale and Reception June 14
  • Third Thursday to feature Mike Jurkovic June 18
  • Celebration of Women’s Voices Conference – Women Writers Past and Present
  • “2,” Call for submissions: Poets and prose writers of 2nd Sunday @ 2
  • Springfield (Missouri) Writers Guild invites HVWG members & others to submit to writing contest
  • Berkshire Festival of Women Writers Summer Leadership Institute for Teen Girls & Young Women
  • Registration open for two workshops with Pat Schneider (assisted by Kate Hymes)
  • Cornell University Press to publish book by James Schlett of Rotterdam

MEMBER ANNOUNCEMENTS

Misfit Editor Alan Catlin reports on upcoming misfit magazine
Coming soon, on or about, June 1, an interim issue of misfit magazine, #14, “The Traveling Wilbury’s: Misfit Editors Edition.” This stand-alone half issue, between our regular issues, will feature work by each of the three editors on their recent travels abroad: Jennifer in Spain, Gene in Paris and yours truly, Alan Catlin, in England. Expect some great art, killer photos, poems and a travelogue (of sorts) covering all the overseas bases.

Leslie Neustadt to facilitate writing & collage class starting June 17
The Independent Living Center of the Hudson Valley (ILCHV) presents “Claiming Our Power; Sharing Our Stories: A Writing and Collage Class for People with Disabilities.” Join Leslie Neustadt, artist and poet, to

  • participate in a 6-week class to learn to write poems and essays about your personal experiences with disability;
  • produce collages and poems and/or essays you have written to include in a chapbook; and
  • read your work at a reading and reception in celebration of National Disability Awareness Month (October 2015).

There is no cost to participate. Classes will take place at ILCHV, 15 Third Street, Troy, from 5-6:30 p.m. starting June 17. For more information or to register, call Barbara at 518/274-0701. This project is made possible in part through a Community Arts Grant, a program funded by The Arts Center of the Capital Region through the New York State Council on the Arts.<

Around and Into the Unknown by Hillary Savoie available now at Amazon
In the beautiful Around And Into The Unknown, American writer and disability rights activist Hillary Savoie and her daughter, Esmé, journey from the first ultrasound through ICU through diagnosis after diagnosis to acceptance during Esmé’s first four tumultuous years of life. The story is available both as an e-book and as part of a paperback anthology.

Publishing news from member Charles Curry
Garbanzo Literary Journal has recently published “Ragged Glories” by Charles Curry in Volume 5 (page 37). For more information about this magazine or to purchase this issue, visit its website.

AREA ANNOUNCEMENTS

Caffè Lena to present a poetry reading by Jordan Smith June 3
On Wednesday, June 3, Caffè Lena will present a poetry reading by Jordan Smith. 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, 518/583-0022, www.caffelena.org.

Arthur’s Market & Cafe Second Wednesday Open-Mic to feature Susan Kress June 10
Arthur’s Market & Cafe, 35 North Ferry Street, Schenectady, NY. Wednesday, June 10. Susan Kress has ​published numerous essays and articles and a book, Carolyn G. Heilbrun: Feminist in a Tenured Position (University Press of Virginia), reissued in paperback​ with a new epilogue​ on Heilbrun’s suicide.​ ​After 38 years​ as Vice President for Academic Affairs and Professor of English at Skidmore College​, Kress is now focusing on poetry.​

Sign-up begins at 7 p.m. Readings begin at 7:30 p.m. Hosted by Catherine Norr.  Food and beverages available along with a warm, welcoming atmosphere for sharing poetry.

6th Annual Community of Jewish Writers Poetry Reading, Book Sale and Reception June 14
Congregation Agudat Achim is pleased to host the 6th Annual Community of Jewish Writers Poetry Reading, Book Sale and Reception on Sunday, June 14, 3-5 p.m. It will feature poets Susan Comninos, Jay Rogoff and Barbara Ungar:

  • Susan Comninos is a teacher and poet whose work has been widely published in such literary journals as Subtropics, TriQuarterly, Quarterly West, The Cortland Review, Nashville Review, Tulane Review, Judaism, Lilith and Tikkun, among others. Her arts journalism has appeared in such news publications as the Boston Globe, Christian Science Monitor, Jewish Daily Forward and Atlantic Online. In 2010, she won the Yehuda Halevi Poetry Contest run by Tablet magazine.  Later this year, her poetry is forthcoming in the Harvard Review Online, Malahat Review, Subtropics and Catskill Made. Recently, she completed a debut book of poems called Out of Nowhere. She has taught creative writing at the University of Michigan, RPI, the Troy Arts Center, Schenectady JCC and Temple Sinai in Saratoga.
  • Jay Rogoff has published five books of poetry, most recently Venera (2014), a consideration of love and art; The Art of Gravity (2011), a collection obsessed with dance; and The Long Fault (2008), which deals with history and mortality, all published by Louisiana State University Press. His poems have appeared in many journals, including AGNI, The Georgia Review, The Hudson Review, Literary Imagination, Ploughshares, Salmagundi and The Southern Review. He serves as dance critic for The Hopkins Review and also writes on dance for Ballet Review, The Saratogian and other publications. He lives in Saratoga Springs and teaches at Skidmore College. His next book of poems, Enamel Eyes: A Fantasia on 1870 Paris, will appear from LSU in 2016.
  • Barbara Ungar’s latest book of poetry, Immortal Medusa, was released in 2015. She is also the author of Charlotte Bronte, You Ruined My Life, Thrift and The Origin of the Milky Way, which won the Gival Press Poetry Award, a Silver Independent Publishers’Award, a Hoffer Award and the Adirondack Center for Writing Poetry Award.  She is the author of the chapbooks Sequel and Neoclassical Barbra, as well as Haiku in English. She has published poems in journals such as Rattle, Salmagundi and The Nervous Breakdown. A professor of English at The College of St. Rose, Ungar directs the MFA program there.

There will be a poetry reading, panel discussion, book sale and reception. Free and open to the public. Congregation Agudat Achim, 2117 Union Street, Niskayuna, NY 12309.

Third Thursday to feature Mike Jurkovic June 18
Poet Mike Jurkovic will read from his work at the Social Justice Center, 33 Central Avenue, Albany on Thursday,  June 18, at 7:30 p.m. Mike Jurkovic is the co-director of Calling All Poets in Beacon, NY, & producer of CAPSCAST, live recordings from the series. His most recent collection of poems is Eve’s Venom (Post Traumatic Press, 2014).

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.

Celebration of Women’s Voices Conference – Women Writers Past and Present
Wallkill Valley Writers will celebrate the publication of a second anthology on June 27, 7-9 p.m. at Boughton Place, 150 Kisor Road, Highland, New York. These writers are extraordinary because they take the stuff of daily life, fire it in the kiln of imagination and produce works of art that glisten with the joys and sorrows of human experience. You are invited to celebrate as they claim writing as their art.

Readers include: Bythema Bagley, Claudia Battaglia, Tim Brennan, Gloria Caviglia, Susan Chute, Greg Correll, Meg Dunne, Barbara Edelman, Kim Ellis, Jeanne-Marie Fleming, Allison Friedman, Colleen Geraghty, Kate Hymes, Barbara Martin, Linda Melick, Barry Menuez, RoseMarie Navarra, Jennifer “Jen” Roy.

See www.wallkillvalleywriters.com for more information. In addition, you can find a Facebook page originally created for the Conference but now a bulletin board for writers here.

“2,” Call for submissions: Poets and prose writers of 2nd Sunday @ 2
“2nd Sunday @ 2″ co-hosts Dan Wilcox and Nancy Klepsch invite poets and prose writers that have attended our open mic to submit two poems or two pages of prose for publication in our first chapbook called, what else, “2.” The deadline is July 2nd, 2015. Please submit your work in MS Word, 12-point type, Times Roman, spell-checked, etc., by July 2, 2015, to nsktroy@aol.com; please type “2 submission” in the subject line.

Space is limited, so we ask you to consider the length of poems.  Preference will be given to long-time and consistent attendees.  One copy of the chapbook will be provided free of charge to 2nd Sunday poets and prose writers published in our chapbook at our September 13 open mic, which will officially begin our 6th season. You may also purchase copies for $2 at one of our open mics throughout the 2015-16 2nd Sunday Open Mic season.

Thank you so much for supporting our open mic.

Springfield (Missouri) Writers Guild invites HVWG members & others to submit to writing contest
Springfield Writers’ Guild announces its 22nd Annual Prose and Poetry Contest, June 15 – September 15. Here are the details:

  • Fee: $5 per entry. No limit to number of entries, but the same entry may not be entered in more than one category.
  • Prose Division: Maximum 1,000 words, double-spaced. Categories: 1) fiction, any genre; 2) nonfiction, any subject & 3) humorous.
  • Poetry Division: Maximum one page, single-spaced. Categories: 4) humorous, any form & 5) any subject, any form.
  • Awards each category 1-5: First Place $50, Second Place $25, Third Place $15, Two Honorable Mentions.
  • Jim Stone Memorial Poetry Division: Fee $5, one entry per person. Entry must not have been entered in Categories 4 or 5. Poetry any subject, any form. One page, single spaced. Awards this division: First Place $150, Second Place $75, Third Place $50, Two Honorable Mentions.
  • Best of Springfield Writers’ Guild Award: SWG members who enter any category automatically will be considered for a $100 award at no additional entry fee and in addition to other awards they may receive. This category judged separately.
  • Bonus for SWG Members: Submit two entries and receive a special link to submit a third entry free of charge.

Submission Guidelines

  1. Read these guidelines carefully. Failure to follow the guidelines may disqualify your entry.
  2. Contest period is 12:01 a.m. Central Time, June 15, 2015, to midnight Central Time, September 15, 2015. Entries and fees will be accepted only during the contest period and only at www.Submittable.com; see link at www.springfieldwritersguild.org/contests.html. Payment by debit card, credit card or PayPal. Each entry must be unpublished, original work of contestant and entered in only one category. You keep all rights to your entries; entries will not be published.
  3. Double space prose, single space poetry. Title each entry except haiku. A list of your entries will be accessible at www.Submittable.com. Enter the prose word count or poetry form in the box provided. Number prose pages. Do not put your name on entries.
  4. Once an entry is submitted to Submittable, it will not be extracted or exchanged for another entry for any reason. Writers may resubmit another entry accompanied with the $5 fee.
  5. Awards will be presented at the Springfield Writer’s Guild meeting, October 24, 2015, or by mail for those unable to attend. For a list of winning entries and judges, visit www.springfieldwritersguild.org/contests.html after October 24, 2015.

Questions? Contact Contest Chair, Yvonne Erwin: writer716@gmail.com.

Berkshire Festival of Women Writers Summer Leadership Institute for Teen Girls & Young Women
The Berkshire Festival of Women Writers announces a week-long Leadership Institute for teen girls and young women ages 13 – 18, to be held July 20 – 24 from 1 – 5 p.m. at The Mount in Lenox, MA. Led by Jennifer Browdy, Ph.D., founding director of the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers, with college senior Grace Rossman, the writing-intensive Institute, called “The Butterfly Effect,” will give girls the tools, strategies and confidence they need to step into leadership roles as they pursue their interests and passions.

Participants will build community as they share their ideas with each other in guided writing sessions, theater and public speaking workshops, multimedia presentations and in-depth discussions on the issues most important to young women today. The week will culminate in a reception at which the young women will speak their truths for an audience of parents and friends.

