writing news

Foot steps on leaves and announces Writers in the Grove 2018 Author Conference.

Writers in the Grove Authors Conference Announced

For the first time, we will be producing a writers conference specifically for those wishing to move from creative writer to published author.

Writers in the Grove Authors Conference
Saturday, January 27, 2018
9AM-4PM
Forest Grove Senior and Community Center
Forest Grove, Oregon (map)
$60
Proceeds benefit the FGSCC

The day-long conference will feature a variety of classes, individual and small group sessions to help you move from writer to published author.

Deborah Reed Author PhotoThe keynote speaker is Deborah Reed, author of the novels The Days When Birds Come Back, Olivay, Things We Set on Fire, Carry Yourself Back to Me, A Small Fortune, and its sequel, Fortune’s Deadly Descent. She is also frequently featured in Poets & Writers, and holds a Masters in Fine Arts in Creative Writing (fiction) from Pacific University. She is also the co-director of the Black Forest Writing Seminars at the University of Freiburg in Germany. She lives in Manzanita, Oregon.

The faculty of presenters features:

Paulann Peterson Author PhotoPaulann Petersen is an award-winning poet and former Oregon State Poet Laureate. She is a former Stegner Fellow at Stanford University and author of several books of poetry including The Wild Awake, Blood-Silk, A Bride of Narrow Escape, Kindle, The Voluptuary, and Understory. She has also published five chapbooks and her work has been published in many anthologies, magazines, and websites. She teaches poetry workshops for colleges, libraries, and writer’s conferences, and serves on the National Advisory Board for Friends of William Stafford. She will be presenting an afternoon poetry workshop.

Holly Lorincz editorHolly Lorincz is an author of fiction and non-fiction and owner of Lorincz Literary Services, a literary editing agency. She worked for many years as a collaborative literary agent for MacGregor Literary. She is a member of the Editorial Freelancers Association and on the faculty for the Profitable Authors Institute and The Blackbird Studio for writers in Portland, Oregon. Her specialty is in developmental editing, fiction and non-fiction, as well as collaborative writing. Holly will be speaking about the publishing industry and preparing a manuscript for submission.

Chip MacGregor - Literary AgentChip MacGregor is the founder of MacGregor Literary, an author agency, helping authors in the memoir, spirituality, self-help, Christian, true crime, romance, and literary fiction publish their books and negotiate movie and television projects. He will be speaking on how to find, query, and pitch your story to agents and publishers.

Jessica Morrell Author PhotoJessica Morrell is a long-time favorite speaker and teacher on writing fiction, and an accomplished author. Her books, Thanks, But This Isn’t for Us, A (sort of) Compassionate Guide to Why Your Writing is Being Rejected, Between the Lines, Bullies, Bastards, and Bitches: How to Write the Bad Guys of Fiction, and Writing Out the Storm continue to be textbooks for writers determined to improve their writing and get published. She will be speaking about developing a character arc.

Kristen Thiel Publisher - photo by BC Debney, 2017.As a full-time professional writer and editor for fourteen years, Kristin Thiel works with writers, publishers, and other businesses to improve their professional writing skills with a goal toward publishing. She’s also an avid hiker, backpacker, and “yes-sayer” to Northwest fun and exploration. Kristin will be talking about the pitfalls of common writing errors and how to avoid them.

Mary Jane Nordgren AuthorMaryJane Nordgren is a published author of novels, plays, and memoirs, and publisher of the Seeds of… anthologies. Her books, Early: Logging Tales Too Human to be Fiction, Quiet Courage, and Frail the Bridge. She will be presenting a practice session on writing open paragraphs and hooks.

Optional Sessions

By advance registration only, meet with one of the faculty for a 15 minute professional consultation on a single sample of your work. Jessica Morrell will be assisting with memoir or fiction, and Holly Lorincz available to talk through a story idea, plot points, and non-fiction scope and sequence. Cost: $10 paid in advance.

There is also an optional paid small group session for practicing pitching (45 min) with Kristin Thiel. Cost: $5 paid in advance.

About Writers in the Grove 2018 Authors Conference

This is a fundraiser for the Forest Grove Senior and Community Center, a non-profit community center and the host of Writers in the Grove weekly meetings. The Center provides free and low cost meals through their dining services and Meals On Wheels outreach program, as well as a wide range of educational, recreational, wellness, and community events and educational opportunities.

Writers in the Grove is a free weekly workshop for those wishing to develop their creative writing skills. The group meets Mondays at the Forest Grove Senior and Community Center on Mondays from 9-11am, and on the second Saturday of the month at the Forest Grove Public Library from 10:30-noon. Writers in the Grove supports the freedom of expression and creative writing spirit in Forest Grove, Oregon, and around the world.

