Hudson Valley Writers Guild Newsletter, January 2016


Member Announcements:

  • News from Judith Prest
  • News from Alan Catlin
  • Pauline Bartel featured as film expert in recent article from The Digital Bits

Area Announcements:

  • Arthur’s Poetry Open-Mic features Catherine Norr January 13
  • Adelphi Creative Writing MFA fellowship application deadline January 15
  • Poet Bunkong Tuon will read at the Social Justice Center January 21
  • Stephen A. DiBiase Poetry Prize deadline January 29
  • New course catalog from Arts Center available
  • Early application deadline January 31 for Odyssey Writing Workshop


News from Judith Prest
Judith sent in three poems to Cyclamens and Swords, an online journal, last month and all three were accepted for the December issue.

News from Alan Catlin
Alan Catlin would like to announce the publication of his latest book, Last Man Standing, from California’s Lummox Press. The book is available directly form the press,, or from Amazon.

Pauline Bartel featured as film expert in recent article from The Digital Bits
Pauline Bartel, author of The Complete GONE WITH THE WIND Trivia Book (2nd edition), was one of five film experts featured in the roundtable article “The Box-Office Champ: Remembering ‘Gone With the Wind’ on its 75th Anniversary” by journalist and film historian Michael Coate in his column “History, Legacy & Showmanship” on the website The Digital Bits. The column “focuses on retrospectives and tributes to popular and historically significant films.” Bartel provided insights about why Gone With the Wind is worthy of celebration on its 75th anniversary, why Gone With the Wind is cited as the most popular film ever made and what is Gone With the Wind’s legacy.

The second edition of The Complete GONE WITH THE WIND Trivia Book by Pauline Bartel was published by Taylor Trade Publishing, an imprint of Rowman & Littlefield, in honor of the film’s 75th anniversary in 2014. This major rewrite of the 1989 original trade paperback, which sold more than 50,000 copies, continues the behind-the-scenes chronicle of Gone With the Wind – the book, the movie and the phenomenon that endures today. Bartel relates in loving detail the inside stories of the writing and publishing of the novel; the Hollywood frenzy of transforming the book into film, including casting headaches, on-set tensions, and jinxed scenes; the premiere; and the Academy Awards. The updated edition also contains the scoop on the publication of two GWTW sequels; the disastrous debut of the Scarlett television miniseries; the post-GWTW lives of cast members, such as the news of Clark Gable’s secret lovechild; the restoration of three original costumes in time for GWTW’s 75th anniversary; and much more. According to Bartel, “The book’s  reader-friendly format – fact-packed features, profiles, quizzes and photographs – will delight any GWTW fan and make this the one book that no ‘Windie’ can do without.” The Complete GONE WITH THE WIND Trivia Book is available as a $16.95 trade paperback and as a $9.99 eBook. Visit for further information.

Bartel is an award-winning writer who has been a devoted “Windie” since the age of 16, when she first saw the film with her mother. Since then, Bartel has viewed the movie countless times and has collected an array of GWTW books and memorabilia. She is the author of six other popular culture books and is a member of the American Society of Journalists and Authors. Bartel is also president and chief creative officer of Bartel Communications, Inc., an award-winning corporate communications consultancy. Visit for further information.


Arthur’s Poetry Open-Mic features Catherine Norr January 13
Catherine Norr  has been published in various literary journals such as Evening Street Review, The Sun, Orion and Avocet, and on-line at Misfit Magazine, WeLoveBooks&Company and BigCityLit. Her collection Return to Ground was published in 2014 by Finishing Line Press.

Sign-up for the regular 2nd Wednesday open mic is at 7 p.m. Readings begin at 7:30. The event is hosted by Catherine Norr. Arthur’s is located at 35 North Ferry Street, Schenectady,  12305.

Adelphi Creative Writing MFA fellowship application deadline January 15
The Adelphi University Creative Writing MFA Program is now inviting applications for full-tuition Creative Writing Fellowships for 2016-17. Further information can be found on the MFA website (go to Adelphi, then Arts and Sciences, then English, and—finally—MFA!). News about our program can also be found on our literary site or check out Village of Crickets on Facebook. Direct questions to Please note that the deadline for applications is January 15, 2016.

Poet Bunkong Tuon will read at the Social Justice Center January 21
Poet Bunkong Tuon will read from his work at the Social Justice Center, 33 Central Avenue, Albany, on Thursday, January 21, at 7:30 p.m. Bunkong Tuon teaches at Union College in Schenectady. His first full-length collection of poetry, Gruel, was published in 2015 by NYQ Books. Gruel documents the lives of Cambodian refugees and explores the poetic landscape of a Cambodian learning to live and write poetry in America.

