Cambridge

The Dipper - June 2019

"The Dipper" is our monthly newsletter, where we highlight readings, events, calls for submission, and other literary-related news for the coming month. If you have news or events to share, let us know

 

June News

Rena Mosteirin

Rena Mosteirin

Dan Chiasson

Dan Chiasson

GennaRose Nethercott

GennaRose Nethercott

Drumroll, please….!

It’s finally time to announce the featured poets for Poetry & Pie III. We are beyond thrilled that Rena J. Mosteirin, Dan Chiasson, and GennaRose Nethercott will be joining us at Sweetland Farm in Norwich, Vermont, on Saturday, August 3, from 3:00 to 5:00 pm.

Poet-for-hire Taylor Mardis Katz is returning with her Remington typewriter so that she can write custom poems for you. As in past years, we welcome you to read your own, original work at our open mic. New to Poetry & Pie this year, we’ll have a musical interlude by one of our favorite local musicians, Laura Jean Binkley (who also performed at last November’s Writers’ Process Night). And, of course, we’ll ply you with every kind of pie—sweet, savory, gluten-free, vegan—that you can imagine. Get the details and RSVP on our Poetry & Pie page. We look forward to seeing you there!

Rena Mosteirin, a Poetry & Pie featured poet, is also the author of the first Little Dipper, our new handmade chapbook series. Rena’s chapbook, tentatively titled half-fabulous whales, is a collection of erasure poems crafted from the pages of Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick. We’re producing a limited edition of 25, numbered and signed, and will have them for sale at Poetry & Pie. If you’d like to reserve a copy in advance, let us know!

Our friend Ocean Vuong’s debut novel, On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous, comes out on June 4, and we couldn’t be more excited. You might remember that Ocean was one of the featured poets at last year’s Poetry & Pie, where he read an excerpt from the novel. On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous has received rave reviews—including starred reviews from Kirkus, Library Journal and Booklist—and is the number one Indie Next pick for June. You have a few opportunities to see him in New England in June and he’s going to be at Bookstock in Woodstock, Vermont, at the end of July. Not only is his writing amazing, but he’s a wonderful reader of his own work. Not to be missed!

In case you missed it, we have some new goodies on our blog, including a Friday Reads selection by writer Sierra Dickey, and an interview with local writer, Rachel Barenbaum about her debut novel, A Bend in the Stars.

 
 

Slow Club Book Clubbers are leisurely making their way through our spring selection, Wioletta Greg’s Swallowing Mercury. If you’re not a member yet, you can read our recent, mid-season check-in letter about that book, and you can sign up to be notified about our summer book, which we’ll announce very soon.

 
LiteraryNorthDotOrg.png
 

And finally… we recently changed our website from .com to .org. We’ve always imagined ourselves more as a community organization than a business, and we want our website to reflect that. The old website address will automatically take you to the new one for the time being, but, when you get a chance, please update your bookmarks to the new address: www.literarynorth.org.

June’s Shooting Stars

A cool literary find from each of us to help light up your month!

Star.png
  • I recently discovered a new favorite podcast, Everything Else, a culture podcast from the Financial Times. My favorite episode is “Ways of Seeing: Sheila Heti on Pierre Bonnard, but there are so many good ones. Richard Grant, Alexander Chee, Kerry James Marshall, Sally Rooney. Give it a listen! —Shari

  • If you have a spare ~24 minutes in our day, listen to Mary Ruefle read her essay “My Private Property” on KCRW’s Bookworm podcast. Every time I listen, it leaves me speechless. —Rebecca


June Highlights

Shomari Wills

Shomari Wills

Brooklyn journalist and author Shomari Wills reads from his book, Black Fortunes, in the historic Barn House at the Clemmons Family Farm in Charlotte, Vermont, on Saturday, June 1, from 4:00 to 6:00 pm.

If you haven’t had a chance yet to see James Crews talk about his book, Healing the Divide, he will be at Northshire Bookstore in Manchester Center, Vermont, along with Julia Shipley, Todd Davis, Carol Cone, Alice Gilburn, David Axelrod, and Michelle Wiegers on Sunday, June 2, at 2:00 pm.

Helen Macdonald

Helen Macdonald

The Bread Loaf Environmental Writers’ Conference and Translator’s Conferences offer many readings open to the public from Friday, May 31 through Wednesday, June 5 at Middlebury College in Middlebury, Vermont. Some of our favorite writers will be on hand, including Megan Mayhew Bergman, Claire Vaye Watkins, Dan Chiasson, J. Drew Lanham, Helen Macdonald, Emily Wilson and more.

The Thing in the Spring—an annual festival of music, art, and literature in Peterborough, New Hampshire—features readings by Mary Ruefle and Arielle Greenberg on Friday, June 7; Adar Cohen, Doug Valentine, and Ed Symkus on Saturday, June 8; and Iliana Rocha and Rage Hezekiah on Sunday, June 9. All readings take place at the Toadstool Bookshop. Check our calendar for reading times.

The Joan Hutton Landis Summer Reading Series kicks off on Sunday, June 9, at 5:30 pm with Angela Palm and Nathan McClean. The series takes place at Big Town Gallery in Rochester, Vermont, and continues through September 1.

Amitava Kumar. Photo by Snigdha Kumar

Amitava Kumar. Photo by Snigdha Kumar

Amitava Kumar, author of Immigrant, Montana, is reading at Northshire Bookstore in Manchester Center, Vermont, on Thursday, June 13, at 5:30 pm.

Sunday, June 16 is Bloomsday, the day we commemorate the life of James Joyce and his novel Ulysses. If you’re in the Upper Valley, you can celebrate with a brunch, readings, and discussion with professor James Heffernan at Jesse’s Restaurant in Hanover, New Hampshire, starting at 11:30 am. $32 per person. Registration is required.

The 2019 Hyla Brook Reading Series continues in Derry, New Hampshire, on Friday, June 14, at 7:00 pm with keynote speaker Bruce Bennett and Frost Farm Prize winner, David Southward.

David Huddle and Gregory Spatz read from their latest works of fiction at The Vermont Bookshop in Middlebury, Vermont, on Thursday, June 20, at 7:00 pm.

Zinzi Clemmons. Photo by Nina Subin

Zinzi Clemmons. Photo by Nina Subin

Cheryl Strayed will speak at the Latchis Theater in Brattleboro, Vermont, on Tuesday, June 25, at 7:30 pm in celebration of Brattleboro Area Hospice’s 40th anniversary.

On Friday, June 28, Zinzi Clemmons will read from her debut novel, What We Lose, at the Norman Williams Public Library in Woodstock, Vermont. The reading begins at 4:30 pm.

This year’s Justice - And Poetry - For All, put together by the Sundog Poetry Center, will focus on the poetry of immigrants. As of press time, the date and lineup haven’t been announced, but Sundog’s website says it’s happening in June. Check their website for updates.

Visit our calendar for detailed information about these events and more!

 

Worth a Drive

  • Yaddo presents Amy Hempel at Northshire Bookstore in Saratoga Springs, New York, on June 6, at 6:00 pm. Reservations are required. She will be in conversation with Elaine Richardson, President of Yaddo.

  • Robert MacFarlane, author of Underland, will be in conversation with Sebastien Smee at Harvard Book Store in Cambridge, Massachusetts, on June 11, at 7:00 pm.

  • Regina Porter will be reading from her debut novel, The Travelers, at the Odyssey Bookshop in South Hadley, Massachusetts on June 20, at 7:00 pm.

  • The Juniper Summer Writing Institute hosts public readings during the month of June. Readers include Joy Williams, Ross Gay, Ocean Vuong, Mitch Jackson, CA Conrad, and more!

 

Worth a Listen

  • Check out last month’s Brave Little State from VPR, where they looked into just what draws so many writers and poets to Vermont.

  • Pam Houston on the OtherppL podcast.

  • Preti Taneja joins Andy Miller and John Mitchinson on the Backlisted podcast to discuss Beloved, by Toni Morrison.

