|49 Writers Board President Don Rearden|
will be featured in a free 49 Writers Reading and
Craft talk Dec. 8 at 7 pm Cafe Felix at Metro Books
Why 49 Writers?
A couple years ago, if you asked me about the literary community of Alaska I would have answered with my own question, "What community?"
Don't get me wrong, there was no shortage of literary talent in Alaska. What was missing was community. Either that or I just hadn't arrived as a writer yet and received my skeleton key or learned the secret handshake. We all know writing is itself a solitary and --- at times --- even a lonely endeavor. Writers by nature aren't the most gregarious of creatures. Heck, some of us even don't like our own species.
Still, we do, if I may be so bold to suggest, actually want to be around other writers, if only to be around someone who understands irony beyond Alanis Morissette's definition involving the desire for a knife when you've got several thousand spoons at your disposal.
While I've never even possessed more than twenty or so spoons at a given time, and perhaps a spork or two, I did jump at the opportunity to help start this cool little non-profit called the 49 Writers. I signed on as a member and later as a board of directors member because I wanted to be a part of something that sounded pretty amazing. I had no idea.
In just a few years I have made friendships that will ensure some one writes something powerful and/or funny at my wake, hopefully many many winters from now. I have forged connections with famous authors, not so famous authors, future authors, and more importantly cool Alaskan writers I can ski with, talk shop over coffee, or just borrow a knife should the need arise.
We're teaching young writers. We're supporting working writers. We're building a writing community, and not just here in Anchorage, but across the 49th State. There are more than forty-nine of us, too, and I hope you'll want to join our ranks and become a part of this. Sign up and become a member! Or if you're like me and behind on your membership dues, then join with me and renew today.
Don Rearden doesn't really need to borrow a knife. He's being sarcastic. He recently renewed his membership in hopes we'd teach him the secret handshake.