49 Writers Roundup for Literary Alaska | December 16-30, 2016

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Please note: the 49 Writers Statewide Roundup will now appear biweekly,
on the first and third Friday of each month. 

David Stevenson will be honored by the American Alpine Club in February with the H. Adams Carter Literary Award, which was established to recognize excellence in alpine literature. His most recent book is Warnings Against Myself (University of Washington, 2o16). He’s the director of the Creative Writing and Literary Arts Department at the University of Alaska Anchorage and author of the short fiction collection Letters from Chamonix, winner of the Banff Mountain Festival Fiction Prize.

Eva Saulitis‘s powerful collection of essays, Becoming Earth (Red Hen Press, 2016), is longlisted for the PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay (which aims to preserve the dignity and esteem that the essay form imparts to literature). Becoming Earth was published shortly before Eva died last January.

Debbie Clarke Moderow of Denali Park and Anchorage was listed on the 35 Over 35 list. Her book Fast Into the Night was also awarded a National Outdoor Book Award for Outdoor Literature.

Congrats to Fireside Books in Palmer, AK for being featured in the book Footnotes from the World’s Greatest Bookstores by Bob Eckstein! Good timing, too: Fireside is celebrating its 15 year anniversary: on Saturday, December 17, 2016, they’ll have 15% off of select items, food, drawings, and prizes — and their famous Real Alaskan Ugly Coffee! Fireside website

Fairbanks writer Jean Anderson‘s short story collection, Human Being Songs: Northern Stories was a finalish for the 2016 G.S. Sharat Chandra Prize in Short Fiction from BkMk Press at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. The book will be published in February 2017 by University of Alaska Press.

Susanna Mishler, an Anchorage-based poet, author of TERMINATION DUST (Red Hen Press/Boreal Books), and long-time 49 Writers supporter, instructor, and volunteer, was one of four artists awarded a 2017 residency through the Rasmuson Foundation Artist Residency Program. She’ll spend eight weeks at Djerassi Resident Artists Program in the Santa Cruz Mountains near Woodside, California. Learn more about the four artists.


ANCHORAGE | December 16, 2016, 1-3 pm at UAA Bookstore | Mystery author Stan Jones talk and speculative fiction authors Sterling Emmal and L. S. Goulet talk and signing. FB event

ANCHORAGE | December 16, 2016, 6 pm at Barnes & Noble | Eowyn Ivey, bestselling Alaskan author of The Snow Child, finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and her latest book, To the Bright Edge of the World, will read and sign. Reading begins at 6 pm with signing to follow.

ANCHORAGE MUSEUM | December 16, 2016, 6 pm | Conversation and readings about mountaineering myth and history. Hosted by David Stevenson, professor and coordinator of the Low Residency MFA Program in Creative Writing at the University of Alaska. Part of Unbound, a Museum series that “loosens words from the page through monthly experimental literary events. Included with admission. FB event

ANCHORAGE | March 31-April 1, 2017 | Organized by the graduate students within the University of Alaska Anchorage English department, the Pacific Rim Conference on English Studies invites submissions in literature, rhetoric and composition, linguistics, anthropology, history, journalism, gender studies and other related fields. See the call for proposals here.

EAGLE RIVER | The Living Room Reading Series, every 2nd Wednesday 7-9 pm at Jitters, featuring writers and book lovers. Sign up to read, or come listen. More


FAIRBANKS | Fairbanks Arts Association hosts the oldest literary reading series in the state. Nearly every month, writers reading their own work publicly at a community meet-up where people can connect with other lovers of literature. Readings are held on the day after First Friday, usually the first Saturday of the month at 7 pm. Most reading are held in the Bear Gallery in Pioneer Park, although occasionally in the summer (June, July, and August) the weather is beautiful reading are held outside to another spot in Pioneer Park. Additional readings and events may be held, but the First Saturday Literary Reading Series is monthly at 7 pm the day after First Friday (except February).

FAIRBANKS |  University of Alaska Press seeks a Director and Acquisitions Editor to head the department. This is a term funded, full time position. More


JUNEAU | First Woosh Kinaadeiyí Poetry Slam of Season 7, Friday, December 16, 7 pm at Heritage Coffee downtown. Participants are asked to have three original poems ready to read, one poem per competitive round. All ages, experience levels, and walks of life welcome. Signups to perform start at 6:30 pm. Woosh Kinaadeiyí is a nonprofit organization committed to diversity, inclusive community, and empowering voice and organizes these free to low cost monthly events for the community. Free and open to the public. Donations are welcome. For questions, contact Christy NaMee Eriksen, Woosh Kinaadeiyi President, christynamee@gmail.com. More

