Linda: 49 Writers Weekly Roundup

Conference season is upon us and the North Words Writers Symposium got us off to a great start in Skagway last week – thank you Jeff Brady, Buckwheat, and all the other organizers who make this unique event possible. Next year’s keynote will be Mary Roach!

Eowyn Ivey, photo by Steven Nowers

Coming up next week, Kachemak Bay Writers Conference in Homer! Scroll down for the conference link and full schedule of free public readings, and check out Michael Armstrong’s story in the Homer News about Eowyn Ivey, who met her agent, Jeff Kleinman, there in 2008. You never know…

49 Writers members: if you’re attending be sure to look for me and get your 49 Writers member button!
Last night saw the last meeting of the 49 Writers member group in Juneau before the summer hiatus. Again, a huge thanks to Sarah Isto for hosting these gatherings in her lovely home. And to all our Juneau members for coming out in force every other month to share their work. Kudos to board member Joan Pardes for her commitment to making this happen.

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Events in Anchorage

Today, Friday June 6, 4-6pm, UAA Campus Bookstore: Attorney Lee Goodman presents his just released crime thriller Indefensible, the perfect book for summer reading! “Complex and intelligent, fantastically well-plotted. Indefensible is as good as it gets.” John Lescroart (New York Times bestselling author of twenty-four novels). Lee Goodman’s work has appeared in the Iowa Review, where it received a nomination for the Pushcart Prize in fiction, and Orion Magazine, among other publications. During the summers, Goodman works as a commercial fisherman in Prince William Sound, where he operates his own salmon fishing boat. Publishers Weekly gave Indefensible a starred review!

Today Friday, June 6, 6-9pm, Anchorage Museum: The VoxVan will be recording community stories. Tell your story: What does living in Anchorage and the North mean to you? This TV studio on wheels stops throughout the community collecting stories. The resulting videos will be shown in an Anchorage Centennial Celebration exhibition, to reflect Anchorage residents’ diverse personalities, perspectives, histories and cultures. This partnership with Alaska Public Media is part of the Anchorage Museum’s Polar Lab. For more information on VoxVan and upcoming locations, visit Free.

Today, Friday, June 6, 10am-5pm, Barnes & Noble, Anchorage: Author signing by Jim Misko, author of numerous novels, including The Cut of Pride and For What He Could Become.

Don’t miss the chance to meet Mike Holloway, author of the newly released Dreaming Bears: A Gwich’in Indian Storyteller, a Southern Doctor, a Wild Corner of Alaska. To see a book trailer and more information visit:

  • Saturday, June 7, 1-2:30pm, DeBarr Costco 
  • Wednesday, Jun. 11, 4-6pm, UAA Campus Bookstore
Tuesday, June 10, 5-6pm, Barnes & Noble, Anchorage: Author signing by Mindy Dwyer: a rare opportunity to get personalized copies of author/illustrator Mindy Dwyer’s enchanting children’s picture books, including her latest, Alaska’s Sleeping Beauty.

Around the State

Today, Friday, June 6, 4pm, Fireside Books, Palmer: Author, photographer, and 49 Writers guest blogger Kim Heacox will sign copies of his latest book, John Muir and The Ice That Started a Fire, as well as copies of many of his previous books. Originally, Kim didn’t plan on writing for a living. He was having fun exploring the world, especially Glacier Bay. But on one trip through Glacier Bay in a kayak, he finally revealed his love of writing and turned his focus on making it a career. Now living in the small town of Gustavus right in Glacier Bay, Kim splits his time between photography and writing.

Tomorrow, Saturday, June 7, 11:30am, Fireside Books, Palmer: Marianne Schlegelmilch is back! Lovers of mystery should definitely check out her Feather series of mystery books set in Alaska. For fans, this is a chance to grab your signed copy of her latest title!

Juneau author Annie Boochever (Bristol Bay Summer) will be making this following appearances:

  • Today, Friday, June 6, 5-7pm, book signing at Hearthside Books Downtown
  • June 16, 6:30pm, Annie will present at the Valley Library.
Today, June 6, 5-7pm, Opening Reception for the Books as Art exhibition (June 6-28), Bear Gallery, Alaska Centennial Center for the Arts in Pioneer Park, Fairbanks: Books have a long history as vehicles for preserving and transmitting visual and verbal information. Their role, both utilitarian and aesthetic, continues to evolve. Artists’ books and book forms are becoming even more innovative, even while the reach of the digital world becomes more wide-ranging. The exhibition program includes a series of workshops and lectures designed to engage the public in the conversation of why and how we make books, and more importantly, why the book resonates with so many of us as a tangible expression of our ideas. For more info go to
June 14, 7pm, Fairbanks Arts Association Bear Gallery: June Literary Reading featuring Marianne Schlegelmilch and Jim Madonna. Marianne is the author of the mystery “Feather” series and Jim is retired professor of Mining Extension at the UAF and author of the 3 volume Alaska Gold Trail series. For more information, please call 456-6485 ext. 226.
Alaskan author news

Congrats to Nick Jans for the starred review from Booklist for A Wolf Called Romeo! “As in Jans’ previous works (The Grizzly Maze, 2006; The Glacier Wolf, 2009), the writing is both lyrical and factual, and through Jans’ pen, we feel the crisp Alaska twilight and see the breeze ruffle Romeo’s black coat.”

