December 2015 NorthWords

Felicia S new6-Session LSW MEMOIR WORKSHOP
Instructor: Felicia Schneiderhan
Thursdays: Jan. 14, 21,

28 & Feb. 4, 11, 18, 2016
6-8 pm
Marshall Prof. Building, Duluth 

Tuition $90 (LSW members); $115 (all others)

Memoir is one of the most popular forms of writing today. In this six-week workshop, participants will study a variety of memoirs and learn traditional and experimental forms for writing their own. In-class activities will teach techniques for developing scenes, incorporating research, heightening overall structure and movement, and exploring the variety of writing forms available to the memoirist. If you are an experienced memoirist or just getting started, this active workshop will give you tools to best tell your story.

Felicia Schneiderhan is an award-winning author based in Duluth. In 2015, she published the memoir Newlyweds Afloat, detailing more than two years that she and her husband Mark lived aboard a trawler in Chicago.

To register:  Please contact Marty Sozansky at 218-341-4363 or email Tuition fees will be collected on Jan. 14, the first night of class.


(and we’re giving away two desktops)

By January 1, 2016, Lake Superior Writers will have relocated to downtown Duluth–we’ve found a beautiful new home in the Board of Trade Building at 301 West 1st Street, third floor! Our move is made necessary by Marshall School’s decision to turn the Marshall Professional Building into a dormitory for international students. (Although we’ll be moving out this month, LSW writing groups that have been using the conference room in the building may continue to do so until Feb. 28, 2016.)

Our new office will be located inside the suite occupied by Duluth Sister City International; we’ll have our own lovely office complete with desk and a few pieces of other furniture, use of Wi-Fi, access to an ample storage room as well as access to a spacious common area we can use for classes, workshops, and Board meetings. Next month we’ll post some pictures of our new space!

We have a couple of items which are FREE to anyone who would like to haul them away:

deskA piece of laminated MDF (medium density fiberboard) measuring 96-3/4 X 23-1/4 inches that we have used as a desktop (with the ends placed upon two-drawer file cabinets – see photo at left). The laminate is wood-grained with one finished edge, and makes a great, large writing desk (or craft work table, woodworking table or sewing surface…) when placed on top of 2-drawer filing cabinets. A second piece of MDF measuring 48 X 23 inches in the same finish and with one finished edge is also available.

They’re both in very good condition. Interested? Please call Gail Trowbridge at 218-728-1354 or email to arrange a pickup time. First come, first served!



First Folio! The Book That Gave Us Shakespeare
LSW seeking people to help plan event(s) for First Folio Exhibit at UMD, Oct 3-26, 2016

We’re looking for a few people to help LSW plan some activities for writers around the exhibit of the Shakespeare First Folio, 1623, at the Tweed Museum, UMD Oct. 3 through 26, 2016.

The First Folio is the first collected edition of Shakespeare’s plays. Published in 1623, seven years after Shakespeare’s death, it is one of the most valuable printed books in the world. The Folger Shakespeare Library, in partnership with the Cincinnati Museum Center and the American Library Association, is touring the First Folio to 50 states in 2016 in honor of the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death. UMD was selected as Minnesota’s host site in February 2015.

Marty Sozansky, LSW board member, attended an early planning meeting this past summer, and learned that LSW and other arts organizations are invited to participate as programming partners. What might LSW do? So far, we plan to offer a poetry workshop focused on writing sonnets, taught by LSW member Cal Benson. We’re also hoping to arrange a field trip for LSW members to view the folio and get together for some socializing after. But we’re looking for more ideas (and help)! Please contact us at if you would like to be part of a planning group to create some great events for writers while the exhibit is here.


LSW seeks facilitators for First Sunday Amazing Grace Prose Open Mic

Last winter and spring, LSW members facilitated an open mic at Amazing Grace in Duluth’s Canal Park on the first Sunday of each month. People were invited to gather at 6 pm, order dinner/snack and sign up for the reading, which began at 6:30. The program ended last summer, but we’d love to see it revived. Amazing Grace is also eager to see it restarted; all we need is a facilitator (or two people who could take turns) to commit to being there each month, sign up writers, and do a little introduction before the reading starts. One of our members has volunteered to facilitate starting in May, but we’re looking for a volunteer or a couple of volunteers to facilitate this winter. Does this sound like you? Please send an email to if you’re interested.


