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WRITERS IN PROGRESS - Spring Reading - May 11

Celebrate the wonderful work of our writers this spring! Join us for an evening of readings by Susan McKenna, Daphne Thompson Addabbo, Robyn Coady, and Marie Westburg. Refreshments to follow the reading.
May 11th, 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Writers in Progress
221 Pine Street #359
Florence, MA 01062



Thursday, May 16, 6 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

Anger, frustration, humor, disbelief, belief, Hope…spill it all out.
AND eat pizza. Free!
Workshop led by Alice Barrett. RSVP alice.barrett1@gmail.com

429 Main Street, Ashfield, MA

Sponsored by Missions and Social Justice Committee

Workshops & Weekend Retreats at Patchwork Farm

New Dates for Spring & Summer Workshops and Weekend Retreats with Patricia Lee Lewis at Patchwork Farm Retreat

Sign up soon to save yourself a place!  Patricia has been leading writing retreats at Patchwork Farm Retreat for over 25 years. She celebrates our relationship to the earth as sacred, to writing as a way of finding what is deepest within us, and to teaching writing as a participatory, supportive endeavor. Jump start your writing and find support and engagement with your fellow writers.

  MORE at http://writingretreats.org

Woven Word Young Writers:  Now Enrolling For Semester II Workshops

Woven Word Young Writers:  Now Enrolling For Semester II Workshops and Summers on the Houseboat.   Every person has stories and poems that belong to them alone.  Woven Word helps young writers unlock this core material.  Together we build a tight community of writers.  We step away from school assignments and create a powerful space for young writers to explore poetry and fiction on their own terms. Based in Hadley, Woven Word Young Writers offers a variety of workshops for upper elementary - high school writers, including after-school workshops, home school options, and sessions of Summers on the Houseboat.     Woven Word Young Writers director is Lynn Bowmaster.  Lynn has more than 20 years experience leading workshops for youth.  Before directing Woven Word Young Writers, Lynn was a community organizer, and staff of the Amherst Writers & Artists.


Contact Lynn at Lrbowmaster@gmail.com

or www.wovenwordyoungwriters.weebly.com for more information.

Nerissa Nields writing it up in the garden




  • Regular, 10-week Courses
  • Generative (first draft) writing
  • Manuscript group (by invitation only)
  • Spring 2019
  • Northampton, MA

Tuesday afternoons: 12:30-2:30pm starting April 2, 2019
Wednesday afternoons: 12:30-2:30pm starting April 3, 2019
Wednesday evenings: 7-9pm starting April 3, 2019
Thursday evenings: 7-9pm starting April 4, 2019

Thursday manuscript group (Weeding & Pruning): 3:30-5pm by application only. To apply, please send a letter and a 300 word sample of writing to Nerissa@nields.com.

Please visit here for up to date listings

Pioneer Valley Writers Workshop

Please visit here for up to date listings

Writing Across Culture, with Elletra Pauletto

One of the first rules of writing is to write what you know. But what happens when we attempt to go beyond these boundaries and explore new ways of thinking, talking and living? How do we portray a different culture, race, gender or ethnicity--something that is essentially unfamiliar to us--in a way that is respectful, authentic and whole? In this class we will read authors who have attempted to put themselves in others' shoes, or who are writing about cultures that are not their own, and discuss whether they have done so in a way that is sensitive or appropriate to the story. Special attention will be given to identifying stereotyping and cultural blindness in our own writing, and learning how avoid falling into the sometimes subtle trap of romanticizing the exotic.

Saturday, March 16th, 9 a.m. - 12 p.m. ($75)

Revision Strategies for Novels and Memoir, with Randy Susan Meyers

Revision can be overwhelming. Structural techniques and tools—ranging from effective computer programs to editing checklists, to judicious use of your three-hole-punch—can help marry your left and right brain. The workshop will cover three areas of revision: concrete organizational ideas, strategies for reading and editing your own work, and managing and editing manuscripts with computer tools. The workshop will also include discussion of evaluating and incorporating critique. In-class exercises will help sharpen revision techniques. Handouts will include strategy sheets, suggested readings, and examples of computer-generated tools.