“We’re invoking the image of the butterfly both as a symbol of transformation, and because of the saying that the wind from one butterfly’s wings can change the world,” says Dr. Browdy, a professor of literature, writing and media studies at Bard College at Simon’s Rock. “Our aim is to awaken teen girls and young women to the power of their own voices, both written and spoken, and to give them techniques they can take out into the world to make a difference on issues they care about. And to have fun doing it, too!”

The summer week-long workshop will be followed by monthly Leadership Circles for Teen Girls and Young Women starting in September at different locations in Berkshire County. Participants will also have a chance to join the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers Youth Advisory Board and to contribute to an anthology of young women’s writing forthcoming from Green Fire Press.<

Tuition is $500; some full and partial scholarships will be available. The application deadline is June 21, 2015.  For more information, visit www.berkshirewomenwriters.org or email info@berkshirewomenwriters.org.

Registration open for two workshops with Pat Schneider assisted by Kate Hymes
Everyone is a writer. Those who do not write stories or poems tell them, sing them, and, in so doing they are writing on the air. Creating with words is our continuing passion. We dream stories, make up stories, poems, songs, and tell them to ourselves. —Pat Schneider

  • How the Light Gets In: Writing as a Spiritual Practice, June 27. Registration fee $200. Pat Schneider will guide writers on an inner journey of spiritual awareness.  The writing will gently and with grace lead you to find and explore the cracks of memory, grief and absence, failure, anger and pain in order to let the light the in, to let your light shine. The light you discover will illuminate the joy, forgiveness, quest for justice, and the comedy of being human. Pat describes writing as a form of prayer that allows us to praise, give thanksgiving, to rage, or to open one’s inner self and listen. Writing as spiritual practice of follows no established path or way. Pat quotes Rumi, “There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground.” She continues in her own words: I suspect there are as many variations on the experience of mystery as here are human persons. Write with Pat and find your path, your way.
  • You Are a Writer: A Weekend Writing Retreat, September 11-13. Registration fee: $420. Commuter registration: $420 plus $90 (facilities and meals) = $510. Overnight registration: $420 plus $190 (2 nights lodging) = $615. Pat Schneider says that it isn’t discipline we lack, but belief in our art, our creativity and in ourselves. Over a more than 40-year career leading writing workshops, she has helped novice and experienced writers believe in their stories and their ability to write them. She has developed a practice, the Amherst Writers and Artists method, that leads writers to write what they know and what they don’t know they know, to tell their deepest truth and to know that their deepest writing is their best writing. Commit to writing as your art. Experience personally writing with Pat who has been called “the wisest teacher of writing.”

About Pat
Pat is a poet, playwright, librettist and author of 10 books of poetry and non-fiction. She was born in the Ozark mountains of Missouri where she became intimate with fossils, creek beds, grasshoppers and box turtles. After a search for work took her single mother to St. Louis, from age 10 Pat lived in tenements and in an orphanage until she was given a scholarship to college. Those early experiences have deeply influenced her writing and fueled her passion for those who have been denied voice through poverty and other misfortunes.

Pat’s libretto, “The Lament of Michal,” was performed in Carnegie Hall by Phyllis Bryn Julson and the Atlanta Symphony directed by Robert Shaw. Her poetry has been read by Garrison Keillor on National Public Radio’s Writer’s Almanac 16 times.  A film about her work with women in low-income housing, titled “Tell Me Something I Can’t Forget,” is included in the DVD companion to her book Writing Alone and With Others.

Amherst Writers & Artists, founded by Pat in 1981 and directed and managed by Pat and Peter for 30 years, is now an international network of workshop leaders who use the writing method described in Writing Alone and With Others. Pat’s newest book, How the Light Gets In: Writing as a Spiritual Practice, was released from Oxford University Press in April 2013.

To register for either workshop and get more information about fee schedules and deadlines, visit www.wallkillvalleywriters.com.

Cornell University Press to publish book by James Schlett of Rotterdam
On June 30, Cornell University Press will publish A Not Too Greatly Changed Eden: The Story of the Philosophers’ Camp in the Adirondacks by James Schlett, of Rotterdam. The book tells the definitive story of the historic Philosophers’ Camp, an August 1858 gathering at Follensby Pond of 19th century America’s leading intellectuals, including the transcendentalist philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson, the Harvard scientist Louis Agassiz and the Cambridge poet James Russell Lowell. They were led into the Adirondack wilderness by William James Stillman, a painter originally from Schenectady who co-founded the nation’s first art journal, the Crayon.

In this book, Schlett recounts the story of the Philosophers’ Camp from the lives and careers of — and friendships and frictions among — the participants to the extensive preparations for the expedition and the several-day encampment to its lasting legacy. Schlett’s account is a sweeping tale that provides vistas of the dramatically changing landscapes of the United States in the second half of the nineteenth century. As he relates, the scholars later formed an Adirondack Club that set out to establish a permanent encampment at nearby Ampersand Pond. Their plans, however, were dashed amid the outbreak of the Civil War and the advancement of civilization into a wilderness that Stillman described as “a not too greatly changed Eden.”

But the Adirondacks were indeed changing. When Stillman returned to the site of the Philosophers’ Camp in 1884, he found the woods around Follensby had been disfigured by tourists. Development, industrialization and commercialization had transformed the Adirondack wilderness as they would nearly every other aspect of the American landscape. Such devastation would later inspire conservationists to establish Adirondack Park in 1892. At the close of the book, Schlett looks at the preservation of Follensby Pond, now protected by the Nature Conservancy and the camp site’s potential integration into the Adirondack Forest Preserve.

* * *

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 do not submit your announcement as a PDF. All copy for announcements must be in the body of an email or attached as a Word document.
    • 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

To unsubscribe from this list, please email hvwginfo@gmail.com with your request.

Hudson Valley Writers Guild Newsletter, May 2015

IN THIS ISSUE

Guild Announcements:

  • Submission guidelines for the HVWG 2015 Poetry Contest

Member Announcements:

  • Tom Swyers’ Novel Saving Babe Ruth wins Benjamin Franklin Book Awards

Area Announcements:

  • Book shop at Feed and Seed Building in Kinderhook reopens May 2
  • Poetry course starting May 12 – “Love, Technology: Poems Written in the Digital Age”
  • Arthur’s Market and Cafe’ Open-Mic features Mimi Moriarty May 13
  • Third Thursday to feature Barbara Ungar May 21
  • Reading of  “Song of Myself”  May 31
  • Illustrator wanted!

GUILD ANNOUNCEMENTS

Submission guidelines for the HVWG 2015 Poetry Contest
The Hudson Valley Writers Guild is pleased to announce this year’s poetry contest. Cash prizes will be awarded to first ($100), second ($75) and third place ($50) poems. The winning poets will be invited to read their winning submissions at a program in the fall.

Here are the guidelines:

  • 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 and August 15, 2015.
  • One to three previously unpublished poems may be submitted. Poems must not exceed 40 lines.
  • Contact information must not appear anywhere on the submission.
  • A cover letter must include: name, address, phone number, email, title, and line count.
  • Submissions must be typed using 12-pt. Times New Roman or Cambria font.
  • Send three hard copies by mail. No email submissions. Please no pornography or erotica.
  • Mail submissions and entry fee to: HVWG CONTEST c/o Jan Tramontano, 14 Brookwood Avenue, Albany, NY  12203

This year’s judges are Howard Kogan and Cheryl A.Rice.

Howard Kogan is an award winning poet whose work has appeared in many literary journals including Still Crazy, Occupoetry, Poetry Ark, Naugatuck River Review, Jewish Currents Anthology (2014), Jewish Currents Calendar (2015), Writer’s Haven, Farming Magazine, Literary Gazette, Pathways, Up the River, Point Mass Anthology and Misfit Magazine. He has also published a book of poems,Indian Summer, and a chapbook, General Store Poems.

In 2011 he was the Poet Laureate of Smith’s Tavern, Voorheesville, NY.  He was a finalist in the second Annual Jewish Currents Dora and Alexander Raynes Poetry Competition, a semi-finalist in the Naugatuck River Review Annual Contest (2014) and one of three first place winners of the Rensselaerville Festival of Writers Poetry Contest (2014).

Cheryl A. Rice’s work has appeared in Baltimore Review, Chronogram, Florida Review, Home Planet News, Mangrove, The Temple and Woodstock Times, and in the anthologies,Wildflowers, Vol. II (2002: Shivastan Publishing), For Enid With Love (2010: NY Quarterly Books) and A Slant of Light  (2013:Codhill Press), among others. She is the author of Moses Parts the Tulips (2013: APD Press), My Minnesota Boyhood (2012: Post Traumatic Press) and Auction (2004, Flying Monkey Press; 2nd edition 2010). Her CDs are: “Nobody Slept Last Night” (2003, Another Poor Bastard Productions) and “Girl Poet” (2007, Flying Monkey Productions).

She is also founder and host of the Sylvia Plath Bake-Off. Her poetry blog, Flying Monkey Productions, may be found at http://flyingmonkeyprods.blogspot.com/.

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

Contact Jan Tramontano at jantramontano@gmail.com for more information.

MEMBER ANNOUNCEMENTS

Tom Swyers’ Novel Saving Babe Ruth wins Benjamin Franklin Book Awards
Member Tom Swyers’ novel Saving Babe Ruth earned two Benjamin Franklin Book Awards at the 27th annual Independent Book Publisher Association’s conference and awards ceremony held in Austin, Texas, on April 10. Saving Babe Ruth was awarded gold for “Best First Book Fiction” 2015 and silver for “Best Popular Fiction” for 2015.

Tom is scheduled to speak about Saving Babe Ruth at the Albany Institute of History and Art on May17 at 2 p.m. and at the Norman Rockwell Museum on May 30.

AREA ANNOUNCEMENTS

Book shop at Feed and Seed Building in Kinderhook reopens May 2
The Friends of the Kinderhook Memorial Library Book Shop at the Feed and Seed Building will re-open on May 2. The shop will be completely re-stocked with hundreds of new and gently used books for adults and children, all at affordable prices. The Friends’ book collection includes vintage, collectible and contemporary fiction and non-fiction. Each week a special collection will be highlighted and new books will be added as donations come into the Library.

The Book Shop will be open every Saturday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. through mid-October. The Feed and Seed building is located at 24 Hudson Street in the Village of Kinderhook. For more information about the Friends and other Library programs, please visit the Kinderhook Memorial Library website: http://www.oklibrary.org.

Poetry course starting May 12 – “Love, Technology: Poems Written in the Digital Age”
Irony, brevity, self-focus: all are the calling cards of communication in the Digital Age. But, to quote the poet Donald Hall, “Does it end there?” Today’s poetry often references the Internet, Twitter and our personal lives as mediated through screen time. In the face of what’s trending, how do we tease out what literature will last and what kind of writing will be gone in the time that it takes to say “screen shot”?

Join poet Susan Comninos in exploring poetry that’s set within our cultural moment, while trying your hand at writing poems of lasting value. This 8-week series, from May 12 to June 30, will include the reading and discussion of published poems and their techniques, as well as the reading and discussion of student work.

Susan Comninos has recently published poems in Subtropics, TriQuarterly, Quarterly West, The Cortland Review, Nashville Review, Lilith, Tikkun and Gastronomica, among others. Later this year, her poetry is forthcoming in the Harvard Review Online, Malahat Review, Subtropics and Catskill Made. In 2010, she won the Yehuda Halevi Poetry Contest run by Tabletmagazine. She has taught poetry at the University of Michigan, RPI, Troy Arts Center, Schenectady JCC and Temple Sinai. She currently lives in Guilderland.

