The Talk of the Porch

The Dipper - May 2018

"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

We've made it! Unfrozen precipitation is falling all over the brown-turning-green grass. Bulbs are shooting up. Buds are breaking out. Maybe some of you have even taken the snow tires off your car. Let's call it Spring, and with it we have so much wonderfulness to celebrate.

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First of all, our Lady Sings the Blues book group is happening this month, on Tuesday, May 15, at Yankee Bookshop! It's not too late to read the book and join us! We're getting excited for some great conversation, a little Billie Holiday music, and some freshly baked refreshments. For full details, head over to the LN Events page.

Whether or not you can attend the Lady Sings the Blues book group, you won't want to miss seeing JAG Productions' Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill at The Engine Room in White River Junction, Vermont, May 24 to 27 (also in Pomfret and Burlington late May through early June). If you attended JAGfest or any other JAG shows, you already have an inkling of how great this show will be. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit the JAG Productions website.

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A couple weeks ago, we had the chance to interview YA writer Jo Knowles and comic maker Tillie Walden about their 2018 summer workshop, "Creating Graphic Novels for the YA Market," at The Center for Cartoon Studies. Individually, Jo and Tillie are smart, creative, articulate, and fun people. Together, they form a dynamic duo of graphic novel power! Read the interview, and then sign up for their workshop!

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Finally, we are beyond thrilled to announce Poetry & Pie II!

It's happening Saturday, July 21, at 3:00 pm, at Sweetland Farm in Norwich, Vermont. Wonderful poets Didi Jackson, Julia Shipley, and Ocean Vuong will be there, reading poems and eating pie. We'd love you to be there, too! We'll have an open mic, lots of great conversation, pie, pie, and more pie. For details and to RSVP, visit the LN Events page.

 

May's Shooting Stars

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

  • Our friend James Crews is teaching an online Mindfulness and Writing workshop from May 5 to June 2. If you made it to Poetry & Pie last July, you already know how wonderful James is. There will be exercises/prompts, videos, readings, and the opportunity for a phone consult at the end of the course. All levels are welcome. —Shari
     
  • The first sestina I fell for is Elizabeth Bishop's, but I've never attempted writing my own—yet. If you're like me and need a little help, local writer and all-around wonderful human Rena Mosteirin has created a little software tool that generates the correct order for your selected end words. As she notes, the source code for the program is itself a sestina. ♥—Rebecca

May Highlights

Morgan Parker. Photo by Rachel Eliza Griffiths

Morgan Parker. Photo by Rachel Eliza Griffiths

Natalie Shapero and Morgan Parker read from their poetry collections at Bennington College on Wednesday, May 2 at 7:00 pm.

The Bloodroot Literary Magazine launch party for Issue 10 is happening at Left Bank Books in Hanover, New Hampshire, on Friday, May 4, from 7:00 to 10:00 pm. Hannah Howard will read from Feast, followed by an open mic for all Upper Valley writers.

Bianca Stone. Photo by Hillery Stone

Bianca Stone. Photo by Hillery Stone

Waking Windows hosts the Page Burner Reading Series in Winooski, Vermont, on Saturday, May 5 at various locations beginning at noon. Authors include James Crews, Jessica Hendry Nelson, Annie DeWitt, and Bianca Stone.

A new season of Talk of the Porch begins on Monday, May 7 and will continue most Mondays in May, June, and August. Based at the Craftsbury Public Library in Craftsbury Common, Vermont, and led by Vermont writers Stark Biddle and Julia Shipley, Talk of the Porch is a slightly irreverent but totally intense reading/discussion group focused on fiction in The New Yorker. Copies of the week's stories are available at the library starting the Wednesday before each meeting.

Poet Joshua Bennett will read at Dartmouth College's Sanborn Library in Hanover, New Hampshire, on Thursday, May 10 at 4:30 pm and then award the Dartmouth Creative Writing Prize.

Bernd Heinrich is reading from his new collection, A Naturalist at Large, at Bear Pond Books in Montpelier, Vermont, on Friday, May 11 at 7:00 pm.

Local author Melanie Finn will be at The Norwich Bookstore on Wednesday, May 16 at 7:00 pm to launch her new novel, The Underneath.

Ross Gay

Ross Gay

You'll be able to catch poet Ross Gay at two Vermont venues this month: Wednesday, May 16 at Bennington College, and Thursday, May 17 at Vermont Studio Center. We are very much looking forward to his new book of essays coming in 2019.