 

We're Looking Forward to These June Releases

underland.jpg

Calls For Submission and Upcoming Deadlines

Frost Farm Poetry Conference
Accepting registrations for this year’s conference (June 14 to 16). Registration includes workshops, a one-on-one meeting with your instructor, keynote with Bruce Bennett, critiques with poet-in-residence Rhina Espaillat, panel discussions, readings, a reception, breakfasts and lunches.
Deadline: June 1 | Details

Juniper Summer Writing Institute
Accepting applications for this summer’s institute (June 16 to 22). The institute includes manuscript consultations, craft sessions, workshops, readings, and other events, led by a wide range of instructors, including CAConrad, Gabriel Bump, Ross Gay, Khadijah Queen, Bianca Stone, Ocean Vuong, Dara Weir, and Joy Williams.
Deadline: rolling admissions until full | Details

The Frost Place 2019 Conference on Poetry
Spend a week at “intensive poetry camp” (July 6 to 12) with writers who are deeply committed to learning more about the craft of writing poetry. The Frost Place Conference on Poetry offers daily workshops, classes, lectures, writing and revising time in a supportive and dynamic environment. $25 application fee.
Deadline: June 15 | Details

Vermont Studio Center Fellowships
Twenty-five VSC fellowships open to all artists and writers living and working anywhere in the world, in addition to six special fellowships for writers. These awards are for residencies scheduled between September 2019 and May 2020. Every VSC residency opportunity includes private room, private studio space, all meals, and full access to their schedule of evening programs and events. $25 application fee.
Deadline: June 15 | Details

Zig Zag Lit Mag
Accepting fiction, non-fiction, dramatic forms, poetry—any genre, any topic. To submit you must live, labor, or loiter in Addison County, Vermont.
Deadline: June 30 | Details

Green Mountain Writers Conference
For five days each summer (July 29 to August 2), people who have been coming to the conference for years and first-timers joyously tackle the job of putting words together to tell story, to craft poetry, to communicate, to share, and to learn from one another under the close tutelage of published authors. Faculty this year includes Dede Cummings, Jensen Beach, Yvonne Daley, and Gary Margolis.
Deadline: Call (802) 236-6133 for availability or email the director, Yvonne Daley, at yvonnedaley@me.com | Details

The Frost Place Poetry Seminar
Join a select community of poets for 5-1/2 days (August 4 to 10) to refresh your artistic inspiration in a setting of great natural beauty. Have your poems-in-progress given generous and focused attention in this intimate setting. The seminar offers unparalleled access to a faculty of celebrated contemporary poets. The goal is to send you home charged up to re-enter your own work. $25 application fee.
Deadline: July 1 | Details

Hunger Mountain Issue 24: Patterns
General submissions are open in prose and poetry on the theme of patterns. Work must not have been published before, including online.
Deadline: October 15 | Details

Lifelines Magazine
Accepting submissions of original and unpublished short stories, nonfiction, poetry, and artwork for their 2020 issue. While they consider a broad spectrum of subject matter for publication, they are looking for pieces that speak to the experience of medicine in some way.
Deadline: October 31 | Details

Center for Cartoon Studies, MFA Degree and Certificate Programs
Now accepting applications for the MFA, One- and Two-year Certificate programs, Low Residency second-year option. Learn all you need to know about making comics, self-publishing, in a prolific and dynamic environment and community. $50 application fee.
Deadline: rolling admissions until programs are filled | Details


Upcoming Workshops and Classes

Helping the Poet Make a Better Poem with Steven Cramer
Saturday, June 8, 1:00 to 4:00 pm

In this three-hour workshop, we’ll honor both the critical and creative faculties of our brains (perhaps discovering that they’re closer siblings than we might have thought). We’ll first discuss work-in-process by participants, asking ourselves the only question worth asking in a workshop: how might we help the poet make this poem the best it can be? Then we’ll engage in one or two writing “experiments” designed to encourage using language more as paint than as a vehicle for conveying information, favoring the sensory over making sense.
Location: The Ford House, SNHU, Manchester, New Hampshire | Cost: $65-$85 | Details

Elements of the Novel Workshop with Eileen Charbonneau
Saturday June 8, 15, 22, and 29, 11:00 am to 1:00 pm
Do you think you have a novel in you?  Have you written one (or more!) and want to make it better and closer to publication? Eileen will cover topics such as setting, characterization, voice and dialogue. All are encouraged to write during class and learn how to critique each other and self-edit.
Location: Village Square Booksellers | Cost: $5 per session | Details

New Hampshire Writers’ Project Write-In
Saturday, June 22, 9:00 am to 3:00 pm

The NHWP holds seasonal Write-Ins for its members where they can come and hang out with fellow writers and have a dedicated time to write. We write all day, break for a social lunch, and then get back to writing or take part in an optional ad hoc critique session with fellow writers.
Location: The Ford House, SNHU, Manchester, New Hampshire | Cost: free for members | Details

Do I Have a Book in Me? with Bill Schubart
Tuesday, June 25, 7:00 pm

As an author or eight fictional works—both self-published and traditionally published—Bill will answer questions about the work of writing and the new business of publishing. Bill will also discuss his recently published novel, The Priest.
Location: Phoenix Books, Burlington, Vermont | Cost: free | Details

Tapping into Your Write Brain: A Workshop for the Creatively Inclined with Joni Cole
Friday, June 28, 6 to 7:30 pm
In this workshop, you will participate in a creative writing exercise using thematic prompts that stir up…who knows? And that’s the fun, freeing, and always powerful experience of writing and sharing from a “prompt”. No writing experience is required. Space is limited. Please register by June 21 through the Hood Museum of Art’s website.
Location: Hood Museum of Art, Hanover, New Hampshire | Cost: free | Details

Write Here, Write Now with Barbara Steiner
Saturday, June 29, 9:30 am to 4:30 pm
Beginning and experienced writers are invited to a day-long creative writing workshop at Aryaloka Buddhist Center. Based on the Amherst Writers and Artists method, we’ll write in response to prompts (which you are free to ignore) designed to help us bypass our inner critic and write from what comes to us.
Location: Newmarket, New Hampshire | Cost: $45-$85 | Details

The Dipper - May 2019

"The Dipper" is our monthly newsletter, where we highlight readings, events, calls for submission, and other literary-related news for the coming month. If you have news or events to share, let us know

 

May News

Now that the weather has finally turned (and turned again), you might be eager for more clues about our headlining poets for Poetry & Pie III on Saturday, August 3. We’ll release all of the details next month, but, for now, we have a few more teasers for you. Put these together with the first set of clues and see if you can guess who’s coming. The first person to email us with the correct names of all three poets wins a free pass to the event!

Hpie.jpg
  • Mystery poet #1 started writing poetry at the age of 25 and has studied with Frank Bidart.

  • Mystery poet #2 lives next door to a bear sanctuary.

  • Mystery poet #3 has been on an epic Western road trip this year.

As we mentioned last month, one of the books that we’ve been most excited about this spring is Healing the Divide: Poems of Kindness and Connection, an anthology of poetry edited by our friend James Crews and put out by the fabulous, local publisher Green Writers Press. We recently interviewed James about the book. If you haven’t seen the interview yet, check it out on our blog.

The Upper Valley is very lucky to be the home of Bloodroot Literary Magazine, edited by the fabulous team of James E. Dobson and Rena Mosteirin. Volume 11 (the Fourth Digital Edition) was released in April and is available online and as a downloadable PDF. Volume 11 features photography from our friend James Napoli (of Junction Magazine fame), poems by our own Rebecca Siegel, and poems by our friends Meghan Oliver and Ivy Schweitzer.

We are very excited to announce our first chapbook project: Little Dippers. Each Little Dipper will feature one writer’s work and will be hand-stitched and have covers letterpress printed by us! Look for more information about this project very soon. Little Dipper Issue 1 will be available at Poetry & Pie III in a limited edition of 25.

