Saturday, July 4, 2015

The Use of a Double in Storytelling

I recently re-watched Fringe, a television series. In one episode, I noticed a very striking technique being used. In the episode, one character feels out of place. The plot of the episode is that he's helping hunt down a character doing evil in the cause of -- fitting in. When the main character questions the character and finds out more about his motives, everything the murderous character says about doing whatever it takes to fit in, the dialogue has a subtext and a level of deeper emotions because the viewer is aware of the main character's issues.

One aspect of powerful storytelling is making what a main character feels accessible to an audience. Struggling writers are often so immersed in introducing a character, getting across their background, their history, their surroundings, creating a picture of their relationships, everything really except what an audience often craves from a story, something that suggests an author can help readers/viewers go on a journey to a state of deeper, potent feeling.

When novels become hugely successful while being denigrated by literary stylists, they have often created that deeper journey people crave from stories.

On a side note, I helped an author with a memoir that had a vivid and compelling action line...but I could barely get her to convey her feelings toward those closest to her, and to her own deeper feelings about tragic events in her life. On a first read, her deeper feelings were an almost complete void.

A literary agent passed on her memoir (that someone had, when the main events of the memoir happened, offered her $50,000 for the movie rights, but that was long ago).

It happened that another story person read her memoir and helped her to write about those deeper feelings from the first paragraph of the memoir, and the literary agent who had passed on the book agreed to represent it.

If you're not writing a sequel to a well-written movie about dinosaurs, you need to get to that deeper place.


To read some of my longer reviews of popular movies, check out my writing workbook, A Story is a Promise & The Spirit of Storytelling, available on Amazon's Kindle and Barnes and Noble's Nook.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Story is a Promise Website Moving to New Host

The process started on Saturday, 6/27/2015, and could take 24-48 hours. The domain will still be

Bill Johnson author, A Story is a Promise & The Spirit of Storytelling

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Soapstone Literary Announcements 6/14/2015

These announcements of events and opportunities of interest to the writing community have been sent to you by Soapstone. Feel free to send them on to your friends and colleagues or to invite them to join the list by signing up at:

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Broadway Books is pleased to announce that internationally renowned poet Judith Barrington will read from her newest collection, /The Conversation,/ on Tuesday, June 23^rd at 7 pm. She will be introduced by /The Oregonian/’s Poetry Editor, Kirsten Rian.

/The Conversation/ is Barrington's long-meditated dialogue with the many interlocking parts of her life, the record of her sustained career as writer, teacher, activist, and explorer of the heart's mysteries.

Barrington has published three other collections of poetry and two poetry chapbooks, a memoir, and a text on writing literary memoir which is used throughout the United States and in Australia and Europe. Her memoir, /Lifesaving/, won the Lambda Book Award and was a finalist for the PEN/Martha Albrand Award for the Art of the Memoir. Her poems have been featured by Garrison Keillor. In 2013 she was awarded the Gregory O'Donoghue International Poetry Prize.

This event is free and open to the public. Broadway Books is located at 1714 NE Broadway, Portland. You may also visit our website: .


The New Soapstone: Celebrating Women Writers

We are pleased to announce that we are now offering two new opportunities* for readers and writers in Oregon and Southwest Washington.

Small Grants to an Individual Woman or an Ad Hoc Group of Women

These funds are to support *events * and *study groups * celebrating the work of women writers. The application process is simple and the time between applying and notification short. For the first year, Soapstone board members will serve as the grant review committee. BR>
All events and study groups will be open to the public and offered at no charge.

Go to our website for more details:


Applications for the 2016 *Oregon Literary Fellowships are due Friday, June 26, 2015. Fellowships are awarded to Oregon writers in Fiction, Nonfiction, Poetry, Drama, and Young Readers Literature. Fellowships are also awarded to support Oregon's independent publishers and small presses that demonstrate a commitment to literary publishing. There is no charge to apply. Recipients are determined by a panel of out-of-state judges.

Applications may be mailed via U.S. mail or hand delivered to the Literary Arts office at 925 SW Washington in Portland.

Fellowship applications* can be found on our website. Fellowships will be awarded in the amount of $3,000.

In 2016, for the first time, Literary Arts is also offering a Writers of Color Fellowship, as part of the Oregon Book Awards & Fellowships program.

The goal of the Writers of Color Fellowship is to promote perspectives from a variety of cultural, ethnic and racial backgrounds, and encourage diverse writers to apply for fellowships. All applications for the Writers of Color Fellowship will also be considered for an Oregon Literary Fellowship.

The deadline to submit books for the 2016 *Oregon Book Awards *is*Friday, August 28, 2015.* Books written by Oregon writers, with an original publication date between August 1, 2014 and July 31, 2015, are eligible. Awards in 2015 will be presented in the following genres: Fiction, Poetry, General Nonfiction, Creative Nonfiction, Children's Literature, Young Adult Literature, and Graphic Literature. Please note that Graphic Literature has separate eligibility guidelines. *Submission guidelines* can be found on our website.

If you have questions about how to apply for an Oregon Literary Fellowship or how to submit a book to the Oregon Book Awards, contact Susan Denning at or *503-227-2583 x107. The 2016 Oregon Book Awards finalists and Oregon Literary Fellowship recipients will be announced in January 2016.


OPA's Fall Conference 2015 is at the University Place Hotel in Portland, October 2-4

We will again use the very successful format of last fall's conference at Bandon: a multi-stream mix of workshops, panels, readings, and other presentations. We'd like to hear your proposals.

Please submit a one-page proposal with:

Title and Poet(s):

Workshop: include examples and writing exercise
Panel: include different viewpoints on a topic, theme, form
Presentation: slide show, multi-media, history, etc.
Reading: focus on theme, ie. nature, bilingual, poetry of witness

Proposals will be accepted starting June 1st, 2015 and deadline is July 1st, 2015.

Submit via email to:
Subject line: OPA Fall Conference Proposal

or mail to: OPA Fall Conference Proposal
Dorothy Blackcrow Mack
3671 Ross Ave.
Depoe Bay, OR 97341

Notification of Acceptance by August 31, 2014.