Classes are held at the Schenectady JCC in the Farber/Miness Gallery. The JCC is located at 2565 Balltown Road, Niskayuna. The cost for Schenectady JCC members and returning poetry students is $85; new students, $110. Enroll at the Schenectady JCC or by calling (518) 377-8803.

Arthur’s Market and Cafe’ Open-Mic features Mimi Moriarty May 13
Second Wednesday open mic and featured poet May 13 at Arthur’s Market & Café, 35 N. Ferry Street, Schenectady. Featured poet: Mimi Moriarty. Mimi’s many published works include two chapbooks from Finishing Line Press: War Psalm and Sibling Reverie (written with her brother Frank Disiderio). Another chapbook, Crows Calling, is from Foothills Publishing. She has presented at many local and regional venues.

Sign-up starts at 7 p.m.; readings begin at 7:30. Hosted by Catherine Norr. Good food, beverages and cozy, welcoming ambiance!

Third Thursday to feature Barbara Ungar May 21
Poet Barbara Ungar will read from her work at the Social Justice Center, 33 Central Avenue, Albany, on Thursday, May 21 at 7:30 p.m. Barbara Ungar is a professor of English at the College of Saint Rose in Albany, NY; she directs the MFA program there. Among her books of poetry are Charlotte Brontë, You Ruined My Life, The Origin of the Milky Way and the recently published Immortal Medusa (The Word Works, 2015).

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 or dwlcx@earthlink.net.

Reading of  “Song of Myself”  May 31
Poets and other citizens will gather on Sunday, May 31, at 6 p.m. at the Robert Burns statue in Washington Park in Albany, NY, to celebrate the birthday of the quintessential American poet, Walt Whitman, with a reading of his poem “Song of Myself.” The event is sponsored by the Poetry Motel Foundation and the Hudson Valley Writers Guild. It is free and open to the public. Persons interested in reading a section of Whitman’s poem can sign up to read at the event.

Walt Whitman was born on May 31, 1819, at West Hills, NY, near Huntington on Long Island. “Song of Myself,” composed of over 1,300 lines in 52 sections, first appeared in Whitman’sLeaves of Grass in 1855. The poem went through a number of revisions and changes until the 1881 edition of Leaves of Grass. Whitman died in 1892 in Camden, NJ. The theme of “Song of Myself,” as indeed it is of most of Whitman’s work, is the celebration of the individual, of the nation and of the spiritual possibility within us all.

The Robert Burns statue is located in Albany’s Washington Park, along the park road that parallels Willett Street and the intersection of Hudson Avenue. The reading will take place rain or shine; it is suggested that the public brings chairs or blankets to sit on.  For more information call or email Dan Wilcox at dwlcx@earthlink.net or visit the Guild’s website, www.hvwg.org.

Illustrator wanted!
A note from Jeff Marden: “I am seeking an illustrator for a children’s book for 2-8 year olds. The illustrations need to be colored pencil drawings. The theme personality is moderate fantasy taking place in a city neighborhood with traditional brownstone houses. If interested in discussing please contact Jeff Marden, Jeff@MardenConsulting.com. Thank you.”

Hudson Valley Writers Guild Newsletter, April 2015

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 announces winners of Take Back the Night poetry contest

Member Announcements:

  • “No excuses: Writing & selling your book” class offered by Pauline Bartel
  • Tom Swyer’s novel Saving Babe Ruth is award finalist
  • A.P.D. announces publication of Coyote: Poems of Suburban Living
  • Alan Catlin shares Misfit Magazine news
  • Update on Schenectady County poet laureate from Bill Poppino

Area Announcements:

  • Caffè Lena presents Karen Skolfield & Bunkong Tuon April 1
  • Rensselaerville Library’s “10 Days/10 Poetry Events/10th Annual Poetry Month Celebration”
  • Pine Hollow Open Mic Series announces 2015 featured poets
  • Third Thursday to feature poet Michele Battiste April 16
  • Roeliff Jansen Community Library announces upcoming literary events
  • Bernadette Mayer’s summer poetry workshop almost filled (sign up now)
  • “Albany Reads: Books and Bites,” April 25
  • Writers in the Mountains presents “Significance of Story” workshop starting April 20
  • Writers in the Mountains presents nature writing workshop starting May 9
  • A Weekend Writing Retreat with Pat Schneider assisted by Kate Hymes, September 11-13
  • Canadian novelist seeks light-hearted, true accounts of senior living

GUILD ANNOUNCEMENTS

HVWG announces winners of Take Back the Night poetry contest
In conjunction with the Take Back the Night program and walk against violence against women, HVWG hosted a poetry contest. Held at The College of St. Rose on April 21 at 4:30 p.m., the program will include a reading of the winning entries.

Faith Green and Andrea Portnick lead the contest and with HVWG announce two winners: the winning poem “For Her, For Love” by H.L. Martin and “Another America Not Seen” by Joseph Phillip De Marco.

For Her, For Love
by H. L. Martin

You have to watch him raise another child,
because at twenty three
you are too old to testify
to what he did to you all of those years,
and what those years do to you now.

I watch you give your children the best
your mother gave to you,
and more. You know what a good investment
a child is. You love them and who they will become.
Once faced with another’s selfishness, you rise valiantly above.

At fourteen you forfeited your chance for justice,
to protect your sister,
and your brothers from being taken
away from your mother. You lost your grandmother,
and I lost my mother, when she took the wrong side.

We have to watch him raise another child,
she is five years old
and alone with him,
in the house where decals hide the numbers
and the law keeps us at bay.

*

Another America Not Seen
By Joseph Phillip De Marco

The dark face of hunger, desperation, and gutter pain are not felt in high places,

the callousness is not seen, legally it exists in our genes, along with sirens, and flashing lights.

Spartan and Trojan beggars fight the masses’ wicked spears on the cold silted streets,

unnoticed when the acid rain falls intentionally, covering guilt and shame;

tithing to God insures no ties nor blame for defeated men.

I walk with you, o’blighted souls. I breathe the same air that you breathe;

finding no peace, no place; I worry someday it would be me, and I say nay, never me!

So it will come; all disappointments following into my grave.

So it will be me, as I hang my hat before my witness,  I learned.

I surrender all reluctantly before I leave.

and if they read; it matters not, as no amount of light can force them to see what they out to see!

MEMBER ANNOUNCEMENTS

“No excuses: Writing & selling your book” class offered by Pauline Bartel
A course for aspiring authors interested in writing and selling books will be held on Thursdays, April 23, 30 and May 7 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at SUNY Adirondack, 640 Bay Road, Queensbury, NY. “No Excuses: Writing and Selling Your Book” is offered through continuing education. Course fee is $59, which includes a coursebook. To register, telephone (518) 743-2238.

Instructor Pauline Bartel will discuss the step-by-step process of transforming an idea into a published book, including creating a book proposal, finding agents and publishers and guiding a book to publishing success. Bartel is an award-winning writer and the author of seven published books. She is a member of the prestigious American Society of Journalists and Authors. Visit her website (www.paulinebartel.com) for further information.

Tom Swyer’s novel Saving Babe Ruth is award finalist
Published in June 2014, Tom Swyers’ novel, Saving Babe Ruth, is a finalist in two categories of the Independent Book Publisher Association’s annual Benjamin Franklin Awards. The two categories are “Popular Fiction” and “Best First Book: Fiction.”

The book is based on a true story. When washed-out lawyer and Civil War buff David Thompson takes charge of the kids’ baseball league in town, he must use all of his legal and survival skills to endure a wild, humor-laced thrill ride through an underworld filled with secrets and double lives that threaten his team, his league, his marriage, his family and his life.

Swyer’s book was in the newspapers and on the television last fall when it caused one local town to have a public hearing over its high school principal. A book trailer for Saving Babe Ruth covers those events.

Tom plans to talk about this and other adventures he’s had with Saving Babe Ruth when he speaks at a book signing at the Albany Institute of History and Art on May 17 at 2 pm. The talk is free with paid admission to the museum.

Tom has set aside a limited number of free Kindle copies of Saving Babe Ruth for HVWG members. You can request one by dropping him a note swyerstom@gmail.com.

A.P.D. announces publication of Coyote: Poems of Suburban Living
A.P.D. (Another Poetic Disaster) announces the publication of Coyote: Poems of suburban living, by Dan Wilcox. This chapbook of six poems is #11 in The Bob Kaufman Series of A.P.D.’s (Aged PoeticDynasty) inexpensive chapbooks of works by Albany poets. The poems were variously inspired by viewing suburban life second-hand from the safety of the city and by random remarks made late at night on Facebook. (No real coyotes were harmed in the writing of these poems.)

Charlie Rossiter (www.poetrypoetry.com), Chicago poet and founding member of the poetry performance group “3 Guys from Albany,” describes Coyote this way: “Dan Wilcox knows coyote and what happens when the trickster comes to town. Like the life force itself, coyote roars through the air-conditioned nightmare of suburbia luring housewives to run naked in the night while their husbands sit clueless in front of TV sports, ravages hapless family pets and lovingly cares for her young. (Shapeshifting coyote takes human form and switches gender at will). Wilcox’s insight into coyote is particularly impressive considering that he is an adamantly urban poet who has been known to wear a sport coat on a weekend camping trip.”

Copies of Coyote may be ordered by sending a check for $4 payable to “A.P.D.” to 280 South Main Ave., Albany, NY  12208, or they may be purchased for $3 from the poet at readings and open mics.

Alan Catlin shares Misfit Magazine news
Alan writes: The Lucky #13 issue of Misfit Magazine is now up and ready for your reading pleasure at misfitmagazine.net. This issue was our theme issue — Deadly Sins — and we received all kinds of terrific work. I hope you will enjoy reading as much as we did putting it together. Lucky 13 is also something of a double issue with over 40 new poems and with dozens of reviews, almost three times as many as any previous issue. Please note that I will be taking a sabbatical from April 15 until June 1, when I will again be reading for the next issue, which will be an open one. There may be one of our interim “half issues” towards the end of May also, so stay tuned for future announcements.

Update on Schenectady County poet laureate from Bill Poppino
Stephen H. Swartz has just been re-appointed poet laureate for Schenectady County by its legislature through July 31, 2018. He was initially appointed for a three year term in 2009 and has been a ‘hold-over’ from 2012 until now. Back in 2008, New York State had 12 county poet laureates, but none in the Capital District. This seemed strange to HVWG member Bill Poppino, so following his presentation to the County Library Board, the Legislature appointed a five-person selection committee, including Philip Morris (CEO of Proctors), Jim McCord (Union College) and representatives from three other county schools. Since appointed in 2009, Steve has been a regular presenter at the “Community of Writers” event held in November at the Schenectady Main Library.

AREA ANNOUNCEMENTS

Caffè Lena presents Karen Skolfield & Bunkong Tuon April 1
On Wednesday, April 1, Caffè Lena will present poetry readings by Karen Skolfield and Bunkong Tuon. 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) 583-0022www.caffelena.org.

Karen Skolfield’s book Frost in the Low Areas (2013) won the 2014 PEN New England Award in poetry and the First Book Award from Zone 3 Press and was a “Must-Read” Massachusetts book for 2014. She is a 2014 winner of the 2014 Split This Rock poetry prize and the 2012 Oboh Prize from Boxcar Poetry Review. Skolfield is the poetry editor forAmherst Live and contributing editor at the literary magazines Tupelo Quarterly and Stirring. She teaches writing to engineers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

Bunkong Tuon teaches in the English department at Union College. His poetry and nonfiction works have appeared or are forthcoming in The Paterson Literary Review, The New York Quarterly, The Massachusetts Review, The Más Tequila Review, Numéro Cinq, Misfit Magazine and Nerve Cowboy, among others. Gruel, his first full-length collection of poems, is forthcoming by NYQ Books.