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:

Stephen A. DiBiase Poetry Prize deadline January 29
Details on this call for submissions for the Stephen A DiBiase Poetry Prize:

  • $1,000 in total awards, with at least $500 to the top entry
  • Postmark deadline: January 29, 2016
  • No fee to enter.  Open to all.  Except as noted below, no rules regarding subject or format.
  • Send one copy of one poem that you have created.  No identifying information on or in the piece.
  • Include the following on a separate sheet of paper: your name, mailing address, email address where we can reach you, title or first line of your submission, county of residence (we ask this because there may be a bonus if the top entry is deemed “local”), indication of if you read or perform your poetry at open mics (tell us where you most often do this since there may be a bonus if the top entry is from a “community” poet).
  • Send your one poem and cover sheet to: Bob Sharkey, 19 Hunter Avenue, Latham, NY 12110
  • Email for inquires (not submissions):

New course catalog from Arts Center available 
You can find a PDF of the catalog here. Upcoming writing classes include

  • “Writing What You Know” with Marion Roach Smith
  • “Short Form: Writing Creatively Without Worrying What To Call It” with Cara Benson
  • “Woman on Paper” with Maureen Cummins
  • “Writing in Doubt: The Personal Essay” with Olivia Dunn
  • “Writer’s BOOTCAMP” with Coleen M. Paratore
  • “Fireflies: A Writing Workshop” with Coleen M. Paratore
  • “Poetry: Playing On The Page” with Cara Benson
  • “Screenwriting for Beginners” with Julie Casper Roth
  • “Beginnings and Endings” with Olivia Dunn
  • “Playmaking” with Jackie Roberts
  • “Ingredients for Writing: Lunch and Learn” with Amy Halloran
  • “The Anatomy of the Modern Romance Novel” with Robin Catalano

Early application deadline January 31 for Odyssey Writing Workshop
The Odyssey Writing Workshop offers a transformative, rigorous and empowering experience to writers of the fantastic! The Odyssey Writing Workshop is widely considered one of the top programs in the world for writers of fantasy, science fiction and horror. Writers from all over the world apply. Only 15 are admitted. Fifty-nine percent of graduates go on to professional publication, and among Odyssey’s graduates are New York Times bestsellers, Amazon bestsellers and award winners. A video compilation of graduates describing their Odyssey experiences is available here:

Odyssey is for writers whose work is approaching publication quality and for published writers who want to improve their work. The 6-week program combines an advanced curriculum with extensive writing and in-depth feedback on student manuscripts. The director and primary instructor, Jeanne Cavelos, was nominated for the World Fantasy Award this year for her work teaching and running Odyssey. Top authors, editors and agents have served as guest lecturers, including George R. R. Martin, Jane Yolen, Robert J. Sawyer, Nancy Kress, Ben Bova, Holly Black, Catherynne M. Valente and Dan Simmons.

This summer’s workshop runs from June 6 to July 15. Class meets for over four hours each morning, five days a week. That time is split between workshopping and lectures. While feedback reveals the weaknesses in students’ manuscripts, lectures teach the techniques necessary to strengthen them. In-depth lectures provide advanced insights into the elements of fiction writing. Students spend about eight hours more per day writing and critiquing each other’s work. The program is held on the beautiful campus of Saint Anselm College in Manchester, NH. Saint Anselm is one of the finest small liberal arts colleges in the country, and it provides a peaceful setting and state-of-the-art facilities for Odyssey students. College credit is available upon request.

The early action application deadline is January 31, and the regular application deadline is April 8. Tuition is $2,025, and housing in campus apartments is $850 for a double room and $1,700 for a single. Odyssey graduate Sara King is sponsoring the Parasite Publications Character Awards this year to provide financial assistance to three character-based writers wishing to attend. The awards provide three scholarships in the amounts of $2,025 (full tuition), $500 and $300.  They will be awarded to the three members of the incoming class who are deemed extraordinarily strong character writers, creating powerful, emotional characters that grab the reader and don’t let go. Several other scholarships and a work/study position are also available.

The Odyssey site,, offers many resources for writers, including online classes, a critique service, consultations, free podcasts, a monthly discussion salon, writing tips, and a blog.  Those interested in applying to the workshop should visit the site or e-mail

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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.

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