Looking at all the opportunities coming up for Alaskan authors and their readers, I get a sense of how the Klondikers must have felt back in '98. Except no one has to pack a ton of supplies over a mountain or worry about getting there too late, unless of course you miss a deadline. Be sure to scroll all the way to the bottom so you don't miss a thing. I also update the calendar (at the very bottom of the page, after all the posts) on Fridays.
On Monday, January 12, we'll begin the process of choosing the first 49 Writers book club selection of 2009. So far we've had suggestions of Ordinary Wolves, Firecracker Boys, And She Was, and Being Caribou . We're looking for books either set in the North or written by Northern writers. If you have any other nominations, please comment here or on last Tuesday's book club post or use the contact form to the right. Our poll on book club logistics (top right) closes January 10.
The Freeze project is now accepting writing submissions at their web site. They're inviting all Alaskan writers to participate, no matter the genre, length or curriculum vitae. One of the goals of this project is to identify and select work for publication in a FREEZE book, so they ask that you submit work that suits the concept and include contact information and details about the writing. The writing Freeze also includes work by authors chosen to represent the project, so visit the site all month to read the latest postings and learn about upcoming events. They'll post the first submissions on January 10, opening day for Freeze, and continue updating the page as the month unfolds. Find out more at www.freezeproject.org.
The Freeze project also features several readings this month, including a kick-off outdoor event this Saturday, January 10, at 1 p.m. on the Delaney Park Strip in Anchorage with poet Joan Kane, essayist Sherry Simpson and several other hardcore writers. No word on what it takes to make the hardcore writer cut, but it may have something to do with reading your work outside in January. At any rate, Freeze asks that you come out and thaw the Freeze with your body heat.
The full schedule of Freeze readings include:
January 10: A Northern Writers' reading and open mic at 1 p.m. as part of the Freeze opening on the Delaney Park Strip between E and I streets.
January 16: A casual, but stylish Northern Writers' event with an open mic from 7 to 9 p.m. at Bernie's Bungalow, 7th Ave & D Street.
January 31: Readings hosted by Mr. White Keys from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. at the Anchorage Museum. (Rumor has it Willie Hensley may be a featured reader at this one).
Check the Freeze website for a list of readers at these events or contact Dawnell Smith at firstname.lastname@example.org to participate. They hope to include an open mic at all readings, and they say it's okay just to show up with something to read.
On Tuesday, January 16, Alaska Sisters in Crime meets from 6:30-8:00 p.m., at the Elim Cafe (corner of Dimond Blvd. and Arctic Blvd.) in Anchorage. They're invited an agent from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) from 7-7:30 and a federal ranger from 7:30-8 to speak. You can also bring books to swap.
Anchorage nature writer and author Bill Sherwonit will teach a 12-week nature writing class beginning January 15 in Anchorage. Participants in this workshop-style class will explore and refine their own writing styles, with an emphasis on the personal essay form. The class will also read and discuss works by some of America’s finest nature writers, past and present. The cost is $200. To sign up for this Thursday night class (7 to 9:30 p.m.), or for more information, contact Sherwonit at 245-0283 or email@example.com. Further information about the teacher is also available at www.billsherwonit.alaskawriters.com.
The next application period for UAA's graduate writing program is NOW. If you are a poet, a fiction or nonfiction writer, and you've been considering a low-residency MFA program to help light some creative sparks within your writing life, please know that UAA's early application deadline is January 15, 2009. You will find all the application instructions by visiting the UAA web site http://cwla.uaa.alaska.edu and clicking on the application information button found on the home page.
In the more distant future, UAA announces that its next residency, which includes many public, evening readings and craft talks, will be July 11-23, 2009 featuring John Keeble as the keynote visiting writer. And don't forget that at UAA's web site, you can go to the index called Quicklinks to find high-quality podcasts from craft talks and readings given by faculty and guest speakers in the summer of 2008. They begin on or about page three, once you scroll through the Podcasts section, with Rich Chiappone's talk, "Reading Like a Writer."
On January 21 at 6 p.m., the Rasmuson Foundation will host a teleconference for artists interested in learning more about the Foundation’s Individual Artist Awards. Foundation staff will provide information about the grants, which are awarded directly to writers, and answer questions about eligibility, the application process, supporting materials, timeline, the selection process, and other questions brought forward by participants.
“Getting through the application process requires artists to communicate their creative goals and vision on paper,” said Victoria Lord, program associate. “We realize this can sometimes be challenging, and our hope is that these teleconferences provide applicants with the tools and insight to help them put forward competitive applications.”
All writers are invited to call in regardless of whether they have submitted an application or received funding for an Individual Artist Award in the past. The number: 1-888-896-0862. Guidelines, application materials and lists of past recipients are available at www.rasmuson.org.
February 5 is the deadline for the annual writing/broadcasting/video/photo contest from Alaska Professional Communicators (formerly Alaska Press Women). Winners in 78 categories, including fiction and non-fictions, go on to the National Federation of Press Women finals. The contest is now open to Alaskans other than APC members. Entry fees are $20 per entry for members, $30 for nonmembers. In keeping with NFPW regulations, nonmembers who win first place in the Alaska contest must join APC if they want their entries to be sent forward to the national competition. For details, visit http://www.akprocom.org/commcontests.php
Whew. If that doesn't give you enought to do during the next few weeks of dark and cold, I don't know what will. If you have items you'd like posted in the Weekly Roundup and/or on our calendar, please email us using the contact form in the sidebar to the right.