December 2014 NorthWords


Frank BuresGEOGRAPHY OF MADNESS: The Search for Magic, Medicine, and the Roots of Culture
Presentation by Frank Bures
Dec 16 (Tue) 7 pm
Marshall Professional Building
1301 Rice Lake Road, Duluth

Don’t miss this fascinating presentation by Minneapolis author Frank Bures. Originally from Winona, Bures attended St. Olaf College. He has lived in Italy, Tanzania and Thailand and writes frequently about Africa. He work has been selected for the Best American Travel Writing, and as notable stories in the Best American Essays and Best American Sport Writing. He is a contributing editor at Poets & Writers and has written for the Washington Post Magazine, Harper’s, and Outside. In 2005, Bures traveled to Nigeria to investigate reports that people were being killed for the “magical” theft of other’s genitals. After he returned, he began investigating the so-called “culture-bound syndromes,” voodoo death, and the ways that our culture shapes us, of which people are often unaware. Drawing on research from artificial intelligence, anthropology and psychology, he will show how we create the worlds that, in turn, create us. He will show how the stories people believe influence lives they live.

A screening of the film and discussion of a Duluth writer’s iconic script
Dec 12 (Fri) 7:30 pm
Temple Israel
1602 E. Second St., Duluth

Come to a showing of Frank Capra’s 1939 film “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington” starring Jimmy Stewart at Temple Israel’s Overmann Communal Hall (1602 East Second Street, Duluth). The film has a special resonance for Duluthians, and especially Temple Israel. “Mr. Smith’s” screenwriter, Sidney Buchman, was the offspring of two prominent Jewish families in the Twin Ports and grew up in Duluth’s Jewish community. Buchman wrote the senior play at Duluth Central in 1920. He went on to write scripts for numerous hit films, and won an academy award for “Here Comes Mr. Jordan.” A long-time member of the Communist Party, Buchman was blacklisted in the McCarthy era.

David Ouse, reference librarian at the Duluth Public Library and UMD history professor Alexis Pogorelskin will introduce and discuss the film. Running time: 129 minutes.

A vegetarian pizza dinner will be served. This event is open to the public; the cost of the film and dinner is $5. To reserve your seat and dinner on December 12th, please contact the Temple Israel office, 218-724-8857.


Jim Johnson was crowned the 2014-16 Duluth Poet Laureate on November 9th, 2014, at the College of Saint Scholastica. L to R: Jim Johnson is pictured with Deborah Cooper and Bart Sutter, who previously served in the role. [photo credit: Patty Mester]


Dec 6 (Sat) 10 am-3 pm – Mark Munger will be signing and selling his books, including his latest, Sukulaiset: The Kindred, a historical novel set during the Great Depression and WW II in Finland, Estonia, and Karelia, at the Get It Local Gift Fair. The event is at the Peace Church (1111 N. 11th Ave. E) in Duluth.

Dec 6 (Sat) 12:30-1:30 pm – Margi Preus will be at The Bookstore at Fitgers. She’ll be signing her most recent book, West of the Moon. Her other titles will also be available.

Dec 7 (Sun) 1-3 pm – Mark Munger will be appearing at Redbery Books/Rivers Eatery in Cable, WI as part of Redbery’s annual Author’s Market. Mark will sign and sell his books alongside a half-dozen other regional authors (including some LSW members!)

Dec 14 (Sun) 7:30 pm – Gossamer Road – a poetry/violin due with Gaelynn Lea and Tina Higgins Wussow will perform a holiday show with Wood Blind (an acoustic ska duo) at Teatro Zuccone, 222 E. Superior St., Duluth.

Dec 15 (Mon) 1-3 pm – Mark Munger will be reading from and discussing his latest novel, Sukulaiset, with the Grace Lutheran Church Book Club from 1-3 in the Fireside Room of the church (5454 Miller Trunk Highway, Hermantown, MN).

Dec 15 (Mon) 2-4 pm – Mark Munger will be signing and selling his books at the Aurora Public Library from 2-4 with other regional authors at the library’s Holiday Open House.

Dec 18 (Tue) 7-9 pm – Spoken Word Open Mic at Beaner’s Central, 324 N. Central Ave., Duluth. Hosted by Tina Higgins Wussow. Featured Writer: Teague Alexy. All genres welcome, half priced wine, and trivia in the best listening room in Duluth.

KUDOS – News about our members

Jim Brakken’s memoir “Dale” was published in Creative Wisconsin’s Winter 2014 issue. You can download the magazine here

Viola LaBounty’s essay “Harvesting Pine Boughs” was published in Creative Wisconsin’s Winter 2014 issue. You can download the magazine here

Liz Minette’s poem “October Lines” was published in Calyx – A Journal of Art & Literature by Women, Vol. 28, No. 1, out of Corvallis, Oregon.

Francine Sterle was awarded the 2014 David Martinson–Meadowhawk Prize in Poetry for her collection of poems What Thread?  Red Dragonfly Press is set to publish the book in April, 2015.