The 2018 Hyla Brook Reading Series begins on Thursday, May 17 at 6:30 pm with poet David Davis. The series' readings take place May through September at the Robert Frost Farm in Derry, New Hampshire.

Poets April Ossman and Cynthia Huntington will be reading at Phoenix Books in Rutland, Vermont, on Thursday, May 31 at 6:30 pm.

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

 

Worth a Drive

Rachel Kushner will be at Harvard Book Store in Cambridge, Massachusetts, on Thursday, May 3 at 7:00 pm to read from her new novel, The Mars Room.

If you missed Bruce Kennett's terrific talk about designer and renaissance man W. A. Dwiggins at Left Bank Books in April, you have an opportunity to catch him at Hingham Public Library in Hingham, Massachusetts, on Thursday, May 3 at 7:00 pm.

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The 10th Massachusetts Poetry Festival is taking place from Friday, May 4 to Saturday, May 6 in various venues around Salem, Massachusetts. This year's festival features Sonia Sanchez, Kaveh Akbar, Duy Doan, Jeffrey Harrison, Dorianne Laux, Erika Meitner, Carl Phillips, Nicole Sealey, Sean Thomas Dougherty, and Rhina P. Espaillat.

Charles Simic—poet, essayist, and translator—is the featured guest at the Kittery Art Association's annual Mangion Memorial Poetry Celebration on Saturday, May 5, beginning with an interview and craft talk from 3:00 to 4:30 pm, followed by a reading, reception, and book signing beginning at 7:00 pm. The events will be held at the First Congregational Church in Kittery Point, Maine.

 

Worth a Listen

Michelle Dean speaks about her new book, Sharp, and her early career on the Longform podcast.

Take a listen to Alexander Chee on the Fail Safe podcast and you'll quickly see how lucky we are to have Alex at Dartmouth. Make sure you mark your calendars for Wednesday, May 9, when he'll be reading at The Norwich Bookstore.

 

We're Looking Forward to These May Releases

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Calls For Submission and Upcoming Deadlines

The Frost Place 2018 Conference on Poetry and Teaching (June 23 to 26) and Writing Intensive (June 27 to 28) is now accepting applications. The conference application deadline is May 17. The application fee is $25. Tuition is $725. Meals are $145. The Writing Intensive is $180. For more information and to apply, please visit the Conference page.

The Frost Place Conference on Poetry (July 8 to 14) is also accepting applications. The conference application deadline is May 31. The application fee is $25. Conference rates are from $250 (day rate) to $1550 (includes all tuition, meals, and lodging). For more information and to apply, please visit the Conference page.

Registration is still open for the VCFA Novel Retreat (May 15 to 21). Faculty includes Connie May FowlerJeff KleinmanRichard McCann, and Crystal Wilkinson. A $200 non-refundable deposit is required. For more information, please visit the Novel Retreat page.

The Bennington Review is open for submissions through May 15 with no reading fee. For more information, please visit the Bennington Review Submissions page.

nErDcampVT is accepting registrations for their "unconference" (May 20), which focuses on literacy, at Burlington High School in Burlington, Vermont. The event is free but you must register in advance. For more information and to register, please visit their website.

The New England Review is open for poetry, fiction, non-fiction, and digital submissions through May 31. For more information, please visit the NER Submissions page.

Green Writers Press is accepting submissions through June 1 for the 2nd Annual Howard Frank Mosher First Novel and Short Story Prize. This 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. All ages are welcome to submit. For more information, please visit the Green Writers Press website.

The Frost Place Poetry Seminar (July 29 to August 3) is accepting applications. The scholarship application deadline is May 24. The seminar application deadline is June 28. The application fee is $15. Seminar rates are from $250 (day rate) to $1550 (includes all tuition, meals, and lodging). For more information and to apply, please visit the Seminar page.

Putney Mountain Association and Antidote Books have announced the first Putney Mountain Poetry Contest. Judged by poet Seth Landman, the winner will receive a broadside print of their poem displayed at the Putney Mountain Trailhead and a featured reading at Antidote Books. Submit up to three original poems inspired by the Vermont landscape as PDFs to putney.poetry@gmail.com. Do not include your name on the poems, but please include your name, town of residence, and contact information in the email. All entries are due by June 30.

The Hopper, a literary magazine from Green Writers Press, is accepting submissions of full-length manuscripts to its 2018 Hopper Poetry Prize through July 1. Judged by Amie Whittemore, the winner of this contest will receive $500 and publication by Green Writers Press. The contest is open to all poets with an identified interest in the natural world. There is a $25 entry fee. For more information and to see work by previous contest winners, please visit the Hopper Prize page.

