May at MWAA: Put Your Traveling Pen to Paper

Peat_O'NeilMore of us are traveling more frequently these days, heading to exotic locales and experiencing other countries and cultures, often in surprising and unplanned ways. Those adventures are ripe for use in freelance travel articles and other stories.

Long-time D.C. journalist, author, and freelance writer L. Peat O’Neil joins MWAA on Wednesday, May 17th to lead us in a hands-on writing workshop to move “From Journal Entry to Travel Article”. Peat will have us work from a 400-word raw text to shape an engaging and appealing travel story. Along the way, she’ll give us some hints about what it takes to establish a travel-writing brand.

About the Speaker: Most recently, L. Peat O’Neil is the author of Pyrenees Pilgrimage, Walking Across France, published in 2010, an account of her solo walk on the Camino Frances from the Atlantic Ocean to the Mediterranean Sea along the Pyrenees Mountains. She is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society. Other books include Travel Writing, A Guide to Research, Writing and Selling and Travel Writing, See the World. Sell the Story, and her short fiction has appeared in a variety of journals and anthologies. She wrote for the Washington Post for almost 20 years, and has taught writing seminars at a number of universities, including current writing seminars at the Writer’s Center.

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This and all meetings of the Annapolis chapter of the Maryland Writers Association is held the third Wednesday of the month starting at 6:30 p.m. in Room 205 of the Maryland Hall, 801 Chase Street, Annapolis, MD. Meetings are free to MWA members and all first-time attendees; all others may pay $5. To find out more about MWA, visit the website at: http://marylandwriters.org/index.php?bypassCookie=1

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April at MWAA: Is YA Fiction Your Genre?

Young adult (YA) fiction is one of the hottest segments of the publishing market these days, but writing effectively for this audience demands an approach that in many ways makes writing YA more challenging that writing for either adults or children.

headshot-2015-caroline-bockJoin us on Wednesday, April 19th to learn more about what it takes to write successfully for a growing audience of increasingly discerning and sophisticated YA readers. Noted DC author Caroline Bock discusses what it is that draws her to YA fiction, the challenges inherent in the genre and what she does to overcome them, the path to publication, and some of what she’s learned as a successful YA author.

About the speaker: Caroline Bock is the author of the critically acclaimed young adult novels Lie and Before My Eyes from St. Martin’s Press. Her short fiction is included in the 2017 District Lines IV and in the 2016 Abundant Grace anthologies. Read more about Caroline on her website, http://www.carolinebock.com.

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This and all meetings are open to the public and free to MWA members and first-time guests. All others may pay $5.00. Annual dues to MWA are $40.00 and include other benefits on top of monthly attendance. MWAA meets the third Wednesday of every month at 6:30pm in Room 205 at Maryland Hall, located at 801 Chase Street, Annapolis, MD 21401.

March at MWAA: Inside a Book Review Site

What does it take to get a review from a well-respected review site? How do you get that killer blurb for your bookcover? Join us March 15th when Senior Editor of the Washington Independent Review of Books (WIRoB) Carrie Callahan joins MWAA to give us the skinny on how the operation works, how they select books for review, and what you can do to improve your chances of getting that coveted review. (HINT: Understand the calendar for pre-publication reviews!)

carrie-headshots-2016-21About the Speaker: Carrie Callaghan is the senior editor with the Washington Independent Review of Books. She is also a historical fiction writer, and her short stories have been published in Silk Road, The MacGuffin, and multiple other literary journals around the country. She lives in Maryland with her family.  Follow her on Twitter @carriecallaghan, and you can find her blog at http://www.carriecallaghan.com/blog.

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This and all meetings are open to the public and free to MWA members and first-time guests. All others may pay $5.00. Annual dues to MWA are $40.00 and include other benefits on top of monthly attendance. MWAA meets the third Wednesday of every month at 6:30pm in Room 205 at Maryland Hall, located at 801 Chase Street, Annapolis, MD 21401.

February at MWAA: In the Recording Studio (your prep needed!)

We don’t normally ask that people tell us ahead of time whether they plan to come to a meeting, but this one is special, because on 15 February 2017, we’ll be recording!