Rensselaerville Library’s “10 Days/10 Poetry Events/10th Annual Poetry Month Celebration”
March 28 – April 26. Sponsored by the Rensselaerville Library. Dedicated to the Memory of Poet Galway Kinnell.

Save these dates, mark your calendars and forward to friends:

  • March 28, 10:30 am -12:30 p.m., “Visual Poetry/Words & Images Workshop” (Katrinka Moore).
  • April 2, 7-8 p.m., “April Foolishness: Nonsense & Rhymes“ (reading & sharing of favorite silly poems with Maryann Ronconi).
  • April 9, 7-9 p.m., “Poems Without Form: Prose Poem“ (reading & sharing of poems, followed by writing of prose poems, with Diane Gallo).
  • April 16, 7-9 p.m., “Writing in Form: From Haiku to Sonnet” (discussion & sharing of poems, followed by writing of poems in form from 8-9 with Linda Sonia Miller).
  • April 17, 5:30 p.m., “Storytime – Poetry, Pizza & Crafts for Kids.”
  • April 18, 4 p.m. at the Way-Out Gallery, “Post-It Poetry” (sharing & writing of short poems – on 3×3 post-its – and music, too with Nancy Dyer & Peter Boudreaux).
  • April 19, 3 p.m., Art Opening & Poetry Salon at the Way-Out Gallery. Enjoy a Galway Kinnell tribute (Ginny Carter), art opening & installation, music, wine and readings (by Peter Boudreaux, Alan Casline,Tom Corrado, Cassandra Halleh, Susan Kayne, Howard Kogan, Linda Sonia Miller, Katrinka Moore, Mimi Moriarty & Dan Wilcox).
  • April  21, 7-8 p.m., “Robert Frost, A Poet Connected to Nature” (presentation by Huyck Preserve researchers Sue Beatty & Owen Sholes).
  • April 26, 2-4 p.m. at Conkling Hall, “10th Annual Favorite Poem Project: Galway Kinnell Dedication and an afternoon of poetry & refreshments” (bring a favorite and/or original poem to read aloud or just come and listen – Claire North, emcee).
  • April 30, 5:30-9 p.m., “Western/Cowgirl/Cowboy Poetry at the Palmer House Cafe.“ Reserve a chuck wagon dinner at the cafe at 5:30 and/or enjoy poetry and music inspired by a life “on the range” beginning at 7 p.m. (Janet Botaish)

For complete details and updates, visit www.rensselaervillelibrary.org. All events will be held at the Rensselaerville Library, unless otherwise specified. Any questions? Contact Linda Sonia Miller, poetry events coordinator, at (518) 416-2776.

Pine Hollow Open Mic Series announces 2015 featured poets
Poets of earth, water, tree & sky! Featured poets at Pine Hollow Open Mic Series 2015:

  • Friday, April 10: Alifare Skebe
  • Friday, May 8: John Roach
  • Saturday, May 30: Celebrating 50 Years of Planting (a performance with a 7 p.m. start; Sue Spencer, drums; Michael Czarnecki, voice)
  • Friday, June 12: Deborah Poe
  • Friday, July 10: Alan Catlin
  • Friday, August 14: Celebrating 50 Years of Planting – 7th Annual Poets at the Arboretum (group reading)
  • Friday, September 11: Tom Corrado – World Premiere Performance Poetry: Knapp’s Last Tape…Screendumped
  • Friday, October 9: Brenda Coultas
  • Friday, November 13: Philomena Moriarty & Sam Trumbore

All events are at Pine Hollow Arboretum Visitor Center, 16 Maple Avenue, Slingerlands, NY, at 6:30 PM. Includes open mic for poets and writers. Sponsored by Rootdrinker Institute, Hudson Valley Writers Guild and the Delmar Writers Group.

Third Thursday to feature poet Michele Battiste April 16
Poet Michele Battiste will read from her work at the Social Justice Center, 33 Central Avenue, Albany, on Thursday, April 16, at 7:30 p.m. Michele Battiste is the author ofUprising (2014) and Ink for an Odd Cartography (2009), both published by Black Lawrence Press.  A Schenectady native raised on the Albany poetry scene, she now lives in Colorado, where she raises funds for organizations undoing corporate evil.

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 ordwlcx@earthlink.net.

Roeliff Jansen Community Library announces upcoming literary events
Everyday in April: Poem-a-Day Challenge and a May 1 Open Mic / Roeliff Jansen Community Library is announcing the annual April Poem-A-Day Challenge. For the fourth consecutive year, Great Barrington poet Janet Hutchinson is sending out daily email poetry writing prompts during the month of April. To receive daily prompts send your email address to: janhutch44@gmail.com. Hutchinson says, “There are now 300 people in 12 states and three foreign countries receiving these prompts. Many people have told me that they did not actually complete 30 poems in April, but said that the five they did write were five more than they might have written otherwise.” Challenge participants are invited to attend an open mic event at the Roe Jan Library to read some of the poems they wrote, on Friday, May 1, 7-8 p.m.

April 25, 4 p.m.: Poet Joan Murray to read at Roe Jan Library as part of Poetry Month Celebration / Prize-winning narrative poet Joan Murray will read from her new collection,Swimming for the Ark: New & Selected Poems 1990-2015, at the Roeliff Jansen Community Library on Saturday, April 25, at 4 p.m. Joan Murray is a poet, writer and playwright, whose books include: Looking for the Parade (W. W. Norton), Dancing on the Edge and Queen of the Mist (both from Beacon Press) and The Same Water (Wesleyan University Press). She is also the editor of The Pushcart Book of Poetry and the Poems to Live By anthologies. This program was made possible in part by a grant from Poets and Writers.

May 3, 1-4 p.m.: Memoir Writing Workshop at Roe Jan Library / A memoir writing workshop, led by writers/teachers Susan Hodara and Joan Potter, will be held at the Roeliff Jansen Community Library. The workshop is free, but pre-registration is required by May 1. In April 2014 the library hosted a panel including Hodara and Potter discussing a memoir they co-authored, Still Here Thinking of You: A Second Chance With Our Mothers. “The enthusiasm for the memoir mini-workshop presented at that event made us want to follow up with a workshop that gives participants more time to write their own stories,” says Cecele Kraus of the Library’s Literature Committee. Hodara and Potter will read selections from their memoirs, answer questions and discuss various aspects of memoir, such as finding a personal voice, conflicting or incomplete memories, and guilt about telling family stories. Participants will write their own stories, and feedback will be offered to as many as time permits. For additional details about the workshop, teachers and registration visit the library website at www.roejanlibrary.org. This workshop is made possible by a grant from The Hudson Valley Writers Guild.

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. For information on hours and events, call (518) 325-4101 or visit the library’s website at www.roejanlibrary.org.

Bernadette Mayer’s summer poetry workshop almost filled (sign up now)
Bernadette Mayer will lead her continuing workshop series on a summer session beginning in May 2015. She will once again provide participating poets with the opportunity to engage in her language experiments. She will also talk about her mentors and contemporaries and suggest new directions in verse. She will also suggest books you should have to aid in your writing and how to publish your poems. The workshop is not a traditional critique of participant’s previous work but an opportunity to fulfill Bernadette’s creative writing assignments. Completed assignments are then presented to the group and used as springboards for wide ranging discussion. Bernadette will continue to write and distribute new poems for the benefit of workshop participants and subject matter.

Bernadette Mayer’s poetry writing workshop takes place at her home in East Nassau, NY. The workshop will meet on five Saturdays: May 9, June 13, July 11, August 15 and September 12. Each meeting will take place 2-4 p.m. Mayer will facilitate a conducive atmosphere that will bring forth enhanced new poems from each of the participants. Total Cost: $65, including drinks and light refreshments. Workshop limited to eight participants.

Bernadette Mayer (born May 12, 1945, in Brooklyn, NY) is a poet and prose writer. In 1967, she received a BA from New School for Social Research. She has since edited the journal 0 TO 9 with Vito Acconci and the United Artists Press with Lewis Warsh and worked as Director of St. Mark’s Poetry Project. Her new book Helens of Troy is a Spring 2012 release by New Directions. For more than a decade, she and poet Philip Good have lived in East Nassau. From the beginning of this series of workshops in September 2011, she has provided an expansive menu of poetic technique and belief, as well as her careful listening to an appreciative core of workshop participants. New participants are welcome to their lively get togethers.

Contact: email ACASLINE@AOL.COM to reserve your place. The mailing address, if email is not available, is Rootdrinker, P.O. Box 522, Delmar, NY 12054.

“Albany Reads: Books and Bites,” April 25
“Albany Reads” starts in people’s homes. Hosts will invite friends and neighbors to read Gregory Maguire’s Wicked and then come to their homes for a small plates dinner at 6 p.m. to discuss the book. After the dinner parties, there will be a dessert reception for all the participants at the Washington Avenue Branch at 8 p.m. Hosts will collect individual minimum contributions of $40 per person. Participants are responsible for getting a copy of the book. Limited copies will be available at the library’s branches and will be for sale at a discount at The Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza. If you would like to host an “Albany Reads” dinner, please click here. Hosts need to sign up by Friday, April 17. If you would like to attend an Albany Reads dinner, please click here. We will do our best to match you with prospective hosts with space at their homes. Attendees need to sign up by Monday, April 20.

Writers in the Mountains presents “Significance of Story” workshop starting April 20
Dare to write! Writers in the Mountains (WIM) announces its popular 6-week workshop, “The Significance of Story: Threads of Revelation” with Carol Little at the Andes Public Library, Mondays, 6 to 8 p.m., from April 20 to May 25. This class is open to anyone interested in writing about their life. No prior writing experience is required. It all starts with a word, an image or a sentence and a willingness to discover.

Every person’s story is unique, no matter what shared experiences we have had.  We are changed and shaped by what we experience—by our choices, our circumstances and by things that simply happen as we maneuver through life. Stories have personal meaning, turning points and markers. As we remember and write, or write and remember, we bring together parts of ourselves that may have been scattered, hidden or distorted. We gain a deeper understanding for the truth of our lives, and often a greater appreciation for our own journey.

Carol Little, a long time member of WIM, has extensive experience working with groups and with the use of writing for personal expression. She is a psychotherapist in private practice.

To register, call (607) 759-6138 or write to writersinthemountains@gmail.com. To register online, visit writersinthemountains.org, go to “Register Online” page and fill in the registration form. Class fee is $85.

Writers in the Mountains presents nature writing workshop starting May 9
Dare to write! Writers in the Mountains (WIM) announces a 6-week nature-writing workshop, “Seeing Nature in Words” with Leslie T. Sharpe, at the Delaware County Historical Association, 46549 State Hwy 10, Delhi, NY, Saturdays, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., from May 9 to June 13 (skipping Memorial Day weekend).

Whether one is writing to change the world or simply for the pleasure of recording one’s observations in a notebook, when the relationship between the observer and nature is at the core of a work, the writing is almost always personal and intensely felt. It is this passion that makes the genre so dynamic and also so accessible to read and to write. The goal of this class is to encourage writers to explore their special relationship with the natural world—be it in the Catskill High Peaks or a backyard garden, expressed as a description of a single flower or as an essay probing an environmental issue—in their own true voice.

