A Creative Retreat at Camp NaNoWriMo, April 1st – 30th

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Are you ready to breath some fresh air into your writing practice this Spring?  Let it be hot air if you’d like, as long as you lift yourself above the daily grind of revisions and drift into the midst of some new ideas. If conferences and residencies aren’t in the plan for you this year, then check out Camp NaNoWriMo, the April program for storytellers and word counters.

National Novel Writing Month, NaNoWriMo for short, takes place in November every year.  It’s a call to writers to set aside our self-editing in the service of completing a first draft of a novel, defined by the word count of 50,000 words. That’s the promise you make at the beginning of the month and if you fulfill your promise you “win”. Continue reading A Creative Retreat at Camp NaNoWriMo, April 1st – 30th

Turning Truth into High Impact Fiction

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Laura van den Berg and the Isle of Youth

At Studio X on Varick Street last night, FSG launched of Laura van den Berg’s new book, The Isle of Youth, about women (newlyweds, private eyes, magicians)  mired in secrecy and deception. Continue reading Turning Truth into High Impact Fiction

Win two VIP tickets to the Millay Colony for the Arts 40th Anniversary Party!

Millay Colony for the ArtsHave you applied for a residency or received a grant for the arts? How about even thought about applying to get financial support or resources for a project but been scared off by the process (added on October 25th!) If so, share your experience with Litwrap in the comments below, and enter our drawing for two VIP tickets to the Millay Colony’s 40th Anniversary Party @ Roulette on October 28th from 7pm – 9:30pm.

Melissa Buzzeo will read your palm, Kristin Prevallet will offer hypnosis, Selena Kimball will analyze your handwriting, Kathe Izzo will fall in love with you, Mark Wunderlich will read your tarot cards.

(value: $50 each, which includes first-in-line status for palm-readers, a specialty cocktail, and a goody bag to take home) You can also get as many tickets as you like by donating to Millay Colony for the Arts, here.

What You Missed at Book Festival #3: Writing in the Vernacular

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Kate attended this panel, and got an injection of language inspiration.

12:00 P.M. Lessons Learned. With Christopher Beha (What Happened to Sophie Wilder), Paul Harding (Enon), and Robert Antoni (As Flies to Whatless Boys).Moderated by Erika Goldman.

WRITING IN THE VERNACULAR:  Robert Antoni read a passage from his “As Flies to Whatless Boys” and explained that it is a book based in his family history (his mother’s family’s migration from the UK to Trinidad). The passage was written in the vernacular and he read it with an accent. Said Antoni, he believes strongly in writing in the vernacular, teaches a course on it, and even put it in his title. The word “Whatless” is Trinidadian vernacular for something akin to “Worthless.” Continue reading What You Missed at Book Festival #3: Writing in the Vernacular

What You Missed at Book Festival #2: On the Economy and Technology

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For those who couldn’t make it: LitWrap member Mary Lannon shares her takeaways from two Brooklyn Book Festival Panels last Sunday, 9/22 

Like Albert, Mary also attended the “Get a Job!:  To Have and Not Have in America Today” panel, with D.W. Gibson, author of Not Working: People Talk about Losing a Job and Finding their Way in Today’s Changing Economy; Mark Binelli, author of Detroit City is the Place to Be; and Alyssa Quart, author of Republic of Outsiders:  The Power of Amateurs, Dreamers and Rebels,

Here’s what she took away:

“D.W. Gibson noted both the appeal for a lot of folks of the freelancer model—setting one’s one pace and time with its downsides—reduced benefits or obligations from companies.  On the same panel, Mark Binelli also discussed how unions once fought for good working conditions and benefits, shaping a middle class in Detroit. The implication was clear: the rise of freelancers and the decline of unions do seem to be linked.  Continue reading What You Missed at Book Festival #2: On the Economy and Technology

What You Missed at Book Festival #1: Don’t Write What You Know

lady-writingFor those who couldn’t make it: LitWrap member Albert Pulido shares his takeaways from three Brooklyn Book Festival Panels last Sunday, 9/22. 

12:00 P.M. Cities and their Ghosts, Past and Future: What phantoms continue to haunt the landscape of our cities and our dreams? And how will these apparitions appear to us in the future, in a world even more shrouded in mystery? Basque author Kirmen Uribe (Mean While Take My Hand) searches for roots in Spain and abroad; Patricio Pron (My Fathers’ Ghost is Climbing in the Rain) reckons with his father’s hidden life and Chang-Rae Lee (On Such a Full Sea) depicts a bleak vision of an apocalyptic Baltimore. Short readings and discussion. Moderated by Valeria Luiselli.  Thanks to Etxepare Basque Institute.

In this talk, the besieged moderator lost control of her authors with the unfortunate result of brilliant disjointed flashes in a muck of ideas. Continue reading What You Missed at Book Festival #1: Don’t Write What You Know

What Agents Want

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Last weekend, I took a break from caring for my sweet baby girl and luxuriated in two days of the Slice Literary Writers’ Conference here in Brooklyn. The panels were interesting windows into the publishing world, and the esteemed writers present were so inspiring to hear on topics of craft and the writing life. BUT by far the most valuable thing for me about the conference was the pitch meetings with agents.  Continue reading What Agents Want