Clara Martin Center is seeking submissions for their third annual art/poetry show entitled "Abundance: Celebrating Creativity in Mental Health, Wellness, and Recovery" (September 10 to November 2). You are invited to submit poetry, 2-D or 3-D artwork to display in the exhibit. Submissions are due by July 31. Applicants must be Vermont residents, and preference is given to artists/writers in the Upper Valley. For more information, please visit Clara Martin Center's website.

Registration is open for the 3rd Annual Poetry Festival at the Fine Arts Work Center (August 5 to 10) in Provincetown, Massachusetts. The Festival includes poetry and songwriting workshops. Faculty includes Traci Brimhall, Cornelius Eady, Nick Flynn, Vievee Francis, Ross Gay, Rebecca Gayle Howell, Patty Larkin, and Patrick Rosal. For information on tuition, housing, and registration, please visit the FAWC Festival page.

The Burlington Writers Workshop 2018 anthology team is pleased to invite submissions from the BWW community. Fiction, flash fiction, poetry, memoir, personal essay—it's all welcome. The only requirement for submission is that you must have attended at least one BWW workshop within the past five years. For more information, please visit the Burlington Writers Workshop website.

Registration is now open for The Center for Cartoon Studies Summer Workshops (June 11 to August 10), in White River Junction, Vermont. This year's workshops include everything from drawing and writing single-panel comics, to creating graphic memoirs and novels, taught by award-winning artists and writers, including Hilary Price, Jo Knowles, Tillie Walden, and Melanie Gillman. Tuition ranges from $600 to $1200. For more information and to register, please visit the Summer Workshops page.

The Poetry Society of Vermont's Summer Contests are open. Submissions must be received by July 1. For more information, please visit the Contests and Awards page.


May Workshops and Classes

Are you a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants writer? Hungry for a book that shows you how to write and revise your novel without an outline? Author and writing coach Annalisa Parent will walk you through the elements of a publishable manuscript during her "Storytelling for Pantsers" workshop on Thursday, May 3 (5:30 to 6:30 pm), at Gibson's Bookstore in Concord, New Hampshire. For more information and to register, please visit the Event page.

From Saturday, May 5 through Saturday, June 2, James Crews is teaching a Mindfulness & Writing online workshop. $195. This course is open to all levels. For more information and to register, please visit the Northshire Books website.

Elayne Clift of The Writer's Center in White River Junction, Vermont is offering a workshop called "Life Stories: Memories of Love, Action and Thought," on Saturday, May 5 (10:00 am to 1:00 pm). This workshop will guide participants as they write and share stories “to know precisely what the past was, to explore this knowledge and these memories, and then to wait and see what comes of knowing and remembering. $35. For more information and to register, please visit the Workshop page.

On Saturday, May 5 (2:00 to 5:00 pm), Carol Potter of The Writer's Center, in White River Junction, Vermont, is offering a workshop titled "Shaking the Tree: Experiments with Form." In this workshop you will explore experimental forms and quasi-traditional forms in poetry from the “American sonnet” to the pantoum to Terrance Hayes’ “Golden Shovel” to the Prose poem. $150. For more information and to register, please visit the Workshops page.

Joni Cole of The Writer's Center in White River Junction, Vermont is offering two "How to Write More, Writer Better, and Be Happier" retreats. On Saturday, May 5, join Joni for a full-day retreat (9:30 am to 3:30 pm) in Greensboro, Vermont. The cost is $150. On Thursday, May 26, Joni will be offering a half-day version (9:00 am to 1:00 pm) in Woodstock, Vermont; the cost is $100. For more information and to register, please visit the Workshop page.

On Monday, May 7 (6:30 to 8:00 pm), join poet Gary Margolis for a continuation of his workshops on the poetic line, hosted by Burlington Writers Workshop, in Burlington, Vermont. If you were in the original workshop, bring with you the copies you were given and bring extra copies of your poems for anyone new who signs up. In addition, bring copies of either a poem whose use of line you admire or a poem that is well-regarded but whose use of line baffles you. For more information and to register, please visit the BWW Workshop page.

The League of Vermont Writers is offering "The Critic and the Muse" workshop on Thursday, May 12 (12:30 to 4:30 pm) at the Expressive Arts Studio in Burlington, Vermont. This four-hour workshop uses collage and free writing to help you explore and form a conscious relationship with the invisible powers that help or inhibit your writing. $60 for members; $80 for non-members. Registration closes on May 7. For more information and to register, please visit the Gatherings page.