Leslie T. Sharpe is an author, editor and educator. She has a BA (Phi Beta Kappa and magna cum laude) in Ancient Greek Language and Literature from Wheaton College and received her master’s degree in Ancient Greek from Columbia University, where she was a Woodrow Wilson Fellow. She began her editing career at Farrar, Straus & Giroux and is currently an editorial consultant specializing in literary nonfiction, literary fiction and poetry. A member of the PEN American Center, she is the author of Editing Fact and Fiction: A Concise Guide to Book Editing (Cambridge University Press), which is regarded as a “modern editing classic.”

Sharpe has taught in the undergraduate and graduate writing programs at Columbia University’s School of the Arts; Introduction to Publishing and Editorial Process at City College of New York’s publishing certificate program; and Manuscript Editing at New York University’s certificate program in book publishing. She teaches online courses for the cutting-edge all-media website mediabistro.com, including The Nonfiction Book and Nonfiction Writing Master Class.

Leslie has also a been a regular contributor to Newsday’s “Urban ‘I’” column, and her essays and articles have appeared in a wide variety of publications including the Chicago Tribune, Christian Science Monitor, Global City Review, International Herald Tribune, New York Times, New York Tribune, Philadelphia Inquirer, San Francisco Chronicle andVillage Voice. She recently finished her memoir, Our Fractured, Perfect Selves, and is currently at work on a new book, The Quarry Fox and Other Tales of a Catskill Summer. Her poems for children have appeared in Ladybug Magazine; Who Knew? Catskill Literary Journal; and From the Catskills.

Leslie’s approach, as an editor as well as a writing teacher, is to find the strengths in the work at hand and build on them. That method is rooted in her respect for every writer and their creations. She believes it is especially important that a workshop environment allow writers to feel safe to express themselves and their thoughts and feelings as well as observations—especially when working in those creative nonfiction forms (journaling, personal essay, memoir) that use the first person “I” voice and that speak directly out of one’s personal experience.

To register, call (607) 759-6138 or e-mail writersinthemountains@gmail.com. To register online, visit writersinthemountains.org. This class is $100 if registered by April 18 or $125 thereafter. Partial scholarships may be available.

A Weekend Writing Retreat with Pat Schneider assisted by Kate Hymes, September 11-13
Registration is  open now! Details:

  • Workshop Leader: Pat Schneider
  • Register – www.wallkillvalleywriters.com
  • Registration fee – $420
  • Commuter registration – $420 plus $90 (facilities and meals) = $510. Non-refundable deposit $145 due April 24. Balance $365 due on or before July 17.
  • Overnight registration – $420 plus $190 (2 nights lodging) = $615. Non-refundable deposit $195 due April 24. Balance $420 due on or before July 17.

“Everyone is a writer….Those who do not write stories or poems…tell them, sing them, and, in so doing they are writing on the air. Creating with words is our continuing passion. We dream stories, make up stories, poems, songs, and tell them to ourselves.” —Pat Schneider

Pat Schneider says that it isn’t discipline we lack, but belief in our art, our creativity in ourselves. Over a more than 40-year career leading writing workshops, she has helped novice and experienced writers believe in their stories and their ability to write them. She has developed a practice, the Amherst Writers and Artists method, that leads writers to write what they know and what they don’t know they know, to tell their deepest truth and to know that their deepest writing is their best writing. Commit to writing as your art. Experience personally writing with Pat who has been called “the wisest teacher of writing.”

“Pat is a gifted, exceptional teacher, artist and compassionate human being. She led us from the superficial levels of writing deep into the hidden treasures we all contain and showed us that everyone is truly a writer/artist. She helped us become more courageous and honest – a difficult task! I will be able to finally start writing what I’ve always needed to write. Now I have tools to help me.” — Julia P.

Pat is a poet, playwright, librettist and author of ten books of poetry and non-fiction. She was born in the Ozark mountains of Missouri, where she became intimate with fossils, creekbeds, grasshoppers and box turtles. After a search for work took her single mother to St. Louis, from age 10 Pat lived in tenements and in an orphanage until she was given a scholarship to college. Those early experiences have deeply influenced her writing and fueled her passion for those who have been denied voice through poverty and other misfortunes.

Pat’s libretto, “The Lament of Michal,” was performed in Carnegie Hall by Phyllis Bryn Julson and the Atlanta Symphony directed by Robert Shaw. Her poetry has been read by Garrison Keillor on National Public Radio’s Writer’s Almanac sixteen times.  A film about her work with women in low-income housing, titled “Tell Me Something I Can’t Forget” is included in the DVD companion to her book, Writing Alone and With Others.

Amherst Writers & Artists, founded by Pat in 1981 and directed and managed by Pat and Peter for 30 years, is now an international network of workshop leaders who use the writing method described in Writing Alone and With Others, Oxford University Press.

Pat’s newest book, How the Light Gets In: Writing as a Spiritual Practice, was released from Oxford University Press in April 2013.

Canadian novelist seeks light-hearted, true accounts of senior living
Judy Stoddart, a novelist affiliated with a writers guild in Manitoba, writes: “I am working on a novel involving the day-to-day antics of an Independent Living facility. My request is for light-hearted, true accounts among seniors, family members or staff, but will review any other unique situations that may apply. All names and facilities will be confidential. Your response can be in dialogue, a few sentences or longer; whereas I’ll piece together a story in my own words with your submissions. I will accept all correspondence viajlstod@mts.net until April 30. Please do not send as an attachment but paste in body of email. Subject line to read: “Independent Living.” When published, your acknowledgment will be granted with your permission.”

Judy’s bio includes several publication credits, and she has been accepted for the 2015 Sheldon Oberman Mentorship Program (January 1st – June 15th, 2015). She has just completed a 60,000 word manuscript titled Thirteen Ways to Meet a Woman and a collection of poems titled Crossing the Tracks. Both have been submitted to publishers, but the waiting game can be long before any written material is accepted. She was formerly the editorial assistant for Style Manitoba magazine, where she now continues as a freelance writer.

Hudson Valley Writers Guild Newsletter, March 2015

IN THIS ISSUE

Member Announcements:

  • Linda Freedland seeking Beta reader for her manuscript
  • Letter from my love by Miriam Newell Biskin now available

Area Announcements:

  • Berkshire Festival for Women Writers happening now
  • Celebration of the Activism of Barbara Smith March 3
  • Caffè Lena to present poet Marilyn McCabe March 4
  • “Out of the Mouths of Babes” at Berkshire Festival of Women Writers March 7
  • Second Sunday Open Mic for Poetry & Prose: March 8
  • Arthur’s Market Open Mic to feature Bob Sharkey March 11
  • March 17 deadline for Schoharie Crossing 2015 Writing Contest
  • Third Thursday to feature poet Andy Fogle March 19
  • Vermont author creates March 21 retreat to inspire creativity
  • Technical writer job openings in Albany/Rensselaer

MEMBER ANNOUNCEMENTS

Linda Freedland seeking Beta reader for her manuscript
New HVWG member Linda Freedland writes, “I am looking for a Beta reader for my adult erotic romance. I am currently revising the manuscript based on a review by a professional copy editor. I hope to finish this by early March. I am seeking a reader, preferably female, who enjoys contemporary romance and who will provide me with an unbiased review with comments/suggestions. If interested, please contact me by email at: lwf9408@aol.com.”

Letter from my love by Miriam Newell Biskin now available
Letter from my love by Miriam Newell Biskin is a compilation of letters written by her soldier fiancé during WW2. The self-published book is available online.

AREA ANNOUNCEMENTS

Berkshire Festival for Women Writers happening now
The annual Berkshire Festival of Women Writers is a collaborative, multi-date, multi-venue event dedicated to nourishing and showcasing the voices of women writers of all ages, from many walks of life. Only in the Berkshires is Women’s History Month celebrated with such an outpouring of creativity, with Festival events every day of the month of March.

In 2015 we’ll be celebrating the Fifth Anniversary Season of the Festival in our usual style, with more than 50 readings, lectures, workshops, performances and screenings held at more than 30 Berkshire County venues from Sheffield to North Adams.

Special events to look forward to include a keynote talk by memoirist Dani Shapiro on March 1; a special screening of Pamela Yates’ new film DISRUPTION with a talkback by the filmmaker, in honor of International Women’s Day on March 8; a behind-the-scenes interview with best-selling young adult author Mary Pope Osborne to open the Festival Book Expo event on March 29; a benefit performance directed by Jayne Atkinson-Gill on our closing weekend; and much, much more.

Join us and feel the marvelous momentum of this grand collaborative community celebration! And please support our efforts in any way you can–there are so many ways to get involved, from volunteering to becoming business sponsor or Friend of the Festival.  We can’t do it without you!

For complete Festival information: www.berkshirewomenwriters.org

Celebration of the Activism of Barbara Smith March 3
Rockefeller College, the New York State Writers Institute and SUNY Press invite you to a celebration of the life and work of pioneering activist Barbara Smith. We’ll begin the evening with a panel discussion moderated by Susan Arbetter of The Capitol Pressroom, featuring Barbara and Alethia Jones and Virginia Eubanks, editors of new book, Ain’t Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around: Forty Years of Movement Building with Barbara Smith (2014). Immediately following the discussion, there will be a dessert reception and book signing with Barbara.

As an organizer, writer, publisher, independent scholar, professor, and elected official, Barbara Smith’s work has shaped scholarship, teaching, and progressive activism that challenges classism, sexism, racism and homophobia.  Ain’t Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around: Forty Years of Movement Building with Barbara Smith brings to life the controversies, players, and strategies that expanded the definitions of freedom through multiple social movements. After meticulously selecting material from over two hundred articles and interviews, the book juxtaposes hard to find historical documents with new unpublished interviews with fellow activists and scholars. In a clear, conversational style, it engages readers in fundamental questions that can deepen their social justice work and heighten their integrity, accountability, and courage. Smith is a public service professor in the School of Social Welfare at the University at Albany and a former member of Albany’s Common Council.

Please RSVP here; seating is limited.

Caffè Lena to present poet Marilyn McCabe March 4
On Wednesday, March 4, Caffè Lena will present a poetry reading by Marilyn McCabe. 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. Sponsored by Northshire Bookstore.

Marilyn McCabe’s poems can be found in literary journals on line and in print. Her book of poems, Perpetual Motion, is available through publisher The Word Works or at Small Press Distribution, www.spdbooks.org. Her videopoems can be seen on www.vimeo.com/marmccabe. She blogs about writing and reading at marilynonaroll.wordpress.com.

Caffè Lena is located at 47 Phila Street in Saratoga Springs: (518) 583-0022, www.caffelena.org

“Out of the Mouths of Babes” at Berkshire Festival of Women Writers March 7
In this fourth year of “Out of the Mouths of Babes,” at the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers on March 7, a variety of writers and performers will illume the iconic “village” of people who help raise families – however imperfect. Whether rural or urban, many mothers live in community but experience relative isolation. The quest of Out is to “take the maternal out of the kitchen and into the world” to inspire, maintain, and celebrate the community-supported creative life of women.

Suzi Banks Baum, the event organizer, has spent the past several years cultivating women’s voices through writing. Her drive came from her own “longing that had been masked by the chaos of motherhood.” Realizing women needed their own incubator to create, she formed The Powder Keg Sessions, a series of writing groups. She also edited An Anthology of Babes: 36 Women Give Motherhood a Voice and is currently on a book tour, offering space for women around the country to express their voices through writing. This summer, she’ll take it to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, where she grew up.