From time to time, we plan to invite others to join in on the Friday Reads fun with their reading suggestions. Bloodroot Literary Magazine editor and poet, Rena Mosteirin, recently shared her excellent recommendation with us over on the blog.

May’s Shooting Stars

Star.png

A cool literary find from each of us to help light up your month!

  • I’m excited to see the lineup for the Marble House Residents for 2019. I kept meaning to make it to one of the Art Seed events last summer and never could quite get it together. The first Art Seed of the season is on Saturday, May 11, from 2:00 to 5:00 pm. Readings and performances followed by open studios. Sounds like a great spring afternoon.—Shari

  • Earth Day has just passed us by, but, really, we all know that every day ought to be Earth Day. To that end, Literary Hub has assembled an absolutely fantastic series of Earth Day reading lists, everything from classics (Rachel Carson, Nan Shepard, Barry Lopez, Henry David Thoreau) to science (Elizabeth Kolbert, Elizabeth Rush, Gary Paul Nabhan, Paul Hawken) to fiction and poetry (W.S. Merwin, Peter Matthiessen, Alice Oswald, Ursula K. Le Guin). Their goal is to list at least 365 books, so keep checking back. These lists could become the basis for one of the most important book clubs ever formed. —Rebecca


May Highlights

Emily Bazelon

Emily Bazelon

Emily Bazelon will give a public lecture at the Norwich Congregational Church in Norwich, Vermont, on Wednesday, May 1, at 7:00 pm as part of the Vermont Humanities Council’s First Wednesdays program. Her latest book, Charged, was recently featured on The New York Times Book Review podcast.

How lucky are we that Frank Bidart will be reading at Middlebury College in Middlebury, Vermont, on Thursday, May 2, at 4:30 pm? So lucky.

Peter Money, one of the poets featured at Poetry & Pints earlier this year, is launching his new novel, Oh When The Saints, on Thursday, May 2, at Salt Hill Pub in Lebanon, New Hampshire, from 6:00 to 7:30 pm.

Part of the weekend-long Waking Windows Festival, this year’s Page Burner Reading series and book sale takes place on Saturday, May 4, from noon to 4:00 pm, and features readings by Angela Palm, Alison Prine, Bianca Stone, Ben Pease, Rachel Lindsay, Franky Frances Cannon, Kerrin McCadden, and Nat Baldwin. The readings will be held in various Winooski locations.

In honor of International Compost Awareness Week and Walt Whitman’s 200th birthday, Left Bank Books in Hanover, New Hampshire, is hosting a reading of Walt Whitman’s post-Civil War poem, “This Compost,” followed by two response activities on Tuesday, May 7, from 7:00 to 8:00 pm.

Bill McKibben

Bill McKibben

You have several chances to catch Vermont writer Bill McKibben this month: Tuesday, May 7, at the Unitarian Church of Montpelier; Wednesday, May 8 at The Norwich Bookstore, and Tuesday, May 14 at Flying Pig Books in Shelburne. His latest book, Falter, is an important read; attend a reading if you can!

On Wednesday, May 8, at 6:30 pm, the Water Street Bookstore in Exeter, New Hampshire, is hosting a reading by some of the poets included in the new Lunation Anthology, published by the Portsmouth Poet Laureate Program and featuring 114 women poets.

Julia Bouwsma, Keetje Kuipers, and Chen Chen read as a part of The Silo Series at The Word Barn in Exeter, New Hampshire, on Thursday, May 9. Doors open at 6:30 pm; the reading begins at 7:00 pm. Complementary coffee and treats!

Sean Cole, producer at This American Life, will give a lecture and lead a discussion at Marlboro College in Marlboro, Vermont, on Friday, May 10, from 7:00 to 8:00 pm, about making radio stories out of books and poems.

Salvatore Scibona will read from his new novel, The Volunteer, at Bennington College in Bennington, Vermont, on Wednesday, May 15, at 7:00 pm.

Nausheen Eusuf

Nausheen Eusuf

The 2019 Hyla Brook Reading Series at the Frost Farm in Derry, New Hampshire, launches on Thursday, May 16, at 6:30 pm with Nausheen Eusuf.

Writers on a New England Stage hosts the fantastic Tommy Orange on Thursday, May 16, at 7:00 pm in Portsmouth, New Hamshire.

Dan Chiasson, poet and poetry critic at The New Yorker, will read at the Vermont Studio Center in Johnson, Vermont, on Thursday, May 16, at 8:00 pm.

Michele Filgate visits the Portsmouth Public Library in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, on Wednesday, May 22, at 6:30 pm to speak about the anthology, What My Mother and I Don’t Talk About.

Kathryn Davis will read at the Northshire Bookstore in Manchester, Vermont, on Friday, May 24, at 6:00 pm.

Chigozie Obioma

Chigozie Obioma

Vermont Studio Center visiting writer Chigozie Obioma will read on Wednesday, May 29, at 8:00 pm in Johnson, Vermont.

The 6th Annual Bread Loaf Environmental Writers’ Conference and the 5th Annual Bread Loaf Translators’ Conference begin on Friday, May 31 in Ripton, Vermont. The list of public readings has not been announced yet, but the faculty and guest lists are very enticing, including John Balcom, Jennifer Chang, Daniel Duane, John Elder, Edward Gauvin, Sean Hill, Elisabeth Jaquette, J. Drew Lanham, Suzanne Jill Levine, Helen Macdonald, Claire Vaye Watkins, Dan Chiasson, Bill McKibben, James Prosek, and Emily Wilson. Check the conference website for reading dates and times.

Visit our calendar for detailed information about these events and more!

 

Worth a Drive

  • Myla Goldberg visits The Odyssey Bookshop in South Hadley, Massachusetts, on Tuesday, May 7, at 7:00 pm for her First Editions Club reading from her new novel, Feast Your Eyes.

  • Aysegul Savas will be at Amherst Books in Amherst, Massachusetts, on Thursday, May 9, at 7:00 pm to read from her debut, Walking on the Ceiling.

  • Julie Orringer reads at the Harvard Bookstore in Cambridge, Massachusetts, on Wednesday, May 29, at 7:00 pm.

 

Worth a Listen

  • Mary Gabriel talks about Ninth Street Women on Lit Up. So good! And did you hear the book is going to be made into a series? We’re here for it!

  • Tune in to The Archive Project to hear the very wise Barry Lopez, one of our favorite writers.

  • Emilie Pine reads “How to Edit Your Own Lousy Writing” by Julian Gough and discusses it with Sally Rooney on The Stinging Fly Podcast.

 

We're Looking Forward to These May Releases

Screenshot_2019-04-24 New Daughters of Africa An International Anthology of Writing by Women of African Descent IndieBound [...].png

Calls For Submission and Upcoming Deadlines

The Mudroom at AVA Gallery
The AVA Gallery is seeking storytellers for its next Mudroom event (June 13) on the theme “What I Did for Money.” Submit your story idea (300 words or fewer) and a short bio (150 words or fewer).
Deadline: May 10 | Details

Anne LaBastille Memorial Writers Residency
Indoor and outdoor writing spaces, family-style meals, and fireside discussions at a lakeside lodge in the Adirondacks (October 5 to 19). Three spaces are open to those who don’t live in the Adirondack region. $25 application fee.
Deadline: May 21 | Details

Tiny Stories of Friendship
Firelight, Peterborough, New Hampshire’s immersive and collaborative theatre workshop is calling for Tiny Stories of Friendship—100 words or fewer. Stories will be read/presented/performed at The Thing in the Spring (June 9 at 1:00 pm).
Deadline: May 21 | Details

The Frost Place Conference on Poetry and Teaching, and Writing Intensive
The Conference on Poetry and Teaching is a unique opportunity for teachers to work closely with both their peers and a team of illustrious poets who have particular expertise in working with teachers at all levels. Over the course of 4½ days (June 22 to 26), faculty poets will share specific, hands-on techniques for teaching poetry. $25 application fee.
Deadline: May 30 | Details