Hosted by Christopher Luna and Toni Partington

Thursday, July 9
Angst Gallery
1015 Main Street
Vancouver, WA 98660

Food and libation provided by Niche Wine and Art Bar, 1013 Main Street

With our featured reader, Alex Dang: Alex Dang is a member of the 2013, 2014, and 2015 Portland Poetry Slam Team competing at the National Poetry Slam and the youngest representative from Portland in the slam's history. Alex is the Eugene Grand Slam Champion of 2014 and 2015.


On Thursday, June 25^th at 7 pm Broadway Books will host Marnie Hanel, Andrea Slonecker and Jen Stevenson, authors of the newly published book */The Picnic: Recipes and Inspiration from Basket to Blanket/, *a collection of their recipes and stories. The authors will share what they consider to be the top picnic basket essentials, demonstrate secrets for making the perfect deviled eggs, and their inspiration for this ingenious and beautiful guide to all things picnic. Audience members are invited to share in the eggs and some picnic-perfect beverages!

/The Picnic/ offer guidance on everything you need to plan an effortless outdoor get-together: no-fail recipes, helpful checklists, and expert advice and includes ninety-nine uses for a Mason jar (think cocktail shaker, firefly catcher, or cookie jar), rules for scoring lawn games, and refreshing drinks to mix up in crowd-friendly batches. Let /T//he Picnic/ take the stress out of your next outdoor party and leave only the fun.
This event is free and open to the public.


Broadway Books is pleased to host /The CSA Cookbook/ author Linda Ly on Monday June 22nd at 7 pm. This newly published book presents a no-waste, “nose to tail” approach to cooking and eating the vegetables from a Community Supported Agriculture box, farmer’s market, or backyard harvest.

Join us in learning about common food myths, the surprising parts of plants you might not have known were edible, and how to reduce waste in the kitchen by using the odds and ends from your vegetables in recipes.

Linda Ly is the blogger behind the award-winning , named “Best in Gardening” by /Country Living/ and deemed a go-to source for all things green by HGTV. As a member of Slow Food USA, Ly delights in growing, harvesting, preserving, and cooking only food that comes from the earth. She gains endless inspiration from her modern homestead by the sea, which she shares with her husband, a pair of pugs, and a flock of chickens.

This event is free and open to the public.


the gallery / Passages Bookshop


an empirical exhibition

June 6-30, 2015

Opening reception:

Saturday, June 6
Noon to 3:00 pm

17 SE Third Avenue, Suite 502
(corner of Ankeny, top floor)


Writing Contest for Short Stories and First Chapters (fiction or nonfiction)-

The Oregon Writers Colony annual writing contests' deadline is June 22nd. Request the optional critique from their talented judges. Also, if you are among the winners, you'll increase the exposure and recognition of your writing by reading at Stumptown Lit in October, being recognized in their Eblast! and Colonygram newsletters, on their Facebook page, website, and the authors' catalog/brochure distributed by OWC at Stumptown Lit. and Wordstock. for full details.


Endi Bogue Hartigan, C E Putnam, Allison Cobb, James Grabill, Marilyn Stablein, Jared Hayes, Jen Coleman and dan raphael will read their work (and some others) from the new anthology, Make it True: Poetry from Cascadia. Recently published by Leaf Press in Lantzvllle BC, this book has the work of 92 poets from the region, including Sam Hamill, George Bowering, Judith Roche, Lisa Wolsak, Jim Dodge and Emily Kendall Frey. Paul Nelson, one of the editors and the director of the Cascadia Poetry festival will also be speaking. Copies of the book will be on sale. *June 24**^th **at MilePost 5, *doors open 6:30.


WWotR Quarterly Reading – Open-Mic June 15, Corvallis, OR, where you can sign up and read your own work! Free and open to the public.

This is your chance to engage in an important aspect of the writing life — reading your work in front of others. Anyone can participate, but you have to sign up. These events often fill up, so if you want to read, it's a good idea to get there as soon after 6:15 PM as possible. The number of readers is limited. First to sign up is first to read. Each person gets 7 minutes. No graphic violence, sex, or hate speech. Please tell the audience if your piece is fiction or non-fiction, and if it is a part or whole.

Remember, this is an opportunity to read your written work. It is not meant to be an interactive forum or teaching session. A few tips to help make your performance a success:

• Time yourself beforehand.
• Speak loudly.
• Shine!

And of course an audience is also needed. So if you don't want to read, please come hear some talented writers present their work. WWotR meets on the 3^rd Monday of each month with the exception of January when we meet the Tuesday after MLK day. First Presbyterian Church 114 SW 8th Street (enter Dennis Hall off the 9th Street parking lot behind the church) _See Summer Reading_


On Tuesday, July 7th, at the Old Church in downtown Portland, celebrated author Brian Doyle comes to the *Willamette Writers* membership meeting. Doyle says “The best writers are great listeners.” So come and listen! Join us July 7th, at the Old Church, 1422 SW 11th. Celebrate our 50th year with a piece of cake and a good story, or two or three. And bring your writing implement of choice. The meeting starts at 7:00 pm. Doors open at 6:30.

Doyle is the author of fourteen books: collections of essays, two nonfiction books (The Grail, about a year in an Oregon vineyard, and The Wet Engine, about the “muddles & musics of the heart”), and two collections of “proems,” most recently Thirsty for the Joy: Australian & American Voices. His novel Mink River was published in 2010 by Oregon State University Press, followed by The Plover, (St. Martin’s Press, 2014). “The only way I can figure it out is with my fingers, so … I wrote a whopping large sea novel. I just loved Conrad and Stevenson and Jack London and Kipling and sea logs and accounts and journey and voyages and Kon Tiki and Aku Aku and I guess this is My Sea Novel bless its salty soul.”

Attendance is free to members of Willamette Writers and full time students under 25; non-members pay $10.


