Walt Whitman

Upcoming Literary Events: May 25-31, 2023

As the calendar turns to June, we still have a lot going on in the regional literary community for the last week of May. Here’s a look at some of the lit events, readings, open mics, and workshops coming up this week.


Thursday, May 25

10:30 AM – Storytime Learn & Play @ Troy Public Library
Join us at the Main Library for your child’s enrichment

1:30 PM – Howdunnits Mystery Writers Group @ Albany Public Library – Howe Branch
The Howdunnits provide a safe and welcoming venue to share your writing and to give and receive feedback from others. 

4:00 PM – Pageturning Fiction Workshop with Joanne Dobson (via Zoom)
This multi-week class series will be taught on Zoom. It will start on Thursday, May 25 and end on June 29 for six consecutive Thursdays. If you’ve ever stayed up ‘til three with a compelling novel, you’ve probably wondered, “How do they do that?” Study the literary techniques of popular genres and learn how to create.

6:30 PM – Open Mic Poetry Night @ Inquiring Minds Saugerties
Calling every poet and admirer of poetry alike: Inquiring Minds is holding poetry night on the last Thursday of every month, hosted by Laura Ludwig, a celebrated local poet, screenwriter, actress, and producer! We encourage poets of all skill levels  to sign up for a four minutes slot to share original poetry, fiction, or prose, unpublished work as well as published welcome. 


Friday, May 26

9:00 AM – Early Literacy Storytime! @ Troy Public Library
Kids ages 0-5 are welcome to this early literacy story

4:00 PM – Virtual Conversation with Author James Klise @ Saratoga Springs Public Library
I’ll Take Everything You Have author James Klise visits the Saratoga Springs Public Library and Rainbow Garden Club virtually to discuss the book and share his experience and writing process. We will discuss specific scenes and surprises, along with the ending, and what a historical tale like that tells us about queer lives in 2023. Participants are welcome to join on Zoom or come view the discussion together at the Saratoga Springs Public Library. Please register online.

6:00 PM – Ayse Guvenilir and Aleena Shabbir – Our Ancestors Did Not Breathe This Air @ Northshire Saratoga
Ayse Guvenilir and Aleena Shabbir will visit our Saratoga store to share poetry from the anthology Our Ancestors Did Not Breathe This Air, a poetry collection in which Muslim women explore family, identity, and homeland.

7:00 PM – Shifting Gears Story Slam @ Dottie’s
Similar to a story slam in spirit – minus the scorekeeping bit – WordXWord Stories is a spirited sharing of true, first-person stories told, not read, circling loosely around a theme. May’s theme is Shifting Gears. You’ll have to be there to know where the stories take us.


Saturday, May 27

12:00 PM – Karen DeBonis signs and discusses her book, “Growth” @ Market Block Books
Karen is a happily married, slightly frazzled mother of two when her eight-year-old son, Matthew, develops a strange eye-rolling tic. Matthew’s tics quickly multiply. He becomes clumsy and lethargic, a gifted program dropout. Karen tries to get her husband and their pediatrician to acknowledge what’s happening, but they dismiss her concerns. As a people-pleaser, Karen lacks the skills to assert herself and stifles the growing dread in her heart. For three years, Matthew steadily deteriorates while Karen questions if she has the fortitude required of motherhood. Finally, desperation breaks through her fear of conflict, and she demands answers, only to be horrified by the truth.


Monday, May 29

1:30 PM – Monday Memoir Writing Group (In Person) @ Albany Public Library – Howe Branch
Participate in a group of memoir writers and get feedback

2:00 PM – With Pen in Hand @ Albany Public Library – Howe Branch
Paul Lamar, College of St Rose professor (retired) and South End writer, leads this popular series of writing workshops. Learn how to express yourself clearly and imaginatively, share your work, and respond to the stories of others. Attend any or all sessions.

7:00 PM – Poetic Vibe @ The Fish Market
Poet, artist, and performer D. Colin hosts the weekly Poetic Vibe series, a dynamic night of poetry and spoken word.

7:00 PM – Poetry at the Church @ Goshen Methodist Church
Poetry open mic hosted by Ted Gill. This month’s featured poet is Fr. Robert Phelps


Tuesday, May 30

10:30 AM – Story Time at North Albany @ Albany Public Library
Please join us in the Large Meeting Room for stories, fingerplays, songs and rhymes for babies, toddlers, and preschoolers, and their caregivers.

12:15 PM – FFAPL Tuesday Book Review: “Pverty, by America” by Matthew Desmond @ Albany Public Library – Washington Ave
The Friends and Foundation of Albany Public Library host regular book reviews, author talks, and special presentations. Please join them this month for a review of “Poverty, by America” by Matthew Desmond, reviewed by Anita Thayer, attorney.

6:30 PM – Poetry with Parameters – Presented by Susan Comninos @ Clifton Park – Halfmoon Library
This four-week poetry writing series will cover reading, discussing and writing constrained forms, including the anagram, the sonnenizio, and the place-as-person poem.


Wednesday, May 31

12:30 PM – Poetry with Jennifer Franklin (Wednesday) Summer Session #1 @ Hudson Valley Writers Center
This a 6-week class meeting on Zoom, Wednesdays 12:30-3:00 pm, starting Wednesday, May 31 and ending Wednesday, July 5.  You have written the first draft of your full-length collection. Now, we need to order all of the poems, decide if there should be sections, revise each of the poems, settle on the title, and most importantly—remove.

5:45 PM – Writers Group @ SCPL – Central Library
Whether you’ve been doing it forever or just starting out, bring your written words to this volunteer-run community group and receive feedback from fellow wordsmiths as time permits.

6:00 PM – Walt Whitman Birthday Reading of “Song of Myself” @ Washington Park
Poets & other citizens will gather at the Robert Burns statue in Washington Park to celebrate the birthday of the quintessential American poet, Walt Whitman, with a reading of his poem “Song of Myself.” 

6:00 PM – Joint Book Launch for Nicolas DiDomizio The Gay Best Friend and Steven Salvatore No Perfect Places @ Northshire Saratoga
Two authors will join us to celebrate the release of their new novels! In DiDomizio’s The Gay Best Friend, he’s always been the token gay best friend. Now, stuck between a warring bride and groom hurtling toward their one perfect day, he’s finally ready to focus on something new: himself. Steven Salvatore’s No Perfect Places is a moving YA novel about twins whose incarcerated father dies and leaves behind a life-changing secret.

6:30 PM – Personal Growth Book Discussion Group @ Albany Public Library – Pine Hills Branch
Join us on the last Wednesday of each month to discuss our selected classic or popular book (usually non-fiction but could be fiction) that focuses on personal development and self-improvement. The monthly group discussion can bring out: new interpretations, differing opinions, the sharing of past experiences related to the topic, expansion of our minds, and the cultivation of a deeper sense of community. If you enjoy books that foster personal growth, transformation, and well-being, please consider joining us to discuss with others. On Wednesday, May 31, the group will be talking about, “Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Cannot Stop Talking” by Susan Cain


Did we miss anything? Let us know at info@hvwg.org, and be sure to check out https://hvwg.org to find out more about our vibrant literary and arts community.