The Frost Place 2019 Conference on Poetry
Spend a week at “intensive poetry camp” (July 6 to 12) with writers who are deeply committed to learning more about the craft of writing poetry. The Frost Place Conference on Poetry offers daily workshops, classes, lectures, writing and revising time in a supportive and dynamic environment. $25 application fee.
Deadline: May 30 (scholarships) and June 15 | Details

The Frost Place Poetry Seminar
Join a select community of poets for 5-1/2 days (August 4 to 10) to refresh your artistic inspiration in a setting of great natural beauty. Have your poems-in-progress given generous and focused attention in this intimate setting. Our specialty is unparalleled access to a faculty of celebrated contemporary poets, and our goal is to send you home charged up to re-enter your own work. $25 application fee.
Deadline: May 25 (scholarships) and July 1 | Details

Frost Farm Poetry Conference
Accepting registrations for this year’s conference (June 14 to 16). Registration includes workshops, a one-on-one meeting with your instructor, keynote with Bruce Bennett, critiques with poet-in-residence Rhina Espaillat, panel discussions, readings, a reception, breakfasts and lunches.
Deadline: registration until full | Details

Juniper Summer Writing Institute
Accepting applications for this summer’s institute (June 16 to 22). The institute includes manuscript consultations, craft sessions, workshops, readings, and other events, led by a wide range of instructors, including CAConrad, Gabriel Bump, Ross Gay, Khadijah Queen, Bianca Stone, Ocean Vuong, Dara Weir, and Joy Williams.
Deadline: rolling admissions until full | Details

Lifelines Magazine
Accepting submissions of original and unpublished short stories, nonfiction, poetry, and artwork for their 2020 issue. While they consider a broad spectrum of subject matter for publication, they are looking for pieces that speak to the experience of medicine in some way.
Deadline: October 31 | Details


Upcoming Workshops and Classes

Q&A with Agents from Folio Literary Management
Friday, May 3, 5:30 to 7:30 pm

The Vermont College of Fine Arts hosts a Q&A with three agents from Folio Literary Management: Jeff Kleinman, Jamie Chambliss, and Erin Harris.
Location: VCFA, Cafe Anna, Montpelier, Vermont | Cost: free | Details

How to Write More, Write Better, and Be Happier: A Full-Day Retreat with Joni Cole
Saturday, May 4, 2019, 9:30 am to 3:30 pm
This retreat will help you cultivate a healthy and productive creative process that will serve you now, and for the rest of your writing life. You’ll learn tips and techniques to get started and stay motivated. You’ll receive quality instruction on craft. You’ll also find inspiration and generate new material through writing prompts and other forms of sustenance, most notably gathering within a supportive community.
Location: Old Clary Farm, Greensboro, Vermont | Cost: $175 | Details

Writing with Spirit with Nancy Kilgore
Monday, May 6, 6:30 to 8:30 pm
We start with a brief reading, a short meditation, and then write from a prompt. The last 45 minutes involves reading our pieces (only if you choose) and feedback that is not critique but hearing/reflecting without judgment.
Location: Burlington Writers Workshop, Burlington, Vermont | Cost: free | Details

Manchester Writing Retreat with Deirdre Frost
Saturday, May 11, 11 am to 5:00
This nature-writing retreat will focus on a series of prompts to spark interest and build pivotal content vital to the understanding of the subject matter. The retreat offers helpful ways to think about and to generate a variety of focused pieces and a strategic action plan for work-in-progress. The program will also offer tips on how to incorporate smartphone photography to create more impact.
Location: Northshire Bookstore, Manchester Center, Vermont | Cost: $50 | Details

Poetry and Haiku Printing with Robert Metzler
Tuesday, May 14, 6:30 to 9:30 pm

If you have a poem or several poems that are aching to be printed, the Book Arts Workshop can help you print them. Using the traditional letterpress process of movable type, you will receive instruction in type setting, paper selection, press work, and if more than one page, book binding.
Location: Dartmouth College Book Arts Workshop, Hanover, New Hampshire | Cost: free | Details

Stealing from Theater: Character Creation with Will Alexander
Thursday, May 16, 7:00 to 8:00 pm

Create new characters and expand your understanding of your current cast via theatrical games and exercises in this online webinar. Taught by William Alexander, National Book Award Winner and current chair of the Writing for Children and Young Adults program at VCFA.
Location: online | Cost: $20-$30 | Details

Memoir Writing with Katherine Mayfield
Saturday, May 18, 1:00 to 4:00 pm

Do you have a memoir cooking in the back of your writer’s mind? This workshop will get you started. You’ll learn what makes a compelling memoir, how and why to choose a theme, the importance of reflection in memoir, and techniques which are specific to the art of memoir-writing. You’ll also learn what “creative nonfiction” means in relation to memoir, and how to weave your truth into a riveting description of your life experiences.
Location: The Ford House, SNHU, Manchester, New Hampshire | Cost: $65-$85 | Details

Helping the Poet Make a Better Poem with Steven Cramer
Saturday, June 8, 1:00 to 4:00 pm

In this three-hour workshop, we’ll honor both the critical and creative faculties of our brains (perhaps discovering that they’re closer siblings than we might have thought). We’ll first discuss work-in-process by participants, asking ourselves the only question worth asking in a workshop: how might we help the poet make this poem the best it can be? Then we’ll engage in one or two writing “experiments” designed to encourage using language more as paint than as a vehicle for conveying information, favoring the sensory over making sense.
Location: The Ford House, SNHU, Manchester, New Hampshire | Cost: $65-$85 | Details

Tapping into Your Write Brain: A Workshop for the Creatively Inclined with Joni Cole
Friday, June 28, 6 to 7:30 pm
In this workshop, you will participate in a creative writing exercise using thematic prompts that stir up…who knows? And that’s the fun, freeing, and always powerful experience of writing and sharing from a “prompt”. No writing experience is required. Space is limited. Please register by June 21 through the Hood Museum of Art’s website calendar.
Location: Hood Museum of Art, Hanover, New Hampshire | Cost: free | Details

The Dipper - April 2019

"The Dipper" is our monthly newsletter, where we highlight readings, events, calls for submission, and other literary-related news for the coming month. If you have news or events to share, let us know

 

April News

Thank you to everyone who braved the lion-like weather to join us, Colin McKaig, Peter Money, and Ruth Antoinette Rodriguez at Poetry & Pints at the Brownsville Butcher & Pantry last month! The Brownsville community warmly embraced the headlining poets with rapt attention and loud applause, then entertained us with their own poems at the open mic. This welcoming community is fostered by Lauren and Peter’s enthusiasm and energy, and their wonderful food. If you’re in the Brownsville area, stop by for a snack, a meal, a drink, groceries, meat, cheese, wine, or—coming this summer—ice cream and bbq! Thank you Colin, Peter, Ruth, Lauren, and Peter for a fantastic night.

Pies.png

With spring underway, we look forward to our favorite summer event: Poetry & Pie on Saturday, August 3, from 3:00 to 5:00 pm! This year is our third year at the beautiful Sweetland Farm in Norwich, Vermont. We’ll have three amazing poets, plenty of pie choices, and an open mic for your original work. Please save the date! We’ll be announcing the headlining poets soon. In the meantime, can you guess who’s coming from these clues?

  • Mystery poet #1 grew up going to Al’s French Frys in Burlington but currently lives out of state.

  • Mystery poet #2 lives in the Upper Valley and champions writing and books every day.

  • Mystery poet #3 was a former writer-in-residence at Paris’ Shakespeare & Co.

Calling all slow readers! The beginning of April means it’s time to announce our second selection for the 2019 edition of the Slow Club Book Club. This season’s book is Swallowing Mercury, by Wioletta Greg, translated by Eliza Marciniak. The author Sarah Perry's blurb for the book immediately had us intrigued:

“Greg writes with a precise, strange charm, and the poet’s acute sensitivity to detail. Little by little, I felt the presence of young Wiola appear beside me—vital, quick-witted and curious, picking her way through the dark woods of faith, family, sex, and politics as if in some melancholy fairytale. I experienced the book like a series of cool, clear drinks, each more intoxicating than the last.”