Upcoming deadlines

If you are interested in teaching for 49 Writers and meet the instructor criteria, we’d love to see a course proposal from you – deadline is June 15.

The submission period for the 49 Writers Anchorage Remembers anthology is open through June 30. This collection of personal stories by residents 50 years and older about living in the city will be published in time for the Anchorage Centennial celebrations in 2015. Click here for submission guidelines and check the Anchorage Remembers blog for updates. This project is made possible by a Centennial Community grant awarded by the Alaska Humanities Forum and Anchorage Centennial Committee.

June 30: Early registration deadline for the 2014 Alaska Writers Guild Conference (Sept. 13 & 14, Crowne Plaza Hotel) featuring  nationally acclaimed agents, publishers, and authors. Once again, the conference includes a children’s literature track in conjunction with the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators. Click here for a full list of speakers. Visit the AWG website for more information and to register. Early registration (deadline June 30) is $90 for AWG/SCBWI members, $120 for non-members.

Literary happenings in Alaska this summer

June 8-14: Prince William Sound Community College hosts the 2014 Last Frontier Theatre Conference in Valdez. The invited 68 plays include writers from across the United States and internationally from the United Kingdom. Eight Alaskans have been invited to present their work.

June 13-17Kachemak Bay Writers Conference takes place in Homer, with keynote speaker Alice Sebold (The Lovely Bones). See the schedule above for free community readings by faculty on June 15 and 16. This year’s post-conference workshop at Tutka Bay Lodge, Personal Stories and Great Realities, will be led by Scott Russell Sanders, June 17-19.

June 26-29: Stillpoint Lodge in Halibut Cove hosts a writers retreat, The Pen & The Bell: Mindful Writing in a Busy World, with Holly Hughes (also on this year’s Kachemak Bay Writers Conference faculty). How do we create space for writing in a world crowded with so many distractions? Learn mindfulness practices to provide support for writing and other forms of creativity. Holly co-authored the book The Pen and The Bell: Mindful Writing in a Busy World. Her collection of poems. Sailing by Ravens, is part of the University of Alaska Press’s 2014 Alaska Literary Series.

July 6-10: Wilderness Writing at Coal Creek, Yukon-Charley Rivers National Preserve, with Gretel Ehrlich, brought to you by the UAF Summer Sessions & Lifelong Learning. Award-winning author Ehrlich has published numerous books and essays, been an NPR correspondent, and has traveled widely in Greenland and the Arctic. Practice and insight into the transition between field notes and the finished essay or prose poem. Course fee includes food, lodging in bunkhouse, and transportation to course site by boat from Eagle, AK. Noncredit cost $430. More information here.

July 13-27: Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival Creative Writing Class. Two weeks of writing with master teachers and a lively group of participants. Experience welcome but not necessary. Click here for more information.

July 20-26The Island Institute hosts the Sitka Symposium at Sheldon Jackson Campus in Sitka. This year’s theme, “Radical Imagining: Changing the Story With Stories of Change” will explore dominant narratives of our culture in relation to the challenges of our time, and consider empowering stories of transformative change initiated by people in communities large and small. Leading the Symposium will be Winona LaDuke, Anishinaabekwe author, activist, mother, and Green Party vice-presidential running mate to Ralph Nader; Luis Alberto Urrea, critically acclaimed author of thirteen books of fiction, poetry, and nonfiction, American Book Award winner and Pulitzer Prize finalist; Alan Weisman, best-selling author of The World Without Us and winner of the 2014 Los Angeles Times Book Award for his latest book, Countdown; and Molly Sturges, co-founder and Artistic Director of Santa Fe’s renowned Littleglobe, an artist/activist collective, and founder of the national project COAL, a musical fable and catalyst for climate engagement.

July 22-28: The Wrangell Mountain Writing Workshop in McCarthy presents: True Story, with Tom Kizzia, Frank Soos, and Nancy Cook. During this five-day workshop, writers will explore the craft of creative nonfiction: drafting compelling narratives that tell true stories. How can writers craft a meaningful, readable page-turner while working in the confines of the frequently controversial truth of “what actually happened.” Click here for more information.

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