Friday, June 28, 2013

49 Writers Weekly Roundup



Thanks to Don Rearden for throwing such an excellent book launch party last night at the Taproot in Anchorage - it was a real family affair, with writers and friends from all over attending to show their support and also to help raise money for the victims of the recent flooding in Galena. If you'd like to meet the author in person and buy a copy of the beautiful U.S. edition of The Raven's Gift, you can catch him tomorrow, June 29, 11:30am, at Fireside Books in Palmer.


Last week we invited members who attended the Kachemak Bay Writers' Conference to share their thoughts, and here Teresa Carns remembers Naomi Shihab Nye's keynote address:

Naomi opened with "Oh my God! I thought I had three hours this morning and I have one. So we'll cram a lot in." And she proceeded to do just that, tossing out aphorism after aphorism about writing, along with brief exercises (like practicing scales each day to warm up), then gave us three minutes to write; and then repeated the cycle -advise, write, read aloud.

"If you're having a dull time, write a thank you note or a love letter -- to the soap dish, to a time of the day, to the window, to someone you admire. Or write a farewell -- to a fear, or a bad habit, or something you'd like to say good-bye to. Just a few minutes."

She read bits of poetry from others: "There are mornings when everything brims with promise. Even my empty cup." (From Braided Creek by Ted Kooser and Jim Harrison). "Dawn in the north. His nose stalks the air, seeking coffee." She read a sentence from Ted Kooser about revising: "You can learn to love tinkering with drafts of poems till a warm hand from somewhere above you reaches down, unscrews the top of your head, and drops in a solution that blows your ears off."

Thanks, Teri! Also, if you missed Erin Hollowell's guest post this week on good literary citizenship (inspired by Naomi Shihab Nye), it's well worth the read. Thank you, Erin, for a month of thoughtful and inspirational posts. If you haven't read her new book of poetry, Pause, Traveler, there's still time to enter the Goodreads contest to win a copy, which ends June 30.

Today, June 29, 4pm, Fireside Books, Palmer: Lew Freedman signs copies of My Season on the Kenai: Fishing Alaska's Greatest River.

June 30 is the deadline for early registration for the Alaska Writers Guild annual conference, September 7-8. If you're planning to go, don't miss these special rates.

July 6 is the next First Saturday in Hope, where authors and artists will gather on the lawn at the library for a fun-filled day of events that include a wine and cheese tasting party at the Sherritt Fine Art Gallery and live music in the evening.

July 8, 6-9pm at Blue Holloman Gallery, 3555 Arctic Boulevard C5, Anchorage: the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators (SCBWI Alaska) is offering a revision workshop taught by Newbery Medal winner Linda Sue Park (A Single Shard), author of more than a dozen middle grade and picture books. This workshop, Become Your Own Best Editor, will benefit both picture book authors and novel writers. Registration is $25 for SCBWI members and $30 for non-SCBWI members. Click here to register.

July 16, 7-8:30pm, Loussac Library, the monthly Alaska Writers Guild program features the Alaska Writers Guild Grammar Game. Join the fund and win some prizes!

Cirque #8 is now available: this latest issue offers a tremendous mix of work, a balance of image and text, including excerpts from Jim Sweeney's Alaska Expedition: Marine Life Solidarity, Kris Farmen's Turnagain, and pieces by Andromeda Romano-Lax and Nicholas Dighiera from The Better Bombshell. Eva Saulitis reviews Christine Byl's Dirt Work, former poet laureate Tom Sexton reviews John Morgan's Forms of Feeling, and Ela Harrison interviews poet Erin Hollowell. The issue is also graced by poems from David Wagoner, Tess Gallagher, Tom Sexton, John Morgan, and other fine poets.

Sherry Shahan’s Alaska-based novel Ice Island (Random House) has made the Bank Street College of EducationBest of Books, 2013” list for ages 9-12 in the Adventure category. Congratulations, Sherry!

The Sledgehammer 36-Hour Writing Contest is going virtual! Writers from all over are invited to participate in this zany competition, which takes place August 17-18. Part scavenger hunt, part battle of the wits, this writing contest features prize packages collectively worth more than $20,000! Learn more at www.sledgehammercontest.com.

Boucheron, the Annual World Mystery Convention, takes place November 13-16 at Long Beach, CA. Join readers, writers, publishers, editors, agents, booksellers, and other lovers of crime fiction for a long weekend of education, entertainment, and fun.

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