“Your Words, Your Voice”: In the Recording Studio with Izolda Trakhtenberg

You asked for it, and we’re making it happen! Participants in Izolda’s “Speak Your Words” workshop said they’d love the opportunity to record a brief snippet of their work. To make this happen for the 15 February session, Izolda needs you to send her your selection in advance, so she can put it onto the teleprompter. All the instructions are in the attached PDF below, with a summary of instructions below that.

your-words-your-voice

Instructions for providing your selection:

To prepare, please select five key lines out of your story (or a short poem) that you
want to record. Please limit your selection to five lines. It will take longer than you believe to record just these few lines.

You will want a pivotal moment but one that doesn’t give away any spoilers. When choosing your material, try for a scene with a couple of characters talking. Practice the lines of your possible choices a few times before you make your final selection. You want to be excited about what you read so it sounds fresh in your recording.

Once you choose your lines:
1. Please copy and paste them into a Word (or other word processing)
document.
2. Make sure you put the title of your work at the top of the Word document.
3. Select Save As: and save the document as a text file (with a .TXT extension).
a. Save the document as “[YourFullName].TXT
4. Send the file to Izolda@gmail.com so I can load it on my teleprompter for you to
use when we record.

IzoldaDualColorHeadShotAbout Izolda: With over twenty years of experience working with clients like NASA, the National Geographic Society, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Izolda Trakhtenberg specializes in narration, audiobooks, foreign languages (Russian and Spanish), characters, and accents. She just completed her most recent audiobook project, “The Ghost Next Door: A Love Story” for best-selling author Ginny Baird. Her next audiobook projects will be her own two books, “The Fiddler’s Talisman” and “Life Elements: Transform Your Life with Earth, Air, Fire, and Water.”

She recently narrated online coursework for Project Head Start and the NASA movie, “Breathable: NASA Monitors Our Changing Air Quality.” She is also a music teacher and has a great deal of experience teaching people how to sing and how to speak in public. She presents her “Work in Harmony” team building and creativity workshops to corporations all over the country. She helps participants develop the confidence to communicate, build community, and share their work in a meaningful and masterful way. Visit her website at http://IzoldaT.com

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This and all meetings are open to the public and free to MWA members and first-time guests. All others may pay $5.00. Annual dues to MWA are $40.00 and include other benefits on top of monthly attendance. MWAA meets the third Wednesday of every month at 6:30pm in Room 205 at Maryland Hall, located at 801 Chase Street, Annapolis, MD 21401.

January at MWAA: The Art of Memoir

b-morrisonBecause we know your resolution for 2017 is to write more, you’ll absolutely want to join us on 18 January for this  inspirational discussion with award-winning writer Barbara Morrison, a pillar of the Baltimore writing community.

Memoir is perhaps the most popular genre for emerging writers, and many of our members are either in the midst of, or plan to undertake, memoir projects. Barbara will discuss some of the critical elements of effective memoir, and help us to look for the larger story that allows us to connect with a wide reading community.

About the speaker: Writing under the name B. Morrison, Barbara is the author of a memoir, Innocent: Confessions of a Welfare Mother, and two poetry collections, Terrarium and Here at Least. Barbara’s award-winning work has been published in anthologies and magazines. She provides editing services and conducts writing workshops. For more information, visit her website and blog at http://www.bmorrison.com.

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This and all meetings are open to the public and free to MWA members and first-time guests. All others may pay $5.00. Annual dues to MWA are $40.00 and include other benefits on top of monthly attendance. MWAA meets the third Wednesday of every month at 6:30pm in Room 205 at Maryland Hall, located at 801 Chase Street, Annapolis, MD 21401.

October at MWAA: Hometown Boy Rafael Alvarez Talks About His Writing Life

MWAA is proud to welcome Rafael Alvarez on Wednesday, October 19th at 6:30 p.m.

rafael-alvarezJournalist, author, screenwriter, member of the Seafarers International Union of North America: Rafael Alvarez has done it all, and he’ll be sharing some of those experiences with us.

Alvarez is a tireless chronicler of the under-represented, roving the streets of Baltimore with a disposable camera to collect faces and stories that emerge unpredictably throughout his work.

Come hear one of Baltimore’s favorite sons talk about working the city desk for the Baltimore Sun back in its heyday; writing his memoirs (Hometown Boy and Storyteller), short story collections (The Fountain of Highlandtown, Orlo and Leini, Tales from the Holy Land), and essays (Crabtown); and dealing with the unique–and often maddening–demands placed on Hollywood’s writers for large and small screens.