On Friday, May 18 (10:00 am to 3:00 pm), join Andy Kolvos, Vermont Folklife Center Director of Archives and Research, for a workshop on recording audio for oral history and ethnography. In this workshop, attendees will receive a thorough introduction to the fundamentals of digital audio, types of common field-recording microphones, and the use of digital audio recorders. The workshop will be held at the Vermont Folklife Center in Middlebury, Vermont. $95. For more information, please visit the Event page.

The Dipper - October 2017

"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

 

October News

Maybe this newsletter is arriving in your inbox on an otherwise quiet Sunday at the beginning of Autumn. Maybe you have plans to go apple picking, or maybe the garden needs putting to bed, or maybe you have a notion to go for a hike and then relax with a new book. Those are all really good ideas. But if you happen to find yourself at a loss for something to do, we suggest the Free Verse Festival, happening today (October 1) at Free Verse Farm in Chelsea, Vermont.

What's in it for you? Here's what: Poetry readings by Major Jackson, Taylor Mardis Katz, Didi Jackson, Hal Coughlin, Julia Shipley, and Megan Buchanan. Plus live music, wood-fired pizza, tacos, artwork, beer, tea, and coffee. And we'll be there, checking folks in and handing out Summer Reads postcards to help you fill up your autumn TBR. Stop by and say hello!

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You may wonder how we get so many great events on our calendar. The truth is, we keep our ears open, talk to a lot of people, and spend a lot of hours scanning through online event calendars for venues far and wide to find readings and events we're excited to share with you.

More and more, kind people are contacting us directly to tell us about events they're participating in or organizing. But we know we're still not capturing all the great events this literary community is putting on. If you know of an event, a series, a conference, a workshop, or a venue in Vermont or New Hampshire that we're missing, please drop us a line. We want to make this the best literary calendar you've ever seen.


October Highlights

The Talk of the Porch hosted by Julia Shipley and Stark Biddle will be taking place the first two Mondays in October, November, and December. Join these local writers at the Craftsbury Commons Library in Craftsbury, Vermont, at 7:00 pm to discuss current and classic short stories from The New Yorker. All are welcome. For more information or to find out the reading schedule, call (802) 586-9683.

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Alice McDermott will be reading from her critically acclaimed new novel, The Ninth Hour, at the University of New Hampshire-Durham on Tuesday, October 3 at 5:00 pm.

The Burlington Book Festival Celebrity Series presents Saudi Arabian novelist, Mohammed Hasan Alwan—winner of the 2017 International Prize for Arabic Fiction and the 2015 Prix de la Littérature Arabe—for a reading at Echo Revision Lakeside Pavilion in Burlington, Vermont, on Friday, October 6 at 7:00 pm. The reading will be followed by conversation, book signing, and a reception. This event is free, but seats are limited. To reserve a seat, RSVP at sevendaystickets.com.

Brattleboro Literary Festival is taking place October 13 to 15 at various locations in downtown Brattleboro, Vermont. We are particularly excited to see Hannah Tinti, John Freeman, Nicole Sealey, Carolyn Forché, Min Jin Lee, Carmen Maria Machado, Major Jackson, Claire Messud, and David Tomas Martinez.

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Hisham Matar will be reading at Middlebury College on Thursday, October 19 at 4:30 pm. His book, The Return, was Shari's favorite non-fiction read of 2016.

Also on Thurday, October, 19, Kaitlyn Greenidge will be at the Sanborn Library at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, at 4:30 pm. We both enjoyed Kaitlyn's reading as part of Phoenix Books - Misty Valley's New Voices reading in January.

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Jacqueline Woodson will be at Burlington High School for a talk and signing on Monday, October 23 at 6:00 pm.

Kaveh Akbar will be at Bennington College on Wednesday, October 25 at 7:00 pm to read from his just-released book of poetry, Calling A Wolf A Wolf. Note: If you don't follow Kaveh on Twitter (@KavehAkbar), you are missing out! 

Please visit our calendar for detailed information about each event and to see more event listings for October and beyond.

 

Worth a Drive

Boston Book Festival

The Boston Book Festival is on Saturday, October 28, at Copley Square in Boston, Massachusetts. This year's festival features over 30 authors—writing in genres from fiction to memoir to YA to poetry—as well as several special events. The event is free and open to the public. The full schedule will be available on the BFF website in early October. 

