Poetry Open Mic

Upcoming Literary Events: February 15-21, 2024

This week, we have another great lineup of literary events in the region. Here’s a quick look at the upcoming book discussions, readings, open mics, and workshops.


Thursday, February 15

1:00 PM – Women’s Issues and the Arts @ Albany Public Library – Howe Branch
“Women’s Issues and the Arts” discusses women’s issues and the methods through which writers and artists have dealt with the societal challenges facing women.

2:00 PM – Novels After Noon Book Group @ Albany Public Library – Bach Branch
Cozy up with a cup of tea while you discuss notable literary titles in the Bach branch of the Albany Public Library’s newest book club, “Novels After Noon.” They will explore a variety of genres including memoirs, historical fiction, mysteries, and more! 

4:00 PM – Third Draft Thursday @ The Poetry Barn
Join us on Zoom each third Thursday of the month from January-October (4-6 PM) for a peer-critique workshop.

6:00 PM – Writers Read: New Paltz author Jo Salas @ CMM Distillery, Saugerties
ShoutOut and Inquiring Minds Bookstore will kick off ShoutOut’s 2024 Writers Read series with New Paltz author Jo Salas. Salas will read from her new novel, Mrs. Lowe-Porter, based on the life of Helen Lowe-Porter, translator of Nobel Prize-winning German novelist Thomas Mann. Afterwards, Salas will be in conversation with Nancy Kline, a former reviewer for the New York Times Sunday Book Review. Kline has published nine books, including translations of a number of modern French writers. Her translation of Jérôme Prieur’s “Proust fantôme” will be published in November. The event is free to the public. Books and drinks will be available for purchase.

6:45 PM – A Writers Night in February @ The Longmeadow Adult Center
Straw Dog Writers Guild and the Longmeadow Adult Center present A Writer’s Night with Cherryl Jensen. Cherryl Jensen grew up among the cornfields of Eastern Iowa, and has lived across the country from Washington on the West Coast to New Hampshire and Massachusetts in Northeastern U.S. She received her MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts in 2022. Her mentor was Sue William Silverman. Cherryl’s writing has appeared in Past Ten, Persimmon Tree, Concrete Wolf, Northern New England Review, Psychiatric Services, and more. Her memoir, Crazy Like My Mother, was published last year. She lives in Greenfield, Massachusetts.

7:00 PM – CAPS Be the Feature Open Mic
CAPS Be the Feature Open Mic is always a fluid evening. Maybe participants read 6 poems. Maybe 5. Maybe 3. Maybe 2…

7:00 PM – Poetry & Readings – The Moral Arc Toward Freedom: Lincoln, King, and the Emancipation Proclamation @ Huxley Theatre, NYS Museum
The program will feature poetry, readings of brief excerpts of historical documents, and a conversation with the audience about the complicated legacy of slavery and emancipation in the United States. 

7:30 PM – Third Thursday Poetry Night Featuring Kathleen Anne Smith @ Social Justice Center
Poet Kathleen Anne Smith will read from her work at the Social Justice Center with an open mic for community poets.


Friday, February 16

7:30 PM – Open Mic @ Hudson Valley Writers’ Center
Featured Poets + open mike for poets, fiction writers, essayists with rotating hosts at the Hudson Valley Writers’ Center.

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, February 17

9:00 AM – Contemplative Writing Half-Day Retreat @ Shambhala Meditation Center of Albany
Half-day contemplative writing retreat alternating sessions of mindfulness meditation, walking meditation, and writing with optional prompts.

11:15 AM – Foundations of Plot Workshop
Plot. If it works well, you may have a great book. If your plot falls flat, well, you need to find the problems and fix them.

6:00 PM – David Hellerstein – “The Couch, the Clinic, and the Scanner” @ Northshire Saratoga
Hellerstein, a professor of clinical psychiatry at the Columbia University College of Physicians, will join us in Manchester to discuss his award-winning book about the radical changes in the field of psychiatry over the last several decades.


Sunday, February 18

2:00 PM – Poetry Open Mic @ St. Lawrence Friary
Monthly open mic for poetry and spoken word in Beacon, NY, hosted by Fr. Bob Phelps.  


Wednesday, February 21

5:45 PM – Writers Group @ Schenectady Public Library – Central Branch
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 – Poetry Night @ Java Blue Coffee & Market
Monthly open mic for poetry and spoken word in Montgomery, NY, hosted by Robert Milby.

7:00 PM – Straw Dog Writes Weekly Writers Meet Up
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. Afterward, the Zoom room will remain open for a half hour for discussion and chat.

7:00 PM – Milkweed Poetry Workshop @ Buckbee Center
A monthly evening of poetry with a featured reader, workshop, and open reading in Warwick, NY.

7:30 PM – Next Year’s Words: A New Paltz Reader’s Forum @ Elting Memorial Library
The featured readers for this community celebration of words at the library are Sally Van Doren, Matthew J. Spireng, and Amanda Russell. 

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.