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This and all meetings are open to the public and free to MWA members and first-time guests. All others may pay $5.00. Annual dues to MWA are $40.00 and include other benefits on top of monthly attendance. MWA meetings meet the third Wednesday of every month at 6:30 p.m. in Room 205 of the Maryland Hall, located at 801 Chase Street, Annapolis, MD 21401.

September at MWAA: The Energy of Poetry with Grace Cavalieri

NOTE: The September 21st meeting will be held in Room 308 of the Maryland Hall.

As the host of radio’s “The Poet and the Poem” for the last 39 years, poet and playwright Grace Cavalieri has the distinction of having interviewed the  largest number of sitting poets laureate. MWA Annapolis is proud to host Grace for a poetry workshop at the September 21st meeting. She describes the workshop this way:

The poem asks for intuition, sensuality, thinking, and feeling. But this is not on our minds when we write. We only wish to recall a moment in time where someone is the hero of his/her own story. Who are the characters worth writing about in our lives? We’ll see them in detail before entering the poem: where they’re going, what they want. Your poem will catch them in a tiny moment of this journey. In this workshop, we’ll try samples of the poem through circumstance and story. Discover the elements of poetry. In this session you’ll see that YOU ARE WRITING POETRY. And together, we will find the energy that allows this magnificent journey.

Be sure to bring your laptop, tablet, or pen and paper!

Grace Cavalieri, June, 2014. Photo by Dan Murano Adobe RGB converted to sRGB.
Grace Cavalieri, June, 2014. Photo by Dan Murano.

About the Speaker: Grace Cavalieri’s new book is WITH (Somondoco Press 2016.) She’s the author of several books and produced plays, the most recent of which is, “Anna Nicole: Blonde Glory.” (Theatre for the New City, NYC 2012.) She celebrates 39 years on public radio with “The Poet and The Poem” now recorded at The Library of Congress. Grace’s career includes a co-founder of WPFW-FM; after that, Associate Director for Children’s Programming, PBS; and then a Senior Media Program Officer, NEH. She’s the founder of two poetry presses in DC, still thriving, and is presently the poetry columnist for The Washington Independent Review of Books. Grace was awarded the 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award from Washington Independent Review, and has also received the George Garrett Award from AWP for Service to Literature, the Allen Ginsberg, Paterson Award, Bordighera, and Columbia Poetry Awards, a Pen Fiction Award, and CPB’s Silver Medal.

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This and all meetings are open to the public and free to MWA members and first-time guests. All others may pay $5.00. Annual dues to MWA are $40.00 and include other benefits on top of monthly attendance. MWA meetings meet the third Wednesday of every month at 6:30pm at Maryland Hall. Maryland Hall is located at 801 Chase Street, Annapolis, MD 21401.

August at MWAA: Bringing Local History to Life with Lauren Silberman

lauren SilbermanJoin us on Wednesday, 17 August 2016 as local author Lauren Silberman takes us on a journey through her work to capture the quirky stories of local Maryland history. Lauren plans to share the research methods she uses, such as networking/crowdsourcing, databases, primary vs. secondary sources, bibliographies, googling, interviews, how much can be found for free, and determining the academic value of a source.

About the Speaker: Lauren R. Silberman is the author of local histories, including Wild Women of Maryland: Grit and Gumption in the Free State (History Press, 2015), Wicked Baltimore: Charm City Sin and Scandal (History Press, 2011), and The Jewish Community of Baltimore (Arcadia Publishing, 2008). She serves as the deputy director of Historic London Town and Gardens, a 23-acre museum and gardens just outside of Annapolis, MD. Previously, she was a program officer for the American Alliance of Museums in Washington, DC and the education and program coordinator for the Jewish Museum of Maryland in Baltimore, MD. She has served on the boards of the Small Museum Association and Friends of the Greenbelt Museum. She has a B.A. in painting and art history from George Washington University and has completed graduate work towards a MSM in Management with a specialization in Nonprofit and Association Management from University of Maryland, University College. Currently she lives in Greenbelt with her husband and a forthcoming son. Learn more about her at www.lsilberman.com.

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This and all meetings are open to the public and free to MWA members and first-time guests. All others may pay $5.00. Annual dues to MWA are $40.00 and include other benefits on top of monthly attendance. MWA meetings meet the third Wednesday of every month at 6:30pm in room 205 at Maryland Hall, located at 801 Chase Street, Annapolis, MD 21401.