2023 Year in Review

Upcoming Literary Events: November 30 – December 6, 2023

There is another great lineup of literary events in the region this week. Here’s a quick look at the book discussions, readings, open mics, and workshops coming up.


Thursday, November 30

5:00 PM – How To Write A List Poem @ Strand Center for the Arts
This workshop takes place at the Strand Center for the Arts in Plattsburgh, and registrations must be made through their website.

6:00 PM – Generative Texts Salon @ Kiddie Pool
Chatbots and Python outputs, cut-ups and surrealist games: a variety of approaches to generative text with Kite, Chris Funkhouser, & more. 

6:30 PM – Michael Cunningham in Conversation with WAMC’s Joe Donahue @ The White Hart Inn
On the 25th Anniversary of “The Hours,” Pulitzer Prize-winning author Michael Cunningham returns with his first novel in a decade.

6:30 PM – Open Mic Poetry Night @ Inquiring Mind Bookstore & Cafe
Calling every poet and admirer of poetry alike: Inquiring Minds is bringing back 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 We encourage poets of all skill levels to sign up for a four-minute slot to share original (published or unpublished) poetry, fiction, or prose.

6:30 PM – Monthly Poetry Night @ Battenkill Books
Join Battenkill Books for an evening of Poetry. Bring several poems to read, either your own or someone else’s. Open to the public, all are welcome. 


Friday, December 1

4:00 PM – From Page to Stage: Turning Poets into Performers @ The Poetry Barn
Giving voice to written work adds layers of meaning while clarifying our intention and charging the words on the page with emotional and intellectual substance.

6:00 PM – Poetic License – Albany Opening Reception @ Honest Weight Food Co-op
“Ekphrastic art” is defined as the response of an artist in one medium to a work of art by an artist in another medium. Join Poets, Artists, and the community as we celebrate the opening of Poetic License – Albany 2023 @ Honest Weight Food Co-op! Light refreshments are provided by Honest Weight Food Co-op.

6:00 PM – Jon Clinch – “The General and Julia” @ Northshire Manchester
Acclaimed author Jon Clinch will be at Northshire’s Manchester store to celebrate the release of his newest novel wherein Ulysses S. Grant reflects on the crucial moments of his life as a husband, a father, a general, and a president while writing his memoirs and reckoning with his complicated legacy.

6:30 PM – Calling All Poets Series
CAPS is monthly poetry series with featured poets reading new and selected works. A two poem open mic follows. 

7:30 PM – Open Mic & Slam @ Cafe Euphoria
A laid-back open mic and fun slam at a cafe founded and run by trans and gender non-conforming folks. 


Saturday, December 2

9:00 AM – Let’s Write Together Generative Workshop @ Shambhala Meditation Center of Albany
Inspired by Natalie Goldman’s recent book “The True Secret of Writing: Connecting Life with Language,” join us for a morning meditation, movement, and writing retreat. 

1:00 PM – David Pietrusza Signing “Gangsterland: A Tour through the Dark Heart of Jazz-Age New York City” @ Open Door Bookstore
A site by site, crime by crime walking tour through the seedy under belly of Roaring Twenties Manhattan. Historian Pietrusza introduces us to a rogues gallery of characters who were part of the Big Apple’s rotten core.

2:00 PM – 2023 Year in Review @ Mochalisa’s Caffe
The Hudson Valley Writers Guild is proud to present the 2023 Year in Review at MochaLisa’s Caffè with featured poets EL and Nathan Smith!


Sunday, December 3

1:00 PM – Poetic License – Albany Collage Workshop @ Honest Weight Food Co-op
UAG Member Rebecca Schoonmaker hosts an afternoon of collage art making. We will provide the materials – magazines, papers, glue, scissors, n/a beverages, and snacks. While all materials are provided, you may also bring your own to use or share. All ages are welcome! A Suggested donation of $15/person or bring a friend for $10/each.


Monday, December 4

7:00 PM – Poets Creating Conversation @ Berkshire Museum
Not for the faint of heart, Poets Creating Conversation throws out a single word and asks poets to respond. Typically, the results defy expectations! The prompt is GRAVITY. Admission is free.

7:30 PM – Invocation – Albany NY’s Open Mic for Poetry & Spoken Word @ Lark Hall
The Invocation of the Muse poetry and spoken word open mic hosted by R.M. Engelhardt returns to Lark Hall on Monday, December 4.


Tuesday, December 5

12:00 PM – Friends Book Talk: Gene Damm @ Albany Public Library – Washington Ave. Branch
Gene Damm, former journalist, former president of FAPL, & current board member of FFAPL presents Dream Town: Shaker Heights and the Quest for Racial Equity by Laura Meckler at the Washington Ave branch of the Albany Public Library. Open to all ages.

6:00 PM – Poetic License – Albany Poetry Reading & Open Mic @ Honest Weight Food Co-op
Poets, whose work was chosen by an artist in the PL-A show, will share the poem that inspired the artwork and 2 other pieces. Open Mic Sign-ups begin at 6PM!

6:00 PM – Writers Night Out in December @ Forbes Library
Join Straw Dog Writers Guild on Tuesday, December 5, 6:00-8:00pm for Writers Night Out with featured writer Carolyn A. Cushing at Forbes Library. No registration required. If you want to participate in Open Mic and read, please sign up by 5:50pm. Ten names will be randomly selected. Each reader will have five minutes. The second half of the evening showcases our Featured Reader.

6:30 PM – Book Launch: Jack Kelly, “God Save Benedict Arnold: The True Story of America’s Most Hated Man” @ Morton Memorial Library
In his latest book, Jack Kelly tells the gripping story of Arnold’s rush of audacious feats—his capture of Fort Ticonderoga, his Maine mountain expedition to attack Quebec, the famous artillery brawl at Valcour Island, the turning-point battle at Saratoga—that laid the groundwork for our independence.


Wednesday, December 6

6:00 PM – Cookbook Book Club @ Stillwater Public Library
The Stillwater Public Library hosts Cookbook Book Club. Critique and discuss different cookbooks by trying the recipes and bringing a dish to pass.

6:30 PM – Empowered by Poetry @ Hart Cluett Museum
Empowered by Poetry is a new open mic for poetry and spoken word in Troy sponsored by The Arts Center of the Capital Region.

7:00 PM – Straw Dog Writes Online Weekly Meetup
Each Wednesday at 7pm, whenever there is not another scheduled Straw Dog event, any Straw Dog Writers Guild members who would like to spend some time writing together can join a Zoom session. We will spend 15 minutes on introductions, a 45 minute writing session, have a 15 minute discussion, then write for a second 45 minute period of time. Afterwards, the Zoom room will remain open for a half hour for discussion and chat. To register and receive the zoom link, contact Steven D. Brewer at sdbrewer@stevendbrewer.com


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.