*Harvest Writing Contest Open for Entries* Central Oregon Writers Guild is accepting entries for their 8th annual Harvest Writing contest from June 1st until August 16th. The contest is open to residents of Oregon and all current members of Central Oregon Writers Guild.

This is a great opportunity to gain constructive feedback from a panel of judges, polish your writing, and possibly win.

The top 10 winners will read their entries at a special Showcase Event, to be held on the evening ofOctober 24th at the Hampton Inn and Suites, in Bend, Oregon. Winners and their winning entries will be featured in the Central Oregon Writers Guild 2015 Harvest Writing Contest Winners Collection, a book published each year following the writing contest. Winners will also receive a complimentary print copy of the book upon publication. Winners may also be featured in author presentations and readings at Central Oregon bookstores.

Entries must be 1,200 words or less, and are being accepted in the categories of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. One entry is allowed per writer and one poem per poetry entry. All submissions must be previously unpublished original works of the writer.

Full contest details, as well as online entry information, are available at

Questions regarding the contest may be submitted to .


The First Draft Writers’ Series takes place at Pendleton Center for the Arts, 214 N. Main, at 7 p.m. on the third Thursday of each month.


Penelope Scambly Schott is a past winner of an Oregon Book Award in Poetry and many other prizes. Her most recent book is HOW I BECAME AN HISTORIAN. She lives in Portland and Dufur, Oregon where she teaches an annual poetry workshop.


Broadway Books is pleased to announce that Sue Schaefer will read from her debut novel /Now I Am Here Doing This/ on Thursday, June 18th at 7 pm.

The setting is 1984 in the Pacific Northwest and Val, an unconventional mother and artist, knows she's losing her daughter Hana but doesn't know to what to do about it. A domestic detective story, /Now I Am Here Doing This/ is about mothers, daughters, art, adolescence, memory, crime, death, secrets, love, illusion, loss, and redemption.

Schaefer is a Portland artist and writer. In her most recent project she painted a sentence every Tuesday for a year from page 147 of found, random books. /Now I Am Here Doing This/ is her first novel.

This event is free and open to the public.


Bard Deluxe at the Oregon City Library, Thursday June 18th, 7-8pm.

The Oregon City Library will feature a reading of three of the Bards, Marj Hogan, and Oregon Literary Fellowship Winners Armin Tolentino (2014) and Laura Christina Dunn (2015). The Oregon City Library is a cultural haven and in addition to poetry has recently hosted a wide range of events including music, yoga, video game night, pajama story time and a Star Wars party. The OCL is an historic and beautiful Carnegie Library, located in Uptown, on the bluff, at 606 John Adams St., Oregon City. The current issue of The Bear Deluxe celebrates Poetry of Place. To that end, The Bear held a poetry contest and the nine winners have been published in issue #36. Each winner of the contest became a Bard Deluxe.



The Pacific University Master of Fine Arts in Writing program will once again host readings by some of America’s finest writers during its 10-day residency on the Forest Grove campus. Free and open to the public, the evening readings take place at 7:30 p.m. from Friday, June 19, through Friday, June 26, in the Taylor-Meade Performing Arts Center, which is located on campus at the corner of Pacific Avenue and Cedar Street in Forest Grove.

This event is a rare opportunity to hear some of the best writers of contemporary literature read on successive evenings. Featured authors include Australian fiction writer Cate Kennedy, winner of the Queensland Literary Award and the Victorian Premier’s Literary Award; and poet Eduardo Corral, recipient of the Whiting Writers' Award and a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship.

6/19 Claire Davis, Jack Driscoll & Dorianne Laux
6/20 Ellen Bass, Pete Fromm & Scott Korb
6/21 Judy Blunt, Vievee Francis & Craig Lesley
6/22 Eduardo Corral, Valerie Laken & Joseph Millar
6/24 Marvin Bell, Sanjiv Bhattacharya & Laura Hendrie
6/25 Sandra Alcosser, Steve Amick & Mike Magnuson
6/26 Debra Gwartney & Cate Kennedy


Award-winning Oregon coast author Melissa Eskue Ousley will launch the final book in her young adult series, The Solas Beir Trilogy, this July, kicking off a regional book tour. She will be reading from The Sower Comes at 1 p.m. on Saturday, July 11, at a book launch party at Beach Books in Seaside (616 Broadway). For every book sold during the first week of its release (July 11-18), the author will donate one dollar to Clatsop Community College for student scholarships (up to $500) to assist students with financial need.


Thank you for your strong support of the writing community. I wanted to let you know that registration is now open for the 2015 Sledgehammer 36-Hour Writing Contest, and we hope you'll spread the word to your members and friends. A web-ready graphic is attached here as well as a print-ready poster, so whether you reach your members online or in person, it's easy to show your support of Sledgehammer.

This year's contest will take place July 25–26, beginning with an online scavenger hunt that participants can complete from anywhere. Along the way, they'll collect four writing prompts, all of which must be incorporated into their story, which is due by midnight on Sunday. Writers can compete individually or as teams, and the contest is open to all ages.

Cash prizes will be awarded to the best short stories of the weekend in the following categories:

* Individual
* Team
* Readers' Choice
* Judge's Choice
* Youth (two prizes: elementary/middle school, high school)

Winners will also receive entry to writing-related events and the coveted golden sledgehammers. Registration is just $25 for adults and $10/$5 for youth. Visit to learn more and register.

Thank you for your support,

Ali McCart
Executive Editor
Indigo: editing, design, and more

Sledgehammer 36-Hour Writing Contest
2015 Dates: July 25–26


This Saturday, June 13th, from 1 to 3 p.m., Award-winning Historical Fiction/Adventure writer Anne Sweazy-Kulju will be signing copies of her books, including latest release, "Grog Wars," at the Safeway Store, in Tillamook (across from the Pelican Brewery Tap Room).

Grog Wars is part I of a 2-Part Epic Oregon Trail story, and has just been nominated for a Global eBook Award. The book has also taken 1st place in 's international "First Chapter" contest, in March 2013, and has been awarded three "5-Star Review" medals from *Readers' Favorite Book Reviews*. Come and visit with the author and find out why she is called the B&B Innkeeper-turned-Psychic Storyteller!