“My desire is to spread the roots of this community past Berkshire County,” says Banks Baum. “Women the world over are stymied by a silent desperation that keeps them quiet. Whatever their life conditions, the common thread is a societal underestimation of the value of motherhood and of women’s lives in general. My quest is for women to access and nurture their inner resolve, to take a stand for their stories that are news to the world. For this, they must hear from other women.”

A variety of writers and performers, including Banks Baum, will present their work:

  • Sarah Hains DiFazio is a second-grade teacher, community leader and blogger at MommaStrong.com.
  • Amy Dryansky’s newest poetry collection, Grass Whistle, received a Massachusetts Book Award. She blogs about the territory of mother/artist/poet at Pokey Mama.
  • Nichole Dupont writes about “the snarkier side of rural, single motherhood” and has been published in Newsday, Huffington Post and Berkshire Magazine.
  • Janet Reich Elsbach blogs about living on a small ludicrous farm and feeding a family of five at A Raisin & A Porpoise.
  • Lorrin Krouss used to work in publishing and was inspired to write by the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers. Her first essay has already been anthologized.
  • Serene Mastrianni is a registered pharmacist who also created and co-hosts the long-running weekly radio broadcast Radio2Women.
  • Lynnette (Lucy) Najimy and her film company, Beansprout Productions, use the power of story to bridge the gap between people across social divides.
  • Rachel Siegel trained at the Royal Academy of Drama and has performed widely in the United States and UK.
  • Leigh Strimbeck is co-founder of the WAM Theatre and Artist in Residence at Russell Sage College, teaching in the theater and WORLD programs.

In addition to the live portion, there will be art by Berkshire women and a short film on the theme of “If she can, I can!” Copies of An Anthology of Babes will also be available for purchase. Bedtime snacks and socializing will close the evening. “Out of the Mouths of Babes” will be at Dewey Memorial Hall, Sheffield, MA on Saturday, March 7. It will start at 7 p.m., and a $10 suggested donation at the door will help fund the production, as well as support the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers. Pajamas are perfect attire. To learn more, contact Suzi at (413) 429-1799 or suzi@laundrylinedivine.com.

Second Sunday Open Mic for Poetry & Prose: March 8
The next “Second Sunday Open Mic for Poetry and Prose” will be Sunday, March 8, at The Arts Center of the Capital Region, 265 River Street, Troy, NY. Bring two poems or five minutes of prose to read. After March, we have only three more dates left:  April 12, May 10 and June 14.  Co-hosted by Nancy Klepsch and Dan Wilcox.

Arthur’s Market Open Mic to feature Bob Sharkey March 11
Second Wednesday open mic and featured poet March 11 at Arthur’s Market & Café, 35 N. Ferry Street, Schenectady. Featured poet: Bob Sharkey. Bob’s publications include Main Street Rag, Plainsongs, Pudding and his initial collection, a chapbook entitled The Yellow Fairy.

Hosted by Catherine Norr. Come listen and share in a warm welcoming venue. Good food and beverages available.

March 17 deadline for Schoharie Crossing 2015 Writing Contest
There are three categories for the Schoharie Crossing 2015 Writing Contest: child (8-12 years old), young adult (13-17) and adult (17+).

Option #1:
This entry appears on Friday, September 10, in a diary kept by a resident of Fort Hunter in 1869: “It has Rained all day today and I helped…Eb. Howards…and the …Websters also[.]  I shall never forget while I live let it Be long or short what I herd this Day.” No further mention appears in the diary after this, and there is nothing in the days leading up to it that would give any good clues.  Using a creative approach and knowledge of the canal era in Fort Hunter, develop a story about what it is the diarist might have heard.

Option #2:
The Erie Canal operated from early spring to late fall. Occasionally however, barges didn’t make it through before the water froze for the winter.  That is what happened to the line boat, “Elizabeth” operated by the Brown family in 1858. Winnie is now twelve and along with her brothers Albert (14 yrs old) and Jason (8 yrs old), they help their parents haul freight and passengers along the canal between Albany & Buffalo.  Stuck on the frozen canal near Canal town with their four mules (Daisy, Buttercup, Midnight and Magic) until the spring thaw, the family will have to find a way to earn a living and survive. Write a story telling about how they and their mules spend their days until spring.

Option #3:
In recent years archaeological exploration has yielded new information regarding 18th Century Fort Hunter.  Here are three artifacts that were discovered on site: A ring, a silver nose bob, and a black bear tooth.  These  are available to be viewed in the exhibit at the Visitor Center—call if you would like to stop in to see them.  Using one, two or all three of these artifacts, create a compelling story.  Use your own writing voice and place the setting within the 18th century Mohawk Valley frontier.

Here are the rules/guidelines:

  • Submissions must be in by 5 p.m. on March 17.
  • Please, only one entry per person.
  • Please provide with your submission your name, age category, contact information including mailing address and telephone number. Submissions can be dropped off to the site, mailed or sent via email.
  • All submissions must be legible (typed double space preferred) and the pages numbered.
  • Submit to Janice M. Fontanella, Schoharie Crossing, P.O. Box 140, Fort Hunter, NY 12069; janice.fontanella@parks.ny.gov

PRIZE WINNERS will receive:

  • Child: $25 Fulton Montgomery Regional Chamber of Commerce Gift Checks
  • Young Adult: $50
  • Adult: $100

Feel free to illustrate your story, however they are not necessary. If there are any questions or comments, or you would like more historical context or information for your writing, please contact us at Schoharie Crossing via phone: (518) 829-7516.

Third Thursday to feature poet Andy Fogle March 19
Poet Andy Fogle will read from his work at the Social Justice Center, 33 Central Avenue, Albany, on Thursday, March 19, at 7:30 p.m. Andy Fogle grew up in Virginia Beach, lived for 13 years in the DC area and has now been upstate for 10 years, teaching at Bethlehem Central High School and chipping away at a PhD in Education. He has published five chapbooks of poetry and a variety of nonfiction.

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; dwlcx@earthlink.net.

Vermont author creates March 21 retreat to inspire creativity
Writers, freelancers, poets and others are encouraged to attend a day-long retreat designed to assist them in overcoming blocks or resistance in the writing process. “Nourish, A Retreat for Writers” is designed to help writers care for themselves, according to author J.P. Choquette, who designed the one-day event. The retreat will be held in a spacious mansion in the quaint village of Enosburgh, Vermont, on March 21.

“I planned this one-day retreat to help fellow writers by providing the time and space needed to nurture creativity,” she said. “In a world that’s often busy and loud, it can be a challenge to find time to just be quiet and discover or re-discover the joy that comes from writing.” Choquette explained that the goal of the retreat is not to schmooze with editors and agents or worry about one’s career, but to feed creativity: “I want to work with writers to create plans for growing their creativity and their writing. This is best done by guiding writers in defining what blocks them and then create strategies to work around the blocks. It’s about helping them to blossom and strengthen their writing skills and to have fun along the way.”

The morning session will focus on a guided journaling session and on-site yoga class taught by a professional instructor. A spa-like, nourishing lunch will follow. The afternoon offers time for free-writing, creating a collage “story” without words and mini-coaching sessions with participants. “I have discovered that movement and other forms of art, such a painting and collage, both enhance your mental creativity and help your writing,” she explained.

Choquette is a writer of fiction and nonfiction works. She is the author of the guide The 15- Minute Novelist, How to Write Your First Book in Just 15 Minutes a Day. She is also a coach who helps other creatives build a strategy for successfully hurdling over stumbling blocks. Her most recent novel, Subversion, was published in late 2014. Registration is $249. Due to the nurturing atmosphere, spaces are limited. Registration can be found online at http://www.jpchoquette.com/registration-for-nourish-retreat.html

Technical writer job openings in Albany/Rensselaer
Documentation Strategies, Inc., is a leading provider of Information, Technology and Training services to public and private organizations.  Since 1981, Documentation Strategies has served clients throughout the U.S. from its headquarters in Albany/Rensselaer, New York.  We are certified as a Woman-owned Business Enterprise by New York State, the Port Authority of NY-NJ and WBENC.  In 2013 and again in 2014 DocStrats was named an INC. 500/5000 Fastest Growing companies in the US.

Documentation Strategies is seeking to fill two openings; both require at least three years technical writing, editing and proofreading experience:

  • We are representing our client, a national systems integrator, who is in search of a Technical Writer for a New York State (NYS) project.  This is a 3-6 month contract, based in the Albany, NY area and will require 100% on-site presence.
  • We are representing our client, a materials analysis equipment firm in need of a soft- and hardware Technical Writer to join its engineering team.  This is a full-time, permanent opportunity, based in the Albany, NY area and requires 100% on-site presence.  Relocation and sponsorship are not a consideration at this time.

There are detailed job descriptions for each. Experienced technical writers, please contact Carolyn Santiago, IT Recruiter with Documentation Strategies, at santiago@docstrats.com, or call (518) 432-1233 x32.

Hudson Valley Writers Guild Newsletter, February 1

IN THIS ISSUE

Guild Announcements: 

  • Community of Writers Reading in Albany March 1
  • HVWG 2014 year-end membership report

Member Announcements: 

  • Paul Castellani to discuss his new novel at local book club February 25

Area Announcements: 

  • NYS Writers Institute Visiting Writers Series announces Spring 2015 events
  • Josh McIntyre & Dave Jaicks to feature at Caffè Lena February 4
  • Third Thursday to feature Sarah Michelle Sherman February 19
  • New Work from the Powder Keg Sessions at No. Six Depot on February 22
  • Weekly poetry class with Susan Comninos starting March 3
  • Tickets available for film screenings and Gusty Gal Film Awards at the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers
  • NYS Summer Young Writers Institute application deadline April 1
  • Catskills-based writers needed for arts publication

GUILD ANNOUNCEMENTS

Community of Writers Reading in Albany March 1
The Hudson Valley Writers Guild will sponsor a reading by three local authors on Sunday, March 1, at the Albany Public Library Washington Avenue Branch, 161 Washington Ave., from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.  The authors who will read from their recent work are Elizabeth Gordon, K.A. Laity and Keith Willis.  The reading is part of a continuing series titled “Community of Writers.”  The reading is free and open to the public.

Elizabeth Gordon’s book of poems, Love Cohoes, was published in 2014. It is a “tough love” homage to the city where she currently lives. She is a poet who performs in slam competitions nationally as “Elizag.” In 2007, she published the memoir Walk With Us: Triplet Boys, Their Teen Parents & Two White Women Who Tagged Along.  Both books were published by Crandall, Dostie & Douglass Books.

K. A. Laity is the award-winning author of White Rabbit, A Cut-Throat Business, Lush Situation, Owl Stretching, Unquiet Dreams, À la Mort Subite, The Claddagh Icon, Chastity Flame, Pelzmantel and Other Medieval Tales of Magic and Unikirja, as well as editor of Weird Noir, Noir Carnival and the forthcoming Drag Noir. Her bibliography is chock full of short stories, humor pieces, plays and essays, both scholarly and popular. Her website is www.kalaity.com.

Keith W. Willis graduated with a degree in English from Berry College and now lives near Saratoga Springs with his wife Patty. Keith is a member of the Hudson Valley Writers Guild, the Mythopoeic Society and the Latham/Albany/Schenectady/Troy Science Fiction Association. His debut fantasy novel Traitor Knight will be released in July 2015 by Champagne Book Group’s BURST SFF imprint. 