At Mass MoCA in North Adams, Massachusetts, the Mastheads' five writing studios, designed by architects Tessa Kelly and Chris Parkinson, spatially interpret the Berkshire work and homes of American Renaissance writers Herman Melville, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Henry David Thoreau, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, and Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. The studios are available for three-hour appointments during the week, and are open to the public on weekends, through October 30.

We're Looking Forward to These October Releases


Calls for Submission and Upcoming Deadlines

The editors of the anthology Birchsong: Poetry Centered in Vermont, vol. I (2012) are pleased to announce the forthcoming publication of a second volume in the spring of 2018. Poets living in Vermont and neighboring states (New Hampshire, New York, and Massachusetts) are invited to submit, by regular mail, one to three poems for consideration through October 31, 2017. Poems, no longer than 70 lines each, must be written since Tropical Storm Irene in August 2011, and sent to Editors, The Blueline Press, PO Box 706, East Dorset, Vermont 05253. Please email thebluelinepressvt16@gmail.com for complete submission guidelines or if you have questions.

The Frost Place is accepting submissions for its 2018 Chapbook Competition. The submission period is October 1, 2017 to January 5, 2018. The competition is open to any poet writing in English. Entries must be accompanied by at $28 entry fee. For details about submitting your manuscript and more information about the competition, please visit the Competition page.

Also from October 1, 2017 to January 5, 2018, The Frost Place is accepting applications for the Dartmouth Poet in Residence program, a six-to-eight-week residency in Robert Frost's former farmhouse. The residency is July 1 to August 15, and includes an award of $1,000 from The Frost Place and $1,000 from Dartmouth College. For more information and to apply online, please visit the Residency page.

Alice James Books is accepting submissions of poetry manuscripts to the Alice James Award, postmarked through November 1, 2017. The Alice James Award welcomes submissions from emerging as well as established poets who reside in the United States. The entry fee is $30. For submission guidelines and more information, please visit the Alice James Award page.

It's a bit out of our immediate region, but Provincetown is only a few hours' drive. If that's no barrier to you and you can commit to living full-time in Provincetown, Massachusetts, for seven months, and you have not yet published a full-length work, you can apply for a Writing Fellowship at the Fine Arts Work Center. Applications are being accepted now through December 1, 2017. For details, please visit the Writing Fellowship page.


October Workshops and Classes

Are you interested in typesetting poetry interlined with its translation in a second language and typeface? If so, this Letterpress Intensive Workshop is for you. To join, attend the introductory session on Sunday, October 1, at Baker Library in Hanover, New Hampshire. Attendees can register for the workshop, which will be held on Sunday afternoons through the term. The workshop is limited to six, with priority given to Dartmouth students. For more information, visit the Event page.

Ina Anderson continues her series of poetry workshops on October 18, and November 15 at Seven Stars Art Center, in Sharon, Vermont. The workshops are for beginning through experienced poets, and provide feedback in a friendly, supportive setting. A $10 donation for each session is suggested. Pre-registration is not required. For more information, please see the Event page.

Poet and teacher Sarah Anderson is offering the "Beyond the Ship's Log" workshop on Sunday, October 22. Chronicling a sea voyage has always been part of what happens on board a boat and these written narratives are the basis for much of our understanding of maritime related history. This workshop will equip each participant with tips and techniques for writing about your impressions and thoughts along the way and a framework for transforming those notes into a lasting memoir of your adventure. The workshop will be held at the Strawbery Banke Museum in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. The cost is $130-$145. Space is limited. Register by October 10. For more information and to register, please visit the Workshop & Events page.

Geoffrey Douglas, non-fiction author and adjunct professor of creative writing at the University of Massachusetts, is offering an eight-session workshop in the Upper Valley called "The Well-Told Story," on Tuesdays from 6:00 to 8:00 pm, October 24 through December 12. This workshop will help you address questions regarding how best to tell your story. Do you begin at the beginning and go forward, or at the end and circle back? How do you move your narrative along its round-about path without becoming entangled in it? If your story is a memoir, how personal should you let yourself be? If it’s fiction, how do you develop a cast of characters your reader can believe in?  The cost is $280. For more information or to register, email Geoffrey at geoffreyd@earthlink.net.

Burlington Writers Workshop in Burlington and Montpelier, Vermont, offers an ongoing series of free writing workshops. Upcoming workshops include creative writing (any genre), poetry, and creative nonfiction. For a complete list of upcoming workshops and to register, visit the workshop Meetup page. Workshop leaders in October and November include Julia Shipley and Jensen Beach.