Spare Room presents

Michael Friedman
Sarah Mangold
Jeff Alessandrelli

Saturday, June 27, 7:00 pm

Mother Foucault's Bookshop*
523 SE Morrison

$5 suggested donation

Michael Friedman* is the author of the recently-published Martian Dawn & Other Novels (Little A) and two full-length books of poetry, including Species (The Figures), and four chapbooks. His work has appeared in several anthologies, including Great American Prose Poems (Scribner). Previously, he was the board chair of the Poetry Project at St. Mark's Church, and an adjunct faculty member of Naropa University's MFA writing program. He is the cofounder of the literary journal Shiny, grew up in Manhattan, and lives in Denver.

Sarah Mangold is the author of the just-released Electrical Theories of Femininity (Black Radish) and Household Mechanics (New Issues). Her most recent chapbooks include The Goddess Can Be Recognized By Her Step (dusie kollektiv) and An Antenna Called The Body (LRL Textile Editions). > From 2002-09 she edited Bird Dog, a print literary journal of innovative writing and art. She lives near Seattle.

Jeff Alessandrelli is the author of the full-length collection This Last Time Will Be the First. Other work has appeared in Denver Quarterly, DIAGRAM, Gulf Coast, Boston Review, and five chapbooks. The name of Jeff's dog is Beckett Long Snout; the name of his micro-press is Dikembe Press.


Mer/Art Productions proudly présents 'HE/ART MOVES', a unique reading, one hour event of performance, temporary art, installation, mixed media hanging sculpture, sound art, stories, and movement on Saturday, June 20 at 7:30pm.

The location is the Collins View Center, 318 SW Palatine Hill Road, Portland, OR 97219. Donation: $7-10. Refreshments, please carpool if possible. Questions: 503 777 6363 or

Artist, Meredith Dalglish, MFA, Claremont Graduate School, Claremont, CA is presenting her newest work dealing with the emotional and physical issues of the heart."This is more personal work now," she says, which follows her former large scale art installations, with performance she previously did to heal the earth, at colleges, universities nationally and internationally, and in Miami, FL, where she was also an Artist in Education. "This work was created to deal with the entropic nature and fragility of the earth," she said. Her other art performances were done internationally, and she was invited to Sao Paulo, Brazil in '97 and '98, for example where Dalglish did her sound art with temporary art performance to bring attention to the problems of the slash and burn techniques to remove the trees in the Amazon Rainforest, she knows are called "the lungs of the earth."


Community Announcements from Soapstone
622 SE 29th Avenue Portland, OR 97214 USA

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Virginia Woolf, To The River, a video by Bill Johnson

This video explores the creative life and death of the great author. Production by Bill Johnson, author of A Story is a Promise (; voice by Lizzy Shannon, author of Time Twist.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Registration Open for Willamette Writers Conference

Registration for the Willamette Writers conference August 7-9th in Portland is now open. Dozens of workshops, opportunities to meet agents, editors, and Hollywood producers, and Larry Brooks of StoryFix.


The Willamette Writers Conference starts the first Friday in August each year. Events begin on the Thursday evening prior to the official start. For 2015, the conference runs Friday, August 7th through Sunday, August 9th at the DoubleTree by Hilton in Portland, Oregon. The first Willamette Writers Conference, held in 1969, was little more than a day of workshops. It has grown to three days of workshops, panels, and lectures, as well as pitching opportunities and a number of special events. Attendance has grown rapidly in recent years and reached over 800 in 2008, with 150 staff and volunteers. Most attendees are from Oregon and Washington, but some come from as far away as Europe, Canada and Mexico. For more demographics and to advertise in our brochure and program, check out how to Advertise With Us.

The Willamette Writers Conference offers over 80 workshops, panels and speeches presented by some of the best–and best-known–professionals in the business. Attendees have the opportunity to learn from writing instructors teaching offerings that range from introductory and advanced craft, to the business of writing and responding to the challenges and opportunities presented by emerging technologies.

Each year the conference attracts about 50 well-known agents, editors, managers, producers and consultants primarily from the film and literary centers of Los Angeles and New York City looking for the next hot property from among our conference attendees. The result? Usually about 15 people acquire an agent to represent them, and three to six get published or have a script optioned at each conference. (See “Success Stories” for some recent tales of good fortune resulting from Willamette Writers Conferences.) NETWORKING Concurrent with learning and marketing, writers also have the opportunity to network and share creative energy with 600-800 fellow writers and industry professionals, all under one roof and in the heart of “Portlandia,” one of the most scenic and creatively forward-thinking cities in the country.

Friday, May 1, 2015

Soapstone Literary Announcements May 1st, 2015

These announcements of events and opportunities of interest to the writing community have been sent to you by Soapstone. Feel free to send them on to your friends and colleagues or to invite them to join the list by signing up at:

For more information about receiving the announcements or sending your own announcement to this list, go to

We never lend or sell our mailing list. If you no longer wish to be on this list, you can unsubscribe by clicking the “unsubscribe” link at the end.



Mountain Writers Series

presents a book launch for The Conversation, a new book of poems by


Saturday, May 2, 2015

3:00 PM - book-signing reception

Reading at 4:00 PM

George R. White Library and Learning Center Lobby

Concordia University • 2800 NE Liberty Street • Portland

Co-sponsored by Concordia Unversity's Art & Culture Program & open to the public.

Judith Barrington is the author of four collections of poetry. The title poem of this new collection was the winner of the Gregory O’Donoghue International poetry award. Her Lifesaving: A Memoir was the winner of the Lambda Book Award and was a finalist for the PEN/Martha Albrand Award for the Art of the Memoir. She is also the author of the best-selling Writing the Memoir: From Truth to Art. She has been a faculty member of the University of Alaska, Anchorage’s MFA Program and has taught workshops around the U.S. as well as in Britain and Spain.


The New Soapstone: Celebrating Women Writers 

We are pleased to announce that we are now offering two new opportunities for readers and writers in Oregon and Southwest Washington.