Saturday, March 30th, 9:30 a.m. - 4:30 a.m. ($150)

Writing from Life, with Emily Lackey

Lorrie Moore once said that, “for the writer, the facts of life are like ingredients in a kitchen cupboard.” The cake we make is the story we end up telling. “That,” she says, “is how life and art are related…” No matter what we write, our experiences, observations perceptions and inclinations are the greatest inspiration and fodder for our work. In this weekly generative workshop, writers will receive a series of prompts to help them tap into their deepest material and move them into a sustained period of writing. Afterward, we’ll have the opportunity to share our work and receive thoughtful feedback from the group.  Weekly craft tips!

Wednesdays, 6-9pm; 8-week Spring workshop begins April 2nd ($325)

Young Adult Fiction, with Morgan Sheehan-Bubla

Are you curious about the growing world of young adult fiction? Do you think you may have a YA novel in you? This info-packed half-day workshop will bust a few myths, and provide a solid introduction to the YA craft. Through writing prompts and discussion you’ll leave this workshop with the start of a story and a kick-ass main character. This workshop is open to teen and adult writers. Why not write what you love to read?

Saturday, April 13th, 9 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Dialogue Intensive, with Emily Lackey

Effective dialogue is the linchpin of successful scene-writing.  Dialogue can propel a story forward, reveal character, increase narrative tension: in short, dialogue done well engages readers like no other craft element. Yet, for almost all writers, writing compelling and authentic dialogue is one of the biggest hurdles. In this half-day intensive, writers will look closely at the elements of dialogue that make for effective scene work. Through exercises and examples, writers will learn how to craft dialogue that is purposeful, builds character, and develops the subtext that gives their scenes life. Participants should feel free to bring work that is already in progress, but writers of all levels and genres are welcome!

Saturday, April 20th, 9 a.m. - 12 p.m. ($75)

Writing and Pitching the Nonfiction Article, with Kenneth Rosen

Getting published in a magazine takes perseverance, insight, advanced planning, and above all: patience. From Front-of-Book columns to Back-of-Book essays, from longform feature articles to book proposals and more, this five-week masterclass will aim to teach students how to conceive, workshop, and pitch both fiction and nonfiction writing to regional and national publications. The end of the masterclass will focus on book writing techniques and scheduling, including how to author query letters and book proposals. The masterclass will include plenty of in-class writing exercises and free writing time during which students can opt to discuss projects one-on-one with the instructor to home their final drafts. Come prepared with ideas galore and a healthy appetite for quiet writing time.

Mondays 6 p.m. - 9 p.m.; 5-week spring workshop begins April 29th ($225)


Are you looking for a summer writing retreat in a beautiful place?

New Dates for Spring & Summer Workshops and Weekend Retreats 

with Patricia Lee Lewis at Patchwork Farm Retreat

Sign up soon to save yourself a place!  Patricia has been leading writing retreats at Patchwork Farm Retreat for over 25 years. She celebrates our relationship to the earth as sacred, to writing as a way of finding what is deepest within us, and to teaching writing as a participatory, supportive endeavor. Jump start your writing and find support and engagement with your fellow writers.

MORE at http://writingretreats.org

 and I’ve attached a photo

Writing retreat from April 25th - 28th at Kripalu -- $200 discount offered to all Straw Dog Members!

Writing as a Sacred Practice: The Berkshires, MA

 Weekend at the Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health in Western Mass with yoga classes, writing workshops, and time for reflection. We'll be having daily lectures about sacred writing from Harvard Divinity School professor Dr. Rev. Stephanie Paulsell and workshops led by Vanessa Zoltan from the hit podcast Harry Potter & the Sacred Text.

Drawing on women’s writing from the Middle Ages to the present, we will learn new writing practices that help us move past the fear and torpor that often keep us from putting our pen to the page. By putting existing work, like Virginia Woolf's writing, in conversation with our own lives, we hope to make a framework for our own creativity to thrive. You can find out more information about the weekend here.


Mention Straw Dog in the "Where did you hear about us?" question on the registration form, the $200 discount will apply.  email us here for any questions :  info@notsorryproductions.com

Furnished two-bedroom house in Ashfield, MA, available for your writing retreat!

Peaceful, secluded hilltop setting with mountain views, surrounded by forests, fields and walking trails. Three miles to breakfast at Elmer’s Store in Ashfield and ten-minute drive to the food co-op, shops and restaurants in Shelburne Falls. Available for mid-week, weekend, or week-long rentals.