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Writer to Speak on Blogging at Washington County Writers Forum

The Washington County Writers Forum in Hillsboro, Oregon, presents Emily Grosvenor on September 7th at Insomnia café at 7PM.

Grosvenor will be talking about “Entrance Strategy: A Blueprint for Bloggers to Get Found, Connect with Readers, and Make Big Beautiful Projects Happen.” We assume she will be talking about blogging, social media, digital marketing, and finding an audience for your writing projects.

For more information on the speaker, see her site at Be At Home in the World. For more information in on the monthly events in Hillsboro, check out Washington County Writers Forum.

NaNoWriMo 2016

It is almost time for the annual NaNoWriMo, the National Novel Writing Month. It begins at midnight October 31, and runs through the last day of November.

The goal of NaNoWriMo is to write 50,000 words (and complete a novel) in 30 days.

Don’t stress out yet. The numbers divide down to 1,667 words a day, typically 60-90 minutes of writing.

Join more than 300,000 people globally, and Writers in the Grove members, by participating actively or passively. This can be a solo experience or a highly social one. You can connect online and/or connect in person through the many local activities, events, and write-ins where people gather in a social space to write and get to know each other.

Go to the NaNoWriMo site for more information, and check out last year’s “It’s NaNoWriMo Time: How To, Tips, Techniques, and Survival Advice.”

Last year, Writers in the Grove had about eight people participating, some openly, some secretly, not willing to go public because they were afraid of failure. Let’s clear something up right from the start. There is no failing with this. The goal is to write, and anything that gets you writing, and keeps you writing, is a good thing, whether or not you achieve the 50K goal. Many never reach it, but keep trying year after year.

NaNoWriMo is not just about the word count. It is about the writing.

To handle the diverse Writers in the Grove membership needs, we are once again challenging our members to do one of the following:

  1. Write a minimum of 1,667 words a day.
  2. Write for an hour minimum a day.

What You Will Learn From Participating in NaNoWriMo

Last year was the first year we had many members participating and we all learned so much, it was an amazing journey. Here are some samples:

  • I learned I could write consistently every day.
  • I learned how to write consistently daily.
  • I discovered some fears and road blocks I didn’t know I had.
  • I figured out how to work harder with less research.
  • I just wrote. Usually I spend too much time in my head and less writing, but I just wrote.
  • I learned it isn’t as hard as it sounds.
  • I learned that I had something to say, a story to tell.
  • I realized how much I allow life to get in my way. I sit down to write and the phone rings, doorbell goes off, email pings, thoughts roam – and how much I need to just say no.
  • I realized that the true art in writing is editing after you write.

NaNoWriMo is a chance to note all the things that get in your writing way. Keep a notebook and jot them down when you encounter them, and make a plan around or through them. You will always need those solutions as you charge ahead with your writing career. (more…)

National Poetry Writing Month 2016

Like NaNoWriMo, there is a NaPoWriMo, the National Poetry Writing Month for the entire month of April.

The goal of the project is to write a poem of day every day for 30 days in April.

There are many tips and techniques on their site and other poets and writers are offering tips and prompts throughout the month.

Write to Publish Conference in Portland, Oregon

Write to Publish by Ooligan Press and Portland State University is January 30, 2016, in Portland, Oregon. The all day conference is a fundraiser and features non-credit workshops, speakers, panels, vendors, and presentations by author and professionals in the writing and publishing industry.

The focus of the conference is about writing to publish, and navigating the publishing industry as a writer.

Tickets are available now for $80, with discounts for college and high school students.

Portland WordStock November 7, 2015

WordStock, Portland’s Book Festival, is a one-day event at the Portland Art Museum on Saturday, November 7, 2015. Tickets are available now for $15 and includes admission to the Art Museum and a $5 voucher to spend at the extensive book fair.

Over 80 authors will be present offering writing tips and techniques in all genres. According to the press release (PDF), “There will be conversations between Cheryl Strayed and Diana Nyad; Jon Krakauer and Barry Lopez; Tom Spanbauer and Chuck Palahniuk. There will be interviews with Wendell Pierce, Sandra Cisneros, John Irving, and Stacy Schiff; and panel discussions on topics as wide-ranging as unconventional histories, accidental families, paranormal YA, and so much more.”

A series of writing workshops are also available during the event for an addition fee. They include storytelling, poetry, scene writing, editing, humor, and other topics.

The Bookmark Ball is the opening night celebration held the night before as a fundraiser and social gathering with music. Tickets start at $35 for this special event for the Portland literati.