Small Grants to an Individual Woman or an Ad Hoc Group of Women These funds are to support events and study groups celebrating the work of women writers. The application process is simple and the time between applying and notification short. For the first year, Soapstone board members will serve as the grant review committee.

All events and study groups will be open to the public and offered at no charge.

Go to our website for more details:


The Shore Ode: Writing at the Edge of the World

Sitka Center for Art and Ecology, August 1/2 for more information and registration (Sitka fee: $230)

(This workshop description is on p. 25 of the online catalog.)

Walking the rim of the ocean, standing at a lakeshore, or pondering the coming-and-going sameness of a river: this familiar moment of meditation has generated some of the world’s best poems and lyric essays. It’s a kind of secret genre, full of tradition – and undiscovered potential.

We will have two days to explore this immensely attractive kind of writing. I will share inspiring “Shore Odes” both traditional and contemporary. We will take time to walk the nearby river-edge and beach, practicing observational and verbal techniques that sharpen the eye and ear. We will shape our notes into finished poems and essays, ready to astonish the world. Walking, ruminating, reading, writing... how could it not be an amazing time?

Workshop Leader David Oates has published five books of poetry and nonfiction, including Peace in Exile: Poems (Oyster River Press), winning awards including the Badonnah Award from New York's Bitterroot Poetry Journal, and the recent nonfiction prize from Northern Colorado Writers. He teaches the Wild Writers Seminars in Portland, and occasional workshops and graduate courses elsewhere in the US and Europe. The German literary journal Wortschau is featuring his poetry and prose (in English and German) in a series beginning September 2014 and continuing currently. Contact me:


St. Johns Booksellers Saturday May 9th, 2015, 3-4pm

When the parade is over and the party is on, drop by St Johns Booksellers for poetry from the Bards Deluxe. The current issue of The Bear Deluxe celebrates Poetry of Place. To that end, The Bear held a poetry contest and the nine winners have been published in issue #36. Each winner of the contest became a Bard Deluxe. Five of the "Bards" Deluxe (Laura Dunn, Megan Freshley, Heidi Greenwald, Marj Hogan, and Ross Robbins ) will read on St Johns Parade and Bizarre day, May 9, 3 p.m.- 4 p.m., at the St Johns Booksellers, 8622 N Lombard Street in the heart of St Johns.

The St. Johns Booksellers is a long time promoter of local poetry and has large collection of used and new books.


350PDX presents Kathleen Dean Moore and Rachelle McCabe performing “In a Time of Extinctions, a Call to Life,” a program interweaving Moore’s evocative words with McCabe’s expressive piano interpretation of Sergei Rachmaninoff’s “Variations on a Theme of Corelli.”

An empowering call to action in extraordinary times, the performance is Friday, June 5 at 7 p.m. at Central Lutheran Church, 1820 NE 21st Ave, Portland, 97212. Tickets ($8-$20) are available at the door and online at

The performance is a benefit for 350PDX, the local branch of a diverse national grassroots movement to address the challenge of climate change.

In this weaving of music and words, concert pianist Rachelle McCabe plays Rachmaninoff’s “Variations on a Theme from Corelli,” with its outpouring of descending chords and quiet passages giving voice to both grief and hope. Writer Kathleen Dean Moore weaves words into the silences between variations and into the music itself, exploring Earth’s sixth period of extinctions and offering a path toward saving those things we love too much to lose. Convinced of the power of music and the need for action, Moore speaks of the performance as, “art that allows us to tell the terrible truths about global warming and mass extinction in a way that enters into people’s hearts rather than breaks them.”

Performances have been met with enthusiastic ovations, as audiences are treated to a unique artistic experience that empowers them to participate in a community of caring.

Kathleen Dean Moore is a philosopher, environmental advocate and award-winning writer who speaks across the country about the moral urgency of stopping a global carbon catastrophe. Rachelle McCabe enjoys an international career as an artist-teacher and as a solo recitalist and chamber musician.


Share a Poem May 12, 6-8 p.m. Central Library, US Bank Room, 801 SW 10th Ave. downtown Portland

A new, open, Share a Poem Series for reciters, readers, and listeners will continue on the 2nd Tuesday in May (5/12 6-8p.m.) at the Central Library in the US Bank Room (first room on the right). Please share why the poem you’ve chosen appeals to you; add a poem of your own if you’d like and there’s time.

Please email John at with questions, intentions, & to receive updates.


The Oregon Book Awards & Fellowships program promotes, support and celebrates Oregon's writers.

Guidelines and applications for the 2016 Oregon Literary Fellowships, including the newly established Writers of Color Fellowship, are now online at

As part of the application for an Oregon Literary Fellowship, writers can also choose to be considered for the Writers of Color Fellowship. The goal of the Writers of Color Fellowship is to promote perspectives from a variety of cultural, ethnic and racial backgrounds, and encourage diverse writers to apply for fellowships.

Deadline for applications:

All applications are due in the Literary Arts office by June 26, 2015. Fellowship recipients will be announced in January 2016.

Application process:

Writers who apply for an Oregon Literary Fellowship who wish to have their application considered for the Writers of Color Fellowship will indicate this on an addendum to the application form. All fellowship applicants submit an application form and a writing sample. Complete guidelines are on our website at: Applicants who would like guidelines and applications emailed or mailed to them can contact Susan Denning at or 503.227.2583 ex 107. There is no charge to apply.

Selection Process:

Applications will be reviewed by a panel of out-of-state judges, except for young readers literature and drama, which each have a single judge. The judges are instructed to use the writing sample as the basis of their decisions for the selection of fellowship recipients. The judges change each year, and Literary Arts strives to select judges that represent diverse communities.

