HVWG newsletter released, March 31

Hudson Valley Writers Guild Newsletter, April 2012

In This Issue

Guild Announcements: A Note From the President, Albany Word Fest, 2012 Poetry Contest Details

 Member Announcements:  Winifred Elze, Marilyn Kemp

Area Announcements:   Guest Poet Needed at Roarke Center in Troy, Poetry and Prose Open Mic in Troy, Writers Institute Readings in Albany,  Publishing Event in Burnt Hills,  Creative Writing Classes at East Line Books, Open Mic at Pine Hollow Arboretum, Bernadette Mayer Workshop in East Nassau , National Poetry Month in Rensselaerville , Roe Jan Library Poetry Month Events in Copake, Smith’s Tavern Poetry Contest in Voorheesville, War Stories in Schenectady,  Manuscript Prep Class in East Greenbush

Guild Announcements

A note from the President (of the HVWG, that is)
I like to brag, doesn’t everyone?  So I want to say what a great success the Write Here Conference was at the Arts Center in Troy on March 10.  This was a joint project of the HVWG & the wonderful folks at the Arts Center of the Capital Region.  There was a total of 90 participants, in one capacity or another, attending 6 different panels/workshops & a general panel discussion.  Thank you to all Guild members who supported this event by presenting, attending &/or helping out in one capacity or another.  The newsletter below contains information about more fine programming coming up.

I like to say (over & over again, some Board members would point out) that “there is no ‘Guild,’ you, the members, are the Guild.”  None of the things that the “Guild” does would happen without individuals taking an active role to make the events & programs happen.  So please lend your hand in any way you can.  Along those lines, we are still looking for folks to help with the Newsletter, and for someone to help keeping our database & email list up-to-date.  Please contact us/me at hvwginfo@gmail.com for more information if you are interested.

Keep writing.

— Dan Wilcox, President, Hudson Valley Writers Guild

Albany Word Fest
The Guild is one of several sponsors of this week long event celebrating Albany area poetry that will take place at several venues in Albany between April 15-21.   Events include an edition of the Nitty Gritty Slam at Valentine’s on April 17; a special community edition of the Yes! reading series on April 18; the Third Thursday open mic featuring the poet Christopher on April 19, and a day long reading by community poets at the Albany Public Library on April 21.    For other events and details check out the website at albanywordfest.com.

2012 Poetry Contest Guidelines
The HVWG writing contest alternates genres annually. This year’s contest is in poetry. Winners will be awarded cash prizes and invited to read their winning poem at a special Guild program in the fall of 2012.

First Prize – $100
Second Prize – $75
Third Prize – $50

Eligibility:  All contestants must be residents of New York State.  Current members of the HVWG Board of Directors and their families are not eligible. Current or past students as well as family of the judges are also not eligible.  Judges this year are:  Cecele Kraus, Dawn Marar, Thom Francis, and Phillip Levine.

Entries must be postmarked between April 2 and August 31, 2012.  Identification/ contact information must not appear anywhere on the submission.  Cover letter should include the following: name, address, phone number, email address, title of poems.  Submission:  3-5 poems per submission.

All submissions must be typed, 12-pt. type, 50-line limit.  Please include title and stanza breaks in your line count.  Send three hard copies by mail, no e-mail submissions.  Poems must be previously unpublished.  Quality of the poem is the most important consideration.  We are looking for poems that are well crafted, have an excellent lyric quality and contain a strong emotional core.  Any style is considered, including prose poems.

Results: Submissions will not be returned, but if you would like hardcopy results of the contest, please send an SASE. All entrants will be notified of winners by email and/or SASE. Results will also be posted on our website at http://hvwg.org.

For more information, please contact Mimi Moriarty at winterview@earthlink.net.

Mail submissions and entry fee to: The HVWG Non-Fiction Contest, c/o Mimi Moriarty, 3180 New Scotland Road, Voorheesville, NY  12186.

Entry Fee:  $15 for non-members of HVWG, $10 for members.  Make checks payable to HVWG and send with submission.

Member Announcements

If Only, the second novel in Winifred Elze’s Tilde series, is now available as a paperback at Proctor’s Gift Center in Schenectady, and from Amazon. The e-book version is available on Kindle and Nook.

A child of the great depression, Tilde Becker knows hardship and turns it into art. Against the odds, she has graduated from high school, found studio space in New York’s exciting Greenwich Village — and she’s in love.