Can you resist? To join us, just get a copy and read. To be in the know about future titles, please subscribe to our Tiny Letter.

Fantastic poet and all around good guy James Crews has edited a new book of poetry entitled Healing the Divide: Poems of Kindness and Compassion. Yes! This anthology, which comes out on April 9, has a preface by Ted Kooser and includes poems by Mark Doty, Ross Gay, Donald Hall, Marie Howe, Naomi Shihab Nye and many others. The poems in this beautiful book prove to us the possibility of creating in our lives what Dr. Martin Luther King called the “beloved community,” a place where we see each other as the neighbors we already are. Attend the launch for Healing the Divide on Tuesday, April 16 at Bear Pond Books in Montpelier, Vermont. And look for an interview with James on our blog about this project soon.

StillNorthLogo.png

Last month we let you in on Allie Levy’s plans for the Still North Books & Bar in Hanover, New Hampshire. We’re happy to say that renovations for Still North are well underway and the latest news is that a beautiful, original brick wall has been revealed. Allie is still looking for donations to buy the books. Any amount is welcome. If you donate even $1, you get to tell Allie your favorite books, which she’ll compile into a list available at the store once it opens. Let’s all help Allie buy the books!

Always looking for ways to make this newsletter more useful for you, we’ve made some changes to the Submissions and Workshops sections to make them a little less wordy and a little easier for you to scan quickly. We hope you find this change helpful!


April’s Shooting Stars

A cool literary find from each of us to help light up your month! and

Star.png
  • Word House in Brattleboro, Vermont, has us giddy. Check out this new venture started by one of Vermont’s finest writers, Robin MacArthur. Workshops, mentoring writing space, and readings! We’re looking forward to visiting regularly. —Shari

  • Author and artist Katie Holten has created a free downloadable tree font from her alphabet based on the the trees in NYC Parks. Let’s all welcome spring by writing poems in Tree! —Rebecca


April Highlights

Randolph and Montpelier, Vermont, celebrate National Poetry Month with their annual series of PoemTown and PoemCity events, beginning with dinner and a reading with poet Kerrin McCadden at the Black Krim Tavern in Randolph at 6:00 pm on Monday, April 1. Check our calendar (and the Kellogg-Hubbard Library website) for more PoemTown and PoemCity events.

Jo Knowles, YA author, roller derby queen, and all around good human, is launching her latest book, Where the Heart Is, at Yankee Bookshop in Woodstock, Vermont, on Wednesday, April 3, from 6:00 to 7:00 pm.

Laurie Sheck

Laurie Sheck

On Thursday, April 4, poet Laurie Sheck will be reading at the Vermont Studio Center in Johnson, Vermont, at 8:00 pm.

The first annual Exeter Literary Festival takes place Friday, April 5, through Saturday, April 6, in various venues around Exeter, New Hampshire. The Festival features a keynote talk by Dan Brown, book discussions, a picture book scavenger hunt, book trivia competitions, a literary cosplay celebration, panel discussions, readings and signings, and a gala poetry reading at The Word Barn.

Bloodroot Literary Magazine celebrates the launch of its fourth digital edition at Left Bank Books in Hanover, New Hampshire, on Tuesday, April 9, at 7:00 pm. Come celebrate with readings, an open mic, and snacks.

Yiyun Li

Yiyun Li

On Thursday, April 11, at 4:30 pm, Yiyun Li reads as part of the Cleopatra Mathis Poetry & Prose Reading Series at Sanborn Library at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire.

As part of PoemCity events (see above), Bear Pond Books in Montpelier, Vermont, is hosting a group reading to celebrate the launch of Healing the Divide: Poems of Kindness and Connection. This special reading features James Crews (who edited the book), Mary Elder-Jacobson, Megan Buchanan, Alison Prine, Patricia Fontaine, Laura Foley, Carol Cone, and others. The reading on Tuesday, April 16, begins at 7:00 pm.

Namwali Serpell reads from her new novel, The Old Drift, at Sanborn Library at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, on Tuesday, April 16, at 4:30 pm.

Margaret Atwood. Photo by Brigitte Lacombe.

Margaret Atwood. Photo by Brigitte Lacombe.

Margaret Atwood (yes, that Margaret Atwood), prize-winning author of over fifty books—including The Handmaid’s Tale and Alias Grace—will give a lecture at Dartmouth College’s Spaulding Auditorium in Hanover, New Hampshire, on Thursday, April 18, from 4:30 to 6:00 pm.

Justin Torres, author of We the Animals, gives a reading at Dartmouth College’s Sanborn Library in Hanover, New Hampshire on Friday, April 19, at 4:30 pm. The following evening (April 20), Torres hosts a public screening of the film based on his book at the Loew Auditorium in Hanover, New Hampshire, at 7:00 pm.

PoemTown Randolph hosts Farmer Poets Night on Saturday, April 20, at 7:00 pm, featuring Taylor Mardis Katz, Carl Russell, and Caitlin Gildrien. The reading at Silloway Sugar House in Randolph Center, Vermont, will be followed by sugar on snow and other light refreshments.

On Tuesday, April 23, Bear Pond Books in Montpelier, Vermont, hosts a Poets for Migrant Justice fundraising reading, featuring Nico Amador, Cynthia Dewi Oka, and Natalie Scenters-Zapico. All donations given during this reading will benefit Migrant Justice.

Next Stage Arts Project presents Green Writers Press’ 4th Annual Earth Day Celebration and Reading on Friday, April 26, at 7:00 pm at Next Stage Arts in Putney, Vermont. The evening will feature short readings by Vermont authors, book signings, and cake.

Close out National Poetry Month by seeing Alison Prine read at the Vermont Studio Center in Johnson, Vermont, on Tuesday, April 30, from 8:00 to 9:00 pm.

Visit our calendar for detailed information about these events and more!

 

Worth a Drive

  • Isabella Hammad will be at the Harvard Bookstore in Cambridge, Massachusetts, on Wednesday, April 17, at 7:00 pm for a reading and talk about her debut novel, The Parisian, which has been receiving rave reviews.

  • Jane Hirshfield will be reading at Smith College’s Weinstein Auditorium in Northampton, Massachusetts, on Tuesday, April 23, at 7:30 pm.

 

Worth a Listen

 

We're Looking Forward to These April Releases


Calls For Submission and Upcoming Deadlines

The Frost Place 2019 LatinX and Gregory Pardlo Scholarships
The winners receive a full fellowship to attend the Conference on Poetry at The Frost Place (July 6-12), including tuition, room, board, and travel.
Deadline
: April 15 | Details

The Hopper
Accepting submissions of poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and visual art.
Deadline: June 1 | Details

The Hopper 2019 Poetry Prize
Judged by Kathleen Hellen, the winner receives $500 and publication by Green Writers Press.
Deadline: July 1 | Details

The 2019 Fall MacDowell Literature Fellowship
A Fellowship consists of exclusive use of a private studio, accommodations and three prepared meals a day for two weeks to two months.
Deadline: April 15 | Details

2019 Berkshire Prize for a First or Second Book of Poetry
The prize includes a cash award of $3000 in addition to publication by Tupelo Press, 20 copies of the winning title, a book launch, and national distribution with energetic publicity and promotion. This year’s prize is being judged by Oliver de la Paz.
Deadline: April 30 | Details

Barnstorm
Accepting unpublished work in nonfiction, fiction, and poetry
Deadline: May 31 | Details

New England Review
Looking for submissions in all genres: fiction, poetry, nonfiction, drama, translation, creative writing for their website, cover art, and art for their website.
Deadline: May 31 | Details