Oregon Literary Fellowships for Publishers

Fellowships are also awarded to support Oregon’s independent publishers and small presses. They are awarded to presses or magazines that demonstrate a commitment to literary publishing. The deadline for submission is June 26, 2015. Application guidelines and entry form are located at


Daedalus Books presents an evening with poets

Matthew Dickman Timmy Straw Zosia Wiatr James Yeary

Thursday, May 7th 7:00 pm Daedalus Books 2074 NW Flanders



Szybist and Hartigan to read new work at ‘Readings at the Nick’

Acclaimed authors Mary Szybist and Endi Bogue Hartigan will read from their works of poetry on Tuesday, May 5, at 7:30 p.m. in the Austin Reading room of the Jereld R. Nicholson Library at Linfield College.

Szybist is the author of “Incarnadine,” winner of the 2013 National Book Award for Poetry. According to publisher Graywolf Press, Szybist “describes the confusion and even terror of moments in which our longing for the spiritual may also be a longing for what is most fundamentally alien to us.” She is also the author of “Granted,” a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. Her poems have appeared in Ploughshares, Poetry, Best American Poetry, the Pushcart Prize Anthology, Virginia Quarterly Review and more. Szybist teaches English at Lewis and Clark College.

“Pool [5 choruses],” currently a finalist for the Oregon Book Award in poetry and winner of the 2012 Omnidawn Open Poetry Book Prize. Hartigan’s work is “acrobatic and playful,” according to Publishers Weekly, “daring readers to consider intention and arbitrariness at once.” Hartigan is also the author of “One Sun Storm,” selected for the Colorado Prize for Poetry and a finalist for the Oregon Book Award. Her work has appeared in New American Writing, VOLT, Verse, Chicago Review, Colorado Review, Tinfish and others. She is a graduate of Reed College and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop.

The reading is free and open to the public. It is sponsored by the Linfield Nicholson Library and the Linfield English Department. For more information, contact Susan Barnes Whyte at 503-883-2517,

This reading is the final event in the “Readings at the Nick” series for this academic year. The events will continue in the fall.


Franck André Jamme

A reading, in French, by the renowned French poet, with English recitation by Samiya Bashir, poet and Assistant Professor of Creative Writing, Reed College

Monday, May 4 6:30 p.m.

Reed College Chapel (Eliot Hall) 3203 SE Woodstock Blvd.

Free and open to the public

The Cooley Gallery will be open from 5:30 to 6:20 pm prior to the reading

Franck André Jamme travels to the U.S. on the occasion of his new book of poetry, To the Secret, published by La Presse books, with translations by Norma Cole. The book will be available at the reading.

Franck André Jamme has published numerous volumes of both lyric and concrete poetry as well as collaborative works with contemporary artists such as Léonie Guyer, Jaume Plensa, James Brown, Jan Voss, and Suzan Frecon. He was awarded the 2005 Grand Prix de Poésie de la Société des Gens de Lettres, and is the editor of the Pléiade edition of the complete works of René Char.

Jamme is a specialist in contemporary Indian Tantric, Brut, and tribal arts, and has curated exhibitions in Paris, San Francisco, and New York at venues including the Centre Pompidou and the Drawing Center. Siglio Press published his Tantra Song in 2012. His books translated into English include Moon Wood (Selavy Press, 2000), The Recitation of Forgetting (Black Square, 2003), Another Silent Attack (Black Square/Brooklyn Rail, 2006), and New Exercises (Wave Books, 2008). Jamme is the translator of John Ashbery's Three Poems and Ashbery is the translator of Jamme's La Récitation de l'oubli. He divides his time between Paris and Burgundy. For more information about Jamme's work please visit Siglio Press and La Presse.


Loggernaut Reading Series' 10th birthday celebration. In honor of our ten year existence, we've asked handfuls of former readers to write and read ten sentences (or lines). Readers include Justin Hocking, Pete Rock, Emily Kendal Frey, Jamalieh Haley, Michael Heald, Scott Nadelson, Sarah Bartlett, Jay Ponteri, Dan DeWeese, Robin Romm, Don Waters, Rodney Koeneke, Mary Rechner, and Nancy Rommelman. We'll have beer, wine, snacks, and a super secret musical guest!

Loggernaut's 10th Birthday Celebration
May 15th at 7pm
Independent Publishing Resource Center

1001 SE Division, Portland, Oregon


The 29th Street Writers gather in Portland, Oregon on most Saturday mornings to study writing, critique each other’s writing, and, above all, write. The group has been meeting in various configurations for over two decades.

The 29th Street Writers are a collective of diverse women writers, united in a common love for the pleasure and power of language. Writing authentically demands exposure, risk and honesty. Yet when the words land on paper, a new vision begins to emerge…one that enlightens the writer’s life and informs the larger world.

Each year they have a reading to share their work. In 2004, the group recorded a CD, titled This is the Welcome, that was born from their reading at Broadway Books that year and is a celebration of current and former.

Come and listen to readings by Amy Schutzer, Kathleen Saadat, Ila Suzanne Gray, Kathleen Haley, Elizabeth Simson Durant, Sharon Wood Wortman, Ellen Goldberg and Rudy Hansen Murray.

Wednesday, May 13 at 7pm at Tabor Space, 5441 SE Belmont, 503-238-3904. Free admission.


Broadway Books is pleased to announce that Seattle writer Megan Kruse will read from her much-lauded debut novel Call Me Home on Thursday, May 28th, at 7 pm. Call Me Home is published by Portland-based Hawthorne Books.

Call Me Home has an epic scope, braiding the stories of a family in three distinct voices: Amy and her children; Jackson, who is gay and coming of age; and younger sister Lydia. At its heart, this is a story about family, our choices and how we come to live with them, what it means to be queer in the rural West, and the changing idea of home.

Megan Kruse is a fiction and creative nonfiction writer from the Pacific Northwest. She studied creative writing at Oberlin College and earned her MFA at the University of Montana, where she was awarded a Bertha Morton scholarship. Her creative writing has appeared in Narrative Magazine, The Sun, Witness Magazine, Thumbnail Magazine, Bellingham Review, and Phoebe, among others. She lives in Seattle. This event is free and open to the public


The Milwaukie Poetry Series of the Ledding Library of Milwaukie and St. John the Evangelist are delighted to begin the First Friday poetry series readings for 2015 on Friday, May 1.