But her paintings aren’t selling. To support herself, she gets hired as a painter’s assistant in a government arts project. The painter’s job is to design murals of historic scenes. He paints the portraits; she paints the background trees, water, and sky. It’s art, but it’s not hers.

If only people had money to buy her paintings…
If only there were light and time at the end of her work day…
If only she could paint the world she wants, and make it so…
If only…


Marilyn Rothstein, writing as M. E. Kemp, will appear on two panels in Massachusetts in April; first at the Storrs library In Longmeadow for Sisters in Crime on the 11th and again in Boston for the PCA on the 12th.

Area announcements

Guest Poet Needed at Roarke Center
Roarke Center, a social service agency in Troy, has a writing program for persons living with chronic issues and disabilities.  One of our regular participants asked:  “How do you think in poetry?” My interest is to have a guest poet who can facilitate, spark poetic expression. Call 273-8351 and ask for Sister Loretta or e-mail slhoag@yahoo.com.

Poetry and Prose Open Mic, April 1, 2 p.m.  
An open mic for writers of poetry & prose on Sunday, April 1, at the Arts Center of the Capital District, 265 River St., Troy, NY, 2PM.  Free! This is usually on the 2nd Sunday of each month but because Easter falls on the 2nd Sunday of April this year, the open mic has been moved to April 1. This is a rare chance to read that bit of memoir, story, novel, obituary, epistle, etc that you are working on.  Poems are also read.  Readers get five minutes.  Hosted by Dan Wilcox and Nancy Klepsch.

Writers Institute Readings and Seminars
The Writers Institute will feature the following on these April dates: 3: Joseph Lelyveld, Pulitzer Prize-winning author, editor, and journalist. 10: Ghassan Zaqtan, poet, novelist, and journalist.  18: Anne Enright, fiction writer, winner of the Man Booker Prize. Also on April 18, there will be a performance of  The Kite Runner at the Performing Arts Center at UAlbany.  For times and locations of these events please check the website at albany.edu/writers-inst or follow the Institute on Facebook.

Publishing Event at Ballston Community Library, April 4, 6:30 p.m.
Attention, Writers!  Want to get published? Two local companies – Open Door Publishers, Inc., of Malta, and The Troy Book Makers, of Troy – provide printing and publishing services. Come learn what they have to offer on Wednesday, April 4, at 6:30 p.m., in the Community Room at The Town of Ballston Community Library, 2 Lawmar Lane, Burnt Hills. Sponsored by the Children’s Literature Connection. For more information or to RSVP, contact Heather Schwartz: 429-5168 or heatherestelleschwartz@gmail.com.

Creative Writing Classes at East Line Books
Please call 371-4151 to register and visit www.eastlinebooks.com for a more detailed description of classes & instructors.

6-8 PM
Wednesdays April 4-May 23
Instructor: Robyn Ringler
Cost: $200 ($25/class)

This class will cover memoir and fiction. Please bring 6 copies of a creative writing piece to class up to 1000 words. During class, we will critique your piece in a supportive environment and discuss the elements of fiction and memoir. We’ll explore the areas of creative writing that plague and interest you. We’ll write in class using inspiring prompts. Together we’ll discover the best writing process for each of you. This class will inspire you to write more and to try new methods of writing. Call 371-4151 to sign up!


Saturday, April 28th
10 AM-12:30 PM
Instructor: Judith Prest
Cost: $45 + $5 materials fee

This workshop is for anyone who has ever kept a journal (or wanted to start one!) This “tour” of visual journaling will feature several opportunities to experiment with visual expression, as well as some writing practice along the way. Discover the magic of line, color, texture and come prepared to PLAY! Please bring a writing implement and “beginner’s mind” – all art materials and a small art journal will be provided.


Saturday, May 5th
10:00 AM-12:30 PM
Instructor: Robyn Ringler
Cost: $50

This class is for mothers who have long felt they had a story inside them but lacked the knowledge or ability to give that story a voice. This class is a fantastic resource for any woman who “finds herself transformed by motherhood and seeks to give a literary voice to her experience.”


Saturday, May 26
10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Cost: $50
Instructor: Alison Stein Wellner

You’ve been transported by a meal, or nourished by a travel experience, and now you want to write about it. Get started with this class, which will introduce you to the basics of food and travel writing, from memoir and essay to how-to pieces and recipes. We’ll focus on the craft of great food and travel writing, work on developing your ideas, and discuss the reality of publishing food and travel writing today.

