Free event for writers

Dateline: Mon 20 Apr 2009

Thanks to a reader, friend and former Indianapolis Star writer who sent the following info about a confab organized by the Writerss Center -- this is especially good news, because last I had heard, the center was in financial hot water.

But this sounds like a healthy and vigorous event -- all the moreso, with lots of support from the writers in this community:

"The Writers' Center of Indiana presents:

Clowes Craft Lecture Series


with speaker *David Shumate*

No Rules, No Maps

Monday, April 20, 2009

7 p.m.

Indianapolis Art Center Library

820 E. 67th Street Indpls., IN 46220


and made possible by a grant from The Allen Whitehill Clowes Foundation, Inc.

David Shumate is the author of three collections of prose poems and the

recipient of numerous literary awards, including a 2009 NEA Poetry


"I have woven a parachute out of everything broken."

William Stafford

Dear Members and Friends of the Writers Center of Indiana-

Please plan to join us-and bring a friend (or five)-for this first in

our new series of free lectures on the craft of writing! I guarantee a

stimulating evening that will enrich your understanding of the creative

process and provide the opportunity to connect with other Indianapolis

writers-and I also want to remind you that, in these difficult times for

the arts, it is especially important for all of us to come out and

support the kind of programs we value.

Funders look at numbers! The larger our audiences are, the greater case

we have for convincing them that the Writers' Center of Indiana is an

essential piece of the arts picture in Indianapolis.

So please, please, please give us your support by attending as many

Writers' Center programs as you can-and take time to introduce others to

what we do.

Here's an update on that!

Novelist Patricia Henley will present "What a Long Strange Trip It's

Been: Writing Out of the Midwest, "the second Clowes Craft Lecture on

Wednesday, May 27 in the Writers' Studio at Butler University. Henley's

novel Hummingbird House was nominated for the National Book Award. She

teaches at Purdue University.

October's talk will be given by mystery writer, S.J. Rozan, as a part of

the Boucheron World Mystery Convention. Mark your calendar for

Wednesday, October 14 at 7 p.m at the Central Library. Start reading

Rozan's books now! You'll love them!

As for the next several weeks, there are still classes available. You

may sign up online, or send a check to WCI, PO

#30407, Indianapolis, IN 46230-0407. (Please call 317-257-2682 for

information. (Classes are listed below.)

Some of you may not be aware of the Writers' Center's community outreach

programs. For the past two summers, we have worked on memoir projects

with senior citizens, veterans, and young women incarcerated at the

Indiana Girls' School. These programs, funded by the Indiana Retirement

Fund and the Efroymson Family Fund at the Indianapolis Senior Citizen

Center at Flanner House, have introduced a wide variety of people to our

organization and, most importantly, brought their words into the world.

The Writers' Center has established a partnership with Very Special Arts

of Indiana, which will sponsor this summer's summer memoir workshop at

the Girls' School. I'll be teaching the workshop again, with Lyn

Jones-and a group of volunteers. Working with these girls has been one

of the most satisfying teaching experiences of my life! They are bright,

funny, passionate-so in need of windows into worlds that, for now, only

writing can bring. Below you'll see one of my favorite pieces of writing

from last summer, by Kyohan:



*N da close of my room

When I need time to think

And put my head together

Juz the smell of the laundry detergent

On my clothes hangin' up

Juz lookin' at myself n

Da mirror of my closet

Makes me feel relazed

Cuz I like to isolate

Away from people so

It calms my nerves and

Relaxes me. I feel as if

My closest friends are there

To comfort me.

In addition to the memoir projects, I've been doing school and library

visits all over the state, thanks to an artists grant from the Indiana

Arts Commission. Most recently, I spent a wonderful day in Delphi,

Indiana-first at Delphi High School and, later, at the Delphi Community


These are great opportunities to introduce people around the state to

the Writers' Center and its programs.

Last, but not least: I had an exciting conversation today with WCI Board

member, Debbie Steiman-Cameron, who has generously agreed to design and

maintain our new website. Watch for it to be up and running by late

summer. I promise will give you /many/ reasons to renew your membership

or become a new member if the Center, if you haven't already made the


But why wait? We need your support now!