The reading will be part of the May 1 First Friday festivities, and will take place from 6:00 to 7:30 the meeting room at St. John the Evangelist church, located at 2036 SE Jefferson St.

Featured readers will be members of the Silverton Poetry Association. Their mission "is to‬ celebrate and further the art of poetry by sponsoring poetry readings, poetry classes and workshops, open mic readings, poetry publication and other poetry events and initiatives in our community." We have been talking about doing some collaborative efforts and this is a wonderful opportunity. Kelly Morehouse, the President, and several ‪members of the Association will be there reading their ‬own work or their favorite poems.

The featured readers will read for approximately 35 Minutes.

An Open Mic session will follow for all who wish to read their own work, or some of their favorite poems. To get on the list to read ahead of time, please contact Tom Hogan at 503-819-8367 or


David Abel at the Chinese Garden, postponed due to illness, has now been rescheduled.

Peach Blossom Poetry Series at the Chinese Garden

Saturday, May 9 3:30 pm Lan Su Chinese Garden -- Scholar's Hall 239 NW Everett

Free with Garden membership or regular admission Copies of a new broadside produced by the garden will be available gratis at the reading. I hope that you can make it!


Literary Agent Chip MacGregor and Author Leslie Gould Speak at Willamette Writers May Membership Meeting

On Tuesday May 5th at the Old Church in downtown Portland, Willamette Writers presents a special program with literary agent Chip MacGregor and best-selling author Leslie Gould.

The topic of the meeting is Why You Still Need An Agent (and Why An Agent Still Needs You). Chip and Leslie plan to share their insights on what makes for a great professional relationship between author and agent.

Doors open at 6:00 p.m., with time for Chip and Leslie to answer questions informally; the meeting presentation begins at 7:00 p.m. Attendance is free to members of Willamette Writers and full time students under 25; non-members pay $10.


Shawn Aveningo of The Poetry Box® is proud to announce the release of Poeming Pigeons – Poems about Birds, and we invite all of you to join us for our Portland book launch celebration featuring: Annie Lighthart, Brenda Taulbee, Carolyn Martin, Christa Kaainoa, Douglas Spangle, Eileen McGurn, Irene Bloom, Jennifer Kemnitz, Lynn Knapp, 'M', M.F. McAuliffe, Matt Amott, Michael Shay, Pattie Palmer-Baker, Shawn Aveningo, Steve Williams and Tricia Knoll.

Poeming Pigeons Book Launch Celebration
Monday, May 4th, 2015

Ford Food & Drink
2505 SE 11th Ave (at Division)
Portland, Oregon 97202

Poeming Pigeons is a curated collection of poetry from around the world (104 Poets Representing 5 Continents, 11 Countries and 22 States) -- over 100 poems expressing our fascination, fear, frustration and undeniable connection to our fine, feathered friends. Between the pages of this anthology, you will discover stories that make you wonder, cry, laugh, cringe and inspire -- all through poems about birds. For more information, and to order your copy, go to


Each year Gertrude Press publishes two chapbooks: one fiction and one poetry. These beautiful, perfect bound books include a unique cover in a limited press run. The winners of our annual contest will also receive $250, 50 copies of the printed book, and 2 e-book files (MOBI and EPUB). Submit your work for consideration!

Poetry Chapbook Guidelines:

• Submit 25-30 pages of poetry, either online or via surface mail.
• Indicate which poems have been previously published and by whom. Unpublished poems are welcome.
• Poetry may be of any subject matter and writers from all backgrounds are encouraged to submit.
• Include a cover letter and SASE for notification. Sorry, we do not return manuscripts.
• Indicate how you learned of the contest in your cover letter.
• Contest is blind judged. Please DO NOT include any identifying information on your manuscript.
• Include a $15 submission fee payable to Gertrude Press; online submissions are $17 to cover printing, ink, etc.
• Submissions accepted beginning September 15, 2014 until May 15, 2015 (postmark deadline).

Fiction Chapbook Guidelines:

• Submit 25-30 pages of short fiction or a self-contained novel excerpt, either online or via surface mail.
• Submissions should be set in 12pt font and double-spaced.
• Indicate which selections have been previously published and by whom. Unpublished pieces are welcome.
• Fiction may be of any subject matter and writers from all backgrounds are encouraged to submit.
• Include a cover letter and SASE for notification. Sorry, we do not return manuscripts.
• Contest is blind judged. Please DO NOT include any identifying information on your manuscript.
• Indicate how you learned of the contest in your cover letter.
• Include a $15 submission fee payable to Gertrude Press; online submissions are $17 to cover printing, ink, etc.
• Submissions accepted beginning September 15, 2014 until May 15, 2015 (postmark deadline).

Writer Compensation:

$250 cash award

50 complimentary copies of the chapbook

Your chapbook will also be published in EPUB and MOBI format for distribution as an electronic publication through our web site. Chapbooks will be distributed to subscribers, libraries, and bookstores carrying Gertrude, the Press’ annual literary journal.

You can purchase past chapbooks online.


Portland State University's graduate program in Book Publishing is excited to announce the next installment of its Transmit Culture lecture series. Please join us for a conversation with Georgia Frances King, editor of Kinfolk, facilitated by Julie Falk, executive director of Bitch Media.

With a circulation of 75,000, Kinfolk has grown into a global brand with a distinct aesthetic. Based in Portland, the quarterly lifestyle magazine produces international editions in Japan, China, Korea, and Russia, and organizes monthly community gathering events that take place around the world. Julie Falk of Bitch Media will interview Kinfolk editor Georgia Frances King about the magazine's success since its inaugural 2011 issue.

Bitch Media is a Portland-based nonprofit organization that has been publishing the magazine Bitch: Feminist Response to Pop Culture since 2006. Julie Falk was hired as Bitch Media's first Executive Director in June 2009.

Scheduled for May 14, 2015, “Transmit Culture: A Conversation with Georgia Frances King” will begin at 7:30 p.m. in room 102 of the Shattuck Hall Annex at 1914 SW Park Ave, Portland, OR 97201. You can RSVP at the Facebook event (, though it's not required.