The Writers Open Mic held at Pine Hollow Arboretum, April 13, 6:30 pm
The event with poet Phil Good as the feature reader will be held at the Pine Hollow Arboretum Visitors Center building at 16 Maple Ave. in Slingerlands, New York on Friday April 13, 2012 starting at 6:30 PM. In the Open Mic format, others poets can read three short poems or two longer poems. Also two pages of prose will be acceptable.

Light refreshments. Donations welcomed. Contact Alan Casline at acasline@aol.com for more information.

Funding to support this Reading Series comes from Hudson Valley Writers Guild and Rootdrinker Institute. Future Features: May 25, Helen Ruggieri, June 15 Gary Lawless.

The grounds at Pine Hollow Arboretum are open dawn to dusk on the day of the reading so come early and visit the collection.

Exercises to Create Poetry: Bernadette Mayer Workshop
Now forming Bernadette Mayer’s poetry writing workshop which will take place at her home in East Nassau, NY. The workshop will meet on five Saturdays: 4/14, 5 /5, 6/9, 7/14 & 8/11.  Each meeting will take place between 2pm – 4pm. Mayer will facilitate a conducive atmosphere that will bring forth enhanced new poems from each of the participants. Total Cost: $60.00, including light refreshments

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 many of whom continue to attend each new session. Workshop is limited to eight participants. It will be possible to transfer your spot at a particular meeting to someone else if you are unable to attend a particular date. Ask Alan for details on this option or if you need more information.

Contact: By e-mail contact Alan Casline (ACASLINE@AOL.COM) to reserve your place. The mailing address if e-mail is not available is Rootdrinker, P.O. Box 522, Delmar, NY 12054.

Rensselaerville’s 7th Annual National Poetry Month Celebration
Saturday, April 14, 4:00pm – Spoken and Sung: An Afternoon with Walt Whitman.  Poet Howard Nelson and Soprano Sarah Nelson Weiss will read and sing the extraordinary words of Walt Whitman, with music by composers Ralph Vaughan Williams and Ned Rorem, and new works by young and local composers.  At Conkling Hall.

Friday, April 20, 7:00pm Poetry Reading by local poet Linda Sonia Miller, who will read from her newly released chapbook: Something Worth Diving For and other work. At the Rensselaerville Library.

Sunday, April 22,  2:00 – 4:00pm Favorite Poem Project featuring Hudson Valley poets and Guild members Cecele Krauss and Mimi Moriarty, as well as your neighbors and friends, and emceed by Claire North. The Favorite Poem Project, sponsored by Conkling Hall and the Rensselaerville Library, is part of a national movement begun by former poet laureate Robert Pinsky.  This event encourages communities to come together to share poetry.  Last year, almost 50 participants gathered to read aloud their favorite poems, everything from the silly to the serious, favorites from childhood and adulthood, as well as original poems.  Please bring 1-2 favorite or original poems to this year’s event or just come to listen.  At Conkling Hall.

Mimi Moriarty is the poetry editor for The Spotlight, a local weekly newspaper.  Her short fiction, poems, essays and articles have been published in many journals, magazines and newspapers.  She has two chapbooks War Psalm, which came out in 2007, and Sibling Reverie, co-authored with her brother, Frank Desiderio.  A third chapbook, Crows Calling will be out soon.

Cecele Kraus, after thirty years in private practice as a psychoanalyst, began writing poetry. Writing provided perspective and poetry became a way of life. Her poems have appeared in various journals, and in two chapbook anthologies–Zephyrs and Java Wednesdays. Peace Corps experiences were the inspiration for a chapbook entitled Dreaming Barranquilla.  In 2009, her poem, “Love Blooms,” won first place in the Hudson Valley Writers Guild poetry contest. Her chapbook, Tuscaloosa Bypass will be released this year.

Friday, April 27, 7:00pm the haiku year – A talk and reading by actor, writer, director Tom Gilroy of Rensselaerville and NYC. Seven friends made a pact to write haikus every day for a year.  The result was the acclaimed and influential book the haiku year by Tom Gilroy and others.  Tom will talk about the haiku project as well as read from the book.  At the Rensselaerville Library.

Saturday, April 28, 10:00am-12:00 Haiku Writing Workshop with Tom Gilroy – $25, all proceeds go to support the Library.  Pre-registration is required.  Mail checks to: The Rensselaerville Library, P.O. Box 188, Rensselaerville, NY 12147).  At the Rensselaerville Library.