KUDOS – News about our members

Angela Ahlgren had several poems published in the last few months. “Solstice” and “At the Koitto Boarding House, 1947” appear in Amethyst and Agate: Poems of Lake Superior; “Between Us” and “Driving Home from the Funeral, 1982” were published in Kippis: A Literary Journal (Summer 2015, 8.1); and “After the Gray” appears in The Talking Stick, Volume 24.

Eric Chandler’s poem “Sawhorse” was published in the Fall-Winter 2015 edition of Sleet Magazine:

Laurie Herztel of the Minneapolis Star Tribune selected Holy Cow! Press’ poetry anthology as one of five regional gift book choices. “Amethyst and Agate: Poems of Lake Superior, Edited by Jim Perlman, et al. (Holy Cow! Press, 163 pages, $18.95.) These 70 poems tell stories of storms and ice, nostalgia and longing for home. Together, they paint a picture of the power of Lake Superior, the way it dominates the landscape. ‘In winter/it is another world,’ writes Linda Glaser. ‘Think of it as a kingdom of ice,’ writes Norita Dittberner-Jax. But Susan Hawkinson thinks of it in summer: ‘Big Lake and sky /waves and light/let the world wait … /while we refuse/all calls from shore.’ Color plates of 15 paintings by local artists are a nice complement to these fine poems.”–Laurie Hertzel, Books Editor

Linda LeGarde Grover’s novel The Road Back to Sweetgrass has received the Wordcraft Circle of Native Writers and Storytellers 2015 Fiction Award.

Mark Maire won Red Dragonfly Press’s 2015 Emergence Chapbook Series Prize. His manuscript, Clear Day in January, will be published in the spring of 2016.

Upcoming Events

Dec 7 (Mon) 6:30 pm – Open Mic at First Stage – The Words & Lyrics mic is yours! Writers and readers are invited to bring original or favorite prose and poetry and take turns reading at First Stage of the Lyric Center for the Arts, 514 Chestnut St., Virginia. This event is part of an ongoing monthly series for appreciation of the written and spoken word. And this month, there’s an added attraction – the Lyric Center’s Holiday Boutique is open for browsing for that perfect
holiday gift!

Dec. 10 (Thur) 5 pm – publication reading and booksigning for Portrait of an Artist, Paintings by Sarah M. Brokke (Holy Cow! Press, 2015) at the Duluth Art Institute, 506 West Michigan Street, Duluth. The event is free and open to the public. For more information, please contact 218-724-1653.

Dec 12 (Sat) – Book launch of Jim Anderson’s Discovering America One Marathon at a Time, published by Badger Valley Publishing. At the age of 54, Anderson challenged himself to run a marathon in every state. His book is an exploration of our nation’s highways and byways through the eyes of an amateur runner. Anderson’s book launch will take place at Redbery Books in Cable.

Dec 17 (Thu) 7-9 pm – Spoken Word Open Mic at Beaner’s Central. Featured Guest: Felicia Schneiderhan, Author of Newlyweds Afloat. Hosted by Tina Higgins Wussow. Trivia and half-priced wine.

Dec 19 (Sat) 12 noon – 2 pm, – Margi Preus will be signing her new books for young readers, The Bamboo Sword and Enchantment Lake, as well as other titles. The Bookstore at Fitgers, Duluth.

Jan 9 (Sat) 8:45 am – 12 noon – Gary Boelhower will present a workshop based on his book Mountain 10: Climbing the Labyrinth Within (co-authored with Joe Miguez and Tricia Pearce) on at the Marshall Professional Building. Mountain 10 is a labyrinth-based process for listening to the inner teacher, the wisdom at the core of the self. The workshop will help you envision your boldest possibilities for 2016. Cost is $60 with the book or $40 if you already have the book. Call Gary at 218-724-4985 to register by January 6. The workshop is limited to 15 persons.


Hubbs Children’s Literature Conference
Feb 20, 2016, 8:30 am-3 pm
University of St. Thomas (Minneapolis Campus)
1000 LaSalle Avenue, MOH 217; Minneapolis, MN 55403
$20 students; $60 general admission
(Buffet lunch, parking, and CEUs included in registration.)