Transmit Culture: A Series of Conversations about Publishing is hosted by the graduate program in Book Publishing at PSU and Ooligan Press, a nonprofit trade publishing house staffed by students in the graduate program. The lecture series features professionals from all areas of the publishing industry. Lectures are free and open to the public, with a suggested donation of $5–10.


Broadway Books is pleased to announce that Kirsten Rian will read from her new book of poems, Life Expectancy, on Thursday, May 21st.

Rian has spent twenty-five years as a writer and multidisciplinary artist. She is widely published internationally as an essayist and poet and is the author of two books. Rian is the poetry editor at The Oregonian, a writing and literature professor, and the recipient of an Artist Fellowship from the Oregon Arts Commission and project grants from the Regional Arts and Culture Council.

Also active in photography for twenty-five years, Rian’s other career is as an independent curator and picture editor working with some of the world’s most accomplished photographers, publishers, and institutions. She has coordinated more than 375 exhibitions, and picture-edited or written for more than eighty books and catalogs. She recently completed curating an exhibition of images from the vast William Stafford archives for the 2014 William Stafford centennial celebration at Lewis and Clark College, and a digital storytelling project for Notre Dame.

This event is free and open to the public.


Rebecca Lawton Named Winner of Inaugural Waterston Desert Writing Prize

Her winning submission, “The Oasis This Time,” was chosen by the judges for its quality of writing and meaningful contribution to the body of desert literature. Lawton will be honored at a June reading and reception at the High Desert Museum in Bend. She will also receive a $1,000 cash award and a four-week fellowship at PLAYA in Summer Lake, Oregon.

Lawton’s submission focused on California palm oases and their role as barometers of the effects of falling groundwater in communities around the American West. The cash award will help to support her continuing field work on the subject. “We were delighted to receive such a strong response to our call for submissions in this inaugural year of the Prize. The judges were challenged to choose from the diverse range of subject matter and proposals, as well as excellent writing,” said Ellen Waterston, president of the board of directors of the Waterston Desert Writing Prize.

Underscoring the quality of submissions, three applicants were named finalists: Nathaniel Brodie, Oregon, “Entangled in the Land;” Maya Kapoor, Arizona, “The Familiar and Wild;” and Caroline Treadway, Colorado, “Step On This: Desert Ants.” The finalists are invited to attend the June reception and offer a brief reading.

The Waterston Desert Writing Prize was established to honor creative and literary nonfiction that illustrates artistic excellence, sensitivity to place, and desert literacy, as well as to position the desert not only as setting, but also as subject. Inspired by author and poet Ellen Waterston’s love of the high desert of Central Oregon, a region that has been her muse for more than 30 years, the Waterston Desert Writing Prize recognizes the vital role deserts play worldwide in the ecosystem and the human narrative.

The prize is funded from an endowment managed by the Oregon Community Foundation, with the impetus for the creation of the endowment provided by actor Sam Waterston, after whom the prize is named. As the endowment for the prize grows, so will the annual prize amount. Tax deductible donations to the Waterston Desert Writing Prize can be mailed to PO Box 640, Bend, OR 97709.

Submissions for the 2016 Waterston Desert Writing Prize will be accepted starting January 1, 2016. For more information about the Waterston Desert Writing Prize, visit


The “Compose” Creative Writing Conference, May 2, 2015

The Clackamas Community College English Department presents its annual writing conference, Compose, on May 2, 2015, featuring workshops for writers in all genres — from fiction and poetry, to songwriting, digital storytelling, and more. Presenters and special guests include screenwriters Gill Dennis (Walk the Line) and Rafael Alvarez (The Wire); National Book Award-winning poet Mary Szybist; Diana Schutz of Dark Horse Comics; Jeff Baker, film and literary critic for The Oregonian; and award-winning authors Willy Vlautin and Kevin Sampsell. Workshops are $5 each, with lunch and keynote address available for $10.

Storytelling Now is a free evening seminar that will follow the Compose workshops. It features Mr. Alvarez, Diana Schutz, Gill Dennis (Screenwriter for Walk the Line), and J. Bills and Damon Redmond (both videogame designers) in a discussion of the art and craft of storytelling in the digital age.

See the complete schedule and sign up for both events on the CCC Compose Eventbrite page or the CCC English Department website,


Meg McHutchison Woven: New Monotypes

Opening Reception
Thursday, May 7th
5:00 - 8:00 pm

Exhibition runs May 4-30

margareta waterman


Saturday, May 16th
2:00 pm

Glyph Cafe & Arts Space
804 NW Couch St. - corner of NW Park
Portland, OR 97209

Free, open to the public, all ages.

Meg McHutchison is an interdisciplinary artist and narrative designer. Her visual work in monotype is a meditative practice based in energy and flow. Her current exhibition, Woven, features dynamic prints whose markings whorl and spin out from the page. The work is alive, and like flames of fire or crystalline ice the pieces lick and flicker, mesmerize and beckon.

margareta waterman, a grande dame of Pacific Northwest poetry, celebrates her new book, denouement (nine muses books, 2015). The collection features monotypes by Meg McHutchison and JC Schlechter and its nine sections weave together the themes of a lifetime's passionate visions, face death and life both, recognize the pain and the glory, honor the tenderness and whisper the secrets.

Native Oregonian, interdisciplinary artist JC Schlechter's work is primarily focused on the conversation that evolves from considering the natural resources of the Pacific Northwest.

On view in the cafe’s shadow box tables:

McHutchison’s & Schlechter’s original monotypes for denouement, excerpt broadsides and ephemera from the creative process. Vitrine installation runs all month.


If Not For Kidnap presents

Michael Morse, Tod Marshall, Kimberly Burwick, Andrew Michael Roberts, & Broc Rosell

Friday, May 1
7:30 pm

Ristretto Roasters

555 NE Couch Street



Community Announcements from Soapstone by soapstone

622 SE 29th Avenue Portland, OR 97214 USA