For info. about all events, call the library @ 518 797-3949.

Roe Jan Library announces schedule of events celebrating National Poetry Month
COPAKE – The Roeliff Jansen Community Library will kick off its 2nd annual celebration of National Poetry Month on April 1 with a Poem a Day Challenge, organized by poet Jan Hutchinson.

Following is the full schedule of events.

All Month
“Poem a Day” Challenge (For beginners and poets at all levels) To those who sign up, poet Jan Hutchinson will send an email prompt every day in April. The prompts are designed to jump start a poem and move the poet in new directions. On May 4 participants will come together for a group reading from 7:00 to 9:00 pm at the Library. To join the Challenge and receive the daily prompts, please email Jan at janhutch44@g mail.com.

Sunday, April 1, 2 – 3 PM
Shakespeare Sings! Students from the Taconic Hills Drama Club will read several of William Shakespeare’s best-known sonnets, which will then be sung by baritone Keith Spencer, baritone, accompanied by pianist Mark Jones.

Friday, April 13, 7 – 9 PM
Peter Bergmann, Reading from his poems, followed by Open Mike

Poet, playwright and now novelist (Small Ironies), Peter Bergmann, Director of the Millay Society, will read new work. Following Bergmann’s reading, the mike will be open to audience members.

Sunday, April 15, 3 – 4 PM
LOVE POETRY: From the Ancient Egyptians to Cole Porter, with James Kraft and Wendy Power Spielmann. Come join us for some of the best love poems, both serious and very funny, from the ancient Egyptian to the present, with a focus upon English and American poems and the love lyrics of Cole Porter.

Saturday, April 21, 10 – 1 PM
Poetry Workshop: Getting Poems Started, Keeping Them Going, with Mark Wunderlich
In this three hour workshop, students will follow a series of writing assignments and prompts to get language onto the page and shaped into lines, phrases, images, stanzas and poems. In the class, you will also be offered tools and advice for getting poems going despite the demands of time and concentration placed on us every day. Advance registration required. Visit www.roejanlibrary.orgfor more details.

Sunday, April 22, 3 PM
Peter Kane Dufault Reading: Mr. Dufault has been writing poetry for almost sixty years and his work has appeared in many magazines and journals including the New Yorker, London Magazine and Poetry.

Sunday, April 29, 3 PM
Rebecca Wolff, poet and novelist, will read from her own poetry and discuss small press publishing. Ms. Wolff is the founder, editor, and publisher of Fence, a literary journal, and is the author of three collections of poems: The King, Figment, and Manderley. Her novel, The Beginners, was released in 2011. She is a fellow of The New York State Writers Institute.

The Roeliff Jansen Community Library, which is chartered to serve Ancram, Copake and Hillsdale, is located at 9091 Rt. 22 in Copake, approximately one mile south of the light at the intersection of Routes 22 and 23. For information on hours and events, call 518-325-4101, or visit the library’s website at roejanlibrary.org

Smith’s Tavern Third Annual Poet Laureate Contest, April 22, noon
Sunday April 22, 2012 at Smith’s Tavern, 112 Maple Avenue in Voorheesville
Terms:  open to the first 25 poets to register!  There may still be slots remaining.  If interested send an email to <dsullivan6@nycap.rr.com> notification of acceptance right away! Three rounds (any style in English, poems of 25, 35, 45—or fewer—lines respectively)

1. starting time: noon sharp
2. reading order: lottery (by round)
3. two opening rounds, then a 40-minute break
4. music by our fine house band!
5. then final round
6. prizes presented following tallied scores
7. names engraved on laureate statue.

War Stories Performance at Proctor’s
Empire State College would like to invite you to performance entitled War Stories on Tuesday, April 24 at 7:00 pm in Proctor’s Theater in Schenectady, NY.  This unique and powerful show is based on writing about war that was collected from the Empire State College community. The performance gives voice to the various experiences people have had with war–either directly or on the homefront. It is free and open to the public. The performance is also going to be streamed live and can be accessed at choose.esc.edu/War Stories.

 Workshop: How to Professionally Prepare your Manuscript for Self-publication, June 2, 1 p.m.
At the East Greenbush Library, Saturday, June 2 – 1:00-3:00 PM, presented by Barbara M Traynor, author of Second Career Volunteer, a passionate, pennywise approach to retirement, and Jan Tramontano, author of debut novel, Standing on the Corner of Lost and Found.