49 Writers Weekly Round-Up

Welcome to 2010!  Some may call it arbitrary, but I appreciate the opportunity to evaluate, assess, and refocus as the new year unfolds. 

Exactly one year ago, Andromeda Romano-Lax and I started the new year by joining forces here at 49 Writers, aiming to promote the good work of Alaskan authors by engaging an active community of writers and readers. The success of the site continues to amaze us. Beyond strong visitor stats, we’ve enjoyed lively discourse, worldwide readership, and great exposure in publications like Alaska Magazine. We’re so thankful to you, the dedicated readers, and talented writers who’ve made this a rich and diverse resource for the literary-minded. 

Launching into this new year, we’ll continue popular features like our online book club, monthly featured authors, and occasional contests while pursuing more ways to enrich our community of readers and writers.  For example, there’s a new twist on our online book club this month:  local poet Sandra Kleven will be leading an online poetry discussion next Thursday, January 7, from 3 to 8 p.m.  Drop by – you don’t have to stay for the whole discussion – and join the dialogue.

We’re also adding several new services for writers, including display ads to promote books and bookstores at the low rate of $10 per month. Placed in the right sidebar, congregated with like sidebar content, ads include a title, caption, and photo linked to a URL of your choice.

If better writing is on your list of resolutions for the new year, note that we’ve scheduled our first 49 Writers workshop, Finding Your Voice, to be conducted in two Saturday sessions, January 30 and February 6, from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Elim Café in Anchorage. Participation is limited to the first 15 who register.  Thanks to grant support from the Alaska State Council on the Arts and the National Endowment on the Arts, with fiscal sponsorship from Alaska Sisters in Crime, we’re able to offer this workshop at the low rate of $35 per person.  We welcome your input regarding future writing workshops – please take a moment to vote in our sidebar poll, which closes at 7 a.m. on Tuesday, January 5.

No doubt 2010 will bring continued upheaval in publishing as technology narrows the gap between writers and readers, while editors continue to get squeezed out of editing.  To help writers adapt, we’re ramping up our 49 Writers consulting, critiquing, and coaching (CCC) services. After reading your manuscript, we’ll prepare one to three pages of detailed written feedback pointing out what’s working and what needs work, as well as recommending additional steps to bring the project to publication. We’ll also do careful line edits of one manuscript page to set the stage for self-editing once your revision is finished. We complete the process with a telephone consultation and coaching session.

What better way to ring in the new than by snagging Volume 1, Issue 1 of Michael Burwell’s literary journal Cirque at the holiday rate of $12, a savings of 25% off the regular price?  The premier edition features nonfiction, plays, poetry, and an interview with poet Kelsea Habecker, all with a unique Northern perspective.

We value your ongoing participation in our community at 49 Writers.  Thanks for reading!

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