Howard Frank Mosher First Novel and Story Collection Book Prize
This publication prize is for a novelist or short story writer who writes about Vermont and/or the themes that resonate so well with Howard's work: nature, small-town stories, love, friendship, forgiveness, Vermont, solitude, and rural life, that are part of Howard 's literary legacy.
Deadline: June 1, 2019 | Details

Frost Farm Poetry Conference
Accepting registrations for this year’s conference (June 14 to 16). Registration includes workshops, a one-on-one meeting with your instructor, keynote with Bruce Bennett, critiques with poet-in-residence Rhina Espaillat, panel discussions, readings, a reception, breakfasts and lunches.
Deadline: registration until full | Details

Juniper Summer Writing Institute
Accepting applications for this summer’s institute (June 16 to 22). The institute includes manuscript consultations, craft sessions, workshops, readings, and other events, led by a wide range of instructors, including CAConrad, Gabriel Bump, Ross Gay, Khadijah Queen, Bianca Stone, Ocean Vuong, Dara Weir, and Joy Williams.
Deadline: rolling admissions until full | Details

Mud Season Review
Accepting submissions of fiction, poetry, nonfiction, and art. Mud Season Review pays authors and featured artists $50 for their work. Artists whose images they select to pair with writing receive $15.
Deadline: Reading period begins April 1 | Details

Lifelines Magazine
Accepting submissions of original and unpublished short stories, nonfiction, poetry, and artwork for their 2020 issue. While they consider a broad spectrum of subject matter for publication, they are looking for pieces that speak to the experience of medicine in some way.
Deadline: October 31 | Details


Upcoming Workshops and Classes

Poetry Month workshop with Mary Jane Dickerson
Mondays in April
A workshop for those interested in reading and writing poetry, with a culminating reading at the Deborah Rawson Memorial Library in Underhill, Vermont.
Location: Jericho Town Library, Jericho, Vermont | Cost: by donation | Details

The Gifts of Story workshop with Rebecca Rule
Mondays, April 15 to June 10, 10:00 am to noon

An exploration of the art of story. By writing, telling, and sharing their stories, participants will build bridges to the people, places, and experiences that have shaped their lives.
Location: Upper Valley Senior Center, Lebanon, New Hampshire | Cost: by donation | Details

Spring Writing workshop with Robin MacArthur
Tuesdays, April 23 to May 21, 5:30 to 7:30 pm
This supportive, encouraging, and semi-formal workshop is for writers of fiction, creative non-fiction and poetry. Both new and established writers are welcome, though we do have an application process for this intimate session.
Location: 103 Main Street, Brattleboro, Vermont | Cost: $180 (scholarships available) | Details

Touch Your Words: Teaching Indigenous Languages through Making Symposium
April 12, 9:30 am to 4:45 pm

The recent purchase of metal type in the Cherokee Syllabary has prompted new interest in our Book Arts Workshop. This symposium seeks to bring together makers of all kinds (students, scholars, librarians, writers, artists, and printers) to exchange their experiences and knowledge in tactile learning and explore new possibilities.
Location: Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire | Cost: free | Details

People Need Stores: League of Vermont Writers Spring Program
April 13, 8:30 am to 3:30 pm

Explore the art of storytelling and learn how to shape your writing to tell a compelling story. The agenda includes talks by three writing professionals, a tour the town library for a librarian's perspective on books and writing, and a generative writing exercise with local writer Amy Braun. The program concludes with a Q&A on storytelling and books. Register by April 9.
Location: Pierce Hall Community Center, Rochester, Vermont | Cost: $54-$74 | Details

Matter of Life and Verse: Writing Poetry workshop with Michael Metivier
Tuesdays, April 16 to May 21, 6:00 to 8:00 pm

Learn to create resonance, heightened urgency, and a timeless quality to your work. $25, regardless of AVA membership.
Location: AVA Gallery and Art Center, Lebanon, New Hampshire | Cost: $25 | Details

Fun with Forms poetry workshop with Rebecca Jamieson
April 20, 10:00 am to 12:00 pm
This workshop explores the poetic form and why poets use them. The workshop is open to ages 15 and up. All levels of experience are welcome!
Location: Vermont College of Fine Arts, Montpelier, Vermont | Cost: free | Details

603: Writers’ Conference
April 27, 8:00 am to 5:30 pm
The theme of this year’s conference is “The Art of Storytelling.”The keynote speaker will be New York Times bestselling author Gregory Maguire, author of Wicked.
Location: Saint Anselm Sullivan Arena, Goffstown, New Hampshire | Cost: $95-185 | Details

Cartoon Studies Summer workshops
June 3 to August 9

This year’s workshops include Graphic Memoirs with Melanie Gillman, Creating Graphic Novels for the Young Adult Market with Jo Knowles and Tillie Walden, and a Graphic Novel Workshop with Paul Karasik.
Location: The Center for Cartoon Studies, White River Junction, Vermont | Cost: varied | Details

The Dipper - January 2019

"The Dipper" is our monthly newsletter, where we highlight readings, events, calls for submission, and other literary-related news for the coming month. If you have news or events to share, let us know

 

January News

Hello and welcome to 2019! We hope you all had a peaceful holiday season and had some time to read new or favorite old books between feasts, walks in the snow, movie watching, or however you celebrated the days. Did you get any books on your wish list for gifts? Or books you didn’t even know existed that you’re excited about? We sure did, and hope you did too!

emissary.jpg

This month marks the start of the second year of the Slow Club Book Club and we’re incredibly excited to be devoting the entire year to women in translation.

Our first book for 2019 is The Emissary, by Yoko Tawada, translated by Margaret Mitsutani. This novel recently won the National Book Foundation’s prize for Translated Literature and is one of Library Journal’s Best Books of 2018.

If this book sounds interesting to you, we hope you’ll join as as we slowly read it from now through March. If you’re not already a member of SCBC, you can join by subscribing to the newsletter. And if you have suggestions for books written and translated by women (remember, they don’t have to be recent books; we love reading books from the past), drop us a line. We have a list of ideas already, but we always love suggestions from our faithful readers.

Now that we’ve turned the corner into the new year, the calendar of events for January is starting to really fill out. In particular, January seems to be a good time for workshops and classes. Check out the long list of upcoming workshops at the end of this newsletter. It’s a positive blizzard of choices!

Speaking of events, we’re setting aside a morning later this week for our first annual Literary North Retreat, where we’ll drink tea, eat something delicious, review our notes from 2018, and go through our wish lists to figure out the events and projects we want to pursue in 2019. We already have a couple of exciting ideas percolating, and we can’t wait to figure it all out and share our plans with you in the coming months.

Here’s to 2019! May it be a year of good health and good books for you all.


January’s Shooting Stars

A cool literary find from each of us to help light up your month!

Star.png
  • New year, new literary journal subscription? Last year I subscribed to The Sewanee Review and loved every issue. In the past, I’ve subscribed to Zyzzva and One Story. This year I’m thinking about subscribing to The White Review, but I’m open to other suggestions. It’s a great way to keep up with contemporary fiction. —Shari

  • The end of the year always brings a deluge of Best Of lists. One of my particular favorites is Glass Poetry editor Anthony Frame’s Recommended Reading list, an annual tradition since 2015. The list highlights Anthony’s favorite poems of the year that appeared in journals and magazines. It’s always a terrific collection, and it’s nicely accessible: you can just click and read a poem without having to buy a new book or leave your house. —Rebecca

January Highlights

For the month of January, if you donate blood at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, New Hampshire, they will buy a children’s book from The Norwich Bookstore to donate to the kids at CHaD (Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth-Hitchcock). So, you can do two good deeds at once: help save someone’s life, and give a kid a book. Get all the details and schedule your donation on the DHMC website.

The Visiting Writers for the Winter Residency at VCFA in Montpelier, Vermont, will be giving readings January 3 through 5 at the chapel in College Hall at 7:00 pm. Carmen Maria Machado will read on January 3, Terrance Hayes on January 4, and Liara Tamani on January 5.

