Westport Writers' Rendezvous: June update – Part 1

Some twenty of us gathered this month at the Westport Barnes & Noble—almost a record! There was lots to talk about, so this post covers Part 1 of this month’s update.
64224187_10157276618571192_3108182503999930368_nFirst, and most important, the Westport Library is reopening this Sunday, June 23, after an almost two-year hiatus while it has been renovated as a new reading, writing and arts space. The new building is amazing and has a great café, with an outside deck overlooking the river, which is a bonus, for those of us requiring regular caffeine top-ups. Various activities will be taking place between 11-4pm, among them two writing programs. From 2-3pm, The Fairfield Scribes, under the able leadership of Alison McBain and Ed Ahern, will be offering a poetry workshop. And at 3pm, there’s a flash fiction/short story writing and submission panel. Both free. I’ll be there, so come and say hello.IMAGINING MONSTERS COVER
To honour the opening, Alison has edited the stories written at the WestportWRITES workshops, into an anthology: Imagining Monsters. Authors will be signing copies at the event, and you can order it in both eBook and print format from Amazon via the link above. Among our members featured in the book are: Ed Ahern, Elizabeth Chatsworth, Sheryl Kayne, Corinne “Mitzy Sky” Taylor, Alison McBain and the two men responsible for WestportWRITES: Cody Daigle-Orians and Alex Giannini. Don’t forget to congratulate them when you stop by the new Writing Center at the Library.
zeb aI should also mention that two of our members are celebrating their publishing successes. Zeb Appel’s contemporary literay novel, Good Luck and a Benevolent God, was published recently. And Bette Bono has sold her debut novel, The Better Angels, to a small publisher in Maine; All Things that Matter. Way to go!
Authors Publish is offering a free copy of The 2019 Guide to Manuscript Publishers until June 23 only.   The book gives you 178 detailed reviews of traditional publishers who don’t require an agent in order to submit. It covers most genres including poetry, and is a great resource if you are looking to publish a book. And those of you looking for a small press to submit your book to, could do worse than check out the list of over 400 small presses on the Poets & Writers website. The database is sortable by genre, and includes information on reading periods etc.
Greenwich PEN Women, an organization for Writers, Artists and Musicians, is hosting three open mic nights this year. The first is next Tuesday, June 25, at Cos Cob Library, at 7pm. Sign up to read five minutes-worth of your work in any genre. Two more open mic events will follow on July 13 and October 2. Contact Diane Morello at dkmorello@gmail.com for more details.
poetsJune 29 sees the Norwalk Arts Festival in full swing, and among the craft booths, food truck etc, the Poets, Writers & Storytellers Stage will be an all-day event of poetry and prose!
Two poetry reading programs hosted by Jerry T. Johnson, one from 11-1:30, the other from 3-5pm. It takes places at the Lockwoood-Matthews Mansion, in Norwalk CT. The former and current poets laureate of Norwalk will be reading, as will Poets’ Salon members Chachanna Simpson, and Mary Keating, (morning), and Jack Powers, Alison McBain, and Ed Ahern.
You can stop by and listen to the morning session, then check out the artists booths at the festival, grab a bite to eat and return to the stage to hear some more!
Autumn House Press is running its Full-Length Non-fiction Contest until June 30.  The cost to enter is $30, and they accept non-fiction submissions of 200-300 pages. The winner will receive book publication, $1,000 advance against royalties, and a $1,500 travel/publicity grant to promote his or her book. All finalists will be considered for publication.
The Norwalk Library is offering a free five-week summer creative writing program. New and experienced writers can try a fresh approach to writing concise, descriptive flash fiction stories, dialogue, a group story in monologue, and more. Mondays 10:30 am – 12 pm on July 8, 15, 22, 29, and August 5. Registration required: Call 203-899-2780 ext. 15133 or email clahey@norwalkpl.org
Member Amy Oestreicher will be launching her book, My Beautiful Detour, at Barnes and Noble in Westport on July 11 at 6:30pm. I’ll be interviewing this extraordinary artist/writer/musician, and there’ll be a reading, musical performance and book signing, plus refreshments and a literary door prize gift basket. Free. More details here.
And don’t forge to check out the Writers’ Calendar page for more events. 🙂
Part 2 follows on Monday. Happy writing!


Leave a Comment