|Photo courtesy of Christina Whiting|
This year’s Tutka Bay Writers Retreat with Carolyn Forché is now full! But don’t despair, we have started a waitlist – if you’re still interested, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Cancellations do happen as life is unpredictable.
- Thursday, Apr. 24, 7pm, Great Harvest Bread Co., Anchorage: Reading & Craft Talk with Elise Patkotak, “The World of Self-Publishing and Why”
- Saturday, Apr. 26, 9am-12pm, 645 W. 3rd Avenue, Anchorage: Digital tools for the Creative Writer, a class with Lawrence Weiss
- Saturday, Apr. 26, 1-3pm, Juneau Arts & Humanities Council: Every Day a Victory: How to organize your life to write that book you’ve always talked about, a workshop with award-winning Sitka author John Straley. Click here to register.
- Wednesday, May 14 & Saturday, May 17, Anchorage Museum: “The Pressure is Off: Independent Publishing Options for Writers” with Dana Stabenow and Deb Vanasse.
- Register here for Anchorage classes.
Tomorrow, Saturday, Apr. 19, 11am: Fireside Books, Palmer. Time Travel with Bonnye Matthews! Meet the author of the award-winning historical fiction Winds of Change series: Ki’ti’s Story, Manak-na’s Story, and Zamimolo’s Story. Whether you’ve started into this fascinating series or are ready to pick up the newly-published third book, come on by Fireside Books and take the opportunity to chat with Bonnye!
Monday Apr. 21, 5-7pm, UAA Campus Bookstore: poet John Morgan and artist Kesler Woodward present River of Light. Morgan’s River of Light: A Conversation with Kabir, from University of Alaska Press, is based on a trip down the Copper River. Alongside the artwork by Alaskan artist Kesler Woodward, River of Light folds words, sounds, and color into being.
Thursday, Apr. 24, 2:30pm: Celebrate National Poetry in Your Pocket Day by carrying a favorite poem in your pocket and sharing it with your friends, family, even random strangers you bump into throughout the day! Don’t have a poem? Drop by Fireside Books in Palmer and we’ll have some perfect pocket-sized poems ready for you to share!
Friday, Apr. 25, 7-9pm: Springtime in Alaska Brings Yellow Umbrellas from the Alaska Quarterly Review! Join them for the book launch party in Anchorage at TapRoot (3300 Spenard Road) and enjoy a night of jazz, conversation, cocktails, and readings from AQR’s featured poets Joan Naviyuk Kane, Eva Saulitis, and Sean Hill. Admission $7. The latest and 31st edition includes a wide variety of compelling short stories, provocative essays and poems from more than 35 different poets. Purchase a copy for $8.95 at bookstores throughout Alaska or on the web at uaa.alaska.edu/aqr.
April 25-27, Prince William Sound Community College, Valdez, hosts Writing Down the Wild, a three-day workshop for creative nonfiction writers. This non-credit community workshop will be taught by Alaskan nature and wilderness writer Bill Sherwonit. The course will examine and practice the steps necessary to powerful and effective nature writing and will include time outdoors in the local landscape, along with readings and discussions. Registration limited to 12 students: click here for more information.
Saturday Apr. 26, 2-4pm, Ann Stevens Room in the Loussac Library: Celebrate the Bard’s birthday at Shakespeare’s Sonnets, a reading celebration of Shakespeare’s birthday and of Poetry Month. There’s still time to practice your favorite sonnet, and even don a costume!
Outside events of interest to Alaskans
The incomparable Peggy Shumaker continues to criss-cross the country in the service of literature. If you have friends or family in either place, be sure to let them know this is an opportunity not to be missed:
- Monday, May 5, 7pm, City Lights Bookstore, San Francisco: Reading by Peggy Shumaker with Kate Gale and Doug Kearney
- Thursday, May 8, 7pm, Poetry Foundation, Chicago: Reading by Peggy Shumaker with B. H. Fairchild
June 22-28, poet Camille Dungy, who recently visited Alaska, will be leading a five-day workshop at this year’s Minnesota Northwoods Conference, For a schedule and descriptions of the workshops to be taught by the distinguished faculty, please visit www.northwoodswriters.org.
Upcoming deadlines for nominations and submissions
Wednesday, Apr. 30: Poems in Place has extended their open call for poetry. The project will place a poem by an Alaskan writer in each of the seven regions of the Alaska State Park’s system in the coming years. Both original work and nominated poems submitted by appreciative readers will be considered for Independence Mine State Historical Park, near Palmer, and Lake Aleknagik State Recreation Site/ Wood Tikchik State Park, near Dillingham. No submission fees. An honorarium will be paid to the winning poets. See http://www.alaskacenterforthebook.org for more information, contest rules and entry form.
Literary happenings in Alaska this summer
May 28-31: This year’s North Words Writers Symposium in beautiful Skagway, Southeast Alaska, features popular British-American writer Simon Winchester as keynote author, joined by an Alaska-Yukon faculty that includes Nora Marks Dauenhauer, Richard Dauenhauer, Nick Jans, Marcel Jolley, Heather Lende, Lael Morgan, John Straley, and Deb Vanasse. For full information, visit the conference website.
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. There are 8 Alaskans invited to present their work, including 3 from Anchorage, 2 from Juneau, and 1 apiece from Fairbanks, Ketchikan, and Valdez. Alaskan playwrights include Jill Bess (Anchorage, AK), Simple Melody, Linda Billington (Anchorage, AK), A Duct Tale, Clint Jefferson Farr (Juneau, AK), The Kindness of Strangers, P. Shane Mitchell (Anchorage AK), Veritas, Tom Moran (Fairbanks AK), God On Our Side, Mollie Ramos (Valdez, AK), Snowmageddon, Barbara Shepherd (Juneau, AK), Ghost Stories, Norma Thompson (Ketchikan, AK), Missing Something?, Mark Muro (Anchorage, AK), Nocturne on 166th Street.
June 13-17: Kachemak Bay Writers Conference takes place in Homer, with keynote speaker Alice Sebold (The Lovely Bones). 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. 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 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.