Start your new year off right with Bennington College’s Writers Reading Series in Bennington, Vermont, which begins on Thursday, January 3 with Douglas Bauer and Carmen Gimenez Smith. The series wraps up on Friday, January 11 with Garth Greenwell and Mark Wunderlich. All readings are held at the College’s Tishman Lecture Hall, from 7:00 to 8:00 pm (except for the January 10 reading, which begins at 7.30 pm).

Chana Porter. Photo by Stella Kalinina

Chana Porter. Photo by Stella Kalinina

Hannah Tinti and Chana Porter will be reading at the Haybarn Theater at Goddard College in Plainfield, Vermont, on Monday, January 7 and Tuesday, January 9, respectively. Both readings begin at 7:00 pm.

On Thursday, January 17, Jonathan Miles will be in conversation with New York Times book critic, Dwight Garner, at The Northshire Bookstore in Manchester, Vermont. The event begins at 6:00 pm.

Thomas Christopher Greene, president of VCFA, will be at Phoenix Books, in Essex, Vermont, on Tuesday, January 22 at 6:30 pm and at The Northshire Bookstore, in Manchester, Vermont, on Thursday, January 24, at 6:00 pm with his latest novel, The Perfect Liar. The official book launch will take place at Bear Pond Books in Montpelier, Vermont, on Tuesday, January 29.

Kevin Young

Kevin Young

On Sunday, January 27, Dartmouth College celebrates Martin Luther King Jr. Day with a multi-faith celebration featuring the Dartmouth Gospel Choir and poet Kevin Young. The celebration begins at 3:00 pm at Rollins Chapel in Hanover, New Hampshire.

Emily Bernard, author of Black is the Body, will launch her book on Tuesday, January 29, at 6:30 pm at Phoenix Books in Burlington, Vermont.

Cognitive psychologist and linguist, Steven Pinker, will be discussing his new book, Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress at The Music Hall in Portsmouth, New Hampshire on Wednesday, January 30, at 7:00 pm as part of the Writers on a New England Stage series. Tickets are $13.75 (plus $18 book voucher).

Alex Mar is reading from her new memoir, Witches of America, on Thursday, January 31 at 4:30 pm at Dartmouth College’s Sanborn Library in Hanover, New Hampshire. This reading is part of the Cleopatra Mathis Poetry & Prose Reading Series.

Visit our calendar for detailed information about these events and more!

 

Worth a Drive

Daisy Johnson, whose novel Everything Under, was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, will be at the Harvard Bookstore in Cambridge, Massachusetts, on Thursday, January 31 at 7:00 pm.

 

Worth a Listen

I really enjoyed listening to John Wray talk about his reading life on episode 15 of The Spine. —Shari

 

We're Looking Forward to These January Releases

mouthful.jpg

Calls For Submission and Upcoming Deadlines

The Frost Place is accepting submissions for their annual Chapbook Competition until January 5. The competition is open to any poet writing in English. The submission fee is $28. For more information, please visit the Chapbook Competition page.

Applications are being accepted through January 5 for the Dartmouth Poet in Residence program at The Frost Place. This is a six-to-eight-week residency in poet Robert Frost’s former farmhouse in Franconia, New Hampshire. The residency begins July 1 and ends August 15, and includes an award of $1,000 from The Frost Place and an award of $1,000 from Dartmouth College. The recipient will have an opportunity to give a series of public readings across the region, including at Dartmouth College and The Frost Place. For more information, please visit the Residency page.  

Every summer, the MacDowell Colony in Peterborough, New Hampshire, awards residency Fellowships to artists in seven disciplines, including literature. A Fellowship consists of exclusive use of a private studio, accommodations and three prepared meals a day for two weeks to two months. The deadline for the 2019 Summer MacDowell Literature Fellowship is January 15. The application fee is $30. For more information, please visit the Residency Application page.

The Juniper Summer Writing Institute in Amherst, Massachusetts (June 16 to 22) is accepting applications. The institute includes manuscript consultations, craft sessions, workshops, readings, and other events, led by a wide range of instructors, including CAConrad, Gabriel Bump, Ross Gay, Khadijah Queen, Bianca Stone, Ocean Vuong, Dara Weir, and Joy Williams. The non-refundable application fee is $40. For more information and to apply, please visit the Juniper Institute website.


Upcoming Workshops and Classes

On January 4 from noon to 1:00 pm, Joni B. Cole will be discussing how to foster wellness through expressive writing at Open Door Integrative Wellness in White River Junction, Vermont. Expressive writing, also known as reflective or introspective writing, invites individuals to respond to a “prompt” as a means of exploring their thoughts and feelings, and tapping into the unconscious. At this free “Lunch and Learn” session, Joni will discuss the value of expressive writing to you and to your organization. She’ll also facilitate a brief hands-on demonstration, so bring something to write on/with. For more information or to RSVP, email Joni at jonibethcole@gmail.com.

Learn simple bookbinding at a DIY Bookbinding class from 6:00 to 8:00 pm on January 8 at Words & Pictures in Essex, Vermont. This class will demonstrate simple techniques for binding small DIY-ed books, including saddle stitch (stapled) binding, perfect binding, and a couple different types of sewn binding. $15, includes materials. For more information and to register, please visit the Words & Pictures Workshop page.

Writing can be a powerful, cathartic means of coping with life's greatest hardships, including the illness and death of loved ones. In the Writing Group for People Experiencing Loss workshop, discover ways that writing may allow grief to move and evolve. Co-Facilitated by Jenny Gelfan, MAed & Jessica Stout, MSW, this workshop will meet Thursdays at 12:00 pm from January 10 through February 14 at the Jack Byrne Center at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, in Lebanon, New Hampshire. Enrollment space is limited. For more information or to RSVP, please email Amanda M. Reinemann or call her at (603) 308-2447.

On January 13, Carly Winn will lead Writing Ecospsychology: A Writing and Meditation workshop from 2:30 to 4:00 pm at Open Door Integrative Wellness in White River Junction, Vermont. This workshop is an introduction to writing ecopsychology, the interaction of the psyche and the landscape. You will learn to tell the story of your own interaction with the natural world. The workshop will include a discussion of craft, a brief analysis of some samples of ecopsychology writing, a short free-write exercise, and guided meditation. For more information or to register, please email Carly at carly3ski@gmail.com.

The OSHER@Dartmouth winter term is offering several courses for writers and readers, including “Completing Your Manuscript,” “Four Women Poets of Northeast Scotland,” “Poems from the 20th Year of Seven Centuries,” “Renaissance Classics,” “Sherlock Holmes,” “The Poetry of T.S. Eliot & Wallace Stevens,” and “Writing in Circles.” Tuition ranges from $40 to $80. Classes are open only to members ($70 fee). Courses begin the week of January 14 and meet at various locations in Hanover, New Hampshire. For more information and to register, please visit the OSHER@Dartmouth website.

The League of Vermont Writers’ annual business meeting and winter writing craft workshop will take place at Trader Duke’s Hotel in South Burlington, Vermont, on January 19, 2019. This year’s theme, “Honing Your Craft: Writing that Sizzles,” features workshops and discussions led by two well-published Vermont authors: Julia Shipley and Sean Prentiss. $46 for League members; $56 or non-members (includes morning refreshments and lunch). The deadline to register is January 6. Fore more information and to register, please visit the League’s Gatherings page.

The New Hampshire Writers’ Project is hosting a Travel Writing workshop, led by author Dan Szczesny on the campus of SNHU in Manchester, New Hampshire, from 10:00 am to noon on January 19, 2019. Registration is $50 for NHWP members; $70 for non-members. For more information and to register, please visit the NHWP Workshops page.

Sick of using the cut and paste method for creating your zines? In this InDesign: Make a Zine workshop held on January 22, from 6:00 to 9:00 pm at Words & Pictures in Essex, Vermont, you will learn how to design a simple eight-page, half-letter zine in InDesign. This is a beginner level class, which will cover setting up a document, adding text and images, and exporting the document for print or online distribution. $50. For more information and to register, please visit the Words & Pictures Workshop page.