JUNEAU | Sealaska Heritage Institute will release six culturally-based children’s books that reflect the Native worldview as part of its Baby Raven Reads, a program for Alaska Native families with children up to age 5 that promotes language development and school readiness. The series includes a three-book set derived from ancient creation stories that have been passed from generation to generation for thousands of years. The set includes Raven and the Box of Daylight, Raven Brings us Fire, and Origins of Rivers and Streams. The books were adapted from oral histories by Pauline Duncan and illustrated by Lindsay Carron. The series also features a book that teaches the Lingít words for colors. “In the Lingít language, words for colors come from comparisons to animals, plants and natural objects found in Southeast Alaska,” said SHI President Rosita Worl. “For example, the word for ‘blue’ comes from the Steller’s jays common to the region, so to describe something as blue, you would say ‘it is like a Steller’s jay.’” The illustrator will sign copies during December First Friday. More






North Words Writers Symposium will be May 31-June 3, 2017 in Skagway, Alaska. This year’s keynote speaker is world world travel and fiction writer Paul Theroux. After writing nearly fifty books of nonfiction and fiction set in the most exotic of locales, America’s greatest travel writer is finally headed for one of Alaska’s most notorious: Skagway. Paul Theroux will lead a faculty of seven acclaimed authors at the 8th annual North Words Writers Symposium. A maximum of 50 registrants at the 2017 North Words Symposium will also engage with a faculty of Alaskan writers that includes John Straley, Sherry Simpson, Deb Vanasse, Tom Kizzia, Andy Hall, and Lenora Bell. Learn more and sign up soon; 50 participants max. northwordsinfo@gmail.com

2017 Kachemak Bay Writers Conference will occur June 9-13, 2017 in Homer, Alaska. Keynote speaker will be Jane Smiley. Details and more.

2017 Writers Tutka Bay Writers Retreat will occur September 10-12, 2017. Faculty to be announced soon. Details.

Storyknife Writers Retreat now accepting applications for June, July, August, and September 2017. On ten acres of view property just outside Homer, Alaska, Storyknife will be one of the very few residencies for women writers in the English-speaking world. Eventually, the facility will include six private cabins, a main house, and a garden. Currently, one fully-equipped writers’ cabin has been built with a stunning view overlooking Cook Inlet, Mount Iliamna, Mount Douglas, and Mount Augustine. Women writers over 21 years of age are invited to apply for a residency in the Storyknife cabin. This residency will can be 2-4 weeks, and for each week she is in residence, the resident will receive a $250 stipend to cover food and transportation costs. Applications will be accepted until January 27, 2017 through Submittable. The vision of award-winning novelist Dana Stabenow, Storyknife seeks to support women writers by providing uninterrupted time for development of their craft. In 1989, Stabenow won a residency at Hedgebrook, a retreat for women writers on Whidbey Island in Washington. The profound impact of that residency, and the fact that Hedgebrook receives many more applications that they have spots to host writers, has inspired her to develop such an opportunity for women writers on property outside of Homer, Alaska. More: https://storyknife.org/

The Alderworks Alaska Writers and Artists Retreat in Southeast Alaska is now accepting applications for its summer 2017 cabin residencies. Three log cabins will be available as residencies for two 4-6 week periods in early and late summer. The application period for these residencies began on November 15, 2016 and will end on February 15, 2017. The retreat is located nine miles from historic Skagway at the northern end of Lynn Canal.  Situated on a five-acre homestead along beautiful West Creek at the end of the Dyea Road, the retreat is within the Dyea-Chilkoot Trail unit of Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park. Dyea (pronounced Die-eee) was a jumping off point for young Jack London and other stampeders in 1897-98. For hundreds of years leading up to that event, Dyea was a Tlingit fishing and trading village. Testimonials, a photo gallery, cabin descriptions, residency guidelines, and information about how to apply online may be viewed at www.alderworksalaska.com. The cabins are best suited for writers, artists working in small mediums, and acoustic singer-songwriters. All residents must have a degree of self-reliance, as they will be doing their own cooking and working on their own schedule. In their vision statement, the Bradys state, “The idea is simple enough: give writers and artists a quiet, beautiful spot to create or enhance their works, and wonderful things will happen.”


University of Alaska Press seeks a Director and Acquisitions Editor to head the department. This is a term funded, full time position. More

Storyknife Writers Retreat, a women’s writing residency program in Homer, Alaska, seeks to raise $250,000 to build their main house, which they’ll name “Eva’s House” in honor of Eva Saulitis. Details

23rd annual Statewide Poetry Contest now accepting entries. Deadline: 6 pm, February 1st, 2017. Administered by the Fairbanks Arts Association, this year’s contest will be judged by Jeremy Pataky. Cash prizes. Details

35th annual UAA/Alaska Dispatch News Annual Creative Writing Contest is accepting entries. Deadline: 5:30 pm, February 12, 2017. Over $800 is cash prizes. Details

The Governor’s Awards for the Arts and Humanities ceremony will be held in Juneau on Thursday, January 26, 2017. Visit ASCA’s website here for information about last year’s Governor’s Awardees, and here for the Alaska State Writer Laureate program.

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