Hope to see you at the David Shumate lecture this Monday evening.

Happy Spring!

Barbara Shoup

Executive Director

P.S. As many of you know, the Writers' Center grew in leaps and bounds

under the leadership of our former director, Joanna Wos. I'm happy to

report that Joanna is currently working as an Adult Reference Librarian

at the Lawrence Branch of IMCPL-so stop in and see her to say hello if

you're in the neighborhood. She's also teaching a private fiction

workshop, limited to eight students per session. If you're interested,

you may contact her by phone (228-0974) or via email:


*Novel Ideas*

Instructor: Barbara Shoup

Saturday, April 18

10 a.m.-3 p.m. (Bring a sack lunch)

Cost: $50 members; $75 nonmembers; $37.50 teachers, students with valid

ID & seniors (60 and over) WALK-IN'S WELCOME

Where do ideas for novels come from? How are novels /made? /In this

workshop, participants will explore the craft of novel-writing through a

series of exercises designed to help the would-be novelist focus and

begin the novel he wants to write and to provide strategies for writers

with novels-in progress.

*Your Work in the World*

Instructor: Barbara Shoup

Tuesday, April 21

7-9 p.m.

Cost: Members, FREE; Nonmembers $30 ($15 teachers, students with valid

id and seniors (60 and over)

How do you know where to send your work when it's finished? Do you need

an agent? How do you write a synopsis, a query letter? Is

self-publishing a good idea? Join Writers' Center Program Director

Barbara Shoup for an informative talk about publishing and marketing

your work-with lots of time for your questions. Poetry Master

ClassInstructor: David Shumate

Saturday, April 25

1-4 p.m.

COST: $30 members/$45 nonmembers/$22.50 teachers, students with valid ID

& seniors (over 60)

LIMITED TO 12 PARTICIPANTS (Sign up now! There are still a few places left.)

If you are a serious (maybe even published) poet, but still feel there's

a lot to learn about the craft of poetry, this class is for you.

Award-winning prose poet David Shumate will lead this workshop, offering

comments and useful criticism on up to three of your poems. (Please

bring 12 copies of the poem you'd most like the group to consider.)

*Developing & Publishing Your Nonfiction Book*

Instructor: Nancy Baxter

Saturday, May 2

9:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m. (Bring a brown bag lunch)

Limited to twelve students

COST: $35 members; $50 nonmembers; $25 teachers, students with valid

idea and seniors (60 and over)

This interactive workshop will provide strategies in developing,

researching, and scoping out your nonfiction idea; developing your

manuscript; and the road to publication. Participants will be asked to

submit a description of their idea before the workshop so that the

instructor will be prepared to discuss it on that day. (Details for

submission provided upon registration.)

*Renga Party*

Instructor: Hannah Haas

Sunday, May 3

2-4 p.m.

Cost: $20 members; $30 nonmembers; teachers, students with valid ID, and

seniors (60 and over); SPECIAL FAMILY PRICE $10 per person members/$15

per person nonmembers.

Renga, or "linked poem," has been popular for more than 700 years. In

writing regna, groups of poets take turns composing alternating

three-line and two-line stanzas, often about the seasons, nature, and

love. (The haiku form evolved from the three-line opening stanza of the

renga.) Join us for a short instructional session on the renga, then

participate in writing a contemporary version of this collaborative form

during a walk through the Indianapolis Art Center's gardens. The garden

walk will provide us with ample subject matter, and no previous poetry

writing experience is necessary.


Charles Simic Rescheduled for April 21

Poet Charles Simic, who was scheduled to speak in the Johnson Room on

Thursday night (March 19), has been rescheduled for 7:30 p.m. April 21

in the Krannert Room of Clowes Memorial Hall.

The event is free and open to the public. For more information, call

(317) 940-9861."

The Writers Center is now housed at the art center --- 812 E. 67th St. Indianapolis, IN 46220,

Hope to see you all there.


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