Also at Words & Pictures, learn how to make a one-sheet comic or zine that can be easily reproducible and attributable at the One Sheet Comic/Zine Jam on January 26 from 6:00 to 8:30 pm in Essex, Vermont. All experience levels welcome! $5 suggested donation for use of space and materials, but no one will be turned away. For more information or to register, please visit the Words & Pictures Workshop page.

Learn to hand-bind a journal for writing or drawing at a Bookbinding Journals workshop on Saturday, January 26, from 1:00 to 5:00 pm, at River Arts in Morrisville, Vermont. The workshop covers everything from selecting handmade papers to sewing the open-spine binding using traditional techniques. $85, including materials. For more information and to register, please visit the River Arts Adult Classes page.

The AVA Gallery and Art Center in Lebanon, New Hampshire, is offering an Expressive Arts workshop, on Monday evenings from January 28 through February 18. Expressive Arts offers an engaging experience with different modes of art making and materials—clay, painting, stitching, moving, sound, and writing—to understand your potential for insight, creative curiosity, self care, and deep connection. $136 for members; $160 for non-members. For more information and to register, please visit the AVA Gallery website.

Poet James Crews will be offering his four-week Mindfulness and Writing Online workshop from February 2 to March 9. In this generative online writing workshop, we'll examine connections between the practice of meditation/mindfulness and the act of writing fearlessly from the heart. Though not required, attendees will be invited to share their work via email with each other. Beginners and all skill levels are welcome. You do not need any previous experience with mindfulness, meditation or online courses; all you need is an internet connection, email and an open mind. $295 for four session. For more information and to register, please visit the Northshire Books events page.

On March 9, from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm, the AVA Gallery and Art Center in Lebanon, New Hampshire, is offering a “One Photo, Four Stories” writing workshop where you will ue a photo of your choice as a prompt for four separate stories. This class is open to all levels. $68 for members; $80 for non-members. For more information and to register, please visit the AVA Gallery website.

Already dreaming of summer? Registration for Summer Workshops at The Center for Cartoon Studies in White River Junction, Vermont, are already open. This year’s workshops include Graphic Memoirs with Melanie Gillman, Creating Graphic Novels for the Young Adult Market with Jo Knowles and Tillie Walden, and a Graphic Novel Workshop with Paul Karasik. For all the details and to register, please visit the CCS 2019 Summer Workshops page.

Interview: Dan Chiasson

The Burlington Book Festival lands in Burlington, Vermont, on October 12 to 14, with an amazing lineup including Mary Jo Bang, Dan Chiasson, Maria Hummel, Mark Leyner, Bethany Morrow, and Sharon Olds. This is the second in a series of four interviews in celebration of the Festival.

Poet and critic Dan Chiasson is author of four books of poetry: The Afterlife of Objects (2002), Natural History (2005), Where's the Moon, There's the Moon (2010) and, most recently, Bicentennial (2014). A book of criticism, One Kind of Everything: Poem and Person in Contemporary America, was published in 2006. He has received the Whiting Writers' Award, a Pushcart Prize, the Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters as well as a fellowship from the Guggenheim Foundation.

Dan is the poetry critic for The New Yorker, as well as a regular contributor to The New York Review of Books, where he writes about poetry, pop music, and film. He was poetry editor, and later advisory editor, of The Paris Review. A Vermont native, Dan teaches at Wellesley College and lives in Massachusetts with his wife and two sons.

His 2014 book, Bicentennial is both a book about Chiasson’s childhood in Vermont and an elegy for his father. In her review in The New York Times, Daisy Fried writes, “Dan Chiasson is after beauty of a kind, so his poems are often beautiful, odd and quite moving. He seldom resorts to lilting cadences or glow-in-the-dark imagery to achieve this, and complicates any move toward traditional lyric warmth; his poetry is genially brainy, jokey, casually formal, sometimes essayistic and humorously oracular.”

Thank you, Dan, for your thoughtful answers to our questions!

Bicentennial.jpg

Literary North: Tell us a little bit about your writing process.

Dan Chiasson: I write in the mornings, once my kids are off to school, and before teaching or other obligations. I sit at a small, painted farm table, at a purple Eames chair I got 25 years ago. It's in the hallway of our upstairs. I look out at the main street we live on. People scurry by to the T station at the bottom of the hill. If I'm writing poetry, it comes very fast. But I am hardly ever writing poetry. Usually I'm working on a book review, which is like pulling teeth. I get a few sentences down, then a few more. The openings take me forever. Once I have an opening and I can see where the argument is headed, I take a break. Usually I go for a run and think about the sentences I just wrote, and often I think of new ones when I'm out exercising.

LN: What influences have helped shaped you into the writer you are today>?

DC: I would name two especially. Jamaica Kincaid, whom I met at Harvard, was my greatest influence. She has a phosphorescent mind, and we became instant friends—partly because of our connection to Vermont. I was trying to write fiction when I met her; she convinced me that my stories were really poems. We drank gin and tonics at the old Upstairs at the Pudding in Harvard Square and gossiped about people at Harvard. Just talking to her was a training in what words to use, how to be interesting, funny, alert, lyrical and truthful. Around that same time, 1997 or so, I called up Frank Bidart, a poet I admired. He invited me to his classes at Wellesley, where, needless to say I stood out. Frank, too, was such an easy presence, kind, passionate, and (most importantly) incapable of pretending to like things he didn't like. He kept odd hours then as he does still, so often I'd drop a poem off during the day at his apartment in Cambridge, and hear from him late at night, when he woke up.

LN: As the poetry critic for The New Yorker, you share poetry criticism with very literate readers, not all of whom know much about poetry. What goes into deciding which poets and books to share with readers each week?

DC: I think I'm a teacher by nature. A person happiest explaining things to people who are curious to learn. New Yorker readers are the perfect audience because they love critical prose. How many readers of, say, Alex Ross go to the concerts he reviews? Some, but not many. They read him because of his prose, his arguments, his distinctions. The popular music critic Amanda Petrusich may convince more people to go to a show or buy a record, but still, it's her prose, it's the quality of her mind and the cadences of her sentences. So I try to pick books that interest me, that stir up my desire to put good sentences together, that allow me to convey what's beautiful and necessary about poetry. I would suspect that only a small percentage of my readers go out and buy the books. Maybe I'm wrong, I hope so; but I would contend that criticism is its own end, its own fulfillment, and I'm probably at one extreme in that I do not see my essays as serving the books I'm reviewing, but rather the art of poetry, with the books I'm reviewing as especially rich examples of what it can do.

LN: What brings you joy?

DC: Our sons, ages 12 and 14, both bring a huge amount of cultural information into our house. What brings me joy is hearing them argue about the merits of a movie or a band or a performance, which they do constantly. I would say, animated conversation brings me joy. The discovery of a new work of art or body of work. Being in the places that mean the most to me: many of them in Vermont. I would say, swimming in Bristol Falls or at that little rocky public beach in Charlotte. Also, Al's French Frys. The old places in downtown Burlington that are still there from when I was 12 or 13 and discovering the city on my own: Pure Pop Records, Old Gold. Leunig's. Sneakers in Winooski, where I worked from 6th grade until the summer before my last year of college.

LN: What was the most memorable thing you read in the past month?

DC: I'm deep in teaching Emily Dickinson now. There's a poem that is not that well known, "I watched the moon around the house—" about tracking the moon as it passes across the windows of her bedroom. These stanzas blow my mind, comparing the moon to a severed head and then a stemless flower:

But like a Head — a Guillotine
Slid carelessly away —
Did independent, Amber —
Sustain her in the sky —

Or like a Stemless Flower —
Upheld in rolling Air
By finer Gravitations —
Than bind Philosopher —

Photo by BrianSmithBoston.com

Photo by BrianSmithBoston.com