The Hudson Valley Writers Guild fosters an active community of writers and readers by encouraging the development of local authors and providing opportunities for them to share their talents with local audiences.  For more information about the Guild, visit www.hvwg.org. For more information about this reading and the Community of Writers series, contact Dan Wilcox,518-482-0262; email: dwlcx@earthlink.net.

HVWG 2014 year-end membership report
At the end of 2014, the Hudson Valley Writers Guild had 131 “active” members, i.e., people who paid their membership dues in the past year. Of those, 108 (82%) paid their 2014 dues and 23 (18%) did not. Therefore, we start 2015 with 108 “active” members. Of the 108 dues payers, there were 34 new members and 74 renewing members. Of the renewing members, 5 people made voluntary contributions (i.e., without being asked) and 3 people renewed for two years. Dues-paying members contributed a total of $3,245, an increase of $640 from 2013.

The Guild’s membership solicitation effort was carried out through 192 mailings, composed of 84 renewal requests, 74 thank you letters, and 34 new member welcome letters. Additionally, 23 year-end email reminders were sent to non-paying members. The direct costs of the 2014 membership effort were:

Postage $198.66
Reply Envelopes $170.66
Membership Forms $386.81

TOTAL $756.13

Therefore, when compared to the $3,245 income that resulted from the membership effort, we can say that the 2014 administrative expense for membership was 23%, typical (although a bit high) for non-profit organizations.

HVWG has an Honor Roll of four members who made extra contributions in 2014 in addition to their membership dues. The following people are called out for recognition of this effort:

Paul Castellani
Phyllis Hillinger
Kathleen O’Brien
David Wolcott

MEMBER ANNOUNCEMENTS

Paul Castellani to discuss his new novel at local book club February 25
Paul Castellani will participate in a discussion of his new novel, Sputnik Summer, at the Bethlehem Area Y Book Club on February 25 at 1 p.m. (Non-members, as well as members, are welcome.)

AREA ANNOUNCEMENTS

NYS Writers Institute Visiting Writers Series announces Spring 2015 events
The spring 2015 series includes major novelist Alice McDermott, celebrated New Yorker proofreader Mary Norris, rising literary stars Yelena Akhtiorskaya and Elisa Albert, two-time Booker Prize winner Peter Carey, major American poet Alicia Ostriker, prize-winning Caribbean author Caryl Phillips, Shakespeare authority and stage actress Tina Packer, a celebration of local civil rights crusader Barbara Smith, and many other events! For more on the Visiting Writers Series visit:  http://www.albany.edu/writers-inst/webpages4/programpages/vws.html#.VK1HZF8o7s0.

The Classic Film Series will feature young prize-winning director Tanya Hamilton (Night Catches Us), theater and film producer Ron Simons (winner of Tony Awards for for A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder; Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike; and the 2012 Porgy & Bess), prize-winning documentary filmmaker Jason Osder (Let the Fire Burn), and William Wellman, Jr., son and biographer of legendary Hollywood director William A. Wellman, whose career spanned four decades, from the Silent Era to the 1950s. For more on the Classic Film Series visit:  http://www.albany.edu/writers-inst/webpages4/programpages/cfs.html#.VK1Hfl8o7s0.

For more information, visit our website at http://www.albany.edu/writers-inst/webpages4/programpages/vws.html#.VK1JEF8o7s1 and our blog at http://nyswiblog.blogspot.com/, or call (518) 442-5620.

Josh McIntyre & Dave Jaicks to feature at Caffè Lena February 4
On Wednesday, February 4, Caffè Lena will present poetry readings by Josh McIntyre and Dave Jaicks. 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.

Josh McIntyre is a long lost regular at Caffè Lena Poetry and is most known as the poet who proposed marriage to his wife from our stage. He has been published in various magazines and journals, including Metroland, Modern Drunkard, Capital Region Poets and, most recently, in the men’s room at Caffè Lena! This will be Josh’s first return to an open mic stage in three years. He thanks you in advance for your kindness.

Dave Jaicks is the author of several short stories and flash fiction collections. His most recent titles are Spirit Man and Horses in the Fog. He has published his poetry in Fence, Open City, The Haight Ashbury Literary journal, Passages North, Peninsula Poets and Hummingbird. He has won some minor awards for his writing and is currently in the MFA writing program at the University of Massachusetts. His website is davidjaicks.com.

Third Thursday to feature Sarah Michelle Sherman February 19
Poet Sarah Michelle Sherman will read from her work at the Social Justice Center, 33 Central Avenue, Albany, on Thursday, February 19, at 7:30 p.m. Sarah Michelle Sherman, is a writer, teacher, bartender, graduate student pursuing an MFA in Creative Writing at The College of Saint Rose and managing editor of Pine Hills Review. Her work has appeared in Nailed Magazine, Ploughshares Online, The Helix and Decades Review. She is also a contributing writer for Albany’s alternative newspaper, Metroland.

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.

New Work from the Powder Keg Sessions at No. Six Depot on February 22
For over 100 hours, two groups of Berkshire women have faced down the blank page and tethered themselves to the rigors of a daily writing practice. They have taken time from careers, children, housework and other obligations for this radical act. Under the guidance of writer and blogger Suzi Banks Baum, they call themselves “The Powder Keg Sessions” — and on February 22, they will ignite No. Six Depot with their voices and new work. 

The reading of new work from the Powder Keg Sessions will be at 2 p.m. at No. Six Depot, 6 Depot Street, West Stockbridge, MA. This reading is co-hosted by the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers, and The Powder Keg Sessions are sponsored by the Great Barrington Public Libraries.     

Enhancing this devotion to pen and page is the exhibit opening of “What a Daily Writing Practice Looks Like: The Hand-Bound Journals of Writer, Maker, Mother Suzi Banks Baum.” In homage to the time-honored tradition of writers in cafes, Banks Baum’s hand-bound Coptic Stitch books filled with hand-painted papers, found and vintage papers, collages, and small paintings and drawings will be on display in No. Six Depot’s Café gallery until March 31. While she has studied with master book artists, Banks Baum also considers these journals critical to her daily writing practice. The books will be open, so viewers can witness how appetite and curiosity draw diverse resources onto single pages – and eventually, into the world. “What a Daily Writing Practice Looks Like” can be seen between 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. at No. Six Depot (except Tuesdays) between February 22 and March 31. For more information, contact Suzi Banks Baum at suzi@laundrylinedivine.com.   

“My commitment to creating, to making, has buoyed me through the worst of times,” says Banks Baum. “It has also given me a strength and ability to do things I never dreamed of doing. I am convinced that supporting women in engaging their creative voices will allow them to discover tools to improve their own lives and the lives of their families.”                                                                                                 

About Suzi Banks Baum / Suzi Banks Baum creates community wherever she goes. She’s an actress, writer, fiber and mixed media collage artist, teacher and collaborator. She’s also the editor and publisher of An Anthology of Babes: 36 Women Give Motherhood a Voice; creator of “Out of the Mouths of Babes: An Evening of Mothers Reading to Others” for the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers; and collaborator with FeMail, a snail-mail art exchange in its seventh year. She lives with her husband and two teenagers in the Berkshires and blogs atwww.laundrylinedivine.com.

Weekly poetry class with Susan Comninos starting March 3
Susan Comninos will offer a weekly poetry class — “The Poetry of Faith & Science” — beginning March 3 at the Schenectady JCC. The 9-week course (March 3 to April 28) will include the reading and discussion of published poems and their techniques, as well as the reading and discussion of student work. Please come prepared to write and participate.

Faith and science are the scrims through which many of us view and understand our lives. Consequently, both can make for fertile ground when we write poems that operate within, or struggle against, their borders. Explore how accomplished poets like Gerald Stern, Stanley Kunitz, Fanny Howe, Eve Grubin and Robert Morgan attempt to pair science with the Divine, or opt to embrace one over the other.

Classes are held at the Schenectady JCC in the Farber/Miness Gallery. The JCC is located at 2565 Balltown Road, Niskayuna. The cost for Schenectady JCC members and returning poetry students is $95; new students, $115. Enroll at the JCC or by calling 377-8803.

About the instructor: Susan Comninos is both a poet and a journalist. Her poetry’s appeared in Subtropics, TriQuarterly, Quarterly West, The Cortland Review, Nashville Review, Tulane Review, Judaism, Lilith, Tikkun, J Journal: New Writing on Justice, Gastronomica and The Malahat Review, among others. In 2010, she won the Yehuda Halevi Poetry Contest run by Tabletmagazine. She’s taught poetry at the University of Michigan, RPI and Troy Arts Center.

Tickets available for film screenings and Gusty Gal Film Awards at the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers
Tickets are now available for the Gutsy Gal Film Awards and film screening events presented by Gutsy Gals Inspire Me® at the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers on March 21 and 22 in Great Barrington, Massachusetts.

“The first annual Gusty Gal Film Award celebrates an inspiring group of women filmmakers. Not many women have been able to accomplish what they have accomplished and we are proud to put them in the spotlight,” said Deborah Hutchison, founder of Gutsy Gals Inspire Me. 

The film awards, ceremony, and screening of “Muffin Top: A Love Story” will begin at 7 p.m. on Saturday, March 21 at the McConnell Theater at Bard College. Actress Karen Allen, an honorary recipient of a Gutsy Gal award, will present awards to the writers and directors of 11 feature length and short films. Grand-prize winner Cathryn Michon, writer and director of Muffin Top, in addition to many of the remaining winners, will be in attendance. The event is open to the general public and is held in conjunction with the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers, which runs through the month of March. 

On Sunday, March 22, a screening of “Breaking Through the Clouds” and panel discussion will begin at 11 a.m. at the Triplex Theater in downtown Great Barrington. The discussion will be led by the film’s writer and director Heather Taylor, the Berkshire International Film Festival’s founder and director Kelley Vickery, and Gutsy Gals Inspire Me founder Deborah Hutchison. Tickets will be available at the door.

“Because of Cathryn Michon’s fearless and truly entertaining film Muffin Top, and for being an authentic comedy voice about the lives of women everywhere, we are honored to present her with this award. Karen Allen has played very strong female roles and we can’t think of a better way to honor these women than have Karen present them, from one gutsy gal to another. All awards are going to wonderful role models for the future of gutsy women,” said Hutchison.

Tickets are available for the evening of March 21 at tinyurl.com/gutsygalsatberkshire, and tickets will be available at the door for the March 22 event. For more information, visitgutsyaward.com or biffma.org.

NYS Summer Young Writers Institute application deadline April 1
The New York State Summer Young Writers Institute (SYWI)  is a 13-day in-residence writing workshop for high school students. Held during the months of June and July (this year: June 29- July 11) at Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, the workshop offers young writers artistic development, recognition and respect, and peer support. Students work closely with professional writers, immersing themselves in poetry, prose, creative nonfiction, and the critical evaluation of each other’s work. Admission is limited and participation is determined by the evaluation of creative writing samples submitted as part of the application process. The SYWI is open to any high school student entering the 10th, 11th or 12th grade in the fall of 2015.

Workshop participants attend three instructional sessions per day — a ninety-minute workshop in the morning and two hour-long workshops each afternoon. In addition, the young writers attend readings and presentations by the nationally-known writers who are part of the New York State Summer Writers Institute, which is held at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs. Work produced by each student during the Summer Young Writers Institute is published in an anthology.

Full and partial financial assistance based upon individual need is available to help offset the cost of tuition and room and board. The application deadline is April 1st. For more information visit 17th Annual Creative Writing Workshop or contact the Skidmore Office of the Dean of Special Programs at (518) 580-5593.   