Tell your music lover’s story
in the Duluth Superior Symphony Orchestra’s magazine Northern Sounds

The winner’s story will print in the Duluth Superior Symphony Orchestra’s lifestyle magazine, Northern Sounds, the spring issue, in the column titled “Euphony.”. The magazine is distributed at DSSO concerts and through other community outlets.

noun: euphony – the quality of being pleasing to the ear, especially through a harmonious combination of words

Guidelines for Spring 2015 edition:

The nonfiction story should meet the following criteria:

  • It relates to music, directly or indirectly
  • The length is 600-650 words
  • It is submitted no later than Feb. 10, 2015
  • It is a digital submission. Send to:
  • It is a Word document attachment; include name and contact information in body of e-mail. Type “Euphony” in the e-mail’s subject line. DO NOT type submitter’s name on the Word document attachment
  • Not adhering to guidelines will eliminate entry

The full color magazine will print in early March, 2014. E-mail verification will be sent in response to all submissions. The winner will be notified in late February. Thank you for applying your creativity to this endeavor. Please send entries, per above specifications to:


Minnesota Northwoods Writing Conference
June 20-26, 2015
Bemidji State University

Register for the conference at or contact

Mark Doty, Distinguished Visiting Writer

Workshops and instructors include:

  • Tayai Jones, Fiction “Beginnings, Middles and Endings”
  • Matt de la Peña, Young Adult Fiction: “Writing ‘Up’ to Young Adults”
  • Aimee Nezhukumatathil, Poetry: “Jump-Starting Your Poems With Wonder”
  • Joni Tevis, Creative Nonfiction: “Nonfiction and the Nature of Memory”
  • David Gessner, Creative Nonfiction: “Writing From Place”

For more details, including prices, scholarships and housing, visit


2015 Writing Classes

Spend a week on Madeline Island and write! Visit for registration, prices, and housing information

Crafting the True Story: An Exploration of Creative Nonfiction
Instructor: Jacqui Banaszynski – June 1-5

Free-Writing Intensive
Instructor: Douglas Goetsch – June 8-12

Alone Together: Write that Book!
Instructor: Elizabeth Jarrett Andrew – June 15-19

Women’s Memoir
Instructor: Kate Hopper – July 6-10

Inner Journeys: Mindful Travel Writing and Memoir
Instructor: Catherine Watson – July 13-17

How to Plan, Write & Develop a Book: Taking Your Book to Publication
Instructor: Mary Carroll Moore – July 20-24, July 27-31, Sept 21-25



2015 Beyond the Pure Fellowships for Writers
a program of Intermedia Arts
DEADLINE TO APPLY: 6 pm, Dec 9 (Tue)

Attention Emerging MN Writers! Applications are now available for Intermedia Arts’ Beyond the Pure Fellowships for Writers (formerly the SASE Jerome Grants for Emerging Writers), a fellowship program that awards grants of up to $4,000 to four to six emerging Minnesota writers each year. In addition to their grant award, recipients also participate in a nine-month fellowship program that provides peer support, guidance, community, and resources throughout the program year.

Intermedia Arts’ Beyond the Pure Fellowships for Writers places a particular emphasis on increasing the visibility of and providing a platform for emerging writers whose voices have historically been underrepresented in the literary arts, including (but not limited to): writers of color, LGBTQ writers, women, new and recent immigrant communities, Native and Indigenous writers, low-income writers, and writers exploring non-traditional pathways to success.

By providing financial assistance, professional development, and recognition to a culturally, ethnically, socially and socio-economically diverse group of writers, this program strengthens and supports Minnesota’s literary community and provides a platform for many new voices to be heard as they achieve their next level of artistic success.

Visit for application materials, and complete program information.


ARTLines2 Ekphrastic Competition
A national contest for adults and teens to write poetry inspired by five museum artworks

ARTlines is produced in cooperation with the Museum of Fine Arts Houston and is open to students and adults nationwide. Prizes include a $1000 Grand Prize, publication in the ArtLines2 Anthology, and a public reading. Please share with students, writers, and fellow poetry enthusiasts! Get all the details at:

ARTlines2 –  A contest for adults and teens to write poetry inspired by 5 artworks. Each artwork is assigned to 1 of the 5 independent judges. 5 adult winners and 5 teen winners. Cash prizes include $1000 Grand Prize and museum reading and ARTlines2 Anthology (45 poems including finalists). Enter as often as you like. JUDGES: Robert Pinsky,  David M Parsons, Patricia Smith, Mary Szybist, Roberto Tejada.  Free Teen competition (ages 13-19) judged by Writers In The Schools/WITS

Organized by Public Poetry in partnership with the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.


LSW WRITING AND DISCUSSION GROUPS – these groups are open to all writers!

The Writers’ Square Table meets 11:30 am Thursday Nov 18 (third Thursday) at Chester Creek Café, 1902 E. 8th St., Duluth.  Topic: Dialogue in memoir and fiction. All are welcome.

Memoir Group meets this month at Mara Hart’s home at 1:30 pm for a holiday gathering on Sunday Dec 21 (third Sunday).  Please email Mara at to RSVP, get directions and ask questions.

Fiction/Poetry Writing Group will meet 6-8 pm Wed Dec 17 (third Wednesday) at Chester Creek Café, 1902 E. 8th St., Duluth. All are welcome.

Have news to share with Lake Superior Writers members? Send your news to anytime.

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