Who should attend? Authors, illustrators, teachers, parents, storytellers, librarians, students—anyone interested in encouraging the use of quality children’s literature in homes, schools, and communities. Featured speakers KWAME ALEXANDER and CATHERINE THIMMESH will discuss their latest works and share their creative process. In addition to the featured speakers local authors and industry experts will share their knowledge on using mentor texts for nonfiction writing, serving as a member of the Caldecott Committee, and self-publishing. Learn more and register:


Call for Nominations: 28th Annual Northeastern Minnesota Book Awards

UMD’s Library and Friends of the Duluth Public Library are seeking nominations for the 28th NEMBA. Books may be nominated in one of six categories. A nonrefundable $25 entry fee is required for each nominated title. Categories are Nonfiction, Fiction, Art/Photography, Children’s Literature, Poetry and Memoir.  The awards recognize books that are substantially representative of northeastern Minnesota in the areas of history, culture, heritage or lifestyle. For the purposes of the awards, northeastern Minnesota includes the following counties: Aitkin, Carlton, Cook, Itasca, Kanabec, Koochiching, Lake, Pine and St. Louis. Nominated books must have been originally released in 2015. The award prizes will include $200, 100 book seals, and a plaque for the winner in each category. Books receiving honorable mention in each category will be recognized with a plaque and 100 book seals. To nominate a book, visit the NEMBA website at For information, call 218-726-6843 or email Nominations must be postmarked by  Feb. 1, 2016.


UW-Madison Writers’ Institute Coming April 2016

The University of Wisconsin-Madison’s 27th annual Writers’ Institute expands to three full days in 2016, featuring best-selling authors and prominent writing coaches as well as literary agents and editors on the hunt for new talent. Registration is now open for the conference, scheduled for April 15-17 at the Madison Concourse Hotel, that helps both aspiring and established writers take their skills and their careers to the next level. The Writers’ Institute is the Midwest’s premier writers’ conference, where participants get practical tips for improving and selling their work. They have the unique opportunity to pitch manuscripts to industry professionals, who offer feedback and, in some cases, a publishing contract.

“The conference has helped writers of all ages refine their manuscripts, find agents, and publish their work,” says Laurie Scheer, director of the institute. “It attracts authors in many genres, including science fiction, romance, detective, young adult, literary fiction, steampunk, poetry and memoir.”

Guest speakers will share firsthand accounts of success in the publishing industry. Hank Phillippi Ryan, author of “The Wrong Girl” and “Truth Be Told,” has won five prestigious Agatha Awards for her crime fiction. Josie Brown is the author of the popular novel series “The Housewife Assassin” and “Totlandia.” J. Ryan Stradal’s literary novel “Kitchens of the Great Midwest” was optioned for a film treatment after making the New York Times bestseller list last summer. Among the presenters from New York City literary agencies is UW-Madison alumna Jaida Temperly, who represents children’s and adult fiction authors for New Leaf.

The Writers’ Institute includes lectures, workshops, practice pitch sessions, manuscript critiques, agent Q&A’s, and social events in an intimate setting. Participants get to know one another and network with presenters. New this year is a literary event where attendees can read from their work.

“The Writers’ Institute advances the Wisconsin Idea by reaching lifelong learners from around the state and beyond,” says Jeffrey S. Russell, dean of the Division of Continuing Studies and vice provost for lifelong learning. “It provides them with a transformative experience – one that may launch a hobby or a new career. With the help of UW-Madison expertise, the authors can find their voices, then find their readers.”

To register, visit


LSW Writing Groups

Dec 16 (Wed) 6-8 pm – The 3rd Wednesday Writers Group will meet at the Marshall Professional building, 1301 Rice Lake Road, main conference room.

Dec 17 (Thur) 11:30 am – The Writer’s Square Table meets at the Sami Center: 4915 E. Superior Street, Ste. #205. Topic: Sharing of your favorite holiday poem, story, passage, etc.

Dec 20 (Sun) 1:30 pm – The Memoir Group meets at Mara Hart’s home, 205 W. Kent Road, Duluth. This will be a holiday gathering. Please bring something to share and to read, if you wish. If you need directions call 218-728-1253 or 218-409-4108. All are welcome.

The Ink Slingers will not meet in December.