Catskills-based writers needed for arts publication
We are developing a quarterly digital publication focused on art and artists in the Catskills (Ulster, Delaware, Sullivan, Schoharie, Greene, and Otsego counties), and we need writers!

Catskill Made fills the gap in high quality regional arts-focused publications. Local artists, the creative lifestyle and the regional art world will be explored through engaging storytelling, clean design, and beautiful photography. Our mission is to “explore the creative environment”–both personal and regional.

Our first issue will be released March 20 and the theme is “Equinox” — balance in night and day, life and work, creativity and productivity, and every other type of balance that exists. We are interested in the following types of pitches: interviews/features on artists, coverage of art shows and galleries, examining the Catskills life and how this influences art and artmaking, finding inspiration in nature, creative routines, Catskills art history, in-depth examinations of specific artworks, personal essays, journalistic pieces, gChats with artists, creative writing inspired by art. These are just a few ideas. If you have other ideas, or you have an idea that may not fit this theme but still fits our overall scope, send it along. We are open to poetry and short stories that are outstanding and relevant to our purpose.

What we don’t need (or want): pieces on the “revival” of the Catskills; features on young rich people rediscovering the mountains; anything on New York City; articles on food, restaurants or shopping; reviews, listicles or travel itineraries. There are plenty of other publications that would love to publish these!

See details here: http://catskills.craigslist.org/wrg/4869203107.html. Potential contributors can send pitches and portfolio info to this address, hello@eberhardtsmith.com. Payment starts at 10 cents per word.

About us: Catskill Made is run by two Woodstock/Saugerties locals. We also run Eberhardt Smith, a creative company (find us at EberhardtSmith.com) from our tiny cabin. We design, write, edit and photograph for a living and this is our “passion project,” because we love this area, the creative people who live here and the type of lifestyle that we have here.

About the publication: Catskill Made will be magazine-style, but utilize the benefits of a digital format, such as photo galleries, videos, and links. It will be offered on the web and for purchase through the app store. The first issue will be free, and issues after that can be purchased. Each issue will include 6+ stories, photo essays, interviews, etc. Our audience is regional as well as national and global–anyone who is interested in the creative process and lifestyle.

How to pitch: please send us an e-mail that includes your experience, clips or a personal portfolio (a blog is okay–anything that demonstrates your style and skill). Include well-articulated ideas for stories of 500+ words that pertain specifically to this issue or to possible future issues. We pay 10 cents per word to start, and we’re hoping to increase that number within the first year.

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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, January 2015

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

Member Announcements:

  • News & updates from Kate Laity
  • Winifed Elze’s latest novel available at Schenectady book stores
  • Kate McNairy to be featured poet at Caffè Lena
  • “Move with Mindfulness, Write with Ease” retreat January 24 & 25

Area Announcements:

  • Deadly sins: Theme issue of Misfit Magazine open for submissions
  • Upcoming “Bookmarks” reading series deadlines
  • Caffè Lena to feature Suzanne Parker & Kate McNairy January 7
  • Next “Second Sunday” open mic: January 11
  • ARTHUR’S Market & Cafe Poetry night to feature Alan Catlin January 14
  • Third Thursday to feature Poetyc Visionz January 15
  • 20 local story tellers contribute to new anthology

MEMBER ANNOUNCEMENTS

News & updates from Kate Laity

Kate sends the following publication news, as well as info on an upcoming workshop and a possible reading series:

  • I’m happy to announce the release of Drag Noir, the third noir anthology I have edited for Fox Spirit Books (foxspirit.co.uk). Fox Spirit will also be releasing a new edition of my short story collection Dream Book (originally published as Unikirja/Dream Book in 2009) with two new stories after the first of the year. Also in January, my historical novel Knight of the White Hart will be published by Tirgearr Publishing (tirgearrpublishing.com) under the nom de plume Kathryn Marlowe. It’s the first in a new series of historical adventures called The Breton Lais. My paranormal noir novel White Rabbit has gained a lot of good press since its release earlier this year.
  • Vincent Zandri and I are hoping to put together a few folks for a “Noir at the Bar” reading series in the new year. Feel free to contact either of us via our websites (vincentzandri.com or kalaity.com) if you’re interested in reading or attending.
  • I’ll be offering a workshop “How to Keep Writing with a Full Time Job” on Saturday February 7, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. at Universal Pathways, Pleasant Valley Road, Berne NY (universalpathways.wordpress.com). Have you always dreamed of writing, but didn’t think you had the time? Award-winning author K. A. Laity, writer of the Chastity Flame novel series, White Rabbit, Owl Stretching, The Mangrove Legacy and many more books, essays and stories will help you attain your writing goals in just minutes a day with this short workshop based on her guide of the same name. The workshop will combine handouts, exercises and tips for making the most of your limited time. Cost $50. Payable via PayPal or check. See kalaity.com for details.

Winifed Elze’s latest novel available at Schenectady book stores
Winifred Elze has published her latest novel, Threads. Set in Schenectady, it tells the story of a young girl who unexpectedly inherits a clothing store  — a different kind of clothing store. Clothes made there may have your future woven into the fabric. Threads is available at Proctors Gift Center and the Open Door Bookstore, both in Schenectady.

Kate McNairy to be featured poet at Caffè Lena
HVWG member Kate McNairy sends news that she will be one of the featured readers at Caffè Lena this month. Details, including Kate’s bio, can be found under Caffè Lena’s announcement below. Congrats, Kate!

“Move with Mindfulness, Write with Ease” retreat January 24 & 25
It’s winter, we’re achy, we need (and love) to write but sitting long periods is tough. What to do? Come write in a cozy retreat house and learn different ways to take care of your writer’s body. On January 24-25, 2015, Diane Kavanaugh-Black from Of-the-Essence Holistic Wellness offers her quarterly Move with Mindfulness, Write with Ease workshop at Still Point Retreat Center, near Saratoga Battlefield. The workshop runs 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. each day. $59 per day ($29/day limited income); attend one or both days.

Along with time to write, we’ll incorporate stretch breaks and gentle yoga (no prior experience necessary), meditative walks or snowshoes (trails and labyrinth on-site). Visit http://OfTheEssenceHolisticWellness.com for further information and to reserve a spot.

AREA ANNOUNCEMENTS

Deadly sins: Theme issue of Misfit Magazine open for submissions January 1-March 15
Misfit Magazine is looking for your submission for its “Lucky 13″ Issue. This issue will be a themed one on deadly sins. Even if you are one of those poets who lives a life of spotless virtue and has no sins to report, as one poet we all know and love — and who shall remain nameless due to confidentiality issues. She knows who she is! — assures Misfit editor Alan Catlin that maybe you have observed or know someone who has sinned. If so, and you have 3-5 poems that fit the general theme, send them after January 1 to submissions@misfitmagazine.net. Deadline is March 15, 2015   For more specific information visit our Misfit Magazine Facebook Page.

Upcoming “Bookmarks” reading series deadlines:

  • “As the Light Returns.” Curated by local writer and veteran Dan New. Submission deadline: Monday, January 5. Reading: Monday, January 26.
  • “Gardening as Metaphor.”  Curated by Diane Kavanaugh Black. Submission deadline: Monday, January 19. Reading: Monday, February 9.
  • “Transformation.” Curated by Abby Lublin of the Front Parlor Series. Submission deadline: Monday, February 23. Reading: Monday, March 23.
  • “Speaking Truth to Power.” Curated by local poet/spoken word artist Victorio Reyes. Submission deadline: Monday, March 23. Performance: Monday, April 20.
  • “Sonic Stasis.” Co-Curated by composers Ryan Ross Smith and K. Michael Fox. Submission deadline: Wednesday, April 20. Performance: Monday, May 18.

SUBMISSION GUIDELINES

  • Interested writers/creators should submit online via Submittable.
  • All submissions must be received by 11:59 p.m. on the date indicated. The submission window will close at that time.
  • Submissions should not exceed length specified on the submission form.
  • You may submit to multiple curators but only once per theme.
  • All applicants will be notified at least 10 days before the event or once the curator has chosen readers/presenters.
  • Keep the date OPEN in case you are selected!

Find links to each reading, including deadlines, submission guidelines and other details, by clicking here.

Caffè Lena to feature Suzanne Parker & Kate McNairy January 7
On Wednesday, January 7, Caffè Lena will present poetry readings by Suzanne Parker and Kate McNairy. 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 is located at 47 Phila Street in Saratoga Springs. (518) 583-0022. www.caffelena.org.

Kate McNairy is a Saratgoa Springs native whose first chapbook, June Bug was recently published with Finishing Line Press.  She was a finalist in the Blue Light Poetry Competition 2013, and her work has appeared in Word Wednesday, Chronogram, Misfits, Hudson View and Many Waters, among many others. She is also a freelance writer for local newspapers and is an adjunct writing instructor at Empire State College. She’s on the editorial board of The Apple Tree, a literary magazine. Her website is www.katemcnairy.com.

Suzanne Parker is a winner of a Kinereth Gensler Book Award, and her collection of poetry, Viral, (Alice James Books, 2013) was nominated for a Lambda Literary Award. Her poetry has appeared recently in Bloom, Barrow Street, Cimarron Review, Sierra Nevada Review and numerous other journals; she’s a winner of the Alice M. Sellars Award from the Academy of American Poets and was a poetry fellow at the Prague Summer Seminars. Suzanne’s creative non-fiction is published in the travel anthology Something to Declare by the Univ. of Wisconsin Press. Suzanne is a poetry editor at MEAD: The Journal of Literature and Libations.

Next “Second Sunday” open mic: January 11
The next “Second Sunday @ 2 Open Mic for Poetry and Prose” will be Sunday, January 11, at 2 p.m. Please bring two poems or five minutes of prose to read. All are welcome. The event is co-hosted by Dan Wilcox and Nancy Klepsch at The Arts Center of the Capital Region, 265 River Street, Troy.

Here are dates for the rest of the 2014-15 series (save the dates!):

  • February 8
  • March 8
  • April 12
  • May 10
  • June 14

ARTHUR’S Market & Cafe Poetry night to feature Alan Catlin January 14
Open mic & featured reader. Second Wednesday, December 10. 7 p.m. sign-up; 7:30 begin readings. Featured reader for January is Alan Catlin. Hosted by Catherine Norr. Arthur’s Market & Cafe is located at 35 N. Ferry Street, Schenectady. Food and beverages are available.

Third Thursday to feature Poetyc Visionz January 15
The poet known as Poetyc Visionz will read from his work at the Social Justice Center, 33 Central Avenue, Albany, on Thursday, January 15, at 7:30 p.m. Poetyc Visionz is an Albany native and has been performing his spoken word art for nearly 15 yrs. He was a part of the Nitty Gritty Slam Team 2012, 2013 and 2014, and is also a part of the Empire State Slam Championship Team of 2014. He is now working on his third CD project, along with a book installment.

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.

20 local storytellers contribute to new anthology
Twenty local storytellers have collaborated to publish the anthology, Stories We Tell: Tales from the Story Circle of the Capital District. They are members of the Story Circle of the Capital District, which was established in 1983 and hosts a regular schedule of meetings, open mics and storytelling performances at Proctors, Caffè Lena and other venues. This book is their first written anthology. It is a collection of folklore, fantasy, historical and personal stories; many of them fuse several genres. The book (166 pages; paperback; $14.95) is a solid example of the breadth and scope that storytelling can achieve.

Stories We Tell can be purchased at local bookstores, such as The Open Door, New York Folklore Society and Battenkill Books, and online at www.storytellersanthology.com.

* * *
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