study some poetry

November 24, 2020

Soapstone is a grassroots literary organization that has been around since 1992 and currently operates out of Portland, Oregon. From
1998 through 2010, Soapstone provided residencies to more than 375 writers at a retreat in Oregon’s Coast Range. These days, Soapstone provides grants to support ad hoc events and short-term study groups that introduce or offer the opportunity to delve into the work of women writers. All events and study groups are open to the public.

Soapstone has three all-online study groups slated for the winter/spring season:

Reading Natasha Tretheway, led by Andrea Hollander
Six Saturday Mornings, January 9 through February 13, 2021, 10:00am to Noon Pacific

Reading Bernardine Evaristo’s GIRL, WOMAN, OTHER, led by Tricia Snell
Six Saturday Mornings, February 27 through April 10 (skipping March 27), 2021, 10:00am to Noon Pacific

Reading Claudia Rankine, led by Ashley Toliver
Six Saturday Mornings, April 24 through May 29, 2021, 10:00am to Noon Pacific

Fees are very modest and class size is very limited. Visit Soapstone for details.

Hugo House has announced the lineup for Word Works: Writers on Writing 2020–2021. “Word Works craft talks focus on writing as process rather than finished product, examining how language works to inspire and provoke new ideas through lectures and live close readings of the writer’s own or others’ work.”

Each program features a different presenter and topic:

  • Porochista Khakpour: Writing Toward & Against Identity – December 4, 2020
  • Lauren Groff: Fiction’s Hidden Architectures – February 5, 2021
  • Jericho Brown: Nonsense and Senselessness – March 5, 2021
  • Melissa Febos: In Praise of the Confessional – April 9, 2021
  • Joy Harjo: Our Songs Came Through – April 23, 2021
  • Russell Banks: Memory, Abandonment, and Betrayal – May 14, 2021

All Word Works events this season will be held online. Series passes and single-event tickets are now available. See the Word Works page for details on the presenters, topics, and tickets.

LiTFUSE 2021!

October 28, 2020

Yes, September 2021 is a long way off, but if you’ve ever felt the disappointment of signing up for a master class only to find it full, now is your chance! LiTFUSE 2021 will be held September 24-26, in Tieton, Washington (“fingers crossed,” as Program Director Lauren Westerfield says), and pre-registration is now open for master classes with Claudia Castro Luna, Camille Dungy, and Brooke Matson.

rethinking a contest

September 3, 2020

Poetry Out Loud is a national arts education program that encourages the study of great poetry by offering free educational materials and a dynamic recitation competition for high school students across the country.” Students memorize poems, practice their delivery, and compete with one another on the classroom, school, state, and national level.

Not surprisingly, the 2020-2021 POL season will look a lot different from that of previous years. Though a date has not yet been set, POL has already announced that the National Finals will take place in spring 2021 as a video submission-based competition. POL is encouraging teachers and organizers at all contest levels to hold virtual competitions and have posted downloadable Poetry Out Loud Virtual Competitions & Filming Requirements (PDF).

Do you recall poems you memorized in school? The words can last a lifetime. If you have a high school student in your life, visit Poetry Out Loud, browse the poems, watch for deadlines, and consider memorizing a poem yourself!

signups begin at midnight!

August 31, 2020

Though some people wait until August to actually write and mail their poetry postcards (and many people don’t), signups begin as soon as the current August Poetry Postcard Fest ends. Visit the POPO.cards registration page at midnight and log on to Submittable to register for 2021. There’s an active and inspiring Facebook group for participants, and of course there’s the pleasure of finding a little slice of poetry in your mailbox. Sign up and play!

feeling optimistic?

July 23, 2020

We mentioned the National Parks Arts Foundation back in February, but so much water has passed under the bridge that you might have forgotten it by now. In fact, NPAF is currently accepting applications for residencies at six different National Parks and a variety of dates in 2021.

Many of the applications have submission deadlines in early August 2020, so if you’re feeling optimistic about the possibilities of travel and alternate residency, visit the National Parks Arts Foundation, find out more about NPAF residencies, or jump right in and apply on Submittable.

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