Please contact Deborah Dill at deedah31@aol.com for more information.


Looking for an Editor

For my book, Slaying the Dragon: Overcoming Life's Challenges and
Achieving Your Goals. This is an educational/self-help hybrid book for
the general public, featuring the research-supported cutting edge in
healing from psychological trauma. Please contact Ricky Greenwald:

Winner of 2018 New Women's Voices Chapbook Competion - Libby Maxey!

THE WINNER of the 2018 New Women’s Voices Chapbook Competition is Libby Maxey!
Libby Maxey has a BA in English from Whitman College and an MA in medieval studies from Cornell University. She is a senior editor with the online journal Literary Mama, where she has been a part of the Literary Reflections department since 2012. She also does editorial work for Amherst College. She reviews poetry for The Mom Egg Review and Solstice, and her own poems have appeared in Tule Review, Mezzo Cammin, Crannóg, Think, Kestrel, and elsewhere. Her nonliterary activities include singing classical repertoire and mothering two sons. She lives with her family in Western Massachusetts.


The Art of Rain Poetry 

The Emily Dickinson Museum is seeking submissions from poets who wish to have a short poem featured in our public art project, The Art of Rain Poetry during Massachusetts ArtWeek. Poems will be applied to pavement using a non-toxic, temporary, invisible paint that reveals itself when the pavement is wet. From April 26 to May 5, watch poetry come to life in downtown Amherst when it rains!

Call for submissions: Released March 28, 2019

Submissions are due: Thursday, April 11, 2019, by 5 PM.

For more information visit the project webpage at www.emilydickinsonmuseum.org/RainPoetry.

Writer in Residence


Do You Want to Publish?

If you’re ready to push the envelope and write poems that publishers will take seriously I’m offering one-on-one tutorials. I’m a working poet with a wide publication. I offer rigorous and experienced feedback. The first session is free, and $60 per meeting after that. If you are far away and can only respond by email, my fee is $50 per meeting. Note, I also do full manuscript critiques. They will be priced differently, according to how long they are and how much work needs to be done on the poems.

Bio:  Doug Anderson’s first book of poems, The Moon Reflected Fire, won the Kate Tufts Discovery Award.  His second, Blues for Unemployed Secret Police, a grant from the Academy of American Poets. His third book, Horse Medicine, was published by Barrow Street in 2015. He has won awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, The Massachusetts Cultural Council, Poets & Writers, and other funding organizations. His poems have appeared in Ploughshares, Field, The Massachusetts Review, the Southern Review, Poetry, Poetry Ireland Review, and other journals, magazines and anthologies. He has written plays, fiction, and his memoir, Keep Your Head Down, was published by W. W. Norton in 2009. He has taught in the MFA programs at Bennington College and Pacific University of Oregon.


Manuscript Review by D M Gordon

Diana GordonWant your writing to be the best it can be? Aching to be published? Thinking of an MFA? Why not work with an individual editor first. I’m less expensive than a low-residency program, with more focused, extensive attention. I work with post-MFA grads towards publication, poetry, and prose, as well as writers first seeking to share their work. From query letters to self-publication, we can discuss your immediate goals and how to achieve them. A prize-winning poet and fiction writer, and an experienced, respectful editor in multiple genres, I’d love to talk with you.

Visit my website at www.dmgordoneditorial.com for more information, then write to me, Diana Gordon, at dmgordon@comcast.net.

SGCG Illustration

Tattoo design, book illustration, and art commissions by SGCG Illustration, based in Northampton, MA. Specializing in animal characters and horror. 10+ years experience in digital and traditional art! I’d love to draw you something.sgcgillustration.weebly.com

Consultation w/ Gail Thomas

Poet and teacher Gail Thomas is available for individual consultation on your poetry submissions, manuscripts and residency applications. With more than 40 years of publishing and teaching experience, Gail offers feedback that not only focuses on your writing goals, but also strengthens your craft.

Contact her at gailthomaspoet@gmail.com    Website: http://www.gailthomaspoet.com/

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Events, Readings, Workshops, "Looking for..." or Services can be posted